A judge on Saturday threw out Republican Kari Lake’s challenge of her defeat in the Arizona governor’s race to Democrat Katie Hobbs, rejecting her claim that problems with ballot printers at some polling places on Election Day were the result of intentional misconduct, The Associated Press reported.
Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson found that the court did not find clear and convincing evidence of the widespread misconduct that Lake had alleged had affected the result of the 2022 general election.
The judge said Lake’s witnesses didn’t have any personal knowledge of intentional misconduct.
Lake will appeal the ruling, she said in a statement.
Lake had declined to concede the governor race to Hobbs and raised concerns about the election process.
A Trump-backed candidate, she had sidestepped questions about whether she would accept the results of her election on multiple occasions during the campaign.
In Saturday’s ruling, the judge acknowledged the “anger and frustration” of voters who were inconvenienced in the election and noted that setting aside the results of an election “has never been done in the history of the United States.”
“But this Court’s duty is not solely to incline an ear to public outcry,” the judge continued. “It is to subject Plaintiff’s claims and Defendants’ actions to the light of the courtroom and scrutiny of the law.”
Lake has pointed to printing malfunctions in Maricopa County, the state’s most populous county that includes Phoenix, calling it “unforgivable” and claiming voters were disenfranchised.
70 of the county’s 223 voting centers early on Election Day used printers that churned out ballots with ink that was too light for tabulation machines to read, election officials said.
Voters could wait in line until the issue was fixed, cast a ballot at another vote center or deposit their original ballot in a separate, secure box that was sent to the county’s central facility for tabulation.
County election officials have repeatedly pushed back on Lake’s allegations, saying no one was denied.