State Watch

Arizona secretary of state calls on Trump, members of Congress to stop ‘perpetuating misinformation’

The top elections official in Arizona called on President Trump and members of Congress on Wednesday to stop “perpetuating misinformation” as she faces threats of violence following this month’s election, the first time Arizona has voted for a Democratic presidential nominee since 1996.

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D) said in a statement that the “ongoing and escalating threats of violence” against her, her family and her office are “utterly abhorrent,” pledging that the “continued intimidation tactics will not prevent me from performing the duties I swore an oath to do.”

She specifically faulted Trump and other elected officials for fueling distrust in the voting system. 

“There are those, including the president, members of Congress and their elected officials, who are perpetuating misinformation and are encouraging others to distrust the election results in a manner that violates the oath of office they took,” Hobbs said. “It is well past time that they stop. Their words and actions have consequences.”

“Now, I am calling on other leaders in the state, including the governor whose deafening silence has contributed to the growing unrest, to stand up for the truth,” she added. 

The secretary of state also called out Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward, accusing her of spreading conspiracy theories. 

The statement came a day after Arizona officials announced they were looking into an apparent death threat against Hobbs. 

The threat, made over Parler, the social media site that has attracted conservatives disenchanted with Twitter, “was something like, ‘Let’s burn her house down and kill her and her family, and teach these fraudsters a lesson,'” Hobbs told NBC affiliate 12 News in Phoenix.

She said her home address and personal information as well as her son’s cellphone number were posted on Parler. 

Threats against Hobbs ramped up last week after the resurfacing of a tweet from three years ago in which she accused Trump of being “more interested in pandering to his neo-nazi base than being @POTUS for all Americans.” 

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey’s (R) chief of staff, Daniel Scarpinato, told 12 News that the governor was aware of the threats against Hobbs.  

“We don’t condone threats against any elected officials and would provide any and all resources that are needed to ensure the secretary … and her family are safe and protected,” Scarpinato said.

Ducey called the threats against Hobbs “completely unacceptable” at press conference Wednesday.

“I denounce any threats of violence against anyone in elected office or any Arizonan or American,” he said. “That’s different than a court challenge. A court challenge will play itself out.”

Ducey added that his office is working with Hobbs to see if more Department of Public Safety resources can be provided “to protect her.”

Updated at 7:58 p.m.

Tags 2020 election 2020 election results 2020 presidential election Arizona Donald Trump Doug Ducey Joe Biden Katie Hobbs Threats Violence

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