After auditors reviewed votes cast in Arizona’s Maricopa County in the 2020 presidential election, Joe Biden’s total vote count grew by 99 more votes than officially certified, while former President Donald Trump’s vote count was 261 fewer.
However, the auditors also found numerous voting anomalies, including more than 17,000 duplicate ballots.
According to the certified count, Trump lost to Biden by fewer than 11,000 votes in the nominally Republican state.
The audit, which Arizona Senate Republicans commissioned, was conducted by Cyber Ninjas, a Florida-based company.
Company CEO Doug Logan led the presentation of the audit results. One slide shown during the presentation indicated there were 17,322 duplicate votes.
During hearing testimony Shiva Ayyadurai, an expert in pattern recognition with over 40 years of experience, raised several issues with Maricopa County’s signature verification system.
These included voters receiving more than one voter ID number, ballots from voters with matching addresses and signatures but different voter IDs, blank signature boxes that were stamped “verified and approved,” more scribble signatures than the county reported, and the number of blank signatures increasing by 40% between November 4 and November 9.
The months-later audit will not retroactively change election results.
However, numerous advocates of the recount process have called it an indication of the need to ensure more accurate systems for vote counting, including updates to software, multi-layered security systems, and other changes to protect the authenticity of an election.
Trump supporters insist on audits of various other states, citing votes that may also be rife with errors and fraudulent.
Arizona Republican State Rep. Mark Finchem, who is currently seeking the Secretary of State position, is calling for the “arrest of those involved in tampering with election systems, and an audit of Pima County as a next step.”
Part of the secretary of state’s duties includes overseeing elections.
Arizona’s Republican Gov. Doug Ducey tweeted, “When it comes to the audit, like the three audits that preceded it, it’s now over. The outcome stands, and the 2020 election in Arizona is over.”
However, Ducey said in his statement that he would work with the legislature to “strengthen confidence in our elections system.”
Trump reacts strongly to audit
Following the release of audit findings, which reiterated that the election was rife with fraud, former Pres. Trump reacted in a statement saying:
“Huge findings in Arizona! However, the Fake News Media is already trying to ‘call it’ again for [Joe] Biden before actually looking at the facts — just like they did in November! The audit has uncovered significant and undeniable evidence of FRAUD! Until we know how and why this happened, our Elections will never be secure.”
In a later statement, he said, “I will be discussing the winning results of the Arizona Forensic Audit, which will show 44,000 possibly illegal ballots cast, tomorrow at the Great State of Georgia rally, which will be packed!”
State election officials certified the November presidential election results, while Congress certified the Electoral College’s vote count declaring Biden as president on January 6.