According to a report from the Associated Press, the ballots involved in the "audit" of presidential votes in Arizona's Maricopa County have been counted and things haven't gotten "any better' as the Donald Trump-inspired attempt to overturn the election results in the state draws to a close.
In the past week, one pro-audit Republican has changed their tune and pronounced the effort "botched" and organizers have seen their Twitter accounts providing blow-by-blow information on the proceedings shut down.
As AP's Jonathan Cooper explained, "In the last week alone, the only audit leader with substantial election experience was locked out of the building, went on the radio to say he was quitting, then reversed course hours later. The review's Twitter accounts were suspended for breaking the rules. A conservative Republican senator withdrew her support, calling the process "botched." And the lead auditor confirmed what was long suspected: that his work was almost entirely paid for by supporters of Donald Trump who were active in the former president's movement to spread false narratives of fraud."
"Not even a shred of being salvaged at this point," proclaimed Sen. Paul Boyer, the first GOP lawmaker to oppose the audit. "They've botched it at so many points along the way that it's irrecoverable."
Along with finger-pointing after spending months and millions of dollars looking for evidence of voter fraud, the report notes that the Justice Department has served warning to the promoters that they are still being watched.
"The U.S. Justice Department has weighed in, warning any state that is looking to conduct an Arizona-style review that they will need to follow federal law that requires officials to retain and preserve election records, including ballot and ballot materials, for 22 months," the report states. "Earlier, Justice Department officials had alerted Arizona officials of the federal requirement. At this point, the Justice Department has not taken any public action beyond the letter. A Justice Department spokesperson this week declined to comment further."
The report goes on to add, "On Wednesday night, [Cyber Ninjas head Doug ] Logan ended months of silence about who was paying him when he said a whopping $5.7 million had been contributed by political groups run by prominent Trump supporters including Michael Flynn, Sidney Powell, Patrick Byrne and correspondents from One America News Network."
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