Legal battles mount over hand-counting ballots

Elections 2022

(NewsNation) — A number of counties across the U.S. are setting up to hand-count ballots this election cycle — but not without legal and logistical challenges.

The board of supervisors in Cochise County, Arizona voted to hand-count all ballots in the upcoming midterm election.

The decision came after a week of back-and-forth over the legalities of such a move.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued an informal opinion siding with Cochise County— saying county officials can hand-count all ballots in at least five races from the Nov. 8 election.

Under state law, the local leaders of both the Democratic and Republican parties would have to provide hundreds of volunteers to do the counts. However, one supervisor says she will do everything she can to stop the county Democratic party chair from providing those workers.

The day before the decision, Arizona Secretary of State and Democrat gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs warned against the plan, saying it would do nothing more than creating chaos and confusion around the election and tabulation of ballots.

The hand count would take place along with the machine count. The machine count will then be used for the legal, certified results.

Meanwhile in Pinal County, just south of metro Phoenix’s Maricopa County, the Associated Press is reporting that supervisors have also been talking about conducting a hand count.

Both boards have meetings planned for next week.

In Nye County, Nevada, officials had already started to hand-count mail-in ballots when the state’s supreme court issued a ruling saying the process is illegal and putting it on hold.

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