Maricopa County still has 345K ballots to count as voters await Senate result

Nov 9, 2018, 10:11 AM | Updated: 10:12 am
Workers at the Maricopa County Recorder's Office go through ballots Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, in Phoe...

Workers at the Maricopa County Recorder's Office go through ballots Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, in Phoenix. There are several races too close to call in Arizona, especially the Senate race between Democratic candidate Kyrsten Sinema and Republican candidate Martha McSally. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

PHOENIX — The Maricopa County Recorder’s office was making its way through 345,000 or so ballots that still needed to be counted as Arizona voters anxiously await the results of the U.S. Senate race between Republican Martha McSally and Democrat Kyrsten Sinema.

But Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes said, despite the progress election officials have made since the Tuesday election, it could still be several days before the election is called.

Fontes said due to outdated equipment, elections officials can only count between 65,000 and 75,000 of those ballots per day. County officials are hoping to get all of the ballots counted and processed within eight or nine days.

“We will give an update every day at 5 p.m. until we are done with the election, Fontes told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Bruce St. James and Pamela Hughes on Friday.

And while Arizonans take time to honor veterans on Monday, Fontes said he and his office will be hard at work counting all of the ballots and working to bring this race closer to the finish line.

“We’re going to work as hard as we can to get that done,” he said.

The tight-knit race between Sinema and McSally took a turn on Thursday, after a surge of votes from Maricopa and Pima counties brought the Democratic candidate from a 17,000 vote deficit to a lead of a more than 9,000 votes.

A batch of Maricopa County votes pushed Sinema ahead by around 2,000 votes, and the lead swelled by another 7,000 after Pima County reported.

The early ballots are the focus of a lawsuit filed on Thursday by four county Republican parties.

The suit filed by Maricopa, Apache, Navajo and Yuma Republican Party counties alleged that the state’s 15 county recorders don’t follow a uniform standard for allowing voters to adjust problems with their mail-in ballots, and that two counties improperly allow those fixes after Election Day.

A hearing in the lawsuit was expected to be held at 2 p.m. on Friday.

“Yesterday and this morning confirmed our expectation that as the ballots are counted, Kyrsten will steadily build her advantage,” Sinema’s campaign said in a statement on Friday.

McSally’s campaign also said it is confident that she will be elected as Arizona’s next senator.

Maricopa, Greenlee, Pima, Pinal and Yuma counties still had outstanding votes as of early Thursday evening, according to the Arizona Secretary of State website.

The next batch of votes from Maricopa County was expected to come around 5 p.m. on Friday.

According to Tim Steller with the Arizona Daily Star, Pima County expects to finish counting early ballots by Tuesday.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

People get inoculated against the coronavirus in Hyderabad, India, Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021. India h...

Arizona reports 2,495 new COVID-19 cases, 49 more deaths Thursday

Arizona health officials on Thursday reported 2,495 new COVID-19 cases and 49 additional deaths from the disease.
9 hours ago
(Mandel Ngan/Pool via AP)...

Maricopa County prosecutors consider charges against Sinema protesters

The Maricopa County Attorney's Office said it is reviewing recommended charges submitted against activists who confronted U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema in a bathroom two weeks ago.
9 hours ago
Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio poses for a portrait at his private office in Fountain Hi...
Associated Press

Maricopa County to pay $5M to owner whose restaurant was raided by Arpaio

Maricopa County officials approved a $5 million settlement Wednesday with a restaurant owner who claimed in a lawsuit that then-Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s office had defamed him and violated his rights during a 2014 investigation.
9 hours ago
(Grand Canyon University photo)...
Griselda Zetino

Grand Canyon University offers new program for students with disabilities

Grand Canyon University is offering a new program meant to help students with disabilities develop social and job skills.
9 hours ago
(Facebook photo/Tucson Police Department)...
Torrence Dunham

Police group leader says Tucson vaccine mandate will increase staffing issues

Just over 50 Tucson police officers face getting a COVID-19 vaccine or a pink slip in December after the council voted Tuesday to fire unvaccinated city employees, a move a law enforcement association says would devastate services police provide.
9 hours ago
ADOT photo...

US 60 to close between Superior, Miami Monday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The route will be closed as crews further remove the old Pinto Creek Bridge, requiring motorists to take alternate routes.
9 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


What you need to know about spine health

With 540 million people suffering from lower back pain, it remains the leading cause of long-term disability. That’s why World Spine Day on Oct. 16 will raise awareness about spinal health with its theme, BACK2BACK. “BACK2BACK will focus on highlighting ways in which people can help their spines by staying mobile, avoiding physical inactivity, not overloading […]
Sweet James

Best fall road trips to take on a motorcycle

Autumn in Arizona brings the beauty of color-changing leaves and a relief from summer heat. It’s one of the most pleasant times to explore the outdoors, especially on a motorcycle.

Grill like a pro this fall with tips from Albertsons

As the weather cools and football season kicks off, it’s a great time to fire up the grill and enjoy your favorite outdoor meals.
Maricopa County still has 345K ballots to count as voters await Senate result