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Judge rules Arizona’s Maricopa County must turn over 2.1 million November ballots to state Senate

Arizona Senate President Karen Fann, a Republican says effort is about "the integrity of the Arizona election system."

Updated: February 27, 2021 - 11:28pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

A judge ruled Friday that  Arizona's Maricopa County must provide roughly 2.1 million ballots from the Nov. 3 election to the state Senate and allow the chamber to access to its election equipment to conduct an audit, according to a news reports.

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Timothy Thomason ruled that subpoenas issued by the state Senate are valid and should be enforced. Thomason also disputed arguments from county officials the Senate subpoenas are unlawful, according to the Epoch Times. The county has argued that previous, multiple audits are sufficient and that the ballots should be sealed.

"The Court finds that the subpoenas are legal and enforceable,” Thomason wrote in his ruling, obtained by The Times. “There is no question that the Senators have the power to issue legislative subpoenas. The subpoenas comply with the statutory requirements for legislative subpoenas. The Senate also has broad constitutional power to oversee elections.”

Arizona Senate President Karen Fann, a Republican, told news outlets after the judge’s ruling that their move was "never about overturning the election, it was about the integrity of the Arizona election system."

Whether the Maricopa Board of Supervisors will appeal judge's decision remains unclear.