(LifeSiteNews) — Arizona Republican Kari Lake is declaring victory after the state’s Supreme Court rejected six of her seven latest claims in the dispute over her unsuccessful 2022 gubernatorial bid by focusing on the court’s ruling that she deserves a chance to make a case supporting her seventh claim, which regards ballot signature verification.
In last November’s midterm elections, Democrat Katie Hobbs defeated Lake for the governorship of Arizona by 17,117 votes, 50.3 percent to 49.6 percent. Lake, who has defined herself as closely aligned with former President Donald Trump, contends that Hobbs won through vote fraud, and for months has insisted she will overturn the election and ultimately be installed as the true governor of the Grand Canyon State.
Last month, the Arizona Court of Appeals rejected Lake’s lawsuit, which argues that irregularities such as defective ballot printers, “deep flaws in the signature verification process,” and allegedly broken chain of custody for ballots in Maricopa County necessitate tossing the November results and redoing the election in that jurisdiction.
“Lake’s arguments highlight Election Day difficulties, but her request for relief fails because the evidence presented to the superior court ultimately supports the court’s conclusion that voters were able to cast their ballots, that votes were counted correctly, and that no other basis justifies setting aside the election results,” the court ruled.
It also upheld Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson’s earlier ruling that her challenge was improper under the laches doctrine, which forbids challenges to election procedures that are not brought until after an election has been held.
However, on Wednesday, the state’s highest court ruled that the appellate court erred in dismissing Lake’s count concerning the signature verification process, The Arizona Republic reported.
“Contrary to the ruling of the trial court and the Court of Appeals opinion, this signature verification challenge is to the application of the policies, not to the policies themselves,” the court ruled. “Therefore, it was erroneous to dismiss this claim under the doctrine of laches because Lake could not have brought this challenge before the election.”
The court also ruled against her other six counts in the suit, but the ruling directs Thompson to reconsider Lake’s signature claims on the merits, giving the candidate an opportunity to make her case that Maricopa County violated state law on the matter. Lake is currently focusing on that element of the ruling as a positive development.
HUGE: AZ Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Kari Lake, Forces Lower Court to Look at Signature Verification Issues
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) March 23, 2023
On Thursday, Thompson told attorneys for Lake, Hobbs, and Maricopa County to submit additional written arguments on the signature verification questions by March 28, and be prepared for potential oral arguments on March 30.
Lake remains a MAGA favorite for her repeated efforts to signal fealty to Trump, for her heated attacks on the most anti-Trump factions of the Republican coalition, and for her ongoing battle against her election results, which echoes Trump’s disputing of the 2020 presidential election.
But some argue that Lake’s closeness to Trump was a liability in a state famous for electing moderate Republicans such as the late 31-year Sen. John McCain (supporters of whom she told to “get the hell out” during a campaign event last year), citing the fact that the same statewide electorate chose Republicans Tom Horne for Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction and Kimberly Yee for State Treasurer.
Lake was one of the many casualties of an anticipated “red wave” failing to materialize in last fall’s midterms, which Republicans expected would deliver them easy landslides in rejection of Democrat President Joe Biden’s job performance. Conservatives have debated various possible explanations for the outcome ever since.
Regardless, the results for Arizonans include their new governor Hobbs actively pursuing a left-wing agenda, including vetoing legislation to keep critical race theory out of public schools, proposing to defund a pro-life center for homeless pregnant women and redirect it to the abortion industry, and issuing an executive order requiring state agencies and government contractors to ignore “sexual orientation” and “gender identity or expression” as factors for employment decisions, even if relevant to contractors such as religious foster centers.