By Jack Phillips
President Donald Trump on Saturday hailed the Arizona state Senate for its months-long audit of Maricopa County’s 2.1 million ballots and election equipment, while pressing Arizona’s attorney general to investigate.
Speaking at an Arizona event called “Rally for Election Integrity,” the former president said the state Senate did the right thing when it authorized an audit of the county, a process that is still ongoing.
“We will fight for truth, transparency, and accountability, and we will not stop until we have restored our American birthright of honest, free, and fair elections,” Trump said in his speech, adding later that “we’re gathered here in Phoenix to show our support for election integrity and for the brave and unyielding conservative warriors in the Arizona state Senate.”
Trump praised Arizona Republican Party chair Kelli Ward, who has frequently posted about alleged election fraud since last November, as someone who is “really a fighter.”
“I called up, Kelli recently, I said, ‘Why wouldn’t the governor want an audit?’ Maybe everything will prove to be correct, which we know won’t happen,” he remarked, referring to Gov. Doug Ducey. “Why wouldn’t somebody want election integrity? Why wouldn’t they want to know? And I would be very happy—won’t happen—but I would be very happy if they did it and everything was perfect. But you’re not going to find that.”
Regarding the Arizona governor, whom Trump has clashed with in the past, the former commander-in-chief said, “He’s not getting my endorsement.”
Trump’s speech also applied more pressure on Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, who is running for the U.S. Senate seat.
“Hopefully,” Trump said, “he’s going to do what everybody knows has to be done,” referring to Brnovich. The attorney general didn’t attend the Arizona event due to a family commitment, local news website AzCentral reported.
Brnovich and Democrat Secretary of State Katie Hobbs are currently embroiled in a battle over whether to investigate and prosecute alleged voter fraud in the state. After Brnovich issued a request to Hobbs’s office, she responded in turn by saying that the attorney general should investigate state Republican Rep. Mark Finchem.
President Joe Biden became the first Democratic presidential candidate to be certified as the winner of Arizona’s election since 1996, defeating Trump by less than one percentage point. Biden also defeated Trump in Maricopa County, the most populous county in the state, by about 2 percentage points.
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