The AZ GOP’s Longterm Voter Suppression Plan
By Jenny Guzman
If you’ve been watching TV lately, or doom-scrolling on social media, you know there are some seriously wild and scary-sounding claims being made right now around Arizona’s election results. The reality is this: President-elect Joe Biden and Senator Mark Kelly won in Arizona, thanks in large part to incredible organizing led by grassroots groups rooted in communities of color. Unfortunately, Republican legislators and politicians are now trying to throw out that result. Here’s what is going on — and what might happen next.
On Monday, select GOP legislative Republicans held a hearing with members of Donald Trump’s legal team to discuss baseless claims about the Arizona election. Arizona’s very own election and data expert Garrett Archer provided live commentary on the hearing, debunking their ludacris claims. However, LD-11 Representative Mark Finchem believes that despite these claims having no merit, Arizona votes should be thrown out anyways.
Some of the other Republicans that were on board with Arizona votes being thrown out, despite the election being certified, included Sen. Sonny Borrelli (LD-05) who was also a key figure in the hearings, and Wendy Rogers (LD-06) who called on the Arizona State Legislature to overturn the Arizona election results and instead pick the winner themselves. Other Arizona GOP legislators spent the day of the hearing and election certification sharing absurd conspiracy theories as an attempt to undermine the integrity of the election.
Here’s the truth: there are no grounds that the AZ GOP can use to overturn the election. These “claims” are nothing more than Trump talking points being used as an attempt to undermine the fair, accurate and certified election; all of these claims have been debunked. On top of it all, the Trump campaign has lost his Arizona lawsuit to challenge the outcome of the votes, and dropped another Arizona election lawsuit. There is no legal route for the state legislature, or anyone else, to alter the results or award Arizona’s electors to Trump. In fact, Mark Kelly, who just won the race for US Senate, has already been sworn in.
So what comes next?
The Arizona State Legislature begins session on January 11th. Republican legislators are going to be introducing a slew of voter suppression bills as a response to Arizona electing Joe Biden and Sen. Mark Kelly. Some of the Republicans that are notorious for introducing these type of extreme voter suppression bills include Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita (LD-23), who is one of the leading figures in pushing for voter suppression in Arizona, and Rep. Kelly Townsend (LD-16), who has called on Arizona State Attorney Mark Brnovich to investigate each claim made by the Trump campaign — despite there being no actual evidence.
Arizonans need to be aware that Republican legislators are going to try to do whatever they can to make it harder to vote. On top of this, some of these key figures involved with trying to overturn the result and certification of Arizona’s election will also be running for the Governor’s seat, all while trying to get you to forget their efforts to suppress your vote.
Stay informed, stay engaged with the upcoming legislative session, get ready to make calls and participate in virtual actions and remember — Arizonans voted out Trump and McSally. We stood up for our democracy in November, and we’re ready to do it again.