(USA Features) Democrats have filed suit to block an effort in Arizona to audit the 2020 election results led by state Senate Republicans.
The suit, filed Thursday by the Arizona Democratic Party and the lone Democrat on the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, alleges that Republican Senate President Karen Fann and another GOP senator promised a judge they would protect voter privacy and ballot secrecy before he ruled that the Senate could gain access to some 2.1 million ballots as well as the tabulation machines used to count them, the Associated Press reported.
However, the suit claims that Fann and Sen. Warren Peterson’s promises were “illusory” because they outsourced the recount, which is scheduled to begin Friday, to an “inexperienced third party with clear bias.”
The lawsuit, which was filed by the state party and county Supervisor Steve Gallardo, asks for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction to stop the audit and recount.
The suit alleges that a lack of transparency in the audit will cause “irreparable harm to the integrity of Arizona’s election systems” as well as the privacy promised to Arizona voters by law and the trust placed in election officials to handle their ballots with confidentiality.
“The sole reason for this lawsuit and injunctions is to protect the sanctity of the ballots and more importantly to preserve voters’ privacy from a sham audit that has been corrupted by agitators and conspiracy theorists,” Gallardo wrote on Twitter.
1/ The sole reason for this lawsuit and injunctions is to protect the sanctity of the ballots and more importantly to preserve voters’ privacy from a sham audit that has been corrupted by agitators and conspiracy theorists. This corrupted process will not be transparent, dark
— Supervisor Steve Gallardo (@Steve_Gallardo) April 22, 2021
Fann pushed back on those concerns, noting that the ballots are being guarded by a bonded and certified 24-hour security force, locked in cages and monitored 24 hours a day by a public live stream video, the AP reported.
Supporters of former President Donald Trump have expressed doubts that the vote count in Maricopa County late fall was legitimate, which they add further casts doubt on President Joe Biden’s narrow victory in the state.