BY C. Douglas Golden, The Western JournalMarch 23, 2023
1 year ago
 | March 23, 2023
1 year ago

Kari Lake Scores Major Legal Victory in Election Challenge in AZ Supreme Court - 'This Is Huge'

The establishment media outlets were quick to spin the Arizona Supreme Court's Wednesday decision on Republican Kari Lake's lawsuits challenging the outcome of the 2022 state gubernatorial race as a near death-blow to her chances of overturning it.

The Arizona Republic: "Arizona Supreme Court rejects most of Kari Lake's election challenge." KNXV-TV: "Arizona court declines most of Lake's appeal over gov's race." KPNX-TV: "Arizona court declines most of Kari Lake's appeal over governor's race."

Notice that one word in all those headlines: "most." According to KPHO-TV, on six of the seven counts, the court ruled there were "insufficient" grounds to overrule the decisions made in trial courts. There was also much crowing about the fact that Lake could face sanctions for alleging that "35,563 unaccounted-for ballots were added to the total of ballots at a third-party processing facility."

Brahm Resnick, a reporter whose beat covers "politics & democracy" for KPNX, the NBC affiliate in Phoenix, made a point of posting that section of the ruling on Twitter:

However, "most" is not "all," no matter how much liberals in the media might want it to be.

And the one ruling that went Lake's way was huge -- not only for her chances, but for election integrity as a whole.

In the ruling, the state Supreme Court found that the lower trial court erred in dismissing a challenge to signature verification procedures in the state's most populous county, Maricopa County.

The matter was sent back to a trial court for consideration -- and it could grant Lake's team a review of how the signatures were verified.

"The county and appeals courts interpreted Lake’s signature-related challenge as applying to the policies themselves, not how the policies were applied in 2022, and dismissed her claim based on grounds that she filed her legal challenge too late," the Arizona Republic noted.

"But that was an error, the Supreme Court said, noting, 'Lake could not have brought this challenge before the election.'"

Lake, who lost by only 17,000 votes, was quick to tout Wednesday's decision as "huge."

And she also had a warning for those counting her out: "We're just getting started."

In an appeal filed earlier this month, Lake's legal team alleged that “whistleblowers conducting signature verification at [the Maricopa County Tabulation and Election Center] came forward with the evidence that Maricopa disregarded Arizona law and allowed tens of thousands of uncured ballots with nonmatching signatures to be counted.”

"Curing" ballots involves reaching out to voters whose ballots would be rejected due to errors in order to confirm the voter's identity.

Ask establishment media, and the reasoning behind the potential rejection of these mail-in ballots is really no biggie: "Experts say ballot rejections are largely the result of relatively minor voter errors, often associated with security measures that are designed to verify a voter's identity," NPR's Morning Edition reported in a September 2022 explainer.

However, allowing tens of thousands of ballots with non-matching signatures to be counted without curing in Maricopa County -- home to 60 percent of Arizona's voters -- is quite the biggie, particularly given that 1) mail-in ballots tend to favor Democrats by a significant margin and 2) the margin of victory for now-Gov. Katie Hobbs was in the vicinity of only 17,000 votes.

In Lake's appeal, her team argued that the trial court's decision to dismiss her cases “effectively immunizes election officials’ noncompliance with Arizona’s election laws.”

And, as Lake noted with a Bible passage on Twitter, the outcome of a review regarding non-matching signatures being passed through without the slightest whiff of scrutiny could have a major impact, even if it doesn't overturn the results of the election:

The big story in Arizona wasn't that the anodyne, yawn-inducing former Secretary of State Hobbs pulled out a victory over Lake, a former local TV anchor supported by former President Donald Trump and the populist wing of the Republican Party. Even in a loss, Lake became a rising star within the Arizona GOP, which has suffered several high-profile losses in recent years.

Rather, the chaos in Maricopa County on Election Day -- and, as it turns out, even before it -- overshadowed any kind of total legitimacy Hobbs' victory would have normally carried. Ballots couldn't be scanned due to printing errors, lines to vote made exercising one's constitutional right to suffrage look like waiting to go on Space Mountain at Disney World, and the general shrugging incompetence made the whole thing look deliberate.

Yet, when Lake tweeted evidence that signature-matching procedures in Maricopa County were faulty at best, some claimed her publishing the evidence as being a "felony."

Not that this will stop Lake, as she herself noted in another tweet:

She also tweeted a clip from a speech at a Turning Point USA event in Phoenix in December where she promised to take down the "house of cards" fiefdom Democrats and RINOs enjoy in Maricopa County:

Now, let's not all get too excited: If you're betting on Gov. Kari Lake happening any time before January of 2027 -- should she run next time -- your betting service of choice should give you 200-to-1 odds, at least. And you should aim for better than that. (Also, you shouldn't be betting, even if it's small amounts; it's a vice that I give myself 3-to-1 odds of quitting within the next year.)

However, Lake is right: The house of cards that is Maricopa County's broken elections system doesn't just need to be knocked down, it needs to be burned to the ground. Then, the ashes will be scattered over the grave of Barry Goldwater, whose ghost will rise from the coffin and convince Kyrsten Sinema to go full Republican.

This isn't just about non-matching signatures, mind you. There were major snafus (and I do mean that in the way the original acronym was intended to be used) faced in the Maricopa County by those seeking to vote in person on Election Day -- who tend to skew heavily Republican.

Take a look at a few:

And meanwhile, during the trial, the "expert witness" called by Maricopa County to prove its system was totally legit was a woke professor at the University of Wisconsin who never examined a single ballot and admitted that in-person voting favored Republicans by roughly 70 percent, according to tweets from Lake's team:

What does this mean in the end? Stay tuned.

However, Wednesday's ruling was hardly the gut-punch to Kari Lake that the establihsment media made it out to be. One of seven doesn't sound great when you spin it -- until you remember that a house of cards can be toppled with just one pull.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: C. Douglas Golden, The Western Journal



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