Arizona Secretary of State Refers Cochise County Supervisors for Potential Charges

WASHINGTON, D.C. On Friday, Dec. 2, the Arizona secretary of state’s office sent a letter asking Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich (R) and the Cochise County attorney to consider criminal penalties for two members of the Cochise County Board of Supervisors who flouted Arizona law by refusing to canvass results from the 2022 midterm elections. The letter asks Brnovich to “investigate this conduct and take all necessary action to hold these public officers accountable.”

The letter, sent by state Elections Director Kori Lorick, comes on the heels of two lawsuits filed against the board of supervisors after the board purposefully chose not to canvass the county’s election results by the county’s deadline of Monday, Nov. 28. County officials have a non-discretionary and mandatory duty to canvass election results. At the end of a court hearing yesterday, a judge ordered the county to complete the canvass by later that day, after which the county ultimately complied.

In today’s letter, Lorick points to several Arizona laws that establish criminal penalties for failing to perform election duties, which include both misdemeanor and felony offenses. “Supervisors [Tom] Crosby and [Peggy] Judd knew they had a statutory requirement to canvass the election by November 28, but instead chose to act in violation of the law, putting false election narratives ahead of Cochise County’s voters,” Lorick writes. “Had a court not intervened, the failure of these two Supervisors to uphold their duty would have disenfranchised thousands of Cochise County voters. This blatant act of defying Arizona’s election laws risks establishing a dangerous precedent that we must discourage.”

Read the letter here.

Learn more about the Cochise County canvass cases here.