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Threatening email sent to Arizona GOP senator who withdrew support for election audit
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Threatening email sent to Arizona GOP senator who withdrew support for election audit

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PHOENIX — A Republican state senator who has backed away from the election audit she once supported is now the victim of at least one threat.

“You have one chance to give the American people the Audit report or we’re coming for you,” said an email sent Thursday to Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita, R-Scottsdale, from someone identified as “Matt Boster.”

“We know where you live, we know where you get your groceries and we know where your family lives,” the message said. “You better do the right thing or your going to feel the consequences.”

Ugenti-Rita, who reposted the message on Twitter, said it has been turned over to law enforcement.

“My family’s safety is my #1 priority and I will NOT tolerate anyone going after me or my family,” she wrote.

But the senator said she expects “threats like this” to continue because of what she calls “misinformation and the unmet expectations of the public surrounding the audit.”

She did not return calls seeking further comment.

Ugenti-Rita has said she backed the election audit idea when it was first proposed after Joe Biden outpolled Donald Trump in Arizona by 10,457 votes statewide in November, winning the state’s 11 electoral votes. In Maricopa County, the results that are being reviewed for the Senate, Biden got 45,109 more votes than Trump.

Her support changed, she said, amid questions about how the audit was being conducted, including the hiring by Senate President Karen Fann, R-Prescott, of Cyber Ninjas, a firm that had never done similar work.

“Sadly, it’s now become clear that the audit has been botched,” Ugenti-Rita, who is running for secretary of state, said in a Twitter post in July.

“The total lack of competence by Fann over the last five months has deprived the voters of Arizona a comprehensive accounting of the 2020 election,” she continued. “That’s inexcusable, but it shows what can happen when Republicans do not take election integrity seriously.”

In a prepared statement, Fann said threats on lawmakers are “completely unacceptable,” regardless of their position on the audit.

“I understand passions run high on the issue of voter integrity,” the Senate president said. “But personal attacks and threats of violence cross the line.”

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