Cochise County ballot hand-count case could affect future election audits
An attorney told an Arizona Court of Appeals panel that expanding hand counts of early ballots would be a recipe for chaos.
The state Court of Appeals heard arguments Tuesday on Cochise County’s plan from last year to count all ballots by hand.
The Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans sued to stop the move.
Their attorney, Aria Branch, told the court that doing a full hand count would render audits obsolete.
“A 100% audit, by definition, really isn't an audit. It's a second set of election results. And in creating a second set of election results, you create conflict," Branch said.
A panel judge said the law covering early vote audits only allows for a maximum of 5,000 ballots.
The ruling from the Court of Appeals will have major ramifications on how audits are handled in future elections.