Arizona Secretary of State Adrian Fontes (D) blamed “MAGA fascist types” for the high turnover rate of the state’s election officials since 2020, claiming those who support former President Donald Trump “want our systems to crumble” during an interview with KTAR News 92.3 on Wednesday.
Responding to a new report from nonpartisan nonprofit group Issue One, which revealed that 80 percent of Arizona counties have hired new chief election officials since 2020, Fontes blamed Republicans for the high turnover.
Specifically, Fontes (pictured above) blamed “bad actors” who push “false accusations” about Arizona’s elections for pushing out election officials, asserting they were ill equipped to confront “lies and conspiracy theories and misinformation,” and claiming that “the threats and the bad behavior… just been too much for a lot of them frankly in a lot of cases.”
Then, Fontes seemed to suggest the high turnover rate of Arizona election officials is part of an organized plan for these “bad actors.”
“I think this is a greater sort of an effort by these authoritarians and you know these MAGA fascist types,” Fontes told KTAR News, “who just want our systems to crumble.” Fontes claimed this group is “working real hard to drive good people away and sadly they’ve been succeeding” thanks to “all the lies and conspiracy theories.”
Arizona State Senate candidate Mark Finchem, the former Republican state representative who ran against Fontes in 2022 and was sanctioned after a months-long legal challenge to the Democrat’s electoral victory, told The Arizona Sun Times that he has come to expect such remarks from Fontes.
“That’s the kind of divisive language I would expect from a radical leftist like Adrian Fontes,” Finchem told The Sun Times. “Apparently he doesn’t agree with the concept of Make America Great Again.”
Staff members for Fontes did not reply to a comment request from The Sun Times that sought to clarify Fontes’s comments about the “MAGA fascist types” and “conspiracy theories” he claims compelled the mass resignation of Arizona election officials.