ARIZONA NEWS

Leaked draft of Maricopa County audit report confirms Biden defeated Trump in 2020 election

Sep 23, 2021, 8:29 PM | Updated: Sep 24, 2021, 2:12 am
Maricopa County ballots from the 2020 general election are examined and recounted by contractors hi...
Maricopa County ballots from the 2020 general election are examined and recounted by contractors hired by the Arizona senate, June 21, 2021, at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix, Arizona. (Audit pool file photo)
(Audit pool file photo)

PHOENIX — A leaked final draft report for the Republican-controlled Arizona Senate’s audit of the 2020 Maricopa County election results confirmed Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump.

The report found “no substantial differences between the hand count of the ballots provided and the official canvass results for the County.”

Results also had Donald Trump losing 261 votes from the official Maricopa County Canvass, while Joe Biden gained 99 votes.

It also showed Martha McSally losing 541 votes from the official Maricopa County Canvass, with Mark Kelly also losing 60, in the U.S. Senate race.

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jack Sellers after the draft of the report leaked responded by backing the election results that were originally certified.

“You don’t have to dig deep into the draft copy of the Arizona Senate/Cyber Ninja audit report to confirm what I already knew – the candidates certified by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, Governor, Secretary of State and Attorney General – did, in fact, win,” Sellers said in the statement.

“This means the tabulation equipment counted the ballots as they were designed to do, and the results reflect the will of the voters. That should be the end of the story. Everything else is just noise.”

While saying there were no substantial differences between the two, Cyber Ninjas – the audit firm hired by the Arizona Senate – recommended legislation be passed that tightens up the election process to provide additional certainty to elections going forward.

The firm also said there appeared to be many ballots that were cast from individuals who had moved prior to the election and said there was files missing from the Election Management System server.

Maricopa County was also blamed by the firm for failing to cooperate with the audit, saying the county withholding subpoena items, unwilling to answer questions and in some cases “actively interfering with audit research” prevented a complete audit.

The firm said there are many questions open as to the way and manner the election in Maricopa County was conducted and as a result, the full audit results validating the 2020 General Election are “necessarily inconclusive.”

Sellers said election experts will digest the draft and the eventual final report.

“As we have done before, we will correct their errors and misrepresentations about the processes they don’t understand,” Sellers said.

“I hope those holding on to their anger for the past ten months will see the truth and put their energy into supporting the democratic process instead of trying to tear it down.”

The audit began April 23 and was originally set to take about 60 days, but repeated delays extended the review over twice the expected completion time.

Senate President Karen Fann hired Cyber Ninjas to lead several other contractors to examine voting equipment and conduct a hand recount of nearly 2.1 million ballots from the November 2020 general election in Arizona’s largest county.

Only two races that Democrats won — president and U.S. Senate – were tallied in the recount.

The materials were given to Cyber Ninjas and other contractors with little to no election experience for what Fann has called a “forensic audit.”

Election experts say the 2020 election was secure and well-run, and the contractors used bizarre and unreliable procedures throughout the process.

A slew of legal battles over election materials and access to them unfolded in the five months since the audit began.

Fann has said the aim of the process is to restore faith in the election system and find ways to improve Arizona’s voting laws, not to reverse the result of the election.

However, many Trump supporters still see it as a step toward invalidating Biden’s victory and returning Trump to office.

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Leaked draft of Maricopa County audit report confirms Biden defeated Trump in 2020 election