AZ Senate expected to pass resolution authorizing arrest of Maricopa County Board members for failing to comply with election-related subpoena

by Laura Mize · Feb 4th, 2021 11:11 am

Last Updated Feb 5th, 2021 at 12:53 pm

The Arizona Senate on Wednesday introduced a resolution to hold all members of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors in contempt, which carries the possibility of arrest, for noncompliance with a subpoena that demanded access to the county's voting machines and ballots from the November 2020 election.

The Senate has 30 members, including 16 Republicans. Because all 16 sponsored the resolution, it is likely to pass.

Wednesday's resolution stipulates that "...the President of the Arizona Senate take all legal action pursuant to section 41-1153, Arizona Revised Statutes, to enforce the subpoena."

The statute cited holds that a person who defies a legislative subpoena "may be arrested by the sergeant-at-arms and brought before the senate or house upon authority of a copy of the resolution signed by the president or speaker, and countersigned by the secretary or chief clerk."

The five members of the Maricopa Board say they cannot provide the access the subpoena demands because state law requires ballots to be sealed and the voting machines should stay secure.

Jack Sellers, chairman of Maricopa's Board of Supervisors, said Wednesday that he previously had discussed the subpoena with Arizona's Senate president and thought the two had agreed to try to work through the matter.

"I want to be clear: the county will participate in any court hearing with the Senate if they plan to argue the restrictions on ballots should be waived. Instead of suggesting that we are violating the laws the Legislature wrote, they should turn their attention to finding a solution," Sellers said in a statement. "If they truly believe in the legality of their position, they will join us in seeking a solution through the courts."


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