(JustPatriots.com)- Maricopa County in Arizona has begun the hand-count audit of midterm ballots. Of these ballots, almost 400,000 are still awaiting counting.
The races and ballots the hand count audit boards will review on Saturday were chosen randomly by the Republican, Democratic, and Libertarian party chairs to begin the county’s audit on Wednesday night.
This is an essential step in ensuring the accuracy of the results of the 2022 General Election; the county elections department tweeted on Wednesday night.
The hand count audit is intended to “compare the results of the initial count to the hand count to confirm that the tabulation equipment is working correctly and accurately counting votes,” according to the Arizona secretary of state’s website.
An audit was started after roughly 20% of the polling locations in Maricopa County experienced voting equipment issues on election day.
On election day, an estimated 250,000 ballots were cast in person; however, 17,000 ballots, or 7% of the total, had to be separately counted after being entered into a secure slot on the tabulation machines due to electronic errors.
According to the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office, the audit is a necessary step in every Arizona election and is carried out to verify the outcomes of the ballot tabulators.
In a dispute that could have an impact on the certification of the results, two Republicans who are in control of the elected board in a rural Arizona county have sued their own elections director to compel her to conduct a significantly expanded manual count of ballots cast in the election on November 8.
They want the county recorder, a Republican elected, to receive the nearly 12,000 ballots cast on election day from Cochise County Elections Director Lisa Marra. The county’s attorney informed the two GOP board members’ private attorneys that illegally casting votes could result in felony charges against their clients.
In this year’s election, Republicans in Arizona suffered significant defeats in crucial elections for governor, secretary of state, and the US Senate. Many conservatives in Arizona, a state that has always remained steadfastly Republican, are upset about how the state has turned into a political battleground.