Expert disputes Kari Lake’s claim over her governor’s race loss

PHOENIX — Republican Kari Lake didn’t provide proof to again her claims of widespread, intentional misconduct on Election Day at her two-day trial challenging her loss to Democrat Katie Hobbs in Arizona governor’s race, legal professionals for the state stated Thursday.

Lake additionally by no means established her claim that printer issues at Maricopa County polling locations had been intentional acts that will have modified the race’s final result had they not occurred, stated Abha Khanna, a lawyer representing Hobbs, who ultimately won the race by just over 17,000 votes. At the trial’s closing arguments Thursday, Khanna stated Lake’s claims had been primarily based on rumour, hypothesis and theatrics. “What we got instead was just loose threads and gaping plot holes. We know now that her story was a work of fiction,” Khanna stated.

Kurt Olsen, one in every of Lake’s attorneys, stated officers tried to downplay the consequences of the printer issues in Maricopa County. “This is about trust, your honor,” Olsen stated. “It’s about restoring people’s trust. There is not a person that’s watching this thing that isn’t shaking their head now.”

Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson, an appointee of former Republican Gov. Jan Brewer, didn’t say when he would subject a ruling.

Lake faces extraordinarily lengthy odds in her problem, needing to show not solely that misconduct occurred, but in addition that it was meant to disclaim her victory and did in actual fact end result within the fallacious girl being declared the winner.

Her legal professionals centered on issues with poll printers at some polling locations in Maricopa County, dwelling to greater than 60% of voters. The faulty printers produced ballots that had been too gentle to be learn by the on-site tabulators at polling locations. Lines backed up in some areas amid the confusion.

County officers say everybody had an opportunity to vote and that each one ballots had been counted, including ballots affected by printer points had been taken to extra subtle counters on the elections division headquarters.

Lake’s attorneys additionally claim the chain of custody for ballots was damaged at an off-site facility, the place a contractor scans mail ballots to organize them for processing. The county disputes that claim.

Lake was among the many most vocal Republicans this year in selling former President Donald Trump’s election falsehoods, which she made the centerpiece of her marketing campaign. While many of the different election deniers across the nation conceded after shedding their races in November, Lake has not. Instead, she is asking the decide to both declare her the winner or order a revote in Maricopa County.

Her attorneys pointed to a witness who examined ballots on behalf of her marketing campaign and found 14 ballots that had 19-inch photos of the poll printed on 20-inch paper, which means the ballots wouldn’t be learn by a tabulator. The witness insisted somebody modified these printer configurations, a claim disputed by elections officers.

County officers say the poll photos had been barely smaller because of a shrink-to-fit characteristic being chosen on a printer by a tech worker who was on the lookout for options to Election Day points. They say about 1,200 ballots had been affected by turning on the characteristic and that these ballots had been duplicated in order that they might be learn by a tabulator. Ultimately, these ballots had been counted, officers stated.

Lake’s final witness was Richard Baris, a pollster who performed exit polling in Arizona and claimed technical issues at polling locations had disenfranchised sufficient voters that it will have modified the result of the race in Lake’s favor.

Baris claimed that 25,000 to 40,000 individuals who would usually have voted truly didn’t cast ballots because of Election Day issues — and that the voters that day had been extra prone to help Lake. Baris stated his estimate was primarily influenced by the quantity of people that began answering his exit ballot however didn’t end the method.

Kenneth Mayer, a political science professor on the University of Wisconsin-Madison who testified on behalf of election officers, stated Baris’ claim was “a series of assumptions and speculation.”

Thompson had beforehand dismissed eight of the ten claims Lake raised in her lawsuit. Among these had been Lake’s allegation that Hobbs, in her capability as secretary of state, and Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer engaged in censorship by flagging social media posts with election misinformation for attainable elimination by Twitter. He additionally dismissed her claims of discrimination towards Republicans and that mail-in voting procedures are unlawful.

Hobbs takes office as governor on Jan. 2.

Meanwhile, a trial is scheduled Friday in Republican Abraham Hamadeh’s problem of his slim defeat to Democrat Kris Mayes within the Arizona legal professional basic’s race. Hamadeh, who lost by 511 votes, alleges in his lawsuit that issues with printers in Maricopa County led to points involving disenfranchised voters.

Judge Thompson has till December 27 to subject a ruling. An enchantment to a better court docket is feasible. Katie Hobbs is scheduled to take the oath of office as governor on January 2, simply six days after the decide’s deadline.

You can watch the second day of the trial within the video participant under:

Decision 2022

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