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BPC Elections and Election Officials: Cyber Ninjas’ Report Shows Glaring Ignorance of Election Administration

Washington, DC – The Bipartisan Policy Center’s Elections Project and election officials condemn the unnecessary, inaccurate review of the Maricopa County 2020 election results by Cyber Ninjas. Cyber Ninjas’ recommendations for improving elections and voting vary from reiterating current state and federal practices to misunderstanding basic election procedures, and pale in comparison to existing election reform recommendations put forward by bipartisan election officials from across the country prior to the 2020 election.

“Cyber Ninjas has no expertise in election audits, so it’s no surprise that the methodology of their report makes it impossible to validate their findings,” said Matthew Weil, BPC director of the elections project. “Real auditors show their work. Despite finding almost no change in the overall vote totals from 2020, they have succeeded in degrading faith in the results of a free and fair election and delaying discussions of real reforms to improve the voting experience.”

In the days following the 2020 election, Maricopa County conducted two thorough audits of the 2020 election—neither found any evidence of widespread fraud. Cyber Ninjas’ claim that Maricopa County “prevented a complete audit” of the 2020 election is absurd. Maricopa County officials provided Cyber Ninjas with all of the materials required by the state Senate’s subpoena, sacrificing the security of their own voting systems to comply with Cyber Ninjas’ requests.

“Auditing the results is a regular component of well-run elections, and real audits are conducted by professionals in accordance with state law based on widely-accepted security best practices,” said Judd Choate, director of Colorado’s Division of Elections. “Given that Cyber Ninjas’ effort was partisan, conducted with no transparency, and done by individuals with no real elections expertise, there’s absolutely no reason to believe any conclusion offered in the report.”

In January 2020, the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Task Force on Elections released a comprehensive report with 21 recommendations for improving American elections which were endorsed by 21 Republican and Democratic election officials from 18 states. Arizona’s legislature and other state legislatures looking to improve their elections and restore voter confidence in election results should look to reforms proposed by bipartisan experts, not by inexperienced and biased third parties.

Other states are now looking at Arizona’s farce review as a model for their own dangerous and unnecessary election reviews. Integrity is equally as important as access to the ballot in our voting system, but looking for fraud that does not exist only harms our democracy and degrades voter confidence in democratic institutions.

Joe P. Gloria, MPA, CERA, registrar of voters for Clark County Election Department in Nevada, Joseph Kirk, Bartow County elections supervisor in Georgia, and Natalie Adona, assistant clerk-recorder/registrar of voters in Nevada County, California, concur with this statement.