Mohave Superior Court Judge Lee Jantzen heard oral arguments on Tuesday over whether Abe Hamadeh should receive a new trial in his election contest of the attorney general’s race. Jantzen dismissed Hamadeh’s case after the initial trial on December 22, 2022, but Hamadeh discovered new evidence after the trial that then-Secretary of State Katie Hobbs withheld, which revealed that “undervotes” were discovered in Pinal County, votes that were erroneously not counted. After they were included, Democratic Attorney General Kris Mayes’ lead over Hamadeh shrunk to only 280 votes. Hamadeh asked the court for a new trial to consider as many as 76,339 votes that Hamadeh said he believed were not counted throughout the state.
In a statement released after the hearing, Hamadeh said, “I feel confident that we will prevail once all of the evidence is presented to Judge Jantzen. We have been careful to only make those claims that we believe we can prove and that will make our democratic process stronger. On a number of occasions, I was willing to accept the purported outcome of the results. However, after further inspection our team has discovered information about the mismanagement of the election, including the gross disenfranchisement of voters. I am compelled to see that no voter is disenfranchised because of my commitment to our Republic and the democratic process so many of my fellow veterans sacrificed their lives to protect.”
Jennifer Wright, former Election Integrity Unit civil attorney for the attorney general’s office who now represents Hamadeh due to her belief that the winner, Mayes, targeted her after taking office, presented the main case for why Hamadeh should receive a new trial.
“Provisional ballots will alone prove he won,” she said.
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