Top ALEC Official Is Behind Conspiracy Theory-Fueled Arizona Ballot Audit

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      The public face of the preposterous Maricopa County ballot audit is Republican Arizona State Senate President Karen Fann — who also serves as the second-highest ranking board member of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the country’s pre-eminent pay-to-play corporate lobbying group.

      The audit, which has now earned the nickname “The Mess in Maricopa,” is the most conspicuous ongoing attempt by Republicans to bolster the “Big Lie” conspiracy theory that Donald Trump didn’t really lose the presidential election in November.

      In her role as ALEC board treasurer, Fann oversees the group’s agenda and is likely next in line to become its national chair, as ALEC does not currently have a vice chair. Unlike other ideologically conservative lobbying groups, ALEC’s business model is specifically to pursue corporate agendas at the state level.

      So while American corporations are trying to distance themselves from extremist Republican challenges to democracy at the state level, Fann’s prominent and unapologetic role in the Arizona farce adds to the already ample evidence that at least some American corporations are aggressively supporting state-level actions that, as over 100 democracy scholars explained on Tuesday, “are transforming several states into political systems that no longer meet the minimum conditions for free and fair elections.”

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

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