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Arizona attorney general calls for reforms after long wait times for voters

Voters wait in line at dawn to cast their ballot in Arizona's presidential primary election, Tuesday, March 22, 2016, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

PHOENIX — The Arizona attorney general called for reforms Thursday after voters waited for hours to cast a ballot in this week’s presidential preference election.

Mark Brnovich said he found two issues with the way the election was handled.

“The first is that people should not have to wait for hours or stand in lines around a city block in order to cast their ballots,” he said in a press release.

Brnovich added that he was encouraged by the actions of other officials — Arizona Secretary of State Michele Reagan said she will look into the problem while Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton has called for a federal investigation — and feels the issues will be solved.

He also praised both voters and volunteers for sticking around into the wee hours of the morning.

However, the second part of Brnovich’s call for reform doesn’t pertain to voting. It focused on the election results.

“I want to ensure that all voters who are following the rules have a chance to cast their ballots in a fair and neutral environment,” he said.

“While I understand the public anticipation and demand for the results, it is problematic if early election returns and projections of winners are broadcast while voters are still in lines at the polls.”

Brnovich said he plans to work with the Legislature to come up with a law that will block early election results from being release prior to the closure of polls.

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