Arizona’s GOP-backed ballot review has raised more than $5.7 million in private donations, organizers say

By: Rosalind S. Helderman

A private contractor conducting a Republican-commissioned review of 2020 presidential ballots in Arizona’s largest county announced late Wednesday that it has collected more than $5.7 million in private donations to fund the process.

The controversial ballot review, which included a hand recount of Maricopa County’s nearly 2.1 million ballots and a review of ballot tabulating machines, has been underway since April. It was ordered by the state’s Republican-led Senate, which agreed to spend $150,000 in taxpayer money to fund the audit. But the Senate allowed Cyber Ninjas, a Florida-based firm hired to lead the process, to collect donations as well.

It has been clear for months that the lengthy ballot review, which was conducted by dozens of workers, some working nearly round-the-clock, was being largely financed by allies of former president Donald Trump. The newly released figures put that fact in sharp relief: More than 97 percent of the audit’s costs have so far been shouldered by donations from five organizations led by people who have promoted the false claim that the election was stolen.

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Texas GOP lawmakers want 2020 election audit — but only in big counties that mostly went for Biden

AUSTIN — Support is growing among Texas Republicans for a push to audit the results of the 2020 election in a state that former President Donald Trump won handily. But the proposal, introduced in the House earlier this month, would only re-examine votes in Texas’s largest counties, most of which went for President Biden.

The legislation, House Bill 241, calls for an independent third party appointed by the state’s top GOP officials to conduct a forensic audit of results in counties with more than 415,000 people. Of the 13 counties that meet that criteria, 10 voted for Biden last year.

The bill’s sponsor, Republican state Rep. Steve Toth, said earlier this week that his constituents are concerned about fraud in the election. In an interview, Toth added that he also became convinced an audit was needed after a meeting earlier this year with U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Tex.), who claimed to have evidence of vote fraud in a 2018 race that he lost.

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