Signature challenge against Democratic Arizona governor candidate withdrawn

Apr 27, 2022, 7:51 AM

(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)...

(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)

(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)

PHOENIX (AP) — A legal challenge to one of three Democrats running for Arizona governor has been withdrawn after reports from county recorders showed Aaron Lieberman turned in enough signatures to make the ballot.

That means Lieberman will appear along with Democratic Secretary of State Katie Hobbs and Marco Lopez, a former Nogales mayor and Obama Administration border official, on the August primary ballot.

Attorneys for the voter who challenged Lieberman’s signatures, Logan Franklin, asked a judge in Phoenix court to dismiss the case Tuesday afternoon.

At a morning hearing, attorney Andy Gaona said he would know whether the case would proceed to a scheduled trial when Maricopa County completed its review of the challenged signatures. That review confirmed that the former state lawmaker had indeed turned in the minimum number needed to make the ballot.

Candidates must collect signatures from qualified voters to run for office. For Democrats seeking the governor’s office this year, the threshold was 7,035, but candidates often turn in at least twice as many as needed to ensure that enough are valid.

Lieberman turned in only 9,842 signatures, a low enough margin that opponents believed they might succeed in keeping him off the ballot.

Lieberman is the least known of the three Democratic vying to move on to the November general election. He’s unveiled a series of proposals, including providing the option for all 4-year-old to attend free preschool. On Tuesday, he released a plan that would allow students from low-income households to attend trade schools, colleges or universities and graduate debt free.

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Signature challenge against Democratic Arizona governor candidate withdrawn