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Maricopa County 2020 election audit
The Arizona Senate's audit of the 2020 election in Maricopa County has completed the paper examination.

"Audit Update: Paper examination and counting are finished today. Thank you to all the amazing Arizona volunteers who made this audit possible!" said a missive from the "Maricopa Arizona Audit" Twitter account.
The announcement confirming the conclusion of the ballot inspection portion of the audit comes less than two weeks after auditors finished a recount of 2.1 million ballots.

The physical review of ballots included an inspection of their weight and thickness, examination of folds under microscopes, and workers holding ballots up to UV lights.

Towards the end of the process, workers were examining 100,000 ballots per day, the Maricopa Arizona Audit said in a tweet on Thursday.

Ken Bennett, serving as the Arizona Senate's liaison for the Maricopa County election audit, told OAN last week he expected the findings to be released in August. However, they could come as early as late July or as late as Labor Day.

The GOP-controlled Arizona Legislature has voted to revoke the Democratic Secretary of State Katie Hobbs' legal authority in election-related lawsuits, handing that power to the attorney general. The measure was included in major budget legislation, including several actions revolving around the election. It now goes to Republican Gov. Doug Ducey, who has the power to accept or reject individual parts of the measure.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich has sparred with Hobbs before over election lawsuits. Brnovich recently accused Hobbs of not adequately defending the state against election-related lawsuits. The bill approved Thursday gives Brnovich's office exclusive control of such lawsuits, but only through Jan. 2, 2023 — when the winners of the next elections for both offices would be about to take power.
Arizona was arguably one of the most important states in the 2020 presidential election. Even seven months later, a battle is on to audit and examine just what went on in November in the battleground state. The Republican legislature of the state never wants that to happen again and they just made a big move.

The Arizona House passed two bills aimed at securing their elections

The first requires election officials to hand over records to prosecutors. The second raises the threshold of auto recounts to 0.5 percentage points.

The Associated Press reported:
Arizona House Republicans advanced a measure requiring election officials to give prosecutors records of mail ballots that get rejected because the signature doesn't match the one on file.

Mail voting accounts for the overwhelming majority of ballots cast in Arizona. County officials verify they're valid by matching a signature on the ballot envelope to those on file from voter registration forms, driver's license records and previous elections.

If the signature seems off, officials work to contact the voter, who has five days after the election to resolve the issue. Ballots not resolved are not counted.

The measure, SB1241, would require county election officials to give a variety of information from those ballots to the county attorney or attorney general, including the signatures from the ballot envelope and those on file and the voter's contact information.
Meanwhile, House Republicans also voted to raise the threshold for an automatic recount of an election to 0.5 percentage points.

Both measures still need approval in the Senate.

Arizona GOP Chairwoman Dr. Kelli Ward recently provided a major update on the audit and what comes next.

Last week, it was revealed that a whopping nine state delegations will tour the Maricopa County audit facility on Friday.

Ward, who threatened that there "could be arrests of people who are refusing to comply," says the audit could be completed much sooner than expected.