Republicans on the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors are calling for Arizona GOP Chairwoman Kelli Ward, who is closely aligned with former President Donald Trump, to resign following the release of the state Senate's election audit report.
Supervisor Clint Hickman urged top elected Republicans in the state, including Gov. Doug Ducey, Attorney General Mark Brnovich, and state Treasurer Kimberly Yee, to call on Ward to step down over her role in questioning the 2020 election results in Maricopa County.
"She has caused a fracture in our party. She has operated outside of it for the purpose of helping herself," Hickman said in an interview with KTAR News on Friday.
Ward played a key role in building momentum for the audit of Maricopa County's 2.1 million ballots and was especially critical of the county board, which is controlled by Republicans, after Trump's defeat.
Hickman said Friday the board has "always tried — this county has always tried to work with the legislative branch and the judicial branch to bring out evidence and fact," adding that those who supported the Senate's audit "decided to act on conjecture, apparently."
Supervisor Bill Gates, another Republican, echoed Hickman's words, saying the party "must choose a new direction rooted in truth & good politics."
"I stand w/ my colleague here calling for @kelliwardaz’s resignation," Gates wrote in a tweet. "The @AZGOP’s done nothing but push lies about our electoral system, ignore down ballot races, & lose federal & state elections under her leadership."
I stand w/ my colleague here calling for @kelliwardaz’s resignation. The @AZGOP’s done nothing but push lies about our electoral system, ignore down ballot races, & lose federal & state elections under her leadership. We must choose a new direction rooted in truth & good politics https://t.co/RmeGmJi876
— Bill Gates (@billgatesaz) September 24, 2021
Auditors hired by the Republican-led state Senate delivered a report of their review to the chamber on Friday, which confirmed President Joe Biden's victory over Trump in the county and did not assert that fraudulent ballots were cast.
Senate President Karen Fann, however, referred the report to Brnovich and said "urgent issues" in the report "suggest less-than-perfect adherence to Arizona's standards and best practices."
Biden defeated Trump in Arizona by 10,457 votes statewide and by 45,109 votes in Maricopa County in 2020, according to the canvasses following the election.
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Original Author: Jeremy Beaman