April 17. 2021
The Arizona Senate is poised to begin a major audit of over two million ballots cast in the 2020 election, a process the state Senate president claims have been stymied by county officials.
Senate subpoenas to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors for information and equipment needed to perform the audit have been pending since Dec. 15, 2020, and were upheld by a judge on Feb. 25.
In mid-March, the state Senate announced that Republicans in that chamber would be conducting a “broad and detailed” review of Maricopa’s ballots, one that would involve “testing the machines, scanning the ballots, performing a full hand count, and checking for any IT breaches,” among other approaches.
Legislators have been working to hammer out the specific details of the audit in the weeks since. State Senate President Karen Fann tells Just the News that the actual audit process will begin within the next week.
“It’s taken the Senate two and a half months to win in court to uphold our right to issue subpoenas for election materials,” she said, “and another 6 weeks of researching to select the audit team to perform the full forensic audit.” Fann said officials have also “arranged for 24-hour physical and live streaming security.”
Earlier this week, Fann signed a contract to lease the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix from April 19 to May 14 for the Legislature to house the ballots, which were subpoenaed from the county without a place to store them.
With a location finalized, Fann said she expects the Senate to take custody of the ballots and begin a recount effort on April 22.