PHOENIX — We now have a clearer picture of who will be on the ballot to replace Alistair Adel as Maricopa County Attorney. Adel stepped down from the position two weeks ago to deal with health issues. It was a mad dash to secure enough signatures to be on the August ballot. Democratic candidates needed at least 4,300 signatures and Republican candidates at least 4,500 signatures to qualify.
"We were concerned about whether or not we could even do it in 13 days, the public showed up for me and did it in 21 hours," said candidate Julie Gunnigle.
Gunnigle is the lone Democrat. She'll run unopposed in the August primary, waiting for Republican voters to choose between Goodyear City Attorney Gina Godbehere Thomas, Maricopa County Prosecutor Rachel Mitchell, and Anni Foster, the General Counsel for Governor Ducey.
"I understand there is concerns out there. For 10 days I've been meeting with community groups nonstop and everybody is bringing up this issue," said Gina Godbehere Thomas of the 2020 election. For Republican candidates winning over voters in August may require them to relitigate the 2020 presidential election results in Maricopa County.
"Mr. Biden got the most votes in Maricopa County," said Rachel Mitchell. Mitchell may be known best for her role cross examining the woman who accused then Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sex abuse during Kavanaugh's Senate confirmation hearing in 2018.
"Based on everything we know there's been no finding that Arizona state law was violated," Mitchell said of the election process.
Anni Forster turned in over 10,000 signatures, more than any other candidate. Foster wouldn't declare who she believes won the 2020 election between President Biden and former President Trump, saying only the matter is resolved. "I think the 2020 election is over and the people of Maricopa County and the state of Arizona are looking forward to the next election," Foster said.
Over the next 10 business days, the signatures the candidates collected can be challenged. It's unlikely that will happen.