Politics Trump tests the limits of GOP loyalty with Arizona "audit"
Sheriff warns Maricopa County election audit demands 'jeopardize' law enforcement activities
The demands of a controversial Republican-backed audit of the 2020 election in Arizona's most populous county "jeopardize" law enforcement activities, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office warned.Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone released a statement after lawyers with the GOP-controlled Arizona Senate, which ordered the audit and recount of 2.1 million ballots cast last November, sent an email to Maricopa County officials on Friday morning demanding access to router information by the end of the day or face subpoenas on Monday to explain their position while under oath.
Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump addresses supporters during a political rally at the Phoenix Convention Center on July 11, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. Trump spoke about illegal immigration and other topics in front of an estimated crowd of 4,200. Charlie Leight/Getty Images
The Republican Party is finding itself increasingly fractured as more members of the GOP disavow Donald Trump despite concerns within the party that it .
Arizona secretary of state raises alarm about Wi-Fi router connected to Maricopa County election audit servers
Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs raised new concerns about the GOP-led Arizona Senate's audit of the 2020 election in Maricopa County on Wednesday. © Provided by Washington Examiner The Democrat, who has observers at the venue, said one of her experts saw a Wi-Fi router connected to audit servers on Tuesday, which could jeopardize the security of election information."There’s no way to ensure that ballot images, vote counts, & perhaps voter data weren’t connected to external networks or the internet," Hobbs said in a tweet.
On Sunday, Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., a fierce critic of the former President and one of ten House Republicans who voted to impeach him, in an that policy takes less of a priority in the GOP than one's fealty to Trump. "I think what I'm used to saying to any Republican that's maybe kind of confused by the moment we're in is policy doesn't matter anymore," he argued. "It literally is all your loyalty to Donald Trump. As I've said before, this is something that, like, echoes a little bit out of North Korea, where no matter what policy comes out, you're loyal to the guy."
Arizona GOP election official calls Trump post about Maricopa audit 'unhinged'
An election official from Arizona is calling former President Donald Trump's claims about the audit of Maricopa County's 2020 presidential election results "unhinged."Stephen Richer, the Maricopa County recorder and a registered Republican, called Trump's assertions that the county's entire voter database was deleted "readily falsifiable.
The Illinois Republican went on to spell out the hypocrisy between the party's treatment of Trump and Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., who last week was ousted from her leadership role as the party's conference chair over her staunch criticism of the former president. Kinzinger explained that when it comes to Trump, people claim: "I don't like what Donald Trump tweets, but I like his policies, so I'm going to support him." But in the case of Cheney, people say: "Look, I like her policies, I don't like what she tweets, so she needs to leave."
"What that shows to me is an inconsistency that is built solely around allegiance to one man: Donald Trump," the lawmaker added. "And we have to recognize that as a party. And we have to recognize that four months ago we allowed, basically, the narrative to lead to an insurgency on January 6. And until we take ownership of that, we can't heal."
Arizona audit funding cloaked in secrecy
Three weeks into the Arizona Senate's unorthodox audit of the 2020 presidential election results, one potential winner seems to be emerging, regardless of any count: Cyber Ninjas, the Florida-based consulting firm being paid to lead the analysis of the votes in populous Maricopa County. © Matt York/Pool/AP Maricopa County ballots cast in the 2020 general election are examined and recounted by contractors working for Florida-based Cyber Ninjas, on May 6, at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix.
Maryland GOP Gov. Larry Hogan echoed Kinzinger on Sunday when he during a CNN "State of the Union" interview that Cheney's ouster was "kind of doubling down on failure."
"Liz Cheney is a solid conservative Republican who voted with the president 93 percent of the time," Hogan . "I thought she just stood up and told the truth and said exactly what she thought. We've lost the White House, the House, the Senate over the past four years, and to continue to do the exact same thing and expect a different result is the definition of insanity."
Trump has also seen some defection from his inner circle. On Sunday, Trump's former White House adviser, Alyssa Farah, that she would not support him in his potential 2024 presidential bid, signaling an allegiance with Cheney.
"The GOP is careening down a strategically unwise path and morally reprehensible one, to be completely candid with you," she in an interview with MSNBC's Mehdi Hasan. "Liz Cheney did the right thing. We shouldn't condemn people for simply telling the facts. Like, facts matter, she did the right thing. But that shouldn't be brave or heroic but just what our leaders do."
GOP-dominated Arizona supervisors call for end to election audit
The state Senate president letter drew the attention of former President Trump, who blasted it out through his Save America PAC and called her claims "devastating."They also unanimously agreed to send a forceful response to claims made last week by Arizona's Republican Senate President Karen Fann, who wrote to the board of supervisors last week alleging the county was not complying with legislative subpoenas, didn't properly secure the chain of custody of ballots and deleted data.
Farah added: "But there's a perception we care more about loyalty to the former president and wanting to gloss over the election and Jan 6. My unsolicited advice to my fellow Republicans would be: the truth tends to come to the top. It's better to address it now, come to grips with what went wrong, and accept it. Because we're going to be dealing with it in the midterms and 2024."
Farah left the Trump administration back in December of last year, prior to the Capitol riot on January 6. In February, just ahead of Trump's impeachment trial, Farah the constitutionality of proceeding, instead suggesting that the former president should be censured.
Trump has also seen some pushback from his own party in Arizona, where an extremely questionable GOP-led recount in Maricopa County is being held to determine the validity of President Biden's presidential win. On Saturday, Trump baselessly that Arizona Senate's election auditors found an "unbelievable Election crime."
"The entire Database of Maricopa County in Arizona has been DELETED!" the former President exclaimed in a .
Maricopa county recorder Stephen Richer immediately demurred Trump's claim as "unhinged."
"I'm literally looking at our voter registration database on my other screen," he . "Right now. We can't indulge these insane lies any longer. As a party. As a state. As a country. This is as readily falsifiable as 2+2=5."
The Maricopa County board of supervisors has been vehemently pushing back against Trump's claims of foul play.
Trump's election "audit" should be treated as a trojan horse, Arizona secretary of state warns .
Arizona taxpayers may be on the hook for replacing voting machines in Maricopa County Contractors working for Cyber Ninjas, who was hired by the Arizona State Senate, examine and recount ballots from the 2020 general election at Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 1, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Maricopa County ballot recount comes after two election audits found no evidence of widespread fraud.