A Sacramento judge refused Wednesday to order the California Republican Party to disclose information about its ballot drop box program to state officials, rejecting an argument by Atty. Gen. Xavier Becerra that the investigation was essential to ensuring ballots are being properly handled.
The decision by Judge David Brown does not prevent Becerra and Secretary of State Alex Padilla from returning to court over the matter but marks a significant victory for GOP officials who have insisted their ballot collection campaign is following state election law.
A one-page form signed by Brown says there is “no immediate harm or irreparable injury” to the state in the Republican Party’s refusal to comply with a subpoena seeking information about voters whose ballots have been collected and the locations of the private drop boxes in communities across the state.
“The California Republican Party will continue to help Californians vote safely and securely by continuing to gather ballots in trusted places, and deliver them promptly according to law,” Hector Barajas, a party spokesman, said in a written statement.
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