More than 65 percent of Arizona’s population lives in Maricopa County, a huge swath of land nearly the size of Massachusetts. Outside of Maricopa County and Tucson down south, Arizona doesn’t have really large cities (Flagstaff is fewer than 80K), so the sixth largest state in the nation is mostly rural. And mostly red across its huge landmass.
It's in those ruby red counties where trump’s chosen gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake won 75 percent of the vote, and where a racist, misogynist, and Christian nationalist like Rep. Paul Gosar can get elected over and over, even when his own siblings appear in ads for his opponents. Gosar ran unopposed in the midterm.
Without Maricopa County (Phoenix and the large suburbs), Pima County (Tucson), and the reservations, where activists did fantastic work, Kari Lake would be Governor, Oath Keeper Mark Finchem would be Secretary of State, Blake Masters would be sitting in the US Senate and we’d be a lot more nervous about Georgia.
The statewide results did not turn out the way rural counties wanted, with trump’s entire slate of four candidates apparently going down (the AG race is in a recount but the Dem leads). Because Maricopa County leaned Democratic, offsetting the rural Republican votes, some counties are not happy and are expressing their displeasure by refusing to certify their election until the very last minute.
Supervisors in Mohave County in western Arizona on Monday refused to certify the results of the 2022 election, delaying the decision in what some called a “political statement” to show dissatisfaction with how the election was run in the Phoenix area.
What a bunch of whiny piss-ants! Not only didn’t rural supervisors like the results, they complained of machine malfunctions in Maricopa and bragged about their efficiency. Hey, Mohave counted 81,000 votes, Maricopa over 1.5 million. Yes, there were printer problems but they did not affect the results one bit.
The county’s top elections officials have acknowledged that 70 of the county’s 223 voting centers experienced the printing issue but deny that any citizen was denied an opportunity to vote.
According to state law, the supervisors have until the 28th to certify; they intend to meet that day and send in their certification at the deadline. The election is over, they have all of the information, all ballots are counted, there are no uncertainties; the only reason they’re doing this is to stick it to the state because their candidates did not win.
“It's a political statement. I'm not going to lie,” Mohave Supervisor Hildy Angius said before the board voted 3-2 to delay until Monday, the last day allowed by law for counties to certify.
Mohave County is where you’ll find towns like Lake Havasu City and Kingman, hotbeds of nuttery (Timothy McVeigh hatched his plot there). Driving around the area I sometimes see trailer parks wrapped in camouflaged chainlink fence and trump flags, and I don't even want to know what’s going on there!
Another county down south, Cochise, is running the same bullshit delay scam, but their issue is that the election-denying supervisors there (a majority) demanded a hand count because, you know, machines switch votes to Democrats. Marc Elias, on behalf of AARP, already sued officials if they delay everything by hand counting. That got their attention, so they’re copying the nitwits in Mohave County—delaying certification until the final day.
Katie Hobbs, Arizona’s incoming Governor (oh, it feels good to write that!) and current Secretary of State, sent a letter to the two obstructing counties. If Mohave and Cochise really want to stick it to the libs and don’t certify their elections by Nov. 28, Arizona will just move ahead without them and certify what’s in the hopper. Good move, supervisors! Increase Democratic leads, jeopardize Republican wins, and disenfranchise your own voters.
UPDATE: Arizona Secretary of State-elect Adrian Fontes was just on Chris Hayes. He said if Mohave and Cochise don’t respond by Dec. 5, when Arizona certifies everything, their ballots will not be counted. That would not affect Rep. Gosar, who ran unopposed, but in the new CD-6, which includes Cochise County, the Democratic candidate Kristen Engel only trails by about 6,000 votes. Go for it, Cochise! [ADDED]: In the comments Mantis points out that missing votes from either or both counties would also affect the race for Superintendent of Public Instruction, where a great and caring educator (Hoffman) is trailing a terrible thug (Horne) by a few thousand votes. Kossacks in Mohave and Cochise: Send the supervisors an email, the election was rigged, stick to principle!
UPDATE2: From state election attorneys today:
[T]wo counties have postponed their vote until the eleventh hour, raising questions about what happens if they fail to meet their deadline to finalize results.
There’s a simple answer, according to election attorneys in the state: If counties do not certify their election by the Monday deadline imposed by state law, courts will force them to do so.
But court proceedings could potentially cause delays, interfering with the tight timeline for two statewide recounts, and would force taxpayers to pay legal costs for a case where the outcome essentially isn’t in doubt.
“They will cost the county a lot of money and embarrassment and it will do nothing,” said elections law attorney Jim Barton.
Just like the supposed “audit” last year: cost millions (we really don’t know how much), forced Maricopa County to trash their voting machines and buy new ones, was a corrupt, embarrassing nightmare, and did nothing other than prove Biden won by even more votes.