Opinion

Why Maricopa County needs new election equipment

Posted 7/13/21

Maricopa County announced this week that it will comply with the Secretary of State’s direction and replace the tabulation equipment that was subpoenaed by the Arizona Senate Republican leadership and provided to an uncertified contractor.

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Opinion

Why Maricopa County needs new election equipment

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aricopa County announced this week that it will comply with the Secretary of State’s direction and replace the tabulation equipment that was subpoenaed by the Arizona Senate Republican leadership and provided to an uncertified contractor.

This follows the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency stating the equipment the Senate took from the county must never be used in any future election.

Counties are in the business of running elections according to the laws written by the State Legislature. Yet, Senate Republican leadership continues to ignore the law and suggest it doesn’t apply to them when it comes to procurement, public records and accounting for dollars spent for a public purpose. They decided to hire uncertified novices to inspect expensive election equipment. The suggestion that we can now run a few logic and accuracy tests and call equipment good is wildly naïve but not surprising. Maricopa County already hired two certified voting system laboratories to conduct true forensic audits of the tabulation equipment. Those audits proved during the 2020 General Election the tabulation equipment wasn’t connected to the internet or capable of vote switching.

Calling what has happened under the Senate contractor in the Coliseum an “audit” insults the voters’ intelligence and fuels the imaginations of those who wish to tear our democracy apart. Senate Republican leadership continues to complain that the county would not allow the circus into our secure election facility. They apparently know so little about the scope of work of their contractor that they think the act at the Coliseum would fit into a building a fraction of the size. They also ignore the fact the county needed the building to conduct statutorily mandated jurisdictional elections in March and May. 

The contractor for the Senate “audit” is also a known election conspiracy theorist who reportedly appears in a new movie to outline his partisan beliefs.

Many of the subcontractors hired by the conspiracy theorist remain a mystery. Why?

Those who are being paid to count the ballots remain a mystery. Why?

And the people paying for and profiting from this misguided exercise remain a mystery. Why?

Would this even be happening if there wasn’t money to be made?

No person affiliated with the “audit” is in any position to lecture the board about election security, accountability, or honesty. Release the report and be prepared to defend it.

Jack Sellers is chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and represents county District 1.

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