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Senate plans to release 2020 election ‘audit’ report on Sept. 24

By: - September 16, 2021 1:04 pm
Arizona audit

Photo by Courtney Pedroza | Getty Images/pool photo

The Arizona Senate will release its long-awaited and repeatedly delayed election “audit” report to the public on Sept. 24.

Senate President Karen Fann and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Warren Petersen, who jointly issued the subpoenas that initiated the review of the 2020 general election in Maricopa County, will receive the report on the Senate floor at 1 p.m. that day, which will be followed by a hearing about the findings.

Although Fann has said the goal is to restore voters’ confidence in the electoral process, she hired Cyber Ninjas, an unknown cybersecurity firm with no experience in auditing or elections that is run by Doug Logan, a man who espoused debunked election conspiracy theories alleging Donald Trump really won the 2020 election in Arizona and elsewhere.

The resulting “audit” was funded almost entirely by pro-Trump groups and figures, including those who have sought to overturn the 2020 election. Elections experts have said there is no reason to believe the results of the election review will be credible, given the circumstances.

The election review and the report of its findings have been beset by repeated delays since Fann hired Cyber Ninjas in late March. The audit began on April 23, and the final report was originally scheduled to come out in May. But the review itself dragged on for months, ending in late July. 

Audit team leader Doug Logan, CEO of the Florida-based company Cyber Ninjas, planned to submit his draft report, or at least part of it, on Aug. 23. But the report was delayed after Logan and two other members of his five-person team contracted COVID-19. Audit spokesman Randy Pullen later said the audit team would submit its report this week, likely by Thursday.

The plan was for the Senate to review the draft report for accuracy and to recommend changes before releasing it to the public. As of Thursday morning, Pullen said the team hadn’t submitted its draft report to the Senate.

This week, Fann has also ordered Cyber Ninjas to turn over “audit” documents that are public records, including all documents and communications related to the planning, performance and execution of the so-called audit, all policies and procedures used for the audit, documents pertaining to funding and staffing, “and all records that are reasonably necessary or appropriate to maintain an accurate knowledge of activities concerning the 2020 Maricopa County election audit.”

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Jeremy Duda
Jeremy Duda

Associate Editor Jeremy Duda is a Phoenix native and began his career in journalism in 2003 after graduating from the University of Arizona. Prior to joining the Arizona Mirror, he worked at the Arizona Capitol Times, where he spent eight years covering the Governor's Office and two years as editor of the Yellow Sheet Report. Before that, he wrote for the Hobbs News-Sun of Hobbs, NM, and the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah. Jeremy is also the author of the history book “If This Be Treason: the American Rogues and Rebels Who Walked the Line Between Dissent and Betrayal.”

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