HomeDemocracyFake Trump electors donate to campaign of election-denying Arizona GOP state senator

Fake Trump electors donate to campaign of election-denying Arizona GOP state senator

Emily Singer

Sen. Nancy Barto was one of 22 Arizona state legislators who signed a ‘joint resolution’ in December 2020 urging Congress to accept her state’s fake slate of electors.

Nancy Barto, a Republican running for reelection to the Arizona Senate, accepted campaign contributions from two people who were listed on a slate of “alternate” electors that was part of a scheme to overturn the 2020 presidential election results in the Electoral College.

Due to redistricting, the incumbent Barto is running against another incumbent state senator, Democrat Christine Marsh, in Arizona’s Legislative District 4.

Nancy Cottle and Jim Lamon, two of the 11 Arizonans who in December 2020 signed a meaningless document that falsely declared former President Donald Trump had won the election, gave a combined $2,750 to Barto’s campaign, according to campaign finance records.

Lamon, who lost a GOP primary for the U.S. Senate in August, gave $2,650 to Barto; Cottle, who serves as a leader in the Arizona Federation of Republican Women, gave her $100.

Cottle, who signed the fake elector document as “chair,” was subpoenaed by both the House select committee investigating the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump on Jan. 6, 2021, and the Department of Justice.

The fake elector scheme was an effort by Trump aides and allies to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory in 2020. The scheme’s plotters hoped that then-Vice President Mike Pence would use the fake slates of electors when Congress met to certify the Electoral College results on Jan. 6 to declare Trump the winner.

Barto is also an election denier and was one of 22 Arizona state legislators who signed a “joint resolution” in December 2020 urging Congress either to accept Arizona’s fake slate of electors or to nullify Arizona’s results altogether.

Barto also attended a fake “hearing” at a hotel in downtown Phoenix the previous month with Trump legal adviser Rudy Giuliani, during which Trump himself called in to spread lies about the election results.

Control of the Arizona Legislature is up for grabs in November. Currently, Republicans hold a slim majority in the Senate, with 16 seats to Democrats’ 14.

Legislative District 4, where Barto is running, is one of the competitive districts that could determine control of the chamber, according to the Arizona Republic.

State Sen. Marsh, Barto’s opponent in the race, is a former teacher who won election by 497 votes out of just over 120,000 in 2020.

Marsh told the Arizona Republic that the Legislature “should not have the power to overturn elections.” Barto declined repeated requests from the news outlet to offer her views on election administration.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.