What’s Next in ‘Never-Never Land’: Ballots & Boundaries (1)

(Adds date maps are due at the Colorado Supreme Court)

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It’s Arizona Senate President Karen Fann’s move after Maricopa County supervisors’ defiant response to the latest subpoena.

County officials refused to provide ballot envelope images, routers, and other materials.

“The Board has real work to do and little time to entertain this adventure in never-never land,” Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jack Sellers (R) wrote in a letter to the Senate.

“There was no fraud, there wasn’t an injection of ballots from Asia nor was there a satellite that beamed votes into our election equipment,” Sellers wrote. “It’s time for all elected officials to tell the truth and stop encouraging conspiracies.”

Cyber Ninjas, the firm leading the audit, has looked at nearly 2.1 million ballots and now wants extra information for its report. Fann (R) said she’s considering her options to access the subpoenaed materials. READ MOREBrenna Goth

Former Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett carrying a box of ballots
Photographer: Courtney Pedroza/Getty Images
Former Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett carries a box of ballots during the state Senate-ordered examination of Maricopa County ballots.

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MICHIGAN: A SIGNIFICANT NAME YOU MAY NOT KNOW

One man’s understanding of state election law and the way localities count votes made a big difference after the 2020 election in Michigan.

That man is Christopher Thomas. “He’s the election expert in Michigan,” said David Fink, lead attorney for Detroit’s post-2020 election litigation. Meet the technocrat who thwarted false claims from former President Donald Trump and others. — Alex Ebert

IDAHO: CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT SHIFTING

We now know all six members of the bipartisan commission that will redraw Idaho’s two congressional districts, the Idaho Statesman reports. Now the only suspense is over how much territory commissioners will move out of the
Panhandle 1st District of Rep. Russ Fulcher (R).

The 1st has grown faster than the eastern 2nd District of Rep. Mike Simpson (R), according to population estimates.

No, there probably won’t be an impact on the partisan breakdown in Congress; the whole state is strongly Republican. — Greg Giroux

ILLINOIS: REPUBLICANS PREPARING FOR COURT

A three-judge panel has set Sept. 27–29 as the trial date for a Republican-led lawsuit challenging state legislative maps in Illinois.

Illinois House Minority Leader Jim Durkin and other Republicans have filed an amended complaint asking judges to order the legislature’s Democratic leadership to create a bipartisan redistricting commission and appoint its members or provide some other remedy “that allows the drafting and implementation of a redistricting plan based on the official 2020 decennial census count.”

That data’s being released soon (and no later than Aug. 16). — Stephen Joyce

COLORADO: REDISTRICTING DEADLINE EXTENDED

OK, Colorado, you’ve got a few more weeks.

The Colorado Supreme Court granted permission to push back constitutionally mandated redistricting deadlines. The new deadline for finishing maps is Sept. 28, and they’re due at the state’s high court on Oct. 1. — Tripp Baltz

Must Reads:

  • A North Carolina judge has ruled that a lawsuit by media organizations over records connected to a secretive Trump administration voter fraud probe can continue, at least for now. — The News & Observer
  • Some residents of Mohave County, Ariz., told the state’s Independent Redistricting Commission they don’t want to be lumped in a congressional district with any of Maricopa County, saying rural Mohave has almost nothing in common with suburban Phoenix. — Mohave Valley Daily News
  • Tampa Bay residents who want to vote by mail will soon be able to go online again instead of submitting paper forms or calling in their requests. The system that nearly every elections office in the state uses had to be updated after the law changed. — Tampa Bay Times

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To contact the editors responsible for this story: Tina May at tmay@bloomberglaw.com; Katherine Rizzo at krizzo@bgov.com

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