Two Maricopa election officials are anything but neutral

One of the hardest fought 2024 races was that for Arizona governor. On the one hand, there was Katie Hobbs, a bovine candidate who campaigned as Joe Biden did: infrequently and incoherently. It’s almost as if both knew that they’d win no matter what. On the other side was Kari Lake, one of the most dynamic candidates to appear on the American scene in years (or decades). Now, thanks to Maricopa County, Hobbs has been declared the winner, and people have questions—especially because it’s been revealed two of the campaign officials are anti-MAGA activists.

The race started out tight but began to favor Lake as the remaining votes were coming in from strongly conservative regions. But as invariably happens when there is a delay in counting votes, all the votes that come in late (and who knows where they really come from) hewed Democrat. And suddenly, we’re told that the blobby Hobbs is heading for the governor’s office. (Lake, however, has not conceded, which is the right choice.)

The Post Millennial did some digging and found something interesting about two Maricopa County election officials who have the all-important job of making sure all legitimate votes get counted, and that all illegitimate votes do not.

For decades, even centuries, outside of corrupt pockets such as New York City or Chicago, Americans were comfortable believing that their votes, once cast, would be honestly tallied by people who understood their civic responsibility to be objective—or at least, not too highly partisan. That trust is an integral part of a functioning democratic republic.

Image: Stephen Richer and Bill Gates. YouTube screen grab.

It’s doubtful, though, whether two campaign officials in Maricopa met that standard for it’s now clear that they are activists who have worked hard to destroy conservative groups and thinking in America:

It has been revealed that embattled Arizona’s Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer and Supervisor Chairman Bill Gates in 2021 started a political action committee to stop MAGA candidates. 

On November 17, 2021, Meg Cunningham from the Kansas City Beacon tweeted that Richer, “the Maricopa County recorder, is launching a PAC to support Rs running for non-federal AZ offices who ‘acknowledge the validity of the 2020 election and condemn the events of Jan. 6, 2021, as a terrible result of the lies told about the November election.’”

The PAC was set up to be a very altruistic, moral undertaking; indeed, almost a crusade:

The PAC called Pro Democracy Republicans of Arizona claims on their website that they are “fighting to keep our democratic institutions alive.”

The website is sparse on details aside from how to donate but does have a few sentences on their mission. “The Arizona election wasn’t stolen. We Republicans simply had a presidential candidate who lost, while we had many other candidates who won. It’s time we Republicans accept and acknowledge that fact.”

“Candidates come and go. But our democratic institutions are long-lasting, and peaceful transitions of power are a hallmark of the United States.  We should not abandon this history in favor of conspiracy theorists and demagoguery.”

In addition to claiming for himself the high-minded goal of saving democracy, Stephen Richer went a bit further, donating to a far-leftist group:

On Monday it was revealed that top Maricopa County election officer Stephen Richer, who helped to oversee elections in Arizona, donated to the far-left “resistance group” PatriotTakes.

PatriotTakes is a hybrid pack that describes itself on Twitter as a group of “dedicated researchers monitoring and exposing right-wing extremism and other threats to democracy.”

In other words, these guys had skin in the game to destroy MAGA Republicans—and Arizona’s own Kari Lake is one of the most prominent of those MAGA 2020 election doubters.

In the legal world, there’s a concept called the “appearance of impropriety.” It applies to judges and lawyers who technically haven’t done anything wrong but must be kicked off a case anyway because their actions and affiliations create such an “appearance of impropriety” that no reasonable person could expect them to act responsibly and without bias. When it comes to Richer and Gates, they reek of the appearance of impropriety and should never have had anything to do with this vote count.

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