An Arizona Judge denied Governor-elect Katie Hobbs’ request to sanction Kari Lake, her Republican opponent in Arizona’s gubernatorial race.
However, Hobbs was granted roughly $33,000 to cover costs for attaining expert witness in the trial that lasted two days. Lake filed the lawsuit challenging her loss, but Superior Court Judge Peter A. Thompson dismissed her case on Saturday (December 24), giving the defendants until Monday to request legal fees.
In their filing on Monday, Maricopa County and Hobbs — in her capacity as secretary of state and Governor-elect — had requested that Lake pay their attorneys’ fees. They argued that there weren’t any grounds for the claim, and Lake made her claim in bad faith.
Hobbs sought $36,990 in attorney fees and fees for a bevy of expert witnesses, including $4,689.50 for a person hired to inspect the ballots, equating to $565 per hour for 8.3 hours.
However, Thompson only granted $33,004.50 in attorney and expert witness fees, ruling 7.5 percent annual interest accrue until the amount is paid in full.
Maricopa County and Hobbs were also seeking sanctions for Lake and her attorneys, explaining that the sanctions would deter baseless lawsuits about election irregularities.
Lake lost her bid for governor by 17,000 votes, prompting her to challenge the result. Lake claimed her loss only occurred because of issues with ballot printers on Election Day.
When Thompson ruled against Lake’s suit, he explained that Lake hadn’t provided clear and convincing evidence that the alleged misconduct influenced the election results.