Benny White, JD
September 13, 2012
Steve Rosenfeld did a great job of disclosing how the people in charge of the Arizona election review, whoever they are, are continuing to engage people who are incompetent to do what they are hired to do.
The most recent example is the hiring of “Dr. Shiva” who claims he knows how to do ballot image analysis but so far is unable to produce any results.
All of this is a part of a well-orchestrated disinformation campaign. These folks don’t really have to tell the public what is wrong with elections, they simply make a series of claims with no evidence to back them up.
If they ever produce a report, which is more questionable every day, we intend to completely destroy their claims, all of them, with facts and evidence.
Benny White, JD
September 2, 2021
I submitted a new public records request yesterday for a few ballot images and training materials related to electronic adjudication of ballots counted in the Maricopa County 2020 General Election.
Allegations were made that there were too many ballots modified and that there was no way to tell what changes were made. In addition, there were claims that the changes were made to ensure Joe Biden won. None of that was true.
Check out the recent public records request to learn what really happened and why we want to review a few ballot images.
Benny White, JD
August 25, 2021
Sen. Karen demonstrated yesterday that she knows no limits to the extent she will go to cover up the mess she has created in Arizona.
She is going to convene a closed-door investigation but only use the data she contracted for to analyze the 2020 General Election in Maricopa County. She says this is all focused on increasing election integrity. Nonsense.
The legislature recently passed legislation to form an election oversight committee. Sen. Fann is not going to allow that committee of fellow legislators to be involved in reviewing or commenting on the election review report. Members of the Judiciary Committee with jurisdiction for elections? No way. Oh, no, she says, no outside comments will be considered. Really?
She doesn’t want to know how wrong the hand count and machine count really were so she is not going to consider any contrary facts. Just the Ninja circus counts. Eventually this phony report will be published and the disinformation campaign will continue on steroids. We will keep trying to present the facts in the case.
It is difficult for me to believe that our state legislators, Attorney General and Governor will sit silently on the sidelines with their hands folded and allow this tyranny to continue but that appears to be exactly what is going to happen.
Benny White, JD
August 24, 2021
On Thursday of last week the Arizona Court of Appeals issued its decision that the trial court decisions in American Oversight v Fann would be upheld. There were two decisions by Judge Kemp at the trial court level earlier. One was that the Senate had to produce records being requested by various parties and that they had to collect records their agents had accumulated while doing work for the Senate. In addition, those records had to be produced by August 31.
On Friday, the Senate filed a Petition to Review (PR) with the Arizona Supreme Court in order to appeal the decision by the Court of Appeals. The immediate result of that action was to continue the Stay for release of public records that was ordered initially by the Court of Appeals before they heard the case last Wednesday. So, for the moment, no one is getting any public records from the Senate or their agents.
The Arizona Supreme Court is not obligated to grant review of the decision by the Court of Appeals. However, they probably will due to the fact that the matter is of statewide importance and involves a high level of public interest. The Justices can take their time to decide whether or not to hear the appeal and then when various pleadings must be filed. In short, I don’t expect a quick decision from the court but we might hear something by the end of next week.
Benny White, JD
August 19, 2021
The Arizona Court of Appeals issued an order this afternoon telling the Arizona Senate that they must deliver documents they have custody of and those held by the agents, i.e., the CyberNinjas and their subcontractors.
Our public records is a bit different than those at issue in the American Oversight and Phoenix Newspapers cases. Those cases involve funding and process questions. Our request is the only request, so far, for the work products of the Ninjas and the Senate hand count and machine count of ballots. Without those counts there is no way to compare anything the Ninjas report to the official results.
It is critical that our requests for the counts be responded to in a timely manner. Otherwise the Ninjas can make any claims they like but there will be no way to check to see if they are valid or not.
We are hopeful the custodian of the Senate records will read the recent court decision in the same way we do and will promptly deliver the records of the counts.
If you want to read the court order it can be found here.
Benny White, JD
August 16, 2021
There are some important court hearings coming up that will decide whether the Senate has to produce records they and their agents have accumulated during their so-called “forensic audit.”
One case involves Phoenix Newspapers Inc. v Arizona State Senate. That case is moving slowly and will be impacted by a different case, Fann v Kemp, being heard this week and a companion case Fann v Kemp and American Oversight, being heard next week in the Arizona Court of Appeals Division One.
Both of these cases are asking for similar records from the Senate. The Senate and their agent, CyberNinjas, have argued that they have legislative immunity and are independent contractors and are therefore not subject to Arizona’s Public Records Law. On August 2, Judge Kemp, in Maricopa County Superior Court decided in the American Oversight case that the records accumulated during the “audit” were public records and the Senate was required to obtain records from their agents if they were not already in possession of the records. That ruling is being appealed.
On Wednesday, August 18, Fann v Kemp, will be heard to decide whether the case can proceed as a Special Action. The Court of Appeals will probably decide that the matter is appropriate for a Special Action since it involves public officers and agencies. But next week on Wednesday, August 25, the important case, Fann v Kemp and American Oversight, will be heard. That case will decide whether Judge Kemp was correct and the requested records must be produced or Senator Fann is correct that they don’t have to tell the public what they have been doing.
We expect a decision after the hearing on the American Oversight case prior to Labor Day. The difference between what the newspapers and American Oversight is asking for is that we are asking for the ballot counts and the vote counts. The other requests don’t cover those and without those counts the public will never know if the reports by the Ninjas and the Senate are correct or not. That is why I submitted a public records request for the records involving the counts of ballots and votes generated by the Ninjas and the Senate machine count of the ballots. Without those records the Ninjas and the Arizona Senators can say anything they want to say and there will be no way for the public to see if they are telling the truth or not.
No matter what the Court of Appeals decides, I expect the losing party to appeal to the Arizona Supreme Court. There are numerous deadlines for filing various pleadings and for the Supreme Court to decide whether or not they want to hear the case. I expect them to take the case because it is an urgent matter of statewide importance. With all of that said election cases are generally expedited through the courts. I anticipate that the Arizona Supreme Court will hear the case and issue an opinion by the end of September. The loser in that case could petition the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case but I doubt either party will take it that far.
The Arizona Republic reported that Bryan Blehm, the attorney for the CyberNinjas, was responsible for the machine count of the ballots. He supposedly had an unreported oral contract with the Senate where he received no compensation (a requirement to actually have a contract) for putting ballots into the counting machines for a month. Waiting, and waiting, for the counts.
August 12, 2021
I recently submitted a Public Records Request to the Arizona Senate custodian of records. It is essential that someone gets access to the counts of ballots and the votes on the ballots that the CyberNinjas and then the Senate (aka CyberNinjas, disguised as independent contractors) produced during their “forensic audit” of the Maricopa County (AZ) 2020 General Election.
The reason it is essential for someone to get these counts is to have some ability to see if anything the CyberNinjas and the Arizona Senate reports has any credibility at all. If we don’t get these public records then no one will have any ability to challenge anything that comes out of the “forensic audit.” We will just have to take their word for it.
We think that is a real problem. Senator Karen Fann has already told the world that the count by the CyberNinjas does not match the official results. She didn’t tell us how much they differed but it was enough for her to authorize an additional count of the ballots to see how many ballots were really in those boxes. Her liaison, Ken Bennett, didn’t trust the new counts he was seeing so he asked us to check on a few boxes and he gave us the machine counts he had. We found one box that was off by 18 ballots and several that were off by 1 or 2. Close, but in this situation, you have to be exactly correct, 100% accurate. Close is not good enough.
When we get the counts we will compare on a box by box, batch by batch, precinct by precinct or whatever is required to see if the Ninjas got the right ballot count and whether the Senate machine count of ballots can be trusted. If you don’t get the count of ballots correct there is no way the count of votes could be correct. We expect the Senate machine count to be pretty close on most counts except for the problems you have when you are relying on people to write down numbers correctly on several different sheets of paper before they are entered into a computer.
If needed we will be able to compare the results on a ballot by ballot basis by looking at the ballot and comparing that to the ballot image. That assumes the ballots are back in the boxes in the same order they were initially in which is actually a pretty shaky assumption after watching what the Ninjas have done with the ballots.
Right now the courts are deciding whether or not we can get access to these records. Judge Kemp in Maricopa Superior Court issued a decision in a case called American Oversight v Fann et. al to indicate the Senate had to produce these records related to the audit and that they had to produce records generated by their agents and contractors for work they did in the audit. That decision is on appeal and we expect a decision sometime in the next few weeks. We expect a favorable decision and when we get the counts we intend to allow the public to see for themselves whether the audit has produced any useful information. We suspect everyone will see that the official results announced last November were correct after all.