Many in the state of Arizona and, unquestionably, throughout the nation, are awaiting the results of the Arizona audit.
At this writing, we do not know the results of the audit. We will reserve judgement on that. We wish more would just wait to see evidence before commenting.
The spinmeisters have been at work for months though. Democrats, and some Republicans, argue that the audit was unnecessary, bogus, and born out of conspiracy theories.
Our own take is quite simple – the Democrats would not have mobilized an army of attorneys, launched the lawsuits they have, or activated their foot soldiers in the media to attack the audit if there was nothing there. If they were confident the election was clean, then why not let the Republicans have the rope to hang themselves? Why the constant drumbeat to discredit the investigation before the results are even known?
A few argue that it was alright to audit but that the Arizona Senate chose the wrong firm to do the audit. This firm did not have the “establishment” credentials they would like to see. We note that most of those stating that never called for an audit and never suggested any other firms.
But this is jumping the gun we think. The fact that the firm chosen does not have “large offices” and has been quite discrete about its processes is no indication of incompetence. In fact, if the election was indeed rigged by a combination of Democrat operatives, election machine executives, and Republican establishment RINOs, the audit would have to be done differently than normal. It would require a firm truly outside of the leadership of both parties.
From volunteers we have spoken to, they appear to be running a tight ship, keeping video cameras continuously whirring throughout the long audit process, and asking participants to be quiet until results are known.
As to conspiracy theories, we are reflecting on the joke we heard a few weeks ago. The joke was that I must give up all my old conspiracy theories because so many of them have turned out to be true and we need to get some new ones.
If you had asked the average American even 20 years ago that we would get into an endless war in the Middle East started by terrorists funded by the Saudi government (our allies), that we would invade Iraq based on the idea of “weapons of mass destruction” that were never found, that Democrats would pay for Russian disinformation in order to accuse a sitting President of colluding with the same Russians, or that the law enforcement and intelligence agencies at the very top of our government would be part of the scheme, or that the U.S. government would help fund the Chinese work on a virus that escaped, or worse, was exported from laboratories that would infect the world, we would not have believed any of it.
Nor would we have believed that critical race theory would suddenly become the rage among American educators and transgenderism would infect our military.
We would not have believed that American social media companies would ban books, suppress free speech, and cooperate with the Communist Chinese in oppressing their citizens.
We would not have believed the Pfizer vaccine would conveniently appear two days after the election.
None of these important events could just occur spontaneously or randomly.
Strange things have been going on and to dismiss the possibility of election fraud simply because there have not been that many proven cases before, would be foolish. Perhaps there have been plenty of cases we never knew about because we never had any audits!
But seriously, we know that election fraud does take place and we give credit to those investigating if and to what degree it occurred in Arizona’s presidential and Senate 2020 election.
What are the broader implications?
Well, if nothing is found, then it likely harms the credibility of many supporters of Donald Trump.
If something substantive is found, then it certainly harms Democrats, and many Republicans, the news media, and late-night comedians. Locally, it would really hurt the Arizona Republic.
What would it mean for the Presidency, as an institution? Clearly, it would harm the President, already under a cloud of cognitive decline. But the Vice President too would appear to be just as illegitimate. Can the U.S. traverse the turbulent seas of state without a captain that can claim legitimacy along with some respect? Will our enemies and our internal divisions be strengthened in the void?
What will it mean for Governor Ducey, who was quick to certify the election, the leader of the Republican Party in this state, and who is at odds with his own party on this and many other issues? Silence may be the correct position, but it hardly smacks of leadership.
What about leaders in the Arizona Legislature who have pushed for this audit, only to find their claims are not substantiated? These leaders took a considerable political risk and have endured the wrath of the Chamber of Commerce, establishment Republicans, and nonstop criticism from the media to complete this audit.
Regardless of the outcome, they have our respect. At least they did something!
What about some of our officials, like the Republicans on the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors or Stephen Richer, the new Maricopa County Recorder elected in November 2020, if the audit does show fraudulent results? It would seem to further split the Republican Party while leaving the Democrats as the party of cheaters.
We have been particularly puzzled by Stephen Richer, the new Maricopa County Recorder. When we interviewed him last October for The Prickly Pear, he stated that he wanted to “make the Recorder’s office boring again”. By that, he was referring to his predecessor Adrian Fontes who had played partisan games and unsuccessfully and inappropriately attempted to change voting rules in what had long been a nonpartisan office protecting the integrity of the voting process for all Maricopa County citizens.
But before any results of the audit were known, Richer goes on CNN with Anderson Cooper, laughing, smiling, and denigrating the audit process. Please view the video provided. He denigrated the process, without knowing the process. It just was not a firm he would have chosen, although we don’t recall him even calling for an audit.
We don’t know the particular processes of the audit, and neither do the critics. But, lack of knowledge is no reason to avoid a TV camera, is it?
Having thrown our own support to Richer, this was unsettling. We disagree with both what he said and the forum he chose to say it. Shame on us for our naivete.
He says he is defending his staff. Fair enough, but he goes beyond this to call other Republican leaders conspiracy nuts as well.
We don’t think it undermines democracy to check on anything public officials do. The elected representatives of the people called for this audit and they will bear the consequences. That is as it should be. Why jump to criticize other Republicans on CNN? A circular firing squad is the last thing we need right now.
We guess this is another lesson learned.
It reminds us of the comments of an old friend scarred in many political battles as a Conservative activist. His axiom was, “Never underestimate the ability of Republicans to disappoint”.
We hope this axiom is not confirmed once again.
As we move through 2023 and into the next election cycle, The Prickly Pear will resume Take Action recommendations and information.