Senate to issue new subpoenas for election audit

Sheriff Paul Penzone, a Democrat, is telling the county supervisors they shouldn’t surrender the county’s computer routers because it would result in “horrendous consequences” for law enforcement personnel./Gage Skidmore/Flickr

By: Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services 

Senate Republican leaders are setting the stage for a new legal fight with Maricopa County.

Kory Langhofer, the attorney for the Senate, said he will be issuing subpoenas today for all five Maricopa County supervisors, demanding they appear to explain why they won’t surrender certain equipment and information for review as part of the audit of the 2020 General Election returns. Langhofer also said the Senate wants to hear from Scott Jarrett, the county’s director of election day and emergency voting.

But that may just be part of it.

The Senate also may subpoena Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone, a Democrat. That’s because it is Penzone who is telling the supervisors they shouldn’t surrender the county’s computer routers because it would result in “horrendous consequences” for law enforcement personnel.

Those subpoenas will set a date and time for the county officials to appear. And that hearing, in turn, could turn into a debate of not just the legal issues involved but a venue for a very public airing of the merits — and potentially the politics — of the Senate audit.

Potentially more significant is what happens if the senators won’t accept the explanation and the county won’t budge.

That would send the case back to court. And then a judge would have to decide whether prior rulings requiring the county to surrender the ballots and election equipment applies to what senators now insist is necessary.

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