Lawfare Activists Apoplectic Because The Arizona Senate Will Not Provide Advanced Details of Internal Audit Documents
The Lawfare activists are screaming foul because the Arizona Senate is not turning over documents from ongoing investigative measures taking place during the audit of Maricopa County. The group known as American Oversight is a Lawfare group working on behalf of the DNC and allied left-wing activists. They have filed suit against the Arizona senate trying to find evidence they can use to marginalize the audit before the findings are made public.
Seemingly pretending not to know about the separation of power between the state legislative body and the state judicial branch, the activists are filing suits to get access to the evidence in an ongoing Senate investigation. Essentially, this is akin to demanding to sue for legislative content before the Senate can create the law and/or the harm from that law.
It is a clear Lawfare fishing expedition.
Remember, in order for far-left ideologues to advance their ideology, and/or ideological narratives, they must pretend not to know things. Another way to look at this is the Arizona Senate subpoena -which initiated the audit- is akin to an ongoing investigation. The Lawfare group are trying to get custody of details of the investigative techniques being used (forensic audit) in order to undermine the investigation itself.
To advance this narrative the leftists are using another Alinsky maneuver: “make your opposition live up to their own rules”. The Lawfare tribe is accusing the Arizona Senate of not being transparent in their process.
An easy smack-down (with a current familiarity) would be to juxtapose this Lawfare demand against the House Judiciary Committee as they worked to assemble the articles of impeachment behind closed doors. The leftist tribe would clutch their pearls if anyone sued them to find out in advance what details were being assembled in the articles before they were made public…. but that’s essentially what their demand is in Arizona.
PHOENIX — Senate President Karen Fann is taking the position that Arizona courts cannot force her or any other member of the Arizona Legislature to comply with the state’s Public Records Act.
In a new court filing, attorney Kory Langhofer, who represents the Prescott Republican and the entire Senate, is asking Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Michael Kemp to throw out a claim by a self-described nonpartisan watchdog group to get access to all documents and materials related to the Senate’s audit of the 2020 election results.
The Senate has, or will produce documents in its possession, Langhofer said. Ditto with those in the possession of Ken Bennett, who was tapped by Fann to be her liaison with Cyber Ninjas, the private company hired to conduct the audit. The only exception, Langhofer said, are those documents protected as privileged or confidential.
He said, though, what American Oversight wants are documents that are in the hands of Cyber Ninjas or other companies it has, in turn, hired as subcontractors. Langhofer said the Public Records Act does not apply to private companies. And he rejected arguments by attorney Roopali Desai that the records are public because the only reason Cyber Ninjas got the materials in the first place was because they were subpoenaed by the Senate.
But Langhofer has a backup legal argument just in case the judge does not read the scope of the Public Records Act as narrowly as he does. He told Kemp he has no jurisdiction in the fight.
The Arizona law spells out that public records and other matters in the custody of any officers “shall be open to inspection by any person at all times during office hours.” Langhofer concedes that the Senate is a “public body” and lawmakers are “public officers” who, in any other circumstance, would be covered by the law. Only thing is, he said, they are not subject to it.
“The Arizona Constitution entrusts each house of the Legislature plenary power to order its own internal procedures and affairs,” Langhofer wrote. (read more)