Since last year’s presidential election, former President Donald Trump and his allies have repeatedly and without meaningful evidence claimed that systematic fraud was present in the proceedings, including in Maricopa County, Arizona, where Joe Biden was victorious. Biden won Arizona as a whole last November, obtaining the first win in the state for a Democratic presidential nominee since the 1990s. Following his win, Republicans in the state Senate have launched a supposed audit of the Maricopa County election results, although the company that they hired to lead that audit had no prior election auditing experience.
Now, Maricopa County authorities have launched a new effort to undercut lies about the electoral process from Trump and others. They’ve started a website — JustTheFacts.Vote — that they say will “address questions and misconceptions about the 2020 General Election.” It’s notable that, even as another nationwide round of elections swiftly approaches, the officials who handle the electoral process find themselves needing to devote time and other resources to responding to false claims about elections that took place almost nine months ago.
— Maricopa County Elections Department (@MaricopaVote) July 23, 2021
Meanwhile, the Maricopa County Elections Department notes in the announcement of their new website that “Elections are complex and governed by many state and federal laws and procedures,” adding that their site “takes the often-complex world of elections and makes it understandable for residents who may have honest questions about why things are done a certain way.”
As one example fact-check, the Maricopa Elections Department noted that — contrary to a particular myth out there — “counties should not update tabulation equipment [with] every windows update or patch,” because the federal agency known as the U.S. Elections Assistance Commission “requires all updates go through recertification to ensure no vulnerabilities are introduced into the air-gapped vote counting system.” The usage of what’s called an “air-gapped” system means that the county’s “tabulation equipment is never connected to the internet and is completely separated from the Maricopa County Network,” local authorities have explained. Thus, there’s no opportunity for hacking the vote counting system, because it’s not even connected to the internet.
There are no routers connected to the system and there never have been. See attached network diagram of the Election Management System (County’s Tabulation System). pic.twitter.com/zvaaelsbeM
— Maricopa County (@maricopacounty) July 16, 2021