Top Arizona election official requests investigation of Kari Lake for potential violation
By Kyung Lah and Kate Sullivan, CNN
The top election official in Arizona has asked the state’s attorney general to investigate Republican Kari Lake, who lost her 2022 gubernatorial bid, for potentially violating state law by publishing voter signatures on her Twitter account.
The request by Arizona Secretary of State Adrian Fontes, a Democrat elected to the office last November, comes after Lake posted a tweet on January 23 that made an unfounded claim that 40,000 ballots didn’t match voter signatures that the state has on record. Lake posted a graphic that showed 16 voter signatures, alleging that they didn’t match with what Arizona has on file.
In a letter to Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes, Fontes requested “appropriate enforcement action against Kari Lake” for publishing those 16 voter signatures. Fontes cites a state law that prohibits reproducing voter signatures other than the voter or a legally authorized person. Fontes’ letter states that violation of that law is a felony.
The office for Mayes, a Democrat who also was elected in 2022, confirmed receiving the letter but did not comment any further.
Lake’s spokespeople did not reply to CNN’s request for comment.
Lake lost the race for governor to Democrat Katie Hobbs last November by more than 17,000 votes. Since losing, Lake has continued to spout election lies on right-wing media and pursue legal remedy in the courts, efforts that have continued to fail. Lake has appealed a decision by an Arizona judge who found in December there was no clear or convincing evidence of misconduct in the 2022 election and affirmed Hobbs’ victory.
Lake has been making false claims about election fraud on Twitter and in appearances on right-wing media since losing in November. She held a “Save Arizona Rally” in Scottsdale on Sunday in which she repeated lies about the election and promoted conspiracy theories about the election.
Former President Donald Trump called into her rally and affirmed her election lies, saying, “It’s a shame what happened” in November and that he believed “ultimately she’s going to be victorious.” Trump continues to deny the outcome of the 2020 presidential election that he lost and has launched a third campaign for president.
The Republican candidates in Arizona for senate, governor, attorney general and secretary of state all made Trump’s election lies a central part of their campaigns and all lost their races in November.
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