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Arizona GOP taps ‘fake elector’ for RNC post

Arizona GOP taps ‘fake elector’ for RNC post

The Arizona GOP has selected state Sen. Jake Hoffman, a “fake elector” indicted last week and accused of working to overturn President Joe Biden’s 2020 win in Arizona, as a national committeeman for the Republican National Committee. 

Hoffman — who was indicted Wednesday along with 17 other people, including former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani — was elected to the RNC post along with former state Rep. Liz Harris, who was expelled for reasons related to questioning Biden’s 2020 victory in Arizona. 

“I’m humbled and honored to have been elected as the next RNC National Committeeman for Arizona,” Hoffman wrote Saturday evening on X.

“The road to saving America runs through our great state, and the RNC has a crucial role to play in supporting and empowering the Republican grassroots who fight every day against the Democratic Fascists,” Hoffman added.

On Jan. 5, 2021, Hoffman, then days away from becoming a state representative, sent a letter urging Vice President Mike Pence to delay the counting of Arizona’s electors and to “seek clarification from the Arizona legislature as to which slate of electors were proper and accurate.” Hoffman himself was one of the 11 “alternate electors.” 

Announcing the charges against Hoffman and others accused of being involved in the scheme, Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes, a Democrat, said in a recorded video released Wednesday, “These defendants deceived the citizens of Arizona.” 

“The defendants intended that the false votes for Trump and Pence would encourage Vice President Pence to reject the certified Biden-Harris electors’ votes regardless of the result of any legal challenge,” she added. 

Along with Hoffman, the Arizona GOP also selected former state Rep. Liz Harris as a national committeewoman. Harris was expelled from the Legislature a year ago after she invited an election denier to provide testimony laced with unsubstantiated allegations at a televised legislative hearing on elections. 

Jacqueline Breger, an insurance agent whom Harris invited to testify, claimed without evidence that a Mexican drug cartel bribed Gov. Katie Hobbs and Republican House Speaker Ben Toma and that “bribes and infiltration have been used to affect the outcome” of the 2020 and 2022 elections. 

At the controversial hearing on Feb. 23, 2023, Breger claimed that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints “control[s]” government agencies and was “integral to the laundering activities.”

An Arizona ethics panel report found Harris “committed disorderly behavior” and damaged “the institutional integrity of the House” by inviting Breger. Harris was removed from office after 46 of the 60 members of the Republican-controlled House voted to expel her upon the release of the ethics panel report.

“These are not just your run-of-the-mill election deniers,” Barrett Marson, a Republican strategist in Arizona, said of Hoffman and Harris. “They are leaders in the whole experiment of election denialism.”

Marson said he believes Hoffman’s and Harris’ new gigs are indicative of the Arizona GOP’s transformation in recent years.

“I think it shows that both election denialism and a fealty to election denialism is now the state Republican Party in Arizona,” he said. 

The Arizona GOP did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the selections of Hoffman and Harris. 

Vaughn Hillyard

Vaughn Hillyard is a correspondent for NBC News. 

Alex Tabet

Alex Tabet is a 2024 NBC News campaign embed.

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