The fact that Donald Trump refuses to abandon his weird election conspiracy theories is not surprising. What's notable, however, is how the former president is following through on the Big Lie.
On Friday night, for example, the Republican issued a written statement, featuring his idiosyncratic approach to capitalization, which began, "A new analysis of mail-in ballots in Pima County, Arizona means the election was Rigged and Stolen from the Republican Party in 2020, and in particular, its Presidential Candidate."
After a few paragraphs of related palaver, Trump concluded, "Either a new Election should immediately take place or the past Election should be decertified and the Republican candidate declared the winner."
Right off the bat, it's important to note that the former president has no idea what he's talking about. As the NBC affiliate in Phoenix reported, Pima County officials received a large number of mail-in ballots, which was consistent with statewide turnouts.
Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry rejected Trump's suggestions that fraud took place in southern Arizona last November. "Pima County conducted a free, fair, secure, and accurate election. The results were publicly audited via hand count by the County's Republican and Democratic parties, and the results were certified by the Pima County Board of Supervisors and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey," he said Friday.
The same report from KPNX added that Pima County has a bipartisan commission that's tasked with ensuring local elections run smoothly.
"Pima County may be the only County in Arizona with such a multi-partisan commission whose sole role is to advise the County Board of Supervisors and the Elections Department on the conduct and security of county-administered elections," Huckelberry explained.
What's more, the fact that the Republican is floating the idea of an "immediate" do-over election is kind of hilarious. Indeed, consider the core message behind a pitch: Yes, the vote count showed Trump losing. And yes, so did the recounts. And sure, there have been multiple audits and reviews, and all of the conspiracy theories have been discredited. Nevertheless, it makes sense to the former president that the responsible thing to do is to have another election — to see if he likes those results better.
But my favorite part of this is Trump's subtle geographic shift. Let's not forget that over the course of the year, he saw Maricopa County, Arizona, as the lynchpin of his entire strategy. Once there was a sham "audit" of Maricopa County's ballots, it would serve as the first domino that would "undo" his defeat and magically propel him back into the White House.
That strategy, obviously, failed spectacularly. And with that in mind, Trump has effectively arrived at a new point: "Never mind Maricopa County, how about Pima County?"