Katie Hobbs, the Democratic nominee in the 2022 Arizona gubernatorial election, trolled MyPIllow CEO and noted conspiracy theorist Mike Lindell after he complained that agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) seized his phone while he was in the drive-thru of a Hardee’s restaurant.
Once the news broke about Lindell's phone, Hobbs retweeted a news article about the FBI raid and posted a photo of Lindell taking a selfie with Kari Lake, Hobbs' MAGA Republican opponent.
Lake has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump, whose falsehoods about the integrity of the 2020 general election she has continued to parrot. She has called for imprisoning Hobbs—who currently serves as Arizona's Secretary of State—on baseless and unspecified allegations of criminality related to the election.
Hobbs' tweet—which she captioned with, "You mean this phone?"—can be seen below.
Hobbs' post drew the ire of Lake, who soon after responded via @KariLakeWarRoom, her official campaign account, accusing her of celebrating "the Biden administration's continued political persecution of America First Patriots."
"Katie is on record saying that ALL #MAGA Republicans are Neo-Nazis."
"Is this what she has in store for us if she ever gains power?"
Lake's claim that Hobbs has referred to MAGA Republicans—Trump's fervent supporters—as "Neo-Nazis" refers to a 2017 tweet Hobbs wrote denouncing Neo-Nazis after they and their White nationalist and White supremacist cohort gathered for the now-infamous "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia that left counterprotester Heather Heyer dead.
At the time she wrote the tweet, Hobbs was the Democratic leader of the Arizona Senate and she unequivocally rebuked Trump's remark that there were “very fine people on both sides” of the protest after several days of refusing to condemn Neo-Nazis and White supremacist groups.
The tweet resurfaced after prominent members of the far-right used it in an attempt to discredit Arizona's 2020 election result, which—along with the swing states of Georgia, Wisconsin, and Nevada—handed Democrat Biden a clear victory. Hobbs has refused to apologize for the tweet, saying it was specifically addressed to Trump's supporters, and has pushed back against claims that she alone was responsible for counting the state's votes.
Hobbs—who has typically avoided mudslinging with her opponent—was praised by Twitter users for her response, which highlighted the concerted effort on the part of Lindell and Lake to undermine the 2020 election result.
Others chose to respond to Lake's attack directly, criticizing her for breathing life into Trump's "Big Lie" that the election was stolen.
Lindell's phone was seized in connection with a 2021 breach of voting machines in Mesa County, Colorado, committed by former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, who is facing felony charges for alleged tampering after sensitive voter machine data that she leaked was presented at Lindell's "Cyber Symposium." The event, which Lindell billed as an arena in which he would unveil definitive proof that the 2020 election was stolen, ultimately failed to produce any evidence of fraud.
Lindell's complaints about the seizure prompted Trump to lash out at the authorities and to claim that Americans "are now officially living in a Weaponized Police State, Rigged Elections, and all," pushing more conspiracy theories about the integrity of the election he lost to Biden.
Trump's claims ignore the findings of his own intelligence agencies, which determined the election was both free and fair.
In fact, a statement from the Trump administration's own Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), part of a joint statement from the Election Infrastructure Government Coordinating Council and the Election Infrastructure Sector Coordinating Executive Committees, affirmed the agencies found "no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised."