Randy Pullen, a spokesman for the audit commissioned by state Senate Republicans, said auditors are now looking for an attorney who can read braille. About 50,000 braille ballots were cast in last year’s election.
Jeff Ellington, the CEO of Runbeck Election Services, the company that manufactured Maricopa County’s ballots, said in an interview Monday that he has no idea what auditors are looking for on the ballots they are examining. He said his company looked at its ballots under ultraviolet lights after seeing auditors do so weeks ago, “trying to figure out what they could possibly be looking for.”
“It’s not being disclosed what they’re looking for, what those processes are, and that’s frustrating,” Ellington said.
“You’re left to speculate on what they’re doing,” he said. “You’re watching the live feed on the video, you’re left to speculate as to what they’re actually trying to accomplish.”
As the audit progresses, its venue — the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix — has seen visits from a growing roster of pro-Donald Trump Republicans, including Pennsylvania lawmakers who said they would seek a similar audit of their own state’s results.
And on Friday, GOP officials and candidates from several states trekked to the Coliseum. Among them were several Republican lawmakers from Wisconsin, in a trip that Assembly Speaker Robin Vos had approved, and former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, who resigned in 2018 after being accused of blackmailing a woman with whom he was having an affair and is now attempting a comeback as a Senate candidate.
And Republican lawmakers from Georgia — another state where GOP elections officials have repeatedly said there is no evidence to support Trump’s lies about widespread voter fraud, and where audits have found no evidence of wrongdoing — also visited Arizona last week.
Arizona state Senate President Karen Fann — whose Republican caucus launched the audit — and state Sen. David Gowan were on the audit floor for about 45 minutes Monday but did not speak with reporters there.
Arizona’s so-called audit of the 2020 election results of Maricopa County, the home of Phoenix, has been plagued by problems.
The audit is being conducted by a Florida-based company called Cyber Ninjas, whose chief executive officer, Doug Logan, had previously pushed Trump’s conspiracy theories about the election on social media. The company, and the state senators who commissioned the audit, have not offered a full account of who is funding the audit or the companies involved in conducting it.
It has been broadcast by the pro-Trump propaganda outlet One America News, which has also solicited donations for the audit. OAN reported last week that huge numbers of ballots were missing — triggering a wave of aggregated reports by pro-Trump conspiracy websites. But Pullen, the audit’s spokesman, told a pool reporter Monday that reports of hundreds of thousands of missing ballots are “crazy.”
Experts have said the auditors are ignoring standard procedures for post-election reviews and are following processes that could introduce errors and bias into the results of their count.
Nationally, some Republicans have similarly criticized the Arizona proceedings.
“Some jurisdictions, based on disinformation, have utilized abnormal post-election audit methodologies that may put the integrity of the voting process at risk and undermine public confidence in our democracy,” Garland said.
Source: CNN – US News