Maricopa County Held Emergency Hearing To Extend Voting Hours; Judge Denies Request

A judge ruled against extending voting hours Tuesday in Maricopa County, Arizona, after officials held an emergency hearing following 60 different voting centers experiencing ballot printing issues, according to local media.

If the officials were to pass the motion, polls in Arizona would be open until 10 p.m. while suspending any tabulated early ballot returns from public release in Maricopa County until 11:00 p.m.

The move comes after top Republican lawmakers filed a motion to extend poll hours in the Arizona county because voting machines in over 25% of voting locations have experienced printer issues, which resulted in tabulation machines malfunctioning. However, the error did not cause ballots to be misread.

“The widespread issues – in an election administered by Democrat Secretary of State Katie Hobbs – are completely unacceptable, especially as Republicans flock to the polls to vote in person on Election Day,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel shared in a tweet. “We have dozens of attorneys and thousands of volunteers working to solve this issue and ensure that Arizona voters have the chance to make their voices heard.”

Maricopa County recorder Stephen Richer said on Twitter that officials dismissed the lawsuit.

“We are not responsible for Election Day or tabulation,” Richer wrote.

Garret Archer, a data and political analyst at ABC15, said Republican attorneys told the judge they would challenge the fight over the conditional provisional ballots voted by individuals who checked in at a vote center and subsequently left because of tabulation issues.

Arizona Republican Party chairwoman Kelli Ward first reported that issues were occurring at several polling places in Maricopa County. Local media confirmed shortly afterward that at least one tabulation machine was having an issue; later in the morning, local outlets and county officials reported that as many as one in five polling places were having problems.

Republican Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake tweeted out guidance to voters, urging them to follow the suggestions of county officials. Lake and Senate candidate Blake Masters urged their supporters to stay in line and wait until their vote is counted.

Arizona polls have officially closed at 7 p.m. local time.

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