The state Senate does not typically conduct recounts; in fact, Senate Republicans had to go to court to force Maricopa County to turn over the ballots and election machines they wish to audit. The county, run by a Republican-majority board of supervisors, has already audited the ballots, the voting machines and the count, taking extra steps to assure the state Senate that there was no reasonable doubt about the results because there is none.
For the Senate to conduct a massive hand recount, Republicans would need to create their own vote-tallying infrastructure. The Associated Press reports that they still do not know where the counting will happen or who will conduct the survey. Ms. Fann had considered hiring Allied Security Operations Group, an auditing firm that had worked with former Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani during his campaign to discredit the 2020 results. She backed off that idea and now says she has another company in mind, but it is a bad sign about where the recount is going. Arizona Democrats, meanwhile, refuse to participate.
As any experienced election official can attest, there are rules upon rules upon rules in the normal counting process — who gets to observe, how ballots are handled, how voting machines are examined. A non-expert, partisan body conducting its own recount, on the fly, without the other party’s buy-in, two months after the new president has been sworn-in, simply cannot produce credible results.
Given Arizona Republicans’ pathological refusal to accept Mr. Biden’s victory in their state, perhaps the point is not accuracy so much as discovering “irregularities” that seem to bolster Republicans’ stolen-election mythology. As Republicans in states across the country have done, they can use the absence of confidence for which they are responsible to push election “reforms” that suppress Democratic voters.
Though they have done far more damage, Republicans are not the only ones who should question whether their refusal to accept last year’s election results is good for the nation. Rita Hart, a Democrat who lost her bid for a U.S. House seat in Iowa by six votes, is petitioning the House to reconsider the results in her race, claiming that election officials improperly tossed 22 ballots. The House has the power to judge such disputes, which it does with some regularity, and it has a rule-bound process for doing so.
But House Democrats should keep their distance. Iowa’s bipartisan election process certified the results. Barring truly egregious errors, a partisan House majority should not reverse them. Democrats have the moral upper hand condemning Republican efforts to use legitimate means, such as election law changes and congressional objections, to undermine democracy. They should focus on expanding voter access and fighting gerrymandering and other pro-democracy reforms, not open themselves to charges of hypocrisy over a single House seat.