Report: Republicans’ Motion to Extend Maricopa Poll Hours Denied

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    The motion was filed jointly by the Republican National Committee, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the campaigns for Blake Masters and Kari Lake, and Jill Norgaard against Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer and members of the county’s Board of Supervisors, including chair Bill Gates.

    The plaintiffs alleged:

    Upon information and belief, as a direct and proximate result of excessive lines and wait times attributable to systemic tabulator malfunctions at vote centers across Maricopa County, numerous qualified electors seeking to cast a ballot have been unable to do so.

    By preventing voters from obtaining and casting a ballot within a reasonable period of time, these pervasive tabulator malfunctions have effectively truncated the thirteen hour voting period secured by state law.

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    A reasonable extension of polling location operating hours from 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. is necessary to prevent irreparable injury to the Plaintiffs and their members and supporters, and is demanded by the balance of equities and crucial public policy considerations.

    Later in the evening, a judge denied the motion request, though Gates admitted earlier in the day that some 20 percent of polling places were affected. Ultimately, the county reported identifying the tabulation issue and said “technicians” were “deployed throughout the county.”

    In a tweet, Republican National Lawyers Association Chairwoman Harmeet K. Dhillon noted that the court ruled against the temporary restraining order (TRO).

    “Hearing concludes. Court rules against the TRO request, despite the admitted problems with voting in Maricopa County, and multiple factual declarations from voters affected by bad instructions and malfunctioning equipment at over 25% of polling places in Maricopa County,” she wrote.

    The lawsuit also alleged that some poll workers “refused or failed to ‘check out’ some or all” of voters who opted to vote at another location after their ballots were “rejected by the malfunctioning electronic tabulation device,” adding:

    As a result of this malfeasance, the e-pollbooks erroneously designated these individuals as having previously voted in this election. When subsequently presenting at a different vote center, these voters were incorrectly informed that they had already voted and were permitted to complete and submit only a provisional ballot. Upon information and belief, the Defendants will not tabulate these provisional ballots.

    These pervasive poll worker errors have denied numerous qualified electors of Maricopa County, including supporters of the RNC, NRSC, Blake Masters for Senate, and Kari Lake for Arizona, of their right to vote under Arizona law.

    Plaintiffs are entitled to a temporary restraining order and/or injunction requiring the Defendants to immediately instruct inspectors at all polling locations in Maricopa County to properly “check out” on the e-pollbook any voter who has spoiled a ballot and has chosen not to obtain or cast a replacement ballot.

    The case is the Republican National Committee v. Richer, in the Superior Court for the State of Arizona and for The County of Maricopa.

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