This past election saw a record number of voters in Maricopa County. And though some Republicans continue to claim that the election results should be invalidated, the system was fair and worked as designed according to County Recorder Adrian Fontes, a Democrat who, ironically, lost his re-election bid in a vote criticized by Republicans.
“Between 2016 and 2020, Maricopa County had 600,000 more voters,” Fontes said. “That kind of expansion of access cannot be seen [as] anything other than a screaming success, that’s a big deal.”
Fontes believes his team was prepared well for the election after receiving new equipment and staff from the Arizona Board of Supervisors.
Fontes said that there will always be problems and glitches in elections, but he emphasized the importance of voter education in order to make the process smoother for everyone.
In regards to duplicate ballots, Fontes does not believe Republicans have a case.
“I think there’s a lot of folks really enjoying the sport of misinformation and disinformation,” Fontes said. “I don’t think they’re appreciating the damage, real damage they’re doing to our democracy, and I think that, at the end of the day, cooler heads will prevail.”
In response to the legislative leaders who want an independent audit of the county election software, Fontes said it was not necessary.
“I don’t think that there’s any reason to do any more than we have already done, over and over again,” Fontes said.
Fontes emphasized that the same legislative leaders unanimously approved the same election software a year ago.
“It’s easy to understand anything–true or untrue–if leaders continue to use the same kind of rhetoric, whether it’s false or true,” Fontes said. “And it is false. There is no broad-scoped fraud.”
In terms of not winning his re-election, Fontes said he is not “sore” about it.
“The voters get to decide,” Fontes said. “All I got was four years and a possibility, so I’m glad we did what we did. I’m excited about the opportunities that voters have because of my administration.”