After Six Months, Kari Lake’s Election Contest Nears an End: Trial Set Over One Final Claim
WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Monday, May 15, an Arizona judge ruled that Republican election denier Kari Lake’s six month-long election contest regarding her loss in the 2022 Arizona governor’s race will go to trial on one claim. The sole remaining claim pertains to Maricopa County’s signature verification process and the trial on this claim will be held from May 17- May 19.
At trial, Lake will have to show that “Maricopa County’s higher level signature reviewers conducted no signature verification or curing and in so doing had systematically failed to materially comply with the law.” Additionally, Lake must prove that this alleged failure “resulted in a change in the outcome of the gubernatorial election proven by ‘competent mathematical basis.’” Importantly, Lake asked the court to relitigate three previously dismissed claims, which the court declined to do, stating that Lake “has not established a basis for relitigating the previously adjudicated counts.”
This order comes after the Arizona Supreme Court issued a ruling back in March denying review of six of the seven claims in Lake’s appeal of her previously dismissed election contest. Following this ruling, the state Supreme Court sent one claim regarding signature matching back to the trial court for further review.
Following her November 2022 loss to Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs (D) by over 17,000 votes, Lake’s contest was rejected by a trial court after she argued that the certification of results should be voided as a result of “chaos” in Maricopa County on Election Day. When her contest was dismissed, the trial court concluded that Lake did not prove that any intentional misconduct affected the results of the election and that the testimony presented at trial did not “substantiate Plaintiff’s claim of intentional misconduct as to either claim.”
Lake appealed to the Arizona Court of Appeals, but the appellate court affirmed the trial court’s decision. Lake then filed a petition to the Arizona Supreme Court asking it to hear the case. The Arizona Supreme Court held that the “Court of Appeals aptly resolved these issues, most of which were the subject of evidentiary proceedings in the trial court.” After losing at all three court levels, Lake’s sole remaining claim — which alleges that the lower court erred when it dismissed Lake’s signature verification claim — went back to the trial court for further review.
This election contest has been fueled by fringe conspiracies from the beginning and Lake’s attorney (who might be remembered by his stint representing the controversial Cyber Ninjas during Arizona’s 2020 election “audit”) was even sanctioned by the Arizona Supreme Court for false claims. In an order granting sanctions, the high court held: “Because Lake’s attorney has made false factual statements to the Court, we conclude[d] that the extraordinary remedy of a sanction…is appropriate.”