More than half of all counties in Arizona have conducted post-election audits and found either no discrepancies or microscopic issues that don’t affect the outcome, according to reports filed with the secretary of state’s office.
Audits in Arizona’s four largest counties, which comprised 86% of all votes for president in the state, turned up no evidence of the systematic voter fraud that President Trump has complained about. There were no irregularities found in Maricopa County, which is home to Phoenix. Officials in Pima County, home to Tucson, audited a random sample of 4,239 votes in the presidential race and only found a two-vote discrepancy.
Arizona currently has the closest margin between Trump and President-elect Joe Biden. Biden is ahead by 11,537 votes, or just 0.34% out of more than 3.3 million ballots cast statewide. There are under 25,000 ballots remaining to be counted, according to the secretary of state’s office. CNN has not yet projected a winner.
Earlier on Thursday, Trump tweeted, “From 200,000 votes to less than 10,000 votes. If we can audit the total votes cast, we will easily win Arizona also!” The numbers he cited were inaccurate – Biden’s lead in Arizona hasn’t dipped below 10,000.
Under state law, bipartisan audit boards routinely conduct hand-count audits of early ballots and Election Day ballots in all of Arizona’s 15 counties. The audits, which counties begin within 24 hours of the polls closing, must include five races, including the presidential race. By regulation, they have to count regular Election-Day ballots from at least two precincts or 2% of precincts, whichever is greater. The precincts are selected at random, by drawing.
Three GOP-leaning counties – Yuma, Gila and La Paz – didn’t conduct the audits because the local Republican Party chairs didn’t designate members to participate, election officials said. Their lack of involvement is surprising, considering Trump has been spreading baseless accusations of Republican poll-watchers being sidelined.