Why some races in Arizona still haven't been called

An election worker boxes tabulated ballots inside the Maricopa County Recorders Office, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hundreds of thousands of votes were still being tallied Wednesday in Arizona, where contested races including Senate and gubernatorial races remained uncalled.

What's the delay? Here's what we know:


Part of it is because of all of the ballots that got dropped off on Election Day in Arizona's biggest county.

Officials in Maricopa County, Arizona's most populous and home to Phoenix, estimated Wednesday there were about 400,000 votes left to count, with about 275,000 of those being ballots that came in on Election Day itself — votes known in some places as “late earlies,” the counting of which has been known to hold up tabulation.

There are also about 17,000 outstanding ballots — about 7% of those cast in person on Election Day — that were set aside due to a Tuesday printing problem at about a quarter of the county's vote tabulation centers. A judge denied a request from Republicans to keep the polls open, saying he didn’t see evidence that people were not allowed to vote, and officials said those votes would be tallied throughout the week.

Election officials said they also received about 8,000 provisional ballots on Election Day, which included those cast by people who did not have ID, or those whose records showed they had already voted by mail.

Maricopa County planned to give daily reports to update the tallies.


Outside of Maricopa County, about 200,000 ballots remained to be counted, the bulk of them in Pima County, which includes Tucson.

In rural Cochise County, supervisors voted Wednesday to appeal a court ruling that had blocked a full hand-count.

A day before this year's midterm elections, a judge blocked Cochise County officials' plan to count by hand, a measure requested by Republican officials who expressed unfounded concerns that vote-counting machines are untrustworthy.


Meg Kinnard can be reached at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP


Follow the AP’s coverage of the 2022 midterm elections at https://apnews.com/hub/2022-midterm-elections. And learn more about the issues and factors at play in the midterms at https://apnews.com/hub/explaining-the-elections.