Federal judge issues restraining order against US group accused of voter intimidation

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A federal judge on Tuesday issued a temporary restraining order against an Arizona group being sued over voter intimidation, banning members from coming within 75 feet of a ballot drop box, following voters or harassing them.

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The order by US District Judge Michael Liburdi in Phoenix was part of a lawsuit against Clean Elections USA filed by the Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans and Voto Latino, an organization that educates Latinos on voting, alleging that the group - which believes the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump - is trying to intimidate voters by getting its supporters to monitor drop boxes for alleged suspicious behavior.

The lawsuit was filed last week after two people were seen wearing military gear and allegedly carrying weapons while monitoring a drop box in Maricopa County, Arizona.

In his order on Tuesday, Liburdi said the group and its representatives were also banned from speaking to or yelling at voters unless they were spoken to or yelled at first. He also forbade them from openly carrying firearms within 250 feet of a ballot drop box.

He also ordered the group to post on the conservative Truth Social website and social media platform a statement that it is not always illegal to drop multiple ballots at a drop-box.

He also ordered Clean Elections USA organizer Melody Jennings to post on the site that a past statement that it was illegal to drop off multiple ballots was incomplete, as family members, household members and caregivers may legally do so.

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