Pinal County elections director quits, says she wasn't protected from political attacks

By Lauren Gilger
Associated Press
Published: Wednesday, June 28, 2023 - 1:42pm
Updated: Thursday, June 29, 2023 - 10:51am

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Geraldine Roll
Pinal County via Associated Press
Geraldine Roll

The elections director of Arizona's Pinal County has resigned after less than a year in the job, saying county supervisors had tried to politicize elections in the small jurisdiction east of Phoenix.

Pinal County confirmed Geraldine Roll's resignation in a brief note, with County Manager Leo Lew thanking Roll for her service “during very challenging times and for the improvements that she identified and began to implement.”

Roll could not be located Wednesday for comment.

In a letter released by Pinal County, Roll said she was subjected to “ridicule, disrespect, intimidation and attacks on my reputation and ethics.”

She further accused Lew of failing to protect her from attacks by Republican county officials.

“It is a far reach to see how you will deliver clean elections when you bend to a faction of the Republican party,” she wrote.

She signed off: “Really, Not Respectfully, Geraldine Roll.”

Roll is a former deputy county attorney who was appointed elections director late last year after the county suffered several embarrassments, including a primary vote that left some races off ballots and some precincts ran out of ballots on Election Day. Roll had not yet run an election herself.

Pinal County then discovered right before the end of 2022 that it had made errors when counting some ballots, resulting in a roughly 500-vote discrepancy between certified election and recounted tallies. The county has a population of about 450,000.

County supervisors had recently expressed interest in a trial hand count of some 2022 ballots.

Jen Fifield, a reporter for Votebeat, has reported extensively on Pinal County's election problems since last November and says that the circumstances are far different.

The Show spoke with Fifield more about it.

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