Fontes says Brnovich should be disbarred for withholding Arizona election investigation findings
Feb 22, 2023, 5:44 PM
(Photo by Jon Cherry/Getty Images)
PHOENIX — Arizona Secretary of State Adrian Fontes believes Mark Brnovich should be disbarred after documents released Wednesday revealed the former state attorney general kept complete findings of the 2020 election investigation under wraps.
“Yes, he should be disbarred,” Fontes told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Gaydos and Chad Show.
Fontes, a Democrat, was the recorder in 2020 for Maricopa County, Arizona’s most populous county and the epicenter of claims of election fraud.
Current Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes released documents showing Brnovich had — but withheld — the complete investigation findings while he was attorney general and running for Senate last year, even after he lost the Republican primary in August.
The documents shoot down a litany of election conspiracy greatest hits, including false claims of bamboo ballots, large numbers of dead voters and tabulation machines being hooked up to the internet.
“I’m angry for the people that got hurt because Mark Brnovich was too much of a freakin’ coward to tell the truth,” Fontes said.
Officials from both parties ripped Brnovich on Wednesday for keeping the findings private.
Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Clint Hickman, a Republican, said he was “absolutely disgusted” that Brnovich wasn’t more forthright about what his investigators found.
“There’s a lot of people that don’t realize the personal tragedy that this has really foisted on a lot of folks,” Fontes said.
“We’ve had people suffering death threats because of this. We’ve had people leave their careers because of the harassment and intimidation that they suffered fueled by the lie, fueled by what Brnovich could have stopped.”
Brnovich responded to the criticism, saying he was “proud of the work our office did with the election integrity unit.”
“While subjected to severe criticism from all sides of the political spectrum during the course of our investigations, we did our due diligence to run all complaints to ground,” Brnovich said in a statement.
“Where we were able to debunk rumors and conspiracies, we did so. Nevertheless, we also identified areas we believe the Legislature and county officials should address to ensure confidence in future elections.”