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Arizona's Maricopa County To Investigate Election Day Printer Issues

•, by Zachary Stieber

The probe will be "an important step in our efforts to get to the bottom of the printer issues that affected some Vote Centers on Election Day last November," Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates and Vice Chairman Clint Hickman said in a joint statement on Jan. 6.

Voters across the county found their ballots could not be processed by machines in the 2022 midterm elections, a problem that led to long lines at voting centers and workers having to tabulate the votes at a later date. At least 70 of the county's polling sites were affected, at some 17,000 ballots. Maricopa County was one of the last counties to produce results in the midterms.

During a trial held for a lawsuit brought by Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, a cyber expert who examined ballots said he found 19-inch images printed on 20-inch paper. Clay Parikh, an information security officer with Northrup Grumman, said that the printers would not process the 19-inch images.

Parikh said there were only two ways the situation could have happened.

"One way is by changing the printer adjustments that would make the printer adjustments and settings override the image file that was sent, the other is from the application side, the operating system side," Parikh said.

County officials said they weren't aware of the county using 19-inch images and said that the printers were programmed to print 20-inch ballots.

They've denied accusations that the problems stemmed from intentional actions.