Arizona’s Sketchy ‘Audit’ Is Further Delayed After Lead Auditor Gets ‘Quite Sick’ With COVID

PHOENIX, AZ - MAY 01: A contractor working for Cyber Ninjas, who was hired by the Arizona State Senate, works to recount ballots from the 2020 general election at Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 1, 2021 in Phoenix,... PHOENIX, AZ - MAY 01: A contractor working for Cyber Ninjas, who was hired by the Arizona State Senate, works to recount ballots from the 2020 general election at Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 1, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Maricopa County ballot recount comes after two election audits found no evidence of widespread fraud in Arizona. (Photo by Courtney Pedroza/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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August 23, 2021 5:33 p.m.

The Arizona state Senate GOP’s “audit” of the 2020 election results has been delayed, again, after the CEO of the firm leading it and other members contracted COVID-19.

Arizona state Senate president Karen Fann announced in a statement that although the full draft of the “audit” was expected on Monday, Cyber Ninjas CEO Doug Logan and two other members of the five-person team are “quite sick” after testing positive for COVID-19.

Fann said the state Senate’s legal team now expects to convene on Wednesday to begin reviewing the draft report of the “audit.” Another meeting will be held when the rest of the draft is submitted to check for “accuracy, clarity, and proof of documentation of findings.”

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“Once that is complete, the final report will be presented to the Senate Judiciary Committee and findings released to the public,” Fann said.

Brahm Resnik, a reporter at a local NBC affiliate, reported that Fann said one of the three “audit” team members who are sick has been hospitalized with pneumonia.

Cyber Ninjas spokesperson Rod Thomson declined comment when asked by TPM.

Fann, Senate “audit” liaison Ken Bennett, and a spokesperson for the Arizona state Senate GOP did not immediately return TPM’s request for comment.

The Senate’s politicized “audit” of Maricopa County’s 2020 election results has repeatedly run into problems as its officials have bumbled through the process, blocked efforts and transparency and repeatedly blown deadlines.

Cyber Ninjas, the firm leading it, was seemingly plucked from obscurity. The firm had no prior experience with election audits, and Logan has proffered pro-Trump conspiracy theories online and appeared recently in a Big Lie-boosting documentary, undercutting any legitimacy the audit may have had.

Last week, Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs tore into the the state Senate GOP’s incoming report of its sketchy “audit” in a 46-page analysis for its “lack of security and chain of custody procedures”; “lack of transparency”; and “lack of consistent, document quality control practices, policies, and procedures.”

Hobbs noted “numerous examples of failures” in Cyber Ninjas’ review process, which “would deem an audit completely unreliable,” and that the “audit” itself centered around Republicans’ refusal to accept the election results that led to former President Trump’s loss in the 2020 election.

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