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Arizona Judge Rules Against Kari Lake in Gubernatorial Election Contest, Upholds Election of Hobbs

An Arizona District Court Judge has ruled against Republican Kari Lake in her contest of the state’s gubernatorial election, upholding the election of Democrat Katie Hobbs.

Eight of the ten counts Lake alleged in her lawsuit were dismissed by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thomson on Monday, as the Hill previously noted. The case proceeded to trial on Wednesday and Thursday on just two counts, in which the former Fox 10 Phoenix anchor alleged there were illegal and deliberate printer and tabulator configurations meant to sabotage polling locations in Maricopa County on Election Day and violations regarding ballot chain of custody.

In regards to both counts, Thompson ruled the “Court DOES NOT find clear and convincing evidence of misconduct in violation” and confirmed the election of Hobbs. Lake enlisted a number of “expert” witnesses to testify, but it was not enough to reverse the outcome of the election.

Lake, who lost the election by some 17,000 votes, has not conceded, even after the ruling, and said she intends to appeal the case.

“My Election Case provided the world with evidence that proves our elections are run outside of the law,” she claimed. “This Judge did not rule in our favor. However, for the sake of restoring faith and honesty in our elections, I will appeal his ruling.”

Even so, a reversal of this ruling at a higher court is unlikely.

Maricopa County Attorney Thomas Liddy told the Washington Post that the county is seeking sanctions against Lake’s legal team, asserting they understood they never had a case:

A lawyer may not go to court without the evidence necessary for a chance to prevail. Lake had to make up 17,117 votes. She failed to identify one lawful ballot that was not counted or one ballot that was counted that should not have been — and she knew that before she filed the contest.

In a statement that Hobbs shared to Twitter, her campaign manager, Nicole DeMont, called the lawsuit a “sham.”

“We’re pleased that the courts have upheld the will of the voters, and Governor-Elect Hobbs is continuing the work of preparing to take office as Arizona’s next governor,” the statement read in part.

In the lead-up to the election, Lake refused to say that she would accept the results if she lost.

“I’m going to win the election, and I’m going to accept that result,” she told host Dana Bash during an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union in October. It remains to be seen if Lake will ever recognize and honor the results of the election and offer a concession to the governor-elect.

The case is Lake v. Hobbs, No. CV 2022-095403, in Superior Court of Maricopa County, Arizona.

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