Arizona Republicans Halt Audit Canvassing After DOJ Letter

WASHINGTON, D.C. — One of the most concerning methods proposed by Republicans in their performative audit of Maricopa County ballots will no longer be used, state leadership announced last week. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) sent a letter to Senate President Karen Fann (R) last Thursday outlining the DOJ’s concerns about the state’s audit procedures, which will be conducted by private companies hired by the Republican state Senate, including Cyber Ninjas. Of particular concern, the DOJ said, were plans to carry out door-to-door canvassing where auditors would interrogate voters about the validity of their vote and their eligibility in the state. 

In its letter last week, the DOJ said this method could violate federal laws that protect against voter intimidation. In response, Republicans replied on Friday that the door-to-door canvassing would be put on “indefinite” hold as the audit moves forward. They did not guarantee, however, that they won’t revisit the method some time in the future. Cyber Ninjas has also agreed to more oversight from the secretary of state as it continues its audit following a settlement with the Arizona Democratic Party last week.

Read the letter from the DOJ here.

Read Senate President Karen Fann’s response here.