Tom Renz, an Ohio-based attorney and civic commentator, blasted the Arizona court's decision to toss out a suit filed by Mark Finchem, a Republican who ran for Arizona secretary of state, describing the reasons for the dismissal as absurd, especially in the face of what he believes is obvious corruption.
"What I did not expect to find was corruption on a level that seemed to verify the outrage many people expressed after 2020. If the corruption of 2020 was as bad as the 2022 Arizona election people should have been outraged. Further, if the courts did anything similar to what was done with the Finchem dismissal it is not a surprise that people were claiming that there are issues with the courts," Renz noted in his assessment of the court's decision.
"As for the case, the dismissal was, or should have been, an absolute embarrassment for this judge to publish and frankly ought to be appealed to prevent a miscarriage of justice. I would need to write a book to cover all the mistakes in this ruling," he noted further.
Renz said that in his interpretation of the judge's ruling, the court appears to suggest that "Finchem’s team must prove fraud in their pleadings to move past a motion to dismiss," which he called "absolutely absurd," citing Arizona's own Rules of Civil Procedure. What's more, he notes that the court's dismissal relied on old Arizona statutes that were rendered moot in 2020 when the state legislature passed several election reform measures.
"The cases the Judge cited were published in 1986 and 1929. When a law is passed subsequent to a case ruling like those, it overturns those rulings if they are in dispute," he noted.
Furthermore, Renz noted that all evidence presented in a complaint must be considered true "if well-pled," and it appeared as though the Arizona court did not see the complaint in that way.
"The Court apparently also has no issues with possible violation of campaign finance laws as well as what could constitute a RICO and conspiracy charge by an elected official using their office to push or collude with a private company to block advertising by a political opponent in a race she was running in," he wrote, adding:
I will not pain you with the absolute garbage the Court attempts to use to explain away what I simply cannot fathom being anything but misconduct. Throughout there is continued reference to the standards laid out in the previously mentioned cases that were overruled by statute but why let the law get in the way of the desired outcome. In each of these absurd decisions about the application of the facts alleged to the law regarding misconduct (which should not have occurred until trial - AFTER discovery) the Court applies the wrong legal standard. The proper standard according to the statute is “misconduct” not “gross misconduct.”
"What happened in Arizona and particularly in Maricopa County during the 2022 election was indisputably unacceptable. The real question is, was it intentional and/or did it rise to the level of misconduct or violate some other aspect of the law," Renz noted as he began to wrap up his assessment.
"The legislature has spoken and did not require fraud be proven in a complaint for a case to move forward. The rules of civil procedure, applicable case law, and common sense all dictate that this case should have moved ahead," he added.
"Frankly, if the people alleged to have done wrong in this case truly did not do anything nefarious then I would think they would want a full and transparent investigation of what occurred by in independent court so they could demonstrate once and for all that the “election deniers” are crazy… unless they do have something to hide," he said.
It should also be noted that a separate Arizona court has accepted GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake's lawsuit, and it will now move to trial, so there is an excellent chance the corrupt election practices in that state will be exposed.