On Wednesday, May 8, 2024, AZ Mirror reported that the Maricopa County Republican Committee voted unanimously to formally censure all seven justices of the Arizona Supreme Court.

The censure stems from the court’s rejection of various lawsuits filed after the 2022 election by Republican governor candidate Kari Lake and attorney general candidate Abe Hamadeh seeking to overturn the results of their losses. Both Lake and Hamadeh have continued pursuing legal challenges to the election results, with Lake now running for the U.S. Senate and Hamadeh for the U.S. House of Representatives.

In passing the censure, the MCRC accused the justices of failing to perform their duties in a fair and impartial manner. The resolution alleges that Arizonans have legitimate claims of election meddling that deserve to be properly judged in court. However, it provided no concrete evidence to support accusations of misconduct or biased judging.

All the lawsuits brought by Republicans challenging the 2020 and 2022 elections have been dismissed for lack of proof of fraud. The MCRC took issue with sanctions imposed by the Supreme Court against attorneys for filing cases without merit.

The censure also criticizes the high court for allowing a defamation lawsuit filed by Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer against Kari Lake to move forward. Lake has already admitted in court proceedings that Richer’s claims are true.

While the MCRC resolution holds no real authority over the independent judiciary, it points to broader dissatisfaction among far-right election deniers with the repeated rejections of unsupported allegations of irregularities tainting Arizona’s election results.

However, the article notes that all state Supreme Court justices were appointed by Republican governors, and the judges who originally dismissed the Lake and Hamadeh lawsuits were also GOP appointees. Legal experts say the repeated failure to prove claims of meddling reflects the lack of evidence rather than judicial bias.

In response to the censure, County Recorder Richer succinctly texted “Lol” to the AZ Mirror reporter. It remains unclear what effect, if any, the symbolic censure will have.

 

 

Source: AZ Mirror