The office of Democrat Katie Hobbs, who narrowly defeated Republican Kari Lake in the race for Arizona's governor in an election riddled with problems, threatened Mohave County supervisors with prosecution if they did not certify the midterm election results, in an incident similar to the threats her office made to officials in Cochise County.
A new report from the Daily Caller detailed how State Elections Director Kori Lorick contacted the Mohave County board and threatened them with legal action if they didn't certify the election.
Mohave County Attorney Matt Smith told the outlet, "The Secretary of State did contact our County and cited A.R.S. Section 16-1010 as a statute that could be used to prosecute (the board) if they did not certify the election."
That statute says that if an official fails to do their duty it equates to a Class 6 felony and could come with a punishment of two years in prison.
Mohave board chair-elect Travis Linginfelter said, "The threat of legal action, including personally, came from the Arizona State Elections Director."
Like Mohave County, Arizona's Cochise County had refused to certify their election results in the 2022 midterm elections and faced similar threats from Lorick. Mohave has certified, while Cochise has not.
Maricopa County, Arizona’s most populous jurisdiction, voted unanimously to certify their election canvass on Monday despite dozens of residents speaking out about their concerns such as printer malfunctions.
Many Republican-led counties, such as Cochise and Mohave, were reluctant to certify as Arizona's election had a drawn-out process of vote counting that many across Arizona scrutinized. The extra time was to review the election integrity of each county, with many areas hoping they could hold public hearings and gather information about voting issues, such as those in Maricopa County.
Lorick wrote to the Mohave County Board, "Our office will take all legal action necessary to ensure that Arizona’s voters have their votes counted, including referring the individual supervisors who vote not to certify for criminal enforcement under A.R.S. 16-1010."
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