An Arizona county elections director resigned Tuesday, accusing the local elections department of caving in to «a faction of the Republican party» and failing to protect it from «intimidation.»
«I’ve watched you stand by when I was attacked,» Pinal County elections director Geraldine Roll wrote in an email to the county manager, Leo Lew.
Roll added that he has been «ridiculed, disrespected, bullied» and «can’t work for a person who doesn’t support me.»
in a interview With Pinal Central, who first reported the email, Roll emphasized the tense nature of his departure. She said that she had «quit», rather than «quit», adding: «I think there’s a big difference.»
In its emailRoll also alleged that the elections department had become politicized, arguing that the office had turned away from «fairness» and «common sense» in favor of «extremist» rhetoric directed at «a faction of the Republican party.»
“Clearly, politics is the value this administration wants in a place where politics has no place: election administration,” Roll wrote. «Without regrets, I quit.»
A Pinal County spokesperson confirmed the content of the email to NBC News.
In a statement, Lew thanked Roll for his «service during very difficult times.»
«While I disagree with her assessment, she has been an impressive public servant, and I wish her the best and know she will continue to do great things in her career,» Lew said.
The elections director’s resignation is the latest in a series of headwinds hitting the Pinal County Elections Department. Last year, the department mailed out approximately 63,000 missing ballots to voters about a month before the primary election, when some polling places faced off against ballot shortage.
Since the 2020 election, the Department of Justice has received a increasing number of complaints of threats to poll workers.
In April, a survey by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law predicted a large turnover of local election officials ahead of the 2024 election.
According to the survey conducted online from March 2 to April 3, 30% of local officials surveyed said they had been personally harassed, abused or threatened, while 22% said they personally knew election officials who had left their jobs «at least in part out of fear for their safety, increased threats or intimidation.»
A staggering 73% of those surveyed said they felt threats against poll workers had increased in recent years.