Explosive Kari Lake Testimony: Controversial Pollster Suggests 20% of Election Day Voters Disenfranchised

Pollster Rich Baris testified Thursday at Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake’s election challenge trial that the level of voter suppression that occurred on Election Day in Maricopa County last month was enough to deny Lake the victory.

Baris told the court that his firm Big Data Poll conducted exit polling in the Nov. 8 election and found a surprising 20 percent disparity in the response rates of those who used a mail-in ballot versus those who voted on Election Day.

The polling firm director explained that everyone who participated in the survey had agreed before voting to do so.

“The bottom line here is that those who said they would cast their vote by mail or drop their ballot off by mail completed their questionnaire at a 93 percent rate,” Baris said. He explained that some drop-off in participation was to be expected, so 7 percent not completing the survey was not surprising.

“The rate for Election Day voters was only 72 percent,” Baris said. “I can tell you that has never happened to me before, ever.”

“There’s no explanation for why these voters simply did not come back. They didn’t cast their ballot. There’s always going to be a difference, but the difference here is … roughly 20 percentage points,” the pollster said.

“These people didn’t complete this questionnaire because they didn’t vote. They didn’t get to vote,” Baris concluded.

According to KNXV-TV political analyst Garrett Archer, Baris said his poll had about 160 Election Day respondents in Maricopa County.

Baris pointed to the hours-long lines at Maricopa polling places on Election Day, which were due at least in part to widespread ballot printer and ballot tabulation problems, as the reason some Arizonans did not vote.

Lake’s legal team stated in its complaint that 59 percent of polling stations (132 locations) had machines malfunction, while the county has claimed that 70 sites were impacted, or about one-third in all.

In Anthem, north of Phoenix, people in line at midday told The Western Journal they had waited approximately two hours to vote. The wait time was the same around 6 p.m.

Lake has argued that since Republicans outvoted Democrats 3 to 1 on Election Day, what happened was large-scale voter suppression of her supporters.

Data posted by Archer showed that statistic to be accurate.

Despite all the Election Day problems, Lake was able to close Katie Hobbs’ lead from double-digits (about 183,000 votes), based on Hobbs’ advantage in the early voting tallies, to less than a percent (about 12,000 votes) by the Wednesday following the election, thanks to Election Day votes.

Hobbs ultimately won the race by about 17,000 votes after all the mail-in ballots that were dropped off on Election Day were counted.

Baris estimated that between 25,000 and 40,000 people who wanted to vote on Election Day did not do so. The 20 percent figure suggested by Baris’ exit polling corresponds to 50,000 voters, which Baris said is an “admittedly very large” number.

He testified that but for the Election Day chaos, Lake would have defeated Hobbs.

“In my professional opinion, the amount of Election Day voters that we’re talking about here, with the margin, would have changed the outcome of the race, and the number is substantial enough to have changed who the overall winner was in this race,” Baris said.

He added, “I have no doubt” Lake would have won but for the Election Day chaos.

Baris told the court that he has been the director of Big Data Poll for over six years and prior to that worked in election forecasting for People’s Pundit Daily. He said that he has been conducting exit polling since 2014.

The political site FiveThirtyEight does not use Big Data Poll in its compilation of polls. However, Baris pointed out in his testimony that Election Recon gave Big Data its second-highest ranking in 2022 midterm election polling accuracy.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.