Arizona Mirror reporter Caitlin Seivers shredded Republicans in the Arizona State Legislature on Friday, taking them to task for holding committee hearings with a "parade of ever-more dubious election conspiracy theorists" continuing to baselessly claim elections in the state are being stolen or rigged.
"Since early January, the Republican-controlled elections committees in both the state House of Representatives and Senate, headed by Rep. Jacqueline Parker of Mesa and Sen. Wendy Rogers of Flagstaff, respectively, have forwarded a slew of election reform bills that would make using any kind of technology to vote illegal, force hand counts of all ballots, severely restrict voting by mail and early voting, and dump everyone from the voters rolls once per decade, among many other proposed changes to the state’s election system," wrote Sievers. "But in addition to approving sometimes conflicting election bills, the committees have also sought to legitimize numerous election conspiracy theorists and purveyors of the Big Lie that the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump by scheduling time for them to brief lawmakers on their election theories."
Rogers is an infamous far-right legislator with ties to the Oath Keepers, who has defended InfoWars webcaster Alex Jones.
One of their most recent witnesses, Sievers noted, was Jacqueline Breger, an insurance agent from Gilbert who accused newly-elected Gov. Katie Hobbs, a large number of county supervisors and judges, and some of the legislators themselves "of taking bribes from the Sinaloa drug cartel in the form of money laundered through a housing deed scam." It was such an unhinged hearing, Sievers noted, that even Republican lawmakers warned her to stick to discussing the election.
Then there was John Mills, a retired U.S. Army colonel, who "claimed that allowing people to register to vote when they get a new driver’s license is a problem, because you don’t have to prove your citizenship to get a driver’s license." However, noted Sievers, "in Arizona, people are required to prove their legal status in the country to get a driver’s license, and those who don’t submit proof of citizenship are only allowed to vote in federal elections."
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The hearing also featured Seth Keshel, another Army veteran who helped push Big Lie conspiracy theories, whose only real argument was that "something was off about the 2020 presidential election in Arizona because hundreds of thousands more Democrats than he expected voted in that election."
When the office of the governor was asked for comment, Sievers wrote, a spokesperson said, "The Governor is focused on delivering real results for Arizonans. She didn’t waste a single minute of her day on that committee hearing and isn’t going to waste one now by responding to the latest baseless conspiracy theory."
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