There were widespread reports Tuesday of serious issues involving vote tabulation machines in numerous voting centers around Arizona’s Maricopa County, which prompted several Republican organizations to file a lawsuit seeking an extension of voting hours to ensure that all voters had a chance to cast their ballot.
Unfortunately for those Republicans, not to mention disenfranchised voters, a Maricopa County judge rejected the request and refused to delay the closing of polling locations or the initial release of early vote totals, Breitbart reported.
Problems in Maricopa County … again
According to reports and a 13-page complaint, anywhere from 25 to 36 percent of polling locations in Maricopa County suffered “pervasive and systemic malfunctions of ballot tabulation devices and printers,” meaning the tabulation machines were unable to scan poorly printed ballots, which resulted in some voters being burdened with “excessive delays and long lines,” and, in some instances, not being able to vote at all.
The complaint was filed jointly by the Republican National Committee, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and the campaigns of gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake and Senate candidate Blake Masters.
They asked the court to issue a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction that would extend voting hours in Maricopa County from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm and to delay the initial release of early vote totals from 8:00 pm until 11:00 pm.
The lawsuit also sought additional guidance from the court for poll workers about ensuring voters were properly “checked out” of one location if unable to vote so that they could go to another location with properly functioning equipment to legally cast their ballot.
Judge rules against Republican suit
However, AZ Family reported that the Maricopa County Superior Court judge “rejected the notion that people in Maricopa County were denied their ability to vote because of tabulation machine issues.”
Thus, the judge declined to grant the request from the Republicans and declined to extend voting hours or delay the first batch of early vote results.
#BREAKING: A Maricopa County judge has DENIED a GOP lawsuit to extend poll hours & delay the release of voting numbers.
— azfamily 3TV CBS 5 (@azfamily) November 9, 2022
Judge ignored known and obvious problems, attorney says
Republican attorney Harmeet Dhillon took to Twitter early Tuesday evening and wrote, “In Arizona, Mark Kelly’s campaign intervened to OPPOSE people who were disenfranchised today in Maricopa County, from being allowed to vote. Goes to show you that Democrats’ platitudes about voting rights are often situational, at best. Hearing soon.”
Shortly thereafter, she retweeted that message and added, “Hearing concludes. Court rules against the TRO request, despite the admitted problems with voting in Maricopa County, and multiple factual declarations from voters affected by bad instructions and malfunctioning equipment at over 25 percent of polling places in Maricopa County.”
As of Wednesday afternoon, according to Arizona Central, there were reportedly around 400,000 ballots left to be counted, including thousands that were unable to be scanned by tabulation machines due to poor printing quality, and none of the major races had been called as final yet.