Election Day in Maricopa County, Arizona, was a disaster. Given the high-stakes ramifications of the election’s outcome, it’s reasonable and understandable that voters and candidates would be upset at what happened that day.
Republican Kari Lake is locked and loaded, legally speaking, and she is attempting to bring transparency to the situation through the courts, especially regarding what happened with multiple ballot machines and other unfortunate situations that she claims left voters disenfranchised at the polling booth on November 8.
While the election has been formally certified by the state, according to JustTheNews, a new development regarding a sizable ballot total discrepancy is already raising eyebrows, as the number of ballots it includes isn’t far off from the total number of votes by which Lake lost to her competitor, Secretary of State Katie Hobbs.
Maricopa County election officials have allegedly had an issue reconciling a recently discovered discrepancy of roughly 16,000 outstanding ballots.
Given that a razor-thin 17,000 votes decided the race between Lake and Hobbs, one can imagine the questions raised.
The revelation regarding the total ballot discrepancy was brought to light in an email from November 10, sent by Arizona Recorder Stephen Richer to other top election officials, including Board of Supervisors Chair Bill Gates and Elections Director Scott Jarrett.
The email was obtained through a public records request by the America First Legal Foundation.
Specifically, the 16,000 ballot discrepancy was the county’s estimated remaining ballot totals versus the number reported by the Arizona Secretary of State’s office.
“Unable to currently reconcile SOS listing with our estimates from yesterday,” Richer said. He pointed out the difference in numbers. Maricopa County, at the time, had 392,000 ballots waiting to be counted, while the Arizona Secretary of State’s official numbers indicated that there were still 407,664 outstanding ballots.
The Governor-Select certified her own election anywayhttps://t.co/i43LEhH9hN
— Kari Lake War Room (@KariLakeWarRoom) December 18, 2022
“So there’s a 15,000 difference somewhere,” Richer added in the email.
The number is large enough to add yet another layer of skepticism for many who wonder if Maricopa County’s results for the 2022 midterms were legitimate.
At the very least, it’s confusing.
Twitter users, especially Lake’s supporters, unsurprisingly reacted harshly to the revelation of the outstanding ballot discrepancy.
“Maricopa county is stonewalling. They’re not going to turn over the routers, chain of custody, or ballot images where discrepancy’s were found. What are they trying to hide,” one conservative influencer tweeted.
Maricopa county is stonewalling. They’re not going to turn over the routers, chain of custody, or ballot images where discrepancy’s were found.
What are they trying to hide.
— Kambree (@KamVTV) July 15, 2021
It should be stated clearly that the discrepancy doesn’t mean that Lake would have won the election. We’re not even sure exactly what it means yet.
Even if all of the outstanding ballots were for Lake, which statistically is unlikely, it wouldn’t change the election outcome at this point.
But this situation underscores the glaring need for states to continue upgrading and fortifying their election processes.
In this day and age, with technology expanding at an exponential pace, there’s simply no excuse as to why some states, and counties, have so many ridiculous issues with vote results, especially from elections with such profound effects on the nation.