Kari Lake suffers another court defeat in baseless bid to overturn Arizona election results

Judge calls her claims ‘quite simply, sheer speculation’

Eric Garcia
Friday 17 February 2023 16:04 GMT
Kari Lake supporters reenact biblical battle outside election centre

Former Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake suffered another legal defeat when the Arizona Court of Appeals rejected her attempt to overturn November’s election results.

Ms Lake, whom former president Donald Trump endorsed, refused to concede to Democratic Governor Katie Hobbs.

Like Mr Trump, the former news anchor has claimed election fraud and sought to have the election results overturned.

But Chief Judge Kent Cattani issued the ruling saying the court found no such evidence of fraud.

“Lake’s arguments highlight election day difficulties, but her request for relief fails because the evidence presented to the superior court ultimately supports the court’s conclusion that voters were able to cast their ballots, that votes were counted correctly, and that no other basis justifies setting aside the election results,” the judge wrote.

The court upheld a ruling from the Superior Court of Maricopa County, where Ms Lake filed 10 claims in a complaint that alleged that Maricopa County officials tainted election results through misconduct.

But the appeals court refuted much of Ms Lake’s claims in its ruling.

“Lake’s claim thus boils down to a suggestion that election-day issues led to long lines at vote centers, which frustrated and discouraged voters, which allegedly resulted in a substantial number of predominately Lake voters not voting,” the court said. “But Lake’s only purported evidence that these issues had any potential effect on election results was, quite simply, sheer speculation.”

Ms Lake asserted that Maricopa County election officials failed to test ballot-on-demand printers or somehow “injected” misconfigured ballots that could not be read by by on-site vote tabulators.

“This claim fails because, at most, the evidence regarding misconduct was disputed, and ample evidence supported the superior court’s conclusion that the printer/tabulator issues resulted from mechanical malfunctions that were ultimately remedied,” the judge wrote. “More importantly, Lake presented no evidence that voters whose ballots were unreadable by on-site tabulators were not able to vote.”

In response, Clint Hickman, the Maricopa County District 4 Supervisor and a Republican, praised the ruling.

“While Kari Lake and her legal team continue to find success getting their disproven theories of election malfeasance parroted by friendly media sources and some elected officials, there are two places where she has not succeeded: at the polls, when Arizona voters rejected her bid to be Governor, and in a court of law, where her many claims have been dismissed again and again,” he said. “These, unfortunately for her, are the only two places that matter.”

But Ms Lake said she would not back down despite the ruling.

“I told you we would take this case all the way to the Arizona Supreme Court, and that's exactly what we are going to do. Buckle up, America,” she tweeted.

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