A contractor who works for Cyber Ninjas and has been hired by the Arizona State Senate is working to recount the 2020 general election ballots at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 1, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona.
Courtney Pedroza | Getty Images
A draft report of the Republican-backed 2020 election results review in Arizona’s largest county – which has been derided by critics as a chaotic stunt aimed at perpetuating the election fraud conspiracies widespread by former President Donald Trump – has actually confirmed the winners, the said District.
The heavily delayed report by Cyber Ninjas, a Florida-based company whose owner had spread pro-Trump conspiracies, had been extolled by Trump himself.
But the draft “confirms that the county’s campaigning for the 2020 general election was correct and that the candidates confirmed as winners actually won,” the Maricopa County’s official account tweeted Thursday night.
“Unfortunately, the report is also riddled with errors and flawed conclusions about how Maricopa County conducted the 2020 general election,” the county tweeted.
Instead of finding that Trump defeated President Joe Biden in the most populous county in the competitive swing state, cyber ninjas got 99 additional votes for Biden and 261 fewer votes for Trump than before, according to The New York Times, which received a copy of the draft counted out.
“That should be the end of the story. Everything else is just noise,” said Jack Sellers, chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, in a statement.
“But I’m sure it won’t,” he added, predicting that the report accused his board of directors of not working with cyber ninjas. “How could we partner with an investigation led by people who have no idea how to run an election, let alone one in the second largest constituency in the United States?”
Trump claimed in a statement Friday morning that the media misrepresented the results of cyber ninjas, saying, “I heard it was very different” from what was reported.
He claimed the company had found “indisputable evidence” of fraud, although he admitted he had not seen the report himself, and requested an investigation by the Attorney General.
Biden beat Trump in Maricopa by more than 45,000 votes, according to the NBC News count. Biden beat Trump in the state with a total of around 10,000 votes. Arizona county officials who conducted handcounting tests in the days following the November 3 election found no inconsistencies or irregularities in many counties.
A member of Maricopa County’s electoral review team, Doug Logan, CEO of Cyber Ninjas, reacts before presenting the interim results of a widely criticized review of the 2020 elections to the Senate President and Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in Phoenix, Arizona on September 24, 2021 .
Mike Blake | Reuters
In a Friday afternoon hearing, Republican Senate President Karen Fann admitted that the final Cyber Ninjas’ votes were close to Maricopa County’s official number.
“That is a true statement. They were close,” said Fann in the Senate Chambers of the federal states at the beginning of the event, which contained no public comments or questions.
But Fann also pointed to areas of concern in the report, saying it showed that some procedures were not being followed properly.
House Democrats Thursday called Cyber Ninjas CEO Doug Logan to testify at an October 7th hearing after he “repeatedly refused” to follow up their investigation into the “questionable test”.
The Republicans of the Arizona Senate commissioned cyber ninjas even though they had no experience with electoral exams. Logan tweeted the hashtag #StoptheSteal in December, which had become a slogan among Trump and his supporters who claimed his election loss to Biden was rigged.
A month later, on January 6, Trump spoke at a “Stop the Steal” rally outside the White House, ordering his supporters to march to the Capitol to put pressure on Republicans against the results of the electoral college major states to object. Hundreds of Trump’s supporters broke into the Capitol, forced a joint session of Congress to go into hiding and temporarily prevented them from confirming Biden’s victory.
Last month, cyber ninjas missed a deadline for their full report to be filed, in part because Logan and two others got “pretty sick” with the coronavirus, Republicans said at the time.
Maricopa County and state Republican spokesmen did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for further comments on the results of the draft report.
Democrats as well as some Republicans in Arizona have denounced the exam as politically motivated and incompetent. Election experts have also spoken out against the verification and its handling by cyber ninjas.
House Oversight Committee Chairs Carolyn Maloney, DN.Y., and Jamie Raskin, D-Md., Posted a list of concerns to Logan in July describing his company’s inexperience with reports of “sloppy and unsafe” Practices and evidence cited by those funding the effort “have attempted to advance the ‘big lie’ of unmasked allegations of voter fraud”.
The Democrats requested records of cyber ninjas who refused to comply, arguing that lawmakers’ demands were “vague,” “inadequately defined,” or “overwhelmed”.
In a letter to Logan Thursday, Maloney and Raskin said, “It is important that you testify before the committee about your company’s participation in the Maricopa County audit of the issues raised in this letter and the committee’s previous letters to you and your unwarranted refusal to submit documents to the committee. “