Donald Trump 'Unhinged' Over Arizona Vote Fraud Claims, Says GOP Election Official

A Republican election official has called former President Donald Trump "unhinged" over his repeated claims about how the 2020 election was run in Arizona's largest county.

Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer leads the elections department that has been targeted by a GOP audit of the presidential election last November won by President Joe Biden. Previous audits in the county affirmed Biden's victory.

Richer, who became recorder in January, has urged fellow Republicans to call out the accusations of election fraud after Trump issued a statement accusing Maricopa County of deleting an elections database.

"Wow. This is unhinged. I'm literally looking at our voter registration database on my other screen. Right now," Richer wrote on Twitter. "We can't indulge these insane lies any longer. As a party. As a state. As a country."

Wow. This is unhinged. I’m literally looking at our voter registration database on my other screen. Right now.

We can’t indulge these insane lies any longer. As a party. As a state. As a country.

This is as readily falsifiable as 2+2=5. If we don’t call this out... pic.twitter.com/5tDy1wsZg6

— Stephen Richer—Maricopa Cnty Recorder (prsnl acct) (@stephen_richer) May 15, 2021

In his statement, Trump said: "The entire Database of Maricopa County in Arizona has been DELETED! This is illegal and the Arizona State Senate, who is leading the Forensic Audit, is up in arms."

Richer and the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, which is dominated by Republicans, have pushed back on the state's Republican lawmakers who have backed Trump's claims that widespread voter fraud in the state led to his loss.

"Enough with the defamation. Enough with the unfounded allegations," Richer tweeted on Thursday.

"I came to this office to competently, fairly, and lawfully administer the duties of the office. Not to be accused by own party of shredding ballots and deleting files for an election I didn't run. Enough."

Enough with the defamation. Enough with the unfounded allegations. I came to this office to competently, fairly, and lawfully administer the duties of the office. Not to be accused by own party of shredding ballots and deleting files for an election I didn’t run. Enough. https://t.co/dfNp09tCtz

— Stephen Richer—Maricopa Cnty Recorder (prsnl acct) (@stephen_richer) May 14, 2021

Trump's statement came after Arizona's Republican state Senate President Karen Fann demanded the members of the board come to the Senate to answer questions raised by private auditors she has hired.

The Senate took possession of 2.1 million ballots and election equipment last month for a hand recount that was supposed to finish earlier this week.

But auditors had counted around 500,000 ballots before shutting down operations this week. They will resume counting on May 24, according to reports. Meanwhile, some Arizona lawmakers have expressed regret for supporting the audit.

On Wednesday, Fann sent the board's Republican chairman Jack Sellers a letter requesting county officials attend a meeting to answer questions related to the three "serious issues" that have arisen during the audit.

"At the same time, the Senate's audit Twitter account accused County election officials of deleting files off a server before it was delivered," Sellers said in a statement Friday. "That would be a crime—and it is not true."

He continued: "I know you all have grown weary of lies and half-truths six months after 2020 General Elections. Our Board is tired of it too—especially when those lies turn into threats directed at us and County employees who are public servants doing their job."

Sellers said the board plans to hold a public meeting on Monday to "refute lies and lay out facts about these issues."

He also slammed the private company—Florida-based cybersecurity firm Cyber Ninjas—that is carrying out the audit.

"The contractors hired by the Senate President are not auditors and they are not certified by the U.S. Elections Assistance Commission," Sellers said. "It's clearer by the day: the people hired by the Senate are in way over their heads. This is not funny; this is dangerous."

Richer and Fann have been contacted for additional comment.

Donald Trump speaks at CPAC
Former U.S. President Donald Trump addresses the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) held in the Hyatt Regency on February 28, 2021 in Orlando, Florida. Joe Raedle/Getty Images