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Arizona house speaker: Legislature won’t overturn election results

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

PHOENIX — Despite continued pressure from surrogates of President Donald Trump, Republican Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers said Friday the state Legislature cannot and will not overturn the certified Nov. 3 election results.

Bowers released a letter stating that he would not call a special session to discuss the 11 electoral votes that went to President-elect Joe Biden after he became the first Democrat to win in Arizona since 1996.

The state constitution also bars the Legislature from overturning certified election results.

“As a conservative Republican, I don’t like the results of the presidential election. I voted for President Trump and worked hard to reelect him,” Bowers wrote.

“But I cannot and will not entertain a suggestion that we violate current law to change the outcome of a certified election.”

Bowers added that Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis have provided no evidence of election fraud.

Giuliani and Ellis held unofficial meetings in Phoenix earlier this week with some legislators in an effort to prove fraud and overturn Trump’s loss in the state.

“Both times, the Trump team made claims that the election was tainted by fraud but presented only theories, not proof,” Bowers said.

Lawsuits from Arizona Republicans challenging the integrity of the election have been plentiful and mostly unsuccessful since Biden was declared the winner in the state.

As of Friday afternoon, one lawsuit filed by Arizona GOP Chair Kelli Ward was still active.

Ward is challenging ballots in Maricopa County that were duplicated because voters’ earlier ballots were damaged or could not be run through tabulators.

A court-ordered sampling of 1,626 duplicated ballots found Trump lost seven votes due to errors in ballot processing in Maricopa County.

An election official had testified Trump could have lost 103 votes if the error rate were extrapolated across all 27,800 duplicated ballots in the county. Biden won Arizona by more than 10,000 votes.

“No election is perfect, and if there were evidence of illegal votes or an improper count, then Arizona law provides a process to contest the election: a lawsuit under state law,” Bowers said.

“But the law does not authorize the Legislature to reverse the results of an election.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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