Judge allows group to monitor local ballot dropboxes in Arizona
"The Court cannot craft an injunction without violating the First Amendment."
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A federal judge on Friday declined to prohibit a local group from monitoring ballot drop boxes in Arizona.
"The Court cannot craft an injunction without violating the First Amendment," District Court Judge Michael Liburdi wrote.
He did not end the case and said he would allow the Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans to again make a case against Clean Elections USA, per Politico.
The ruling follows reports of armed and masked individuals monitoring ballot boxes in Arizona counties ahead of the midterms, the outlet noted. Ballot drop boxes have long attracted scrutiny from election integrity watchdogs over the potential for fraud.
Liburdi observed that no comments from Clean Elections USA existed to substantiate the notion that their actions presented any threat. Arizona is a constitutional carry state, which means the public carrying of firearms is legal.
"Plaintiffs have not provided the Court with any evidence that Defendants’ conduct constitutes a true threat," Liburdi wrote. "On this record, Defendants have not made any statements threatening to commit acts of unlawful violence to a particular individual or group of individuals."
The Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans has vowed to appeal the ruling.
"We continue to believe that Clean Elections USA’s intimidation and harassment is unlawful," the group said, per Politico.
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