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Cochise County moves ahead, defying judge’s order

Cochise County officials are proceeding with a hand count of every ballot cast in Tuesday’s election, despite a court ruling that bars them from doing so.

Meanwhile, the Board of Supervisors on Wednesday authorized its attorney to appeal that ruling to the Arizona Supreme Court, complicating the timeline for when — or if — the controversial count would actually happen.

Recorder David Stevens acknowledged the order that blocks the county from hand counting all ballots. But, Stevens said, he was moving ahead on the advice of his attorney, Bryan Blehm.

“I have to drive on as if it’s going to happen,” Stevens said, noting the law requires a hand count to begin within 24 hours of when the polls close on Election Day. He set a meeting for late Wednesday afternoon with the…

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