I am a Republican, a two-time Donald Trump voter and a resident of Maricopa County, Arizona. Though I did not believe the 2020 election was stolen, there were lots of Republicans on my side who did.
There is lots of uncertainty on both sides of the aisle regarding the integrity of our election strategy: Many Democrats frequently explained the 2016 election was rigged as a result of”Russian collusion.” Hillary Clinton has said it was stolen and wrote as far in her book about the 2016 effort, while Stacey Abrams still won’t acknowledge her race for governor of Georgia was not stolen out of her.
So I had no problem with the Arizona Senate performing its audit of the 2020 elections in Maricopa County — a fair, comprehensive and transparent audit — based on the criteria it set out in December. The purpose, we were repeatedly told then, was”to verify the machines did what they are supposed to do,” according to Senate President Karen Fann, and also to”restore confidence that the election was held free of’tampering, manipulation and fraud,”’ and –Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Eddie Farnsworth said.
I have the utmost respect for lots of the individuals involved in the audit.
But in the start of the actual audit process, there were things happening that should have concerned everyone who’s concerned with restoring confidence in our system and ensuring there wasn’t any tampering, fraud or manipulation.
If the Democrats in Arizona had done , let alone allthe very same things after losing a statewide election here, I — and each Republican — would be yelling to their audit to be closed down, too.
They hired a firm to lead the audit that has little to no expertise at election audits and has a predisposed belief that the election was stolen. That company gave volunteers blue ink pens because of their auditing when that color ink wasn’t assumed to be close ballots — just red ink pens are.
Then we found out the auditors were using ultraviolet lights and special cameras apparently to chase down rumors spread on social websites there were Trump watermarks about the”real” ballots (there weren’t ) and that as many as 40,000 illegal ballots shipped in from Asia were recognizable by bamboo fibers (there weren’t, and none were found).
When asked about it, audit pioneers said they were”busting myths.”
Finally, one of the vital concerns animating the Senate’s need for an audit at the conclusion of 2020 was the question of whether any ballot machines were linked to the world wide web, which could have been a serious security violation. The Senate subpoenaed the county’s routers for forensic testing, but the sheriff (a Democrat) and the county attorney (a Republican) both denied for fear of hackers obtaining access to sensitive data; an independent audit conducted to the county revealed that the election equipment had never been connected to the internet.
However, a short time following the audit started, observers in the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office found a wireless router on the audit servers. The auditors said it was never linked to the world wide web, and they promised to make it available for forensic testing. (It’s unclear if they have done so to date.) At the very least, it was a huge optics mistake to have a router .
If the Democrats at Arizona had done any, let alone allthe same things after dropping a statewide election here, I — and every Republican — could be yelling to their audit to be shut down, also.
I think that the auditors have missed the goal of convincing the people that it is a thorough and impartial audit.
One of the 2.1 million ballots being inspected for bamboo fibers, mysterious watermarks and also my paper-folding methodology is mine. I am — and we all should be concerned when anyone is managing or conducting tests on our ballots. I never have and never will question the integrity of this Arizonans involved in attempting, after four decades of queries about election integrity, to repay these questions once and for all. But we should question the clinics that are being used.
The auditors needed to terminate the audit for around a week because their lease was up. When they wanted to exude confidence in the auditthey might have used that time to give the people a report of what they found — or didn’t locate — up to there. A midpoint report of findings would have gone a very long way to show people like me that this was all happening in good faith and could achieve its goals. For instance, a law enforcement officer granted a surveillance warrant with a judge must give periodic reports to the estimate which the surveillance is bearing fruit or else the judge won’t allow the surveillance to continue.
But now, I believe the auditors have missed the goal of convincing the public it is a thorough and impartial audit.
I said my respect for all those Arizonans involved in the audit; the same regard ought to be given to those Arizonans contradictory it. To be able to think that the 2020 election has been stolen and is being covered up, one has to feel the Maricopa County attorney, the Maricopa County sheriff, the former and current Maricopa County recorders as well as the entire Maricopa Board of Supervisors are in on it. (They aren’t.)
It is also my view that, together with the 2022 elections fast approa