An Arizona judge has ordered that Republican Kari Lake will need to cover Democratic Gov.-elect Katie Hobbs’s legal fees of $33,000 after Lake’s case looking to overturn the results of the 2022 gubernatorial election was dismissed. Lake on Tuesday filed a notice to appeal after Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson ordered that she needs to compensate the expert witnesses who had to be called in as part of Lake’s case. Hobbs won the vote by 17,000 votes and had asked the judge for additional sanctions against Lake, but the judge rejected the request.
Thompson wrote that it is clear that both sides fully believe in their position, he added that “The fact that plaintiff [Lake] failed to meet the burden of clear and convincing evidence … does not equate to a finding that her claims were, or were not, groundless and presented in bad faith.”
The court heard arguments presented by lake regarding the printer malfunction in many polling centers on Election Day. Lake had argued that the ballot printer problem was due to intentional misconduct. Expert testimony was used to support her claims that the malfunctions of the printers led to a decline in Republican voter turnout which ultimately affected the election results.
Thompson rejected the arguments presented finding that there is no clear evidence that the printers had been tampered with or that the problem was caused by intentional misconduct aiming to alter the results of the election. In the ruling, the judge also acknowledged that the malfunction caused “anger and frustration” of voters but that putting aside the election results “has never been done in the history of the United States.”