ARIZONA NEWS

Cochise County elections director resigns 5 months after being hired

Sep 20, 2023, 8:00 AM

Members of the public attend a Cochise County Board of Supervisors meeting to provide feedback on t...

Members of the public attend a Cochise County Board of Supervisors meeting to provide feedback on the proposed transfer of election functions and duties to the county recorder on Feb. 14, 2023, in Bisbee, Arizona. County Elections Director Bob Bartelsmeyer submitted his resignation Sept. 15, 2023, five months after being hired. (AP Photo/Alberto Mariani, File)

(AP Photo/Alberto Mariani, File)

BISBEE, Ariz. (AP) — The elections director of a rural Arizona county who pushed false claims that voter fraud was behind President Donald Trump’s 2020 election loss is resigning five months after being hired.

Bob Bartelsmeyer submitted his resignation from Cochise County last Friday and announced he would return to his previous job as elections director in La Paz County, more than 300 miles west near the California state line, KVOA-TV in Tucson reported Tuesday.

A public information officer for Cochise County did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

According to his resignation letter, Bartelsmeyer’s last day will be Sept. 29.

Bartelsmeyer was picked as elections director in April by the two Republicans on the three-member Cochise County Board of Supervisors.

Bartelsmeyer publicly shared memes on his personal Facebook page supporting Trump’s allegations of fraud and promoting the lie that Dominion voting machines manipulated the outcome.

He served for a year as the elections director and deputy clerk in La Paz County. Before that, Bartelsmeyer had an unexplained 12-year gap on his resume. Before that, his resume shows he bounced between elections jobs in Arizona, New Mexico and Florida, and was the elected clerk in Lawrence County, Missouri, for 23 years.

The southeastern county of 125,000 people is predominantly conservative and went for Trump over Democrat Joe Biden by nearly 20 percentage points.

The two Republicans on the county board of supervisors tried to have ballots hand-counted in last year’s midterm election but a judge said that was illegal. They then refused to certify the election results. A judge had to order them to approve the election canvass.

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Cochise County elections director resigns 5 months after being hired