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Arizona Election Official Epically Shuts Down Republican Voter's Mail-In Ballot Claims

After rightwinger Aubrey Savela tried to put Maricopa County in Arizona on blast for sending her two ballots, County Recorder Stephen Richer swiftly called her out for changing her address at the last minute.

Stephen Richer
Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer defended the mail-in voting process in Arizona after voter Aubrey Savela, who identifies as a field representative for the right-wing nonprofit Turning Point Action posted a photo of two mail-in ballots and early voting packets on X and tried to put the county on blast for sending her two ballots for the upcoming primaries.

Savela said the supposed error is a sign of "Maricopa County at its finest"—alleging election fraud, supposedly enabling people to vote twice—and added:

"My first time ever voting in a presidential preference election and I received not one but two mail-in ballots. Thank you [Stephen Richer]."

You can see her post and the image she shared below.

Aubrey Savela's two mail-in ballots@aubrey_savela/X

Richer was quick to respond to Savela's insinuations about potential irregularities in the voting system—promptly shutting her claims down.

He clarified that the mailing of early ballots was based on the information available in the voter registration system, and in this case, Savela had recently updated her address.

He wrote:

"You changed your voter registration on the last day of voter registration (Feb. 20) from your Chandler address to your new Tempe address. Because early ballots must go out on Feb. 21, your Chandler ballot was already set to go out, and so it did. Then we sent out a new ballot to your Tempe address when we processed your voter registration modification."
"That's why you had to redact out different lengths in the address (because they were sent to different addresses). You'll also notice that one of packet codes ends in "01" (the one to your old address) and one ends in "02" (the one sent to your new address)."
"As soon as the "02" one goes out, the "01" packet is dead. Meaning even if you sent it back, it wouldn't proceed to signature verification, and it wouldn't be opened. That's how we prevent people from voting twice."
"So just use the one with your new address ending in "02" -- that's the only one that will work. Hope this helps! Have a great night! Happy voting!"

You can see his response below.

Shortly afterward, Savela's post was flagged with an X Community Note explaining that her post was misleading:

"According to the county recorder, the user changed addresses the last day of registration, meaning ballots were sent to her old and new addresses. The ballot sent to the new address has markings indicating the ballot sent to the prior address will not be processed if returned."

But the back and forth didn't end there.

Unfortunately for Savela, she kept digging, firing back at Richer:

To which Richer replied, once again shutting her all the way down.

Many loved Richer's clap backs.

Others criticized Savela more directly.

The interaction between Richer and Savela brings to mind a similar instance when right-wing firebrand Tomi Lahren was criticized after she made a baseless claim about voter fraud that was swiftly debunked by Los Angeles County officials.

In 2022, Lahren suggested that California is allowing voter fraud to take place with no oversight from state authorities. She said she had received her "California voting code and mail-in ballot information" despite being registered to vote in Tennessee the last couple of years.

However, Lahren's claim was immediately countered by the Los Angeles Country Registrar-Recorder and County Clerk, which noted that her registration was "INACTIVE due to returned mail and would only be reactivated if you responded or voted, signing the oath attesting to your qualifications and residence."

The agency requested that she send a direct message to confirm her data so it could process a cancelation.