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Arizona Republican lawmakers tell party chairwoman Kelli Ward to audit her election

Kelli Ward AP
Posted at 9:21 AM, Feb 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-04 13:25:15-05

PHOENIX — State Representative Kevin Payne (R) Peoria District 21 called on Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward to allow for an immediate audit of the state party’s Jan. 23 election.

Payne writes in a letter, signed by 16 of his Republican colleagues in the legislature, that the party chairwoman is “undermining efforts for transparency and accountability in our election process.”

On Wednesday, a resolution was introduced in the State Senate holding the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors in contempt for not turning over ballots along with other records related to the 2020 presidential election. The county is currently in the process of auditing the election results.

There were at least a half-dozen challenges filed involving the results of the Arizona Republican Party’s election of officers and legislative district committee leaders.

Allegations security was lax and voters were not checked before they voted were among the complaints. One candidate was told she won, only to be pulled aside a short time later and told she actually lost. Ward did not win re-election until a second ballot vote. Ward ignored calls for a recount.

In her role as State Party Chairwoman, Ward has led the "Stop The Steal" movement in Arizona.

She demanded recounts and audits despite failing to produce any evidence that Maricopa County’s presidential election vote totals were rigged.

RELATED: Valley business leaders accuse Arizona Republican Party leaders of lying about election results

Ten separate court challenges were dismissed.

Only the Arizona Senate Judiciary Committee’s insistence to audit the vote remains to be decided. That effort, in the view of lawmakers, is being overshadowed by Ward’s refusal to allow an audit of her own election.

Payne writes: “This inconsistency is simply not acceptable.”

Read the full letter here.