An Arizona judge has thrown out most of Carrie Lake’s lawsuit challenging the election results

An Arizona judge has thrown out most of Kari Lake’s election lawsuit challenging the victory of her opponent, Gov.-elect Katie Hobbs (D), after Lake was caught for weeks on unproven allegations of voter fraud.

Lake had asked the judge to overturn Hobbs’s certified victory on 10 counts, alleging that election officials in Maricopa County, which includes most of the state’s population, committed misconduct and cast hundreds of thousands of illegal ballots.

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson on Monday night dismissed eight of the 10 allegations, ruling that they did not meet the proper criteria for contesting an election under Arizona law, even if they were true, so they did not deserve more further consideration.

But Thompson allowed the trial to move forward on two other charges that he said, if proven, could raise a claim under the statute governing election challenges: alleged intentional interference by election officials involving ballot printers in Maricopa County, and chain of control violations.

Lake, an ally of former President Trump who promoted baseless allegations of voter fraud in the 2020 election and refused to commit to accepting this year’s results before Election Day, must now prove those two charges in a trial scheduled for more late this week.

Since the midterm elections, Lake has railed against Maricopa and Hobbs county officials, calling the election a “failure” and a “fraud,” vowing to appeal his case to the Supreme Court if necessary.

Maricopa County, as well as Hobbs, both in his capacity as secretary of state and candidate for governor, dispute Lake’s allegations and have asked the judge to dismiss all 10 counts.

Hobbs and the county argued in the motion to dismiss in full that many of Lake’s allegations were based on procedures put in place well before last month’s election, saying those claims should have been filed before Election Day.

They also argue that the Lake campaign’s arguments are also without merit and would fail on the merits at trial.

“If there’s anything rotten in Arizona, it’s what this contest represents,” an attorney for Hobbs said at the hearing. “Over the past few years, our democracy and its basic guiding principles have come under constant attack from candidates who simply can’t or won’t accept the fact that they’ve lost. The judicial system serves as a bulwark against these efforts to destroy our democratic system from within.”

Maricopa County, which covers the Phoenix area, became the epicenter of claims of voter disenfranchisement after some of the election day voting centers suffered printer malfunctions.

Election officials insist that affected voters could use one of a number of fallback options, but Lake, noting that Arizona’s Election Day voters favor Republicans, claims election officials deliberately sabotaged her victory and their fallback options still disqualify the voters.

“The plaintiff must prove at trial that [Election Day] the printer malfunctions were intentional and directed to affect the results of the election, and that such acts did in fact affect the result,” the judge of the first remaining count said in Monday’s order.

For the other remaining count, Lake said more than 300,000 ballots in Maricopa County did not have proper chain of custody documentation.

The county disputed that claim, arguing that Lake did not understand the various forms of documentation and pointing out that Maricopa had all the necessary documentation.

Lake’s campaign also promoted in court documents a number of other claims rejected by the judge, including that some mail-in ballots were stacked despite mismatched signatures.

Lake also took aim at the Arizona Secretary of State’s office, which Hobbs leads, for noting multiple tweets containing falsehoods about the Arizona election. Ultimately, Twitter decided to remove these tweets.

“This case is also about a covert censorship operation set up by the government that would make Orwell blush,” Lake’s lawyer said during Monday’s hearing, referring to George Orwell, who wrote the dystopian novel 1984.

Lake is one of many GOP candidates contesting their election results.

The justices threw out separate contests filed by a state senator who challenged Hobbs’ win for governor and another filed by defeated Arizona Secretary of State candidate Mark Finchem (R), who challenged the victory of his Democratic challenger.

Arizona GOP attorney general candidate Abe Hamadeh, who trailed his Democratic opponent by just 511 votes out of 2.5 million ballots before an automatic count, also disputed the results of his race.

A state judge in Arizona’s Mojave County similarly heard arguments on a motion to dismiss in that case on Monday, but Hamadeh’s race, joined by the Republican National Committee, continues.

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