Arizona’s Maricopa County announced Monday that it plans to replace all of the voting machines that were turned over to the state Senate and other officials overseeing the audit of 2020 presidential election results.
The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors released its response to a May letter from Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D), in which she expressed concerns “regarding the security and integrity of these machines, given that the chain of custody, a critical security tenet, has been compromised and election officials do not know what was done to the machines while under Cyber Ninjas’ control.”
In response, the county told Hobbs it “shares your concerns” and added that the board acknowledges the secretary of state’s “authority as Arizona’s Chief Election Officer to determine what equipment is acceptable for use in Arizona’s elections.”
“Accordingly, I write to notify you that Maricopa County will not use the subpoenaed election equipment in any future election,” Monday’s letter added.
In a press release announcing the decision, the county vowed to “never use equipment that could pose a risk to free and fair elections.”
Maricopa County will never use compromised equipment that could pose a risk to free and fair elections. As a result, the County will not use the tabulation equipment subpoenaed by the Arizona Senate in any future elections. Read more: https://t.co/47bg4J00MG
— Maricopa County (@maricopacounty) June 28, 2021
The announcement comes after the Arizona Senate in April acquired the voting machines from Dominion Voting Systems, in addition to nearly 2.1 million ballots and voter information from the Nov. 3 election through a court-approved subpoena as part of its election recount.
The Arizona Senate turned over the voting machines to Cyber Ninjas, the firm contracted to oversee the audit, to determine if any of the equipment had been hacked or manipulated.
A previous independent audit ordered by Maricopa County has already found that there were no irregularities or issues with the voting machines or their tabulation of votes.
The Cyber Ninjas audit was spurred by Republicans in the state who expressed concerns on the validity and integrity of the county’s election results after repeated unsubstantiated claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 election that have been advanced by former President TrumpDonald TrumpSenate Democrat introduces bill to protect journalists from government surveillance Trump lawyer says New York DA considering charges related to employee perks Trump lashes out at NY prosecutors as his lawyers argue against criminal charges MORE and his allies.
Hobbs, among other Democrats and voting analysts, have condemned the ongoing audit, which has lasted much longer than previously anticipated, as a partisan move based on unfounded conspiracy theories.
The secretary of state last month specifically sought to address the concerns on the voting machines that were obtained and reviewed by Cyber Ninjas, which has had no prior experience in auditing elections.
The firm’s CEO, Doug Logan, has spread conspiracy theories on the 2020 election in Arizona in now-deleted tweets.
According to the Arizona Republic, Maricopa County is currently about halfway through its $6.1 million lease with Dominion Voting Systems for the voting machines.