The partisan review of more than 2 million Maricopa County ballots wrapped up last month with a final report that agreed President Joe Biden had won. While the report found no evidence of widespread fraud, the third-party contractors, led by Florida cybersecurity firm Cyber Ninjas, nonetheless cast doubt on the election process and suggested fraud could have still occurred.
Arizona’s so-called “audit” has inspired a spate of similar ballot reviews around the country, and Arizona Republicans say they will soon write new laws to address the contractors’ findings.
Sept. 24, 202101:17
The House Oversight and Reform Committee requested documents from Cyber Ninjas in July, but the firm has so far rejected the panel’s attempts to get documents and additional materials, according to a late September letter seeking CEO Doug Logan’s attendance at Thursday’s hearing. The committee appears particularly interested in who paid Logan’s firm and how it was selected for the job; while more than $400,000 of taxpayer funds were spent so far on the review, according to an Arizona Republic review of state records, millions of dollars were raised by outside groups to foot the bill of the costly, months-long operation.
“The hearing will examine how, despite failing to find any fraud, Cyber Ninjas’ audit has already inflicted grave damage to our democracy,” the committee said in a press release.
Logan has reportedly declined to attend, but on Wednesday, the Arizona state Senate’s audit liaison, Ken Bennett, was added to the witness list.
The Arizona review has increasingly become a talking point for Democrats. On Wednesday, at a hearing on federal voting rights legislation, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., repeatedly slammed the Arizona review, at one point referring to Cyber Ninjas as “Ninja Turtles.”
“And remember what happened in Arizona — $5.7 million spent on the Ninja Turtles who were going through all these ballots and the net result was more votes for Biden and fewer votes for Trump,” he said. “This notion of voter fraud is a ruse as far as I’m concerned.”