PHOENIX — Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich released an interim report on his office’s investigation into the 2020 general election Tuesday. In a letter sent to State Senate President Karen Fann, he says the investigation revealed “serious vulnerabilities that must be addressed.”
The letter cites four issues specifically: non-cooperation by the county in the investigation, issues with early vote signature verification, problems with early vote chain of custody, and the use of private grant money in the funding of the election. Additionally, the Attorney General recommended that future election auditing should be done by the state’s auditor general, as well as for increased penalties for election crimes and stronger protections for whistleblowers.
Several top of the ticket candidates are already responding to Brnovich’s letter. Gubernatorial candidate Matt Salmon (R) says the “common sense reforms are needed to strengthen the integrity of our elections." He advocates the state returning to precinct voting, which effectively ends Arizona’s popular and widely used ballot by mail system.
Jim Lamon, a US Senate candidate, and opponent to Mark Brnovich in the Republican primary, called the report a “nothing burger” and implied that the report was released today due Brnovich slipping in recent political polls.
.@brnoforaz’s Election Integrity report is a "Nothing Burger" despite having the Maricopa Ct audit findings on his desk for 6 mos.— Jim Lamon (@jim_lamon) April 6, 2022
Arizona voters want a "Get Stuff Done" US Senator - they are with Jim Lamon. Brno's own polling shows Lamon surging & now leading by 6 points. https://t.co/LYLqAB9kUU pic.twitter.com/uWv5hCZXx2
Noticeably absent from the letter was a lack of any issues stemming from the State Senate’s months-long ballot review conducted last spring.
An internal review done by the Maricopa County Elections Department released in January found that only 87 of more than 53,000 ballots deemed "questionable" by the ballot review were potentially illegally cast.
Maricopa County sent out the following response to the report:
Read the full report online here.