Did Maricopa County Officials Just Accidentally Admit Voting Machines Can Be Compromised?

Officials in Maricopa County announced they will replace the voting machines that were subpoenaed during the forensic audit of the 2020 election, alleging concerns about “security and integrity,” PJ Media reported June 30.

“The voters of Maricopa County can rest assured, the County will never use equipment that could pose a risk to free and fair elections. The County recognizes (Arizona) Secretary (of State Katie) Hobbs’ authority under A.R.S. § 16-442 to certify equipment for use in Arizona’s elections. As a result, the County will not use the subpoenaed equipment in any future elections,” the county said in a statement on Monday.

Sen. Schumer meme - If Americans won't vote for Dems...

“The voters of Maricopa County can rest assured, the County will never use equipment that could pose a risk to free and fair elections. The County recognizes (Arizona) Secretary (of State) Hobbs’ authority under A.R.S. § 16-442 to certify equipment for use in Arizona’s elections. As a result, the County will not use the subpoenaed equipment in any future elections,” the county said in a statement on Monday.

County officials, who have always opposed the audit, have long alleged, without any evidence, that subpoenaed machines could be compromised by the auditors and, in fact, acquired new machines for local elections held this year. The county also reportedly refused to provide subpoenaed routers.

In May, it was reported that “significant discrepancies” had been uncovered during the audit, though a full report on the findings isn’t expected until late July or August.

Other states have sent delegations to Maricopa County as they consider conducting their own forensic audits. An audit is currently underway in Fulton County, Georgia, and it is expected that a forensic audit could be coming to Pennsylvania. Arizona, Georgia, and Pennsylvania are all battleground states where multiple allegations of election irregularities and fraud were made.

But claims that machines can be hacked were deemed “false” by fact-checkers in the wake of the Trump campaign’s allegations. For example, USA Today‘s fact check in January about Dominion voting machines (which were used in Maricopa County) concluded that “assertions that machines can be hacked, votes were dumped and test ballots can be counted are false.”

PJMedia asks: But wait? If they can’t be hacked, why would Maricopa County officials claim that they have to replace their machines after the audit?

Were the fact checks false? Instead of proving that voting machines were not hackable—something we were simply supposed to believe without any forensic examination—did they just admit the opposite is true? They are basically saying, “Trust the liberal county officials not to hack the machines, but don’t trust the Republican-hired auditors not to hack them.”

Of course, we’ve known for a while that voting machines could be hacked. In 2019, Democrats warned about voting machines “switching votes.” Joe Biden even said he was concerned about manipulated voting machines before the election, and perhaps most revealing of all, a computer scientist literally demonstrated how easy it is to hack voting machines.

So, have Maricopa County officials simply proven what we already know: that voting machines can be hacked? It all comes down to trusting those with custody of the machines not to hack them. They essentially just proved why the audit was absolutely necessary.

If voting machines were truly unhackable, as fact-checkers have claimed, Maricopa County officials wouldn’t have to grandstand with baseless claims that the auditors might have compromised the machines. Quite frankly, I trust the auditors more than I trust Maricopa County officials—who have always acted like they’ve had something to hide.

Posted June 30, 2021; source: Matt Margolis for PJMedia.com

Arizona GOP Lawmakers Strip Powers from Controversial Secretary of State Katie Hobbs

The Republican-controlled state Legislature in Arizona voted June 29 to revoke the Democratic secretary of state’s legal authority in election-related lawsuits, handing that power instead to Republican attorney general Mark Brnovich until Jan. 2, 2023.

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D) 300x180 Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (at left) has denounced the independent 2020 election audit in Arizona,  spearheaded by the state’s Republican senate, which is questioning voter fraud and irregularities surrounding Maricopa County’s ballot tally. The audit applied to 2.1 million ballots in the county’s jurisdiction, where Joe Biden allegedly defeated former President Trump by around 10,000 votes, and contracted the services of the small cybersecurity company and first-time election auditor Cyber Ninjas to conduct it.

The measure, sent to Gov. Doug Ducey, was part of a series of proposals inserted into major budget legislation, including several actions that address election integrity. Included is an appropriation of $500,000 for a study of whether social media sites interfered in state elections by promoting Democrats while suppressing Republicans.

Katie Hobbs has since set her sights on grander things, and on June 2 declared her candidacy for governor.

Posted June 30, 2021

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich Tells the Feds to Back Off the State’s Audit of the 2020 Election

In a June 14 letter Monday, Brnovich called U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland’s comments last week expressing concern about post-election audits “troubling.”

“Your statements displayed an alarming disdain for state sovereignty,” Brnovich wrote. “My office is not amused by the DOJ’s posturing and will not tolerate any effort to undermine or interfere with our State Senate’s audit to reassure Arizonans of the accuracy of our elections.”

The audit of the vote in Maricopa County, the state’s most populous county, ordered by state Senate Republicans, began in April.

“Arizona will not sit back and let the Biden administration abuse its authority, refuse to uphold laws, or attempt to commandeer our state’s sovereignty,” Brnovich wrote.

Former President Donald Trump has praised the audit and urged other states to launch their own election reviews. (NOTE: The Washington Times, a never-Trumper news source some consider “conservative,” claimed that Trump “continues to make baseless claims that Democrats stole the election from him through widespread voter fraud.”)

Canine Detects Meth Hidden in Vehicle Headrest

YUMA, Ariz. – A Yuma Sector canine alerted Border Patrol agents to a suspicious-smelling vehicle in which one pound of methamphetamine was found hidden in a seat headrest.

2021-05-13 fentanyl sniffed out by K9 Brit

At approximately 10:30 a.m. on May 28, Blythe Border Patrol agents encountered a Nissan Pathfinder as it traveled through the California immigration checkpoint on Highway 78. Agents referred the vehicle to the checkpoint’s secondary inspection area after a canine “alerted” agents something was problematic with the vehicle.

During a search of the vehicle, agents discovered that one of the seat’s headrests had a plastic bag hidden inside that contained one pound of methamphetamine, worth approximately $1,800-$5,000.

Record checks conducted on the Nissan’s three occupants, all U.S. citizens from Blythe, Calif., revealed the driver, a 34-year-old male, had an outstanding warrant in El Centro, California, for a previous drug smuggling attempt five months earlier through the same checkpoint. Customs and Border Patrol (CPB) said the unnamed man was turned over to local law enforcement for the warrant and will be charged for drug possession and/or transportation for sale.

The other two passengers in the vehicle, a 26-year-old male and 31-year-old female, also had extensive criminal history with charges related to drug possession and sales. One of them was cited in this incident and both were subsequently released. (Editor’s Note: Yes, the CBP says they were “released.”)

Posted May 28, 2021

Border Patrol Agents Arrest a Gang Member and Two Child Sexual Predators

EDINBURG, Texas – Rio Grande Valley Sector Border Patrol agents arrested a female 18th Street gang member, and two other illegal aliens previously convicted of sexual crimes involving children.

McAllen Border Patrol Station (MCS) agents working near Hidalgo, Texas, on May 26 arrested several aliens who had illegally entering the United States. One of those arrested was a Salvadoran adult female who admitted during processing that she was a member of the 18th Street gang.  [Related story, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell]

caution border crossers Rio Grande City Border Patrol Station agents apprehended a group of 10 illegals in Roma, Texas on May 27.  During processing, agents discovered one illegal alien, identified as Edwin Francisco Mejia-Iglesias, a national of El Salvador, who previously had been arrested in 2018 by the Tomball, Texas, Police Department for online solicitation of a minor for sexual conduct.  He was convicted and sentenced to six years probation.

Also on May 27, MCS agents apprehended another group of 10 “migrants” near Havana, Texas.  After the subjects were taken into custody and transported to the station, agents discovered one of the detainees, a Mexican national, previously had been arrested by police in Phoenix, Arizona in 2016 for sexual conduct with a minor. He was convicted and sentenced to five years incarceration. The Border Patrol did not release his name.

Editor’s Note: The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol no longer refers to people entering the U.S. illegally as illegal immigrants. They are now called “migrants” or “non-citizens.”

Biden Campaign’s Jewish Engagement Director Tells Jews to Hide Their Judaism

Aaron Keyak, Jewish Engagement Director at Biden for President, said Friday, “take off your kippah (head covering) and hide your magen david (star of David)” if you fear for your life as a Jew.

Keyak’s comments follow a major increase in anti-Semitic incidents:

Aaron Keyak is President Biden’s “Jewish Engagement Director”

Breitbart News reports that Jewish and non-Jewish Twitter users criticized Keyak’s recommendation to hide Jewish identity. One woman replied to Keyak, “I wore my Magen David today. It’s a little on the small side. I need a bigger one. And I do fear for my safety in the ‘current climate.’”

One man asked Keyak, “Should I hide my eyes to avoid being targeted for being Asian?”

Comparing Keyak’s statement to victim-blaming, another Twitter user said, “She was wearing an awfully short skirt….”

Breitbart News’ Joel Pollak encouraged self-defense over fear:

Joel Pollak is Breitbart News’ Senior Editor At-Large

Despite receiving backlash from his statement, Keyak doubled down on his position, saying, “It’s important that those who wear kippot (head coverings) don’t feel more pressure to put our lives in unnecessary actual danger.”

In September 2020, Keyak blamed former President Donald Trump for antisemitism in the United States, saying, “We know that Donald Trump’s use of antisemitic tropes has emboldened all those who hate Jews.”

President Joe Biden took days to condemn the rise in antisemitic attacks, only doing so on Monday.

As reported by Breitbart News, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said while his organization called out former President Donald Trump at times, “‘none of the people committing’ recent antisemitic attacks ‘were wearing MAGA hats,’ rather, ‘we have people waving Palestinian flags and then beating Jewish people.’”

Antisemitic incidents are on the rise globally. According to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), “During the two weeks of military conflict between Israel and Hamas in May 2021, antisemitic incidents in the U.S. reported to ADL increased by 63% compared to the two weeks before the fighting began, from 126 to 205, according to preliminary data.”

A Twitter analysis by the ADL revealed more than 17,000 tweets between May 7 and May 14, 2021, contained a variation of the phrase “Hitler was right.”

Recent antisemitic incidents reported by Breitbart News include a group in London yelling, “F*** the Jews,” and “Rape their daughters,” as well as a masked pro-Palestinian mob allegedly attacking Jewish diners in Los Angeles and a pro-Israel walk in Illinois being disrupted by protestors yelling “Kill the Jews.”

GOP Chair Elise Stefanik: Justice Department Is ‘Trying to Block’ Maricopa County Audit

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), who was recently elected as the House Republican Conference chair, said the Department of Justice’s questions about the Maricopa County, Arizona, audit of the 2020 election may be unconstitutional.

On May 5, the Justice Department sent a letter to Arizona Senate leader Karen Fann, a Republican, inquiring about the custody of the ballots under review by a group of private contractors, alleging that the group’s other processes—including the canvassing of addresses—could be considered “voter intimidation.”

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R.-NY)

“I support that audit,” Stefanik said after being asked about it in a Fox Business interview on May 16. “Transparency is good for the American people. And again, this should be a nonpartisan issue, whether you are Republican, Democrat, independent, or conservative, transparency is important, and the audit was passed by the Arizona state Senate.”

Stefanik later said that the “Biden Department of Justice is trying to block that audit,” which, she said, “is unconstitutional from my perspective.”

“Our states, constitutionally, are responsible for writing states’ constitution law,” she said.

Pamela Karlan, principal deputy assistant attorney general with the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, wrote to Fann that “the proposed work of the audit raises concerns regarding potential intimidation of voters.”

Fann replied that the plan by election auditors to verify the validity of certain voters had been placed on hold.

“If and to the extent the Senate subsequently decides that canvassing is necessary to the successful completion of the audit, its vendor will implement detailed requirements to ensure that the canvassing is conducted in a manner that complies fully with the commands of the United States Constitution and federal and state civil rights laws,” Fann wrote earlier this month.

The Epoch Times reports that Stefanik’s comments on May 16 came just days after Dominion Voting Systems and Maricopa County officials said they wouldn’t provide passwords for election machines in Maricopa County. Dominion said it would comply with the audit, but that Cyber Ninjas—the company hired by the Arizona state Senate—isn’t accredited by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission.

Stefanik was approved last week in a vote by House Republicans to become the Republican Conference chair—the party’s No. 3 position in the House. She took over after GOP lawmakers voted to remove Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), a frequent critic of former President Donald Trump and other Republicans, from the position.

Posted May 17, 2021

Arizona Bans Post-Election Signature ‘Fix’ for Unsigned Mail-in Ballots

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed a law that bans voters from adding signatures on unsigned mail-in ballots after Election Day.

The measure, Arizona Senate Bill 1003 (S.B. 1003), was approved earlier in the state legislature in party-line votes with Republicans in favor and Democrats opposed.

mail truck delivers ballots for dems

The new law codifies a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit on Oct. 6, 2020, within one month of the 2020 election. It also ended disputes over unsigned mail-in ballots between the state Republicans and Democrats.

Current Arizona law allows election officials to contact voters to fix the signatures on the ballots if the signatures don’t match other signatures from records in the Department of Motor Vehicle, voter registration forms, or previous early ballots. The voters can fix the signatures, if they failed to pass the verification process, within up to five business days after Election Day.

While the new law didn’t change anything about the grace period for the signed ballots, it ended state Democrats’ efforts to add a similar grace period to unsigned ballots.

According to The Epoch Times, Hobbs’s move is part of efforts to honor a settlement in 2019 with the Navajo Nation, which would allow tribal voters with mismatched or missing signatures on mail-in ballots to correct their ballots with five business days after Election Day.

However, the efforts were stopped by appeals court judges who said, in alignment with the state Republicans, that the Democrats went too far by giving absentee voters five days after Election Day to correct missing signatures on mail-in ballots.

“All ballots must have some deadline, and it is reasonable that Arizona has chosen to make that deadline Election Day itself so as to promote its unquestioned interest in administering an orderly election and to facilitate its already burdensome job of collecting, verifying, and counting all of the votes in timely fashion,” the appellate court said.

The new law codified the appeal court’s ruling by adding an amendment to the current Arizona election law. The amendment requires all mail-in ballots to be delivered to the county recorder, other officers in charge of the election, or polling sites no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day.

“The ballot will not be counted without the voter’s signature on the envelope,” reads the amendment.

Another amendment in the new law required election officers to contact the voter if the signature is missing on the ballot. The deadline for adding a signature to a ballot should be no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day.

Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez and Vice President Myron Lizer had urged Ducey to veto the measure, saying it would undermine the 2019 settlement.

Trump endorses Stefanik’s bid to oust Cheney from GOP leadership

Former president Donald Trump on Wednesday endorsed Representative Elise Stefanik (R., N.Y.) to replace Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wy.) as chair of the House Republican Conference as party leadership has reportedly sought to oust the Wyoming congresswoman from her leadership role in recent days.

Rep. Elise Stefanik R-NY portrait with flag

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R.-NY)

“Liz Cheney is a warmongering fool who has no business in Republican Party Leadership,” Trump said in a statement on his website. “We want leaders who believe in the Make America Great Again movement, and prioritize the values of America First. Elise Stefanik is a far superior choice, and she has my COMPLETE and TOTAL Endorsement for GOP Conference Chair. Elise is a tough and smart communicator!”

Stefanik thanked Trump for his support in a tweet on Wednesday, adding, “We are unified and focused on FIRING PELOSI & WINNING in 2022!”

National Review reports that Stefanik has also received support from the top two Republicans in the House for her bid to replace Cheney, a longtime critic of Trump and other conservatives. A spokeswoman for House GOP Whip Steve Scalise (R., La.) said Wednesday that the No. 2 Republican in the House “has pledged to support [Stefanik] for conference chair.”

“House Republicans need to be solely focused on taking back the House in 2022 and fighting against Speaker Pelosi and President Biden’s radical socialist agenda, and Elise Stefanik is strongly committed to doing that,” Scalise’s spokeswoman, Lauren Fine, said in a statement.

The renewed push to remove Cheney, the third-ranking GOP lawmaker in the House, from her leadership post comes after she told the New York Post last week that while she believes Republicans could take back the presidency in 2024, she thinks lawmakers who supported Trump’s effort to overturn the 2020 election results should be disqualified from running.

Cheney has drawn the ire of her Republican colleagues repeatedly since she voted in favor of Trump’s second impeachment but previously survived a secret ballot the House GOP conference conducted in February over whether to keep her in her post.  The conference voted 145–61 to keep Cheney in her leadership role at that time.

“This is about whether the Republican Party is going to perpetuate lies about the 2020 election and attempt to whitewash what happened on January 6,” Cheney spokesman Jeremy Adler said May 4. “Liz will not do that. That is the issue.”

(No, Jeremy, the issue is Liz Cheney’s leftist worldview and lack of veracity.)

Cheney, a daughter of Dick Cheney, who was George W. Bush’s vice president and before that a Wyoming congressman, seemed to have almost unlimited potential until this year. Her career began listing after she was among just 10 House Republicans to back Trump’s impeachment for inciting supporters to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6. The House GOP could hold a second vote to oust Cheney in the near future.

Posted May 5, 2021

Senate Unveils Election Contempt Charge Against Maricopa County Supervisors

The Arizona State Senate is moving ahead with its threat to pass a contempt resolution finding Maricopa County has failed to comply with a subpoena demanding access to elections equipment and ballots cast in the November election.

The Senate introduced the resolution on Feb. 3. Timing on a full Senate vote is unclear, but all 16 Republican senators, a majority of the 30-member Senate, are listed as sponsors.

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors (four of its five members are registered as Republican) on Feb. 2 again refused to comply with subpoenas GOP lawmakers issued to investigate ballots and voting machines as they try to ensure election integrity.

Courts have declined to accept lawsuits questioning election integrity. The Associated Press and other left-wing media claim the courts say there is no evidence Donald Trump lost; both the claim and the alleged “lack of evidence” are false.