The Arizona Supreme Court breathed new life into the election lawsuit of former gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake but dismissed most of the Republican’s arguments as insufficient.
On Wednesday, justices on the state’s high court accepted Lake’s argument that lower courts erroneously dismissed her challenge to the application of the signature verification process in the 2022 midterm election. However, the court sided against Lake in six of her seven claims in the suit.
Lake, who’s become a prominent voice in the Republican Party, maintains that voting irregularities and misconduct potentially cost her the election. Her Democratic opponent, Katie Hobbs, had won by more than 17,000 votes and has been in office since January.
The decision to rule in Lake’s favor on one of the claims comes in contrast to the move from two loser courts—one in Maricopa County and the other in the Arizona Court of Appeals—which both rejected the Republican’s lawsuit.
Chief Justice Robert Brutinel wrote in the ruling that the court will determine whether Lake can prove her claim that Maricopa County failed to comply with Arizona law regarding ballot tabulation. Lake will also have to show that “votes [were] affected ‘in sufficient numbers to alter the outcome of the election’” based on a “competent mathematical basis to conclude that the outcome would plausibly have been different, not simply an untethered assertion of uncertainty.”
Lake, one of former President Donald Trump‘s closest allies, has become a rising MAGA star for her election fraud claims. She not only refused to accept her loss in the 2022 election, but has also amplified Trump’s claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from him.
Although Lake hasn’t announced any other plans for office, her name has been floated as a potential running mate for Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign, as well as for Arizona’s 2024 Senate race. The seat in Arizona is currently held by independent Senator Kyrsten Sinema.
On Tuesday, Lake held a prayer event where her supporters could “pray” for the state Supreme Court to accept her lawsuit.
“We told you we’d bring our election case to the AZ Supreme court and we did,” she tweeted Monday. “Now, it’s time to pray together for the Supreme Court & praise God with great expectations!”
It is unclear what would happen should the courts overturn Hobbs’ win. The Democrat has already served as governor for nearly three months, and no court has issued such a ruling at such a late date, Paul Bender, professor of law at Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law in Arizona, previously told Newsweek.
Earlier this month, Abha Khanna, an attorney for Hobbs, argued in a court filing, “Neither the court nor the respondents should be required to continue parsing through Lake’s convoluted and unsubstantiated arguments.”
“Lake simply recycles the same arguments that have already been rejected by two Arizona courts,” Khanna said. “Lake simply recycles the same arguments that have already been rejected by two Arizona courts.”
Khanna, as well as lawyers representing Democratic Secretary of State Adrian Fontes and Maricopa County, had previously asked the Arizona Supreme Court to order Lake to pay for their legal fees and to slap financial sanctions on her.
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