Superior Court Judge Suddenly Recuses Himself In Arizona Ballot Audit Case

By Vaughan Jones, Jill Ryan, Mark Brodie
Published: Sunday, April 25, 2021 - 11:29am
Updated: Monday, April 26, 2021 - 11:49am

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Ballot audit
Ben Giles/KJZZ
The audit site at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix on April 22, 2021.

The election audit conducted by the Arizona Senate GOP continued this weekend, despite an injunction attempt from the state’s Democratic Party

But over the weekend, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Christopher Coury suddenly recused himself because of a conflict of interest with one of the attorneys representing the firm Cyber Ninjas, which is conducting the audit. Judge Coury ruled had Friday that the Democratic Party would have to put up a $1 million bond to halt the audit process.

This postponed Monday's court hearing that would have decided on an injunction filed by state Democrats against Cyber Ninjas due to breach of recount protocol.

Democratic state Sen. Martín Quezada says he’s confused at the price point presented by Judge Coury, because the audit itself is said to cost $150,000.

“I would have liked to have heard a justification for that amount that he was asking for, but by setting it at that amount, he precluded the party, really, from moving forward with that,” said Quezada.

Quezada says another concern is the security and procedure presented by Cyber Ninjas.

For more on how the audit and the legal battle are proceeding, The Show spoke with Julia Shumway, who covers the state Senate for the Arizona Capitol Times.

KJZZ's Ben Giles contributed to this report.

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