|For Immediate Release
Arizona GOP Presidential Elector Kelli Ward To Challenge State's Process of Signature Verification for Mail-In Ballots
PHOENIX — Kelli Ward, Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman and Trump presidential elector, filed a petition today with the Court to allow discovery to begin in advance of a challenge to the November 30 statewide election canvass.
In the 2020 General Election, Arizona's counties mailed out 3,490,271 ballots. Every voter who casts a ballot at a polling place must present acceptable photo identification. Conversely, the only form of verification the State requires for mail-in ballots is a signature on the outside of the return envelope.
A formal legal elections challenge is expected to be filed soon alleging that the process used to validate ballots returned by mail was legally insufficient. The critical process of verifying a signature determines whether a vote is counted. The suit also raises chain-of-custody issues with re-constructed, or “duplicate,” ballots in Maricopa County.
In Arizona, vote-by-mail is the dominant voting method. However, no political party was provided with a meaningful way to independently monitor the signature verification process for these ballots. The Republican Party of Arizona has received signed statements from numerous observers who have testified that they were kept at a substantial distance from those performing the verification process, rendering it impossible to know whether the verification protocols were being followed.
No lawsuit directly challenging the statewide canvass can be filed before the canvass is complete, which will likely occur on November 30, 2020. Given the number of ballot envelopes that will potentially need to be inspected, the lawsuit seeks to begin the process of discovery as soon as possible.
Chairwoman Kelli Ward issued the following statement on the pending lawsuit:
“Due to countless voting irregularities, as well as alleged failures in the crucial processes that have been instituted to ensure the integrity of our elections, there is now a real lack of trust in the administration of this election. Arizonans cannot have confidence that our state's election canvass will be error-free considering the process by which counties verified signatures on mail-in ballots was not transparent nor adequately evaluated by outside observers. For reasons like this, we will be seeking to contest the reported result of the 2020 election.”
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