Cochise County elections director resigns, reports say

Marra's departure comes months after then-Secretary of State Katie Hobbs had filed a lawsuit...
Marra's departure comes months after then-Secretary of State Katie Hobbs had filed a lawsuit against Cochise County’s board of supervisors over its refused to certify the results.(Cochise County)
Published: Jan. 25, 2023 at 12:25 PM MST
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COCHISE COUNTY, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Lisa Marra, the Cochise County elections director who for years endured a tendentious political climate, has resigned, according to multiple reports.

The small, rural Arizona county was placed in the national spotlight after county supervisors refused to certify the election on time and instead proposed a complete hand count to investigate unsubstantiated voter fraud claims. At least four cases with similar claims had been before the Arizona Supreme Court since 2021, seeking to have the state’s 2020 election results thrown out.

News of her departure was first reported by the Washington Post, which obtained a letter sent to county leaders by Marra’s attorney citing an “outrageous and physically and emotionally threatening” working atmosphere as well as “objectively difficult and unpleasant working conditions” as reasons for her leaving the post. Marra encouraged the county to certify its elections as required by state law, despite the threats of lawsuits. Arizona law requires county officials to approve the election canvass, and state lawyers had warned county supervisors could face criminal charges for failing to carry out their obligations. A judge ultimately ordered the board to certify its results, which they did on Dec 1.

As the Associated Press reported, many elections-related officials are resigning across the country following threats and controversy that have plagued the position for years. Last July, now-former Yavapai County Recorder Leslie Hoffman resigned, saying she was fed up with the “nastiness” and accepted a job outside the county. The county’s longtime elections director Lynn Constable also left that month.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.