|Attorney Brad Roach represents the plaintiffs in a bid|
to enforce existing election laws.
Laws in place but not currently followed by Pima County involve having poll workers include in every Official Return Envelope a copy of the signed “tally lists” or results tape. Although this practice has been ignored or abandoned over time, the procedure is a valuable step in providing a useful auditing tool in the event of a recount or contested election.
In other words, the citizens are asking that the official returns be signed on the back by the poll workers and placed in the clear plastic envelope labelled "Official Returns Envelope" at the end of the night's count.
The recurring theme for any audit is the comparison of one set of numbers to another set of numbers and there are many circumstances that would require the comparison of ballots to the official returns or "poll tapes". To facilitate this process, citizens are also requesting the court issue an injunction mandating that Pima County separate the vote-by-mail ballots by precinct.
Handling of vote-by-mail ballots is another task that the citizens would like to see Pima County perform in compliance with ARS 16-602. To prevent Pima County's continued defiance of the law, plaintiffs are requesting that Pima County conduct sufficient randomly selected hand count audits of the vote-by-mail ballots as outlined in state law.
Attorney Brad Roach is representing the plaintiffs and states in his action: "Pima County has a long and sad history of blocking any attempt to monitor the elections process, verify the integrity of the computer systems, or audit the results."
Roach refers to the two billion dollar Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) Election and Pima County's resistance to public oversight and records requests (Pima County Superior Court cases C2007-2073 and C2008-5016). "This persistent hindering, at every turn, of electors’ and political parties’ attempts to verify election integrity has cost the County hundreds of thousands of dollars in attorney’s fees and resulted in multiple court ordered releases of election information Pima County sought to hide."
This suit also requests the recovery of legal fees incurred.
Partisan politics are fierce on Arizona's Senate floor, but verifiable elections seem to transcend any political differences among the plaintiffs. Green Party Candidate Dave Croteau, Republican Candidate Bill Beard, Libertarian Elections Specialist Jim March and Paul Hilts, the chair of the Pima County Democratic Party Elections Committee are among the plaintiffs with an interest in the November 5th, 2012 General Election.
Election integrity advocate John Brakey of AUDITAZ adds his take on a familiar theme, "It's not about right or left, It's about right or wrong - and then when you look further, it's also about greed and corruption." Brakey is also part of the team that patiently waits for Pima County to step aside and allow for an actual audit and forensic exam of those 2006 RTA Election Ballots stored for a court case aimed at further restoring the integrity of elections in Pima County.
To monitor progress and get information for this 2012 elections lawsuit, visit their new facebook page:
Pima County Elections - Trust but Verify at http://facebook.com/pimacountyelections