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State senator who denied election results and called COVID vaccine 'communism' running for Congress

Townsend, who has pushed false claims about the 2020 election and the COVID-19 vaccine, announced her bid on Twitter early Monday morning.

ARIZONA, USA — Editor's note: The above video aired during a previous broadcast.

An Arizona state senator known for pushing false claims about the COVID-19 vaccine and the 2020 election announced she has filed paperwork to run for Congress early Monday morning.

State Senator Kelly Townsend made the announcement over Twitter, stating she would keep her current state seat while she runs.

She will be running in the Sixth Congressional District, which is a sprawling, rural district that runs from the U.S.-Mexico border to the Mogollon Rim and the New Mexico border to Casa Grande. She currently lives in the East Valley, but the U.S. Constitution only requires Congress members to live in the state they represent.

"[Townsend] has a long record of fighting for secure borders, an end to illegal immigration, expansion of school choice, and of course her well-publicized efforts to secure Arizona's elections," her statement said.

Townsend, who represents Arizona's 16th District, has been a vocal supporter of the Arizona Senate GOP's recount of the 2020 election in Maricopa County since it began. The "audit" failed to produce any evidence of fraud and the company that ran it has since announced it is shutting down.

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She has also been very outspoken against Arizona's COVID-19 mitigation efforts since the beginning of the pandemic.

“We are tired of your boot on our neck and we are not going to tolerate it anymore,“ Townsend said at a rally on May 3, 2020.

The senator has made comments previously signaling her stance against vaccinations of any kind, previously comparing mandatory vaccines to "communism" during a 2017 Sunday Square Off segment.

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Maricopa County Election Recount

Get all the facts surrounding the Arizona Senate GOP's recount of the 2020 election in Maricopa County on our 12 News YouTube playlist here.