It’s been five days since the midterm elections, and the winner of the gubernatorial race in Arizona has still not been announced. On Sunday, Republican candidate Kari Lake appeared on Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures” to blast her state’s election officials, saying:
I consider someone’s vote their voice. I think of it as a sacred vote. And it’s being trampled the way we run our elections in Arizona. I have been sounding the alarm for two years. Nothing got done. Very little got done last legislative session. And we need to get in there and restore faith in our elections.
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) November 13, 2022
As of this writing, Democrat Secretary of State Katie Hobbs is leading the race 50.79 percent to 49.21 percent with 93.9 percent of the votes counted, according to Decision Desk Headquarters. Lake continued:
We can’t be the laughingstock of elections anymore here in Arizona. And, when I’m governor, I will not allow it. I just won’t…
It’s embarrassing. It’s wrong. And we need people who are competent running our elections. This incompetency or maladministration is outrageous. And I think the good thing is that more people are waking up to the fact that Arizona has real troubles when it comes to elections.
Many of the ballots remaining to be tallied are from the state’s most populous county, Maricopa. Lake blasts her opponent Hobbs for not recusing herself from her role as secretary of state, effectively overseeing this election—which she herself is running in. If that’s not a conflict of interest, I don’t know what is. Lake:
We called for her to recuse herself July of last year of 2021, right after we got into the race, recognizing that there’s a major ethical problem there. Obviously, just the optics of it looks bad. And she didn’t do that.
Even though many people been calling for her to recuse herself, it creates problems to say the least.
I’ll say. Meanwhile, the chairman of Maricopa County’s Board of Supervisors, ironically named Bill Gates, hit back at anyone who would dare criticize his (terrible) performance. After the RNC and Senate candidate Blake Masters questioned the counting process, Gates responded:
The suggestion by the Republican National Committee that there is something untoward going on here in Maricopa County is absolutely false and again, is offensive to these good elections workers.
Unfortunately, Masters’ Democrat opponent, incumbent Senator Mark Kelly, was declared the victor in that race Friday night.
Lake also appeared on Huckabee Saturday night, and decried some of the voting processes in Arizona:
On election day, knowing that our hard-core Republicans, our MAGA Republicans, were going to show up to vote in person, more than a third of our poll location had issues with the machines not working, had long lines of more than two, sometimes three hours, and the machines weren’t working, the tabulation machines weren’t working.
And so we had serious problems. I don’t know if was a nefarious act, or just incompetence but regardless, we have to change it. We can’t have the whole world waiting on Arizona, the whole United States waiting on Arizona, to find out where the balance of power lies.
My colleague Cameron Arcand has been following Kari Lake’s campaign on the ground, and he reports that she still has a path to victory and is still confident of an eventual win.
Final results are expected sometime in the next few days—possibly a full week after voting day. Insane.
The bottom line in this whole affair is that it stinks, as Lake said, either of incompetence or nefariousness. There is also the option that both things are true. Anyone who questions what is occurring is called an “election denier,” but how are you supposed to trust the results from this amateurish election crew? I’ve often argued that focusing on denying the 2020 results is not a winning strategy because there’s simply no way to undo them. The focus needs to be on making sure this and future elections are counted fair and square.
However, when a state like Arizona takes days if not weeks to produce results, it makes it very hard to trust those in charge.