Saturday 13 May 2023

JUST IN: Kari Lake Election Challenge – Maricopa County Attorney Joseph La Rue Admits Signature Verification is “Subjective,” “It’s Not Really a Hard and Fast Science” (VIDEO)


Attorneys for Kari Lake appeared with attorneys for Maricopa County and Katie Hobbs today in the Maricopa County Superior Court for oral arguments following the Arizona Supreme Court’s order remanding the fraudulent signature verification issue back to trial.

During the hearing, attorney Tim La Rue admitted that Maricopa County’s signature verification standards are not an exact “science” to ensure the ballots are not fraudulent.

Instead, he claimed that signature verification is “subjective” and “something of an art” that is open to the interpretation of whatever activist reviews the signature. 

“One might say, ‘I think that’s consistent,’ and another might say, ‘no, that’s inconsistent,’” stated La Rue. 

“They just admitted signature verification is a fake science that should NEVER determine outcome,” tweeted We The People AZ Alliance.

It appears that malicious actors at higher levels of the signature verification process could verify any signature by just saying, “that looks right to me,” with no accountability.

We The People AZ Alliance pointed out that tens of thousands of signatures were passed through by the County’s “activist” signature verification managers “like Celia Nabor.” 

As The Gateway Pundit previously reported, during a presentation in the Arizona Senate Elections Committee by We The People AZ Alliance’s Shelby Busch, it was revealed that Maricopa County Assistant Elections Director Celia Nabor suddenly disappeared from the County’s payroll when attorneys for Busch requested her deposition regarding signature verification.

After filing a Special Action Complaint for public records and a deposition request for Nabor, Busch’s legal team followed up on January 12, 2023. The County told them that Nabor, who supervised signature verification in the last three elections, was no longer employed. It appears that Nabor has vanished and left the state.

The declaration below from Lake’s lawsuit states that Celia Nabor appeared to be “desperate” to have the rejected ballots approved. The signatures had already been rejected by all other levels of signature verification. 

On the last day of work, November 15, we were asked by manager Celia to go through perhaps 5,000 to 7,000 ballots, that had already been rejected at levels 1, 2 and 3. We were asked to go to the SHELL program and to only find one signature that matched the green envelope, even if all other signatures in the program did not match the green envelope. The implication from Celia is that was desperate to get the work complete and that she wanted the ballots approved. These 5,000 to 7,000 ballots had already been through the full level 1, 2, and 3 process and been rejected. Therefore, I do not know why [we were] going through them again, and that is why it seemed that Celia wanted them approved.”

Nystrom Decl. ¶ 21.

Another declarant swore that “nothing prevented a level 1, 2, or 3 worke[r]” from approving bad signatures. “observers did not watch any level 3 work and did not watch most of level 2 work,” they state. 

Maricopa permitted any signature reviewer to un-reject ballots without accountability using curing stickers. Workers were able to obtain massive amounts of these stickers and use them to cure ballots without oversight. Onigkeit explained:

In order to perform the curing process, we were given a batch of stickers to place on a ballot, which included stickers with abbreviations. Some, but not all, of the ballot stickers and abbreviations were as follows: “VER” meant that we verified the voter’s information, and their ballot was approved to be counted, “WV” meant that a voter did not want to verify their ballot over the phone, and “LM” meant that we called the voter and left a message.  

One of the problems with the stickers was that nothing prevented a level 1, 2 or 3 worke[r] from requesting a massive amount of “approved” stickers and placing them on ballots. Again, observers did not watch any level 3 work and did not watch most of level 2 work. Once stickers were placed on ballots, there was no record on the ballot or elsewhere to determine who placed the sticker there. We were told to not sign or initial the sticker, but to only date it. Accordingly, there was no way to know who placed “verified” stickers on ballots. The system was wide open to abuse and allowed for potential false placement of “verified” stickers without accountability.

Tim La Rue addresses these declarations below, simply stating that “it’s not clear how many signatures these declarants rejected” because “they’re going off their memory.” 

Presentation by We The People AZ Alliance (referenced below) and State Legislators, where they reviewed voter registration forms and compared them with signatures on over 100,000 ballot envelopes. They identified a staggering 20% error rate in signature verification.

Some of their findings included: 

  • 609 voters that cast a ballot in the 2020 election that used voter IDs issued AFTER the 2020 election.
  • Nine voters whose voter ID was canceled between 2017 and 2020 and were still able to vote in the 2020 election (not provisional).
  • 128 who have two voter IDs assigned to them. Both ballots were cast in the 2020 election, resulting in potentially 128 illegal votes.
  • The signature on the Registration does not belong to the voter
  • Multiple Voters that Do Not Match Signature on Registrations Prior to 2020 AND Had New Registrations Inserted That Are Different or a Match On 02/03/2021
  • Ballots Marked “Voter Unable to Sign Due to Covid Restrictions.”
Ballots Marked “Voter Unable to Sign Due to Covid Restrictions.”
  • Envelopes left blank with no signature
  • Ballots Were Signed By Other Household Members and accepted as-is
  • Over 1,200 Dead voters
  • Ballots Received by the Wrong officer in charge of elections on Election Day
  • 56 ballots were received on election day in other counties and states.
  • 17,822 Accepted Ballots with mismatched signatures
Accepted 2020 Ballots With Mismatched Signatures 

However, attorneys for Maricopa County and Katie Hobbs claimed that these issues do not relate to the 2022 election because they happened in 2020. This is why Lake’s team demands “An opportunity to inspect Maricopa County ballots from the 2022 general election, including ballot signature envelopes and the corresponding signatures on file with Maricopa County, prior to trial.”

Watch La Rue claim verifying signatures is not an exact “science” below:

La Rue: I think it’s important to remember that the declarants, in their declarations, said things like “I think I rejected this many or my memory is…” and I don’t have the declarations in front of me. I don’t remember the exact words. Your Honor can see that though. In other words, it’s not clear how many signatures these declarants rejected. They’re going off their memory, and I’m not questioning whether they’re trying to state the truth. It’s just, they themselves acknowledge, you know, it had been a while since they had done this, and they weren’t keeping notes of how many signatures they rejected, and they think they rejected so many. That doesn’t mean that they did. Second thing that I want to say just very quickly, is that as explained in the papers, there are multiple levels to signature review and the voter gets an opportunity to cure signatures, which means that even if, at the initial level, an initial one reviewer reject signatures, that doesn’t mean that those signatures are actually not going to be found to be consistent, or that they’re going to be cured. 

The Level One reviewer has no way to know what the final outcome will be. And I believe the declarants actually say that in their declarations. I think they’ve attempted to be honest in these declarations. They don’t know. Counsel for Lake said that the analysis from 2020 showed that signatures did not match in 2020. And that’s the type of challenge that they’re bringing here. That again, Your Honor, means they’re shifting back to they’re making changes to signature determinations. And as we said, in our papers, that’s a very subjective process. Two people might look at a signature and one might say, “I think that’s consistent,” and another might say, “no, that’s inconsistent.” And there’s no line rule in the law that says when a signature is or is not consistent. This is something of an art in election verification work. It’s not really a hard and fast science. And that’s why the level two reviewers and the level three reviewers have more experience and are able to look at these, they have additional training, they have access to more signatures than the level one reviewers. And they can look at these and make their own determinations. If we would bring signatures in here, Your Honor, you might think some are consistent and I might think they were inconsistent or vice versa. But the law entrusts this to the recorder unless something happens like happened in the Reyes case, which did not happen here.


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