Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Margaret Mahoney threw out the last election-related lawsuit that remained pending in Arizona on Friday. Fundamentally, only two ballots were at issue in the lawsuit, so President-elect Joe Biden’s win in the state was never threatened by the case. Although Trump’s name wasn’t on the plaintiffs list in this case, he has openly supported nationwide challenges to election results.
One of the plaintiffs in Arizona, Laurie Aguilera, alleged that a tabulation machine at a polling place on Election Day didn’t display a confirmation message after she inserted her ballot, and after this alleged incident, she asked for a new ballot from poll workers, but they didn’t hand one over. Another voter, Donovan Drobina, said that a poll worker directed him to submit his ballot for hand-processing after the tabulation machine failed to read it, but the duo’s lawyer alleged that there’s a legal imperative for the tabulation machines to handle every vote. Judge Mahoney “questioned” the lawyer’s “interpretation that the law guarantees every voter some sort of right to have the ballot counted mechanically, noting the state law and election procedures lay out detailed processes for counting ballots by hand when ballots cannot be read by a machine,” the Arizona Republic says.
As for Aguilera, Maricopa County, Arizona’s legal team argued that withholding the chance for her to submit another ballot helped ensure the integrity of the election by ensuring that she didn’t vote twice. Aguilera may have not noticed a confirmation message on the tabulation machine on Election Day, a lawyer for the county noted. Aguilera says a county computer database didn’t confirm that she’d voted, but the database might have simply been slow. There’s another obviously hollow argument in the lawsuit — the plaintiffs also sought in-person observation privileges for the general public while ballots that machines couldn’t read are processed by election authorities — but the general public could already watch this process via a livestream, which Aguilera and Drobina said they hadn’t tried.
The Arizona defeat emerged shortly after another Arizona defeat, when a judge ruled against the Arizona Republican Party’s request to expand the audit of election results in Maricopa County. County authorities have certified the results of Maricopa’s wing of the presidential election, keeping the process moving along towards the swearing-in of President-elect Joe Biden as the next president of the United States early next year.