By Lacey Latch | Arizona Republic
The U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday issued guidelines for post-election audits, a move that comes three months after the Arizona Senate began a review of Maricopa County’s election and as other states consider similar exercises.
The guidance outlines federal laws pertaining to the integrity of the election audits, including the chain of custody of records and the protocols when working with an independent contractor. The Justice Department also issued a separate guidance on methods of voting.
While the department described the documents as guidance, they also serve as a kind of warning about what the federal government will and will not tolerate as part of these reviews. The documents only mention Arizona’s effort once in passing, but they follow an earlier letter sent to the Arizona Senate president that raised concerns with the proceedings here.
“The right of all eligible citizens to vote is the central pillar of our democracy, and the Justice Department will use all of the authorities at its disposal to zealously guard that right,” Attorney General Merrick B. Garland said in a prepared statement.