U.S. House oversight panel seeks testimony from company conducting Arizona election ‘audit’
Lawmakers say Cyber Ninjas obstructed congressional review
A volunteer observer (right, dressed in orange) watches as Maricopa County ballots from the 2020 general election are examined and recounted by contractors hired by the Arizona Senate at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix on April 27, 2021. (Arizona Republic, pool)
WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats on Friday requested that the company behind a months-long review of Arizona’s election results appear at a hearing next month, after officials from Cyber Ninjas refused to cooperate with document requests from the U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee.
Top Democrats on that panel, Reps. Carolyn Maloney of New York and Jamie Raskin of Maryland, sent a letter Friday to Doug Logan, CEO of the Florida-based company Cyber Ninjas, seeking his testimony at an Oct. 7 hearing on the firm’s role in the review of ballots cast in Maricopa County, Arizona.
“This request follows your repeated refusal to produce documents requested by the committee regarding this largely privately funded audit,” Maloney and Raskin wrote.
“As a result of your obstruction, your participation in a committee hearing is necessary for the committee to advance the investigation of the questionable audit your company performed and to examine whether this audit is interfering with Americans’ right to vote free from partisan interference.”
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Arizona’s Republican-controlled state Senate hired Cyber Ninjas in April to conduct the so-called audit of the 2020 presidential election results in Maricopa County. Findings of that election review were scheduled to be released Friday, and draft reports circulating ahead of the formal announcement showed President Joe Biden actually won Arizona by more votes than the official tally.
The involvement of Cyber Ninjas in the election review has raised concerns, in part because the company had no prior federal election audit experience.
Democrats on the House Oversight panel wrote to the company in July and August, requesting documents related to audit procedures, funding sources, and communications with outside parties that may have improper influence on its investigation.
But top officials on the committee say the company “continuously obstructed” the congressional review, sending responses that objected to the requests or only relayed information that was already publicly available.
Maloney and Raskin described the panel’s investigation as “of exceeding importance to the American people.”
“Consistent with Congress’s constitutional authorities, the committee is investigating the extent to which your company’s actions have undermined the integrity of federal elections and interfered with Americans’ constitutional right to cast their ballot freely and to have their votes counted without partisan interference,” they wrote.
Arizona is not the only state where Republicans have engaged in efforts to review last year’s election results, months after states have concluded their statutorily required certification processes.
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