Better late than never, right Brad?
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger is changing his tune on the 2020 presidential election.
In November, Raffensperger said that it was impossible for there to be fraud in the Georgia election.
He assured the public that the Georgia results were legitimate and fraud-proof.
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Well, over half a year later, Raffensperger is finally changing his tune.
He just admitted publicly that there are irregularities in Fulton County.
Specifically, Raffensperger admits that Fulton County “failed.”
That’s his word, not ours.
New revelations that Fulton County is unable to produce all ballot drop box transfer documents will be investigated thoroughly, as we have with other counties that failed to follow Georgia rules and regulations regarding drop boxes. This cannot continue.
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) June 14, 2021
Raffensperger WSJ 12/20: “November’s election was the most secure in history. In Georgia there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud and no significant issues with absentee ballots.”
Raffensperger 6/21: https://t.co/mWibe2EJXx
— Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) June 15, 2021
How embarrassing is it for the @GaSecofState that a small internet newspaper figured out Fulton County was missing 358 ballot chain-of-custody forms accounting for 18,901 votes (well over the margin of victory) before Raffensperger even had a clue?
— Election Wizard (@Wizard_Predicts) June 15, 2021
The concerns around Fulton County are concerning the drop box forms.
The Washington Examiner provides further details:
The Georgia secretary of state’s office is investigating whether Fulton County monitored absentee ballots returned in drop boxes for the 2020 presidential election.
Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said the investigation was necessary because Fulton County’s elections leadership “fail[ed] the voters of Fulton County and the voters of Georgia,” leaving a void that required “new leadership to step up and take charge.”
“New revelations that Fulton County is unable to produce all ballot drop box transfer documents will be investigated thoroughly, as we have with other counties that failed to follow Georgia rules and regulations regarding drop boxes. This cannot continue,” he tweeted on Monday afternoon.
Fulton County officials say they have been compliant with the investigation, which will focus only on ballot transfer forms rather than ballots themselves, even though officials followed all protocols regarding collecting absentee ballots from drop boxes in 2020.
“Fulton County followed procedures for the collection of absentee ballots from Fulton County drop boxes. We maintain a large quantity of documents and are researching our files from last year. The majority of the ballot transfer forms have already been produced and we are continuing to research a handful,” Regina Waller, Fulton County’s public information manager, said in an email to the Washington Examiner. “We have been in communication with the Secretary of State’s office to update them of our progress on this matter.”
Raffensperger did not elaborate on which “new revelations” he was referencing, but the investigation does follow an article from the Georgia Star News, a conservative website, questioning the county’s handling of the drop box forms.
“A Star News analysis of drop box ballot transfer forms for absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes provided by Fulton County in response to an Open Records Request showed that 385 transfer forms out of an estimated 1,565 transfer forms Fulton County said should have been provided are missing,” the article said after reporting that a Fulton County election official admitted “a few forms are missing” and that “some procedural paperwork may have been misplaced.”
The dispute is one of several involving alleged voting discrepancies in the Peach State.
An active legal case centers on the concern that thousands of fraudulent mail-in ballots might have been cast in the heavily populated Georgia county. Last month, Superior Court Judge Brian Amero granted a motion to unseal higher resolution images of 147,000 absentee ballots from the 2020 election in Fulton County so that they can be “forensically analyzed,” according to VoterGA co-founder Garland Favorito, one of the plaintiffs in the case.
Depositions in the case were then postponed when the litigants reached an agreement in which the plaintiffs consented to reschedule until after the judge holds a hearing on a motion to dismiss the case filed by attorneys for Fulton County. A hearing has been scheduled for June 21.
Among those set to be deposed were Ruby Freeman and her daughter Wandrea Moss, election workers who worked in the absentee ballot counting room at State Farm Arena and were singled out by former President Donald Trump and his allies as they made claims of fraud in the contest.
The Trump campaign filed several legal challenges alleging widespread voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election, most of which were rejected by the courts.
Trump has clashed with Raffensperger over scrutiny of the 2020 election, attracting controversy when the then-president called the secretary of state on the phone to pressure the state’s top election official to “find” enough votes to reverse his loss President Joe Biden, the first Democratic presidential contender to carry the state in decades. A criminal investigation was opened in February.
Raffensperger is up for reelection in 2022, and Trump endorsed challenger Rep. Jody Hice in March.
“One of our most outstanding Congressmen, Jody Hice, has announced he is running for Secretary of State in the Great State of Georgia. Jody has been a steadfast fighter for conservative Georgia values and is a staunch ally of the America First agenda. Unlike the current Georgia Secretary of State, Jody leads out front with integrity,” Trump said in a statement released by his Save America PAC.
Keep in mind that Georgia is under the spotlight once again.
Because the forensic audit in Maricopa County in Arizona is wrapping up and appears to have been tremendously successful.
Now, other battleground states are taking note and their state legislatures want to repeat the process in their own states.
We need a full forensic audit of the 2020 election in Georgia & Brad Raffensperger’s resignation.
— Matt Richards (@MattRichardsGA) June 15, 2021
There is only one truth and it ‘ain’t on your side governor. Corrupt Georgia Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger Pretends He Was Unaware of Missing Chain of Custody Documentation In His State https://t.co/F6OrRMsnCH
— Lara Logan (@laralogan) June 15, 2021
Right now, the biggest problem in Fulton County is that the county is missing chain of custody for hundreds of ballots.
The county is supposed to maintain chain of custody.
Because chain of custody is what ensures that bad actors don’t get their hands on the ballots and attempt to tamper with the electoral process.
The Tennessee Star confirms:
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announced Monday that a thorough investigation will be conducted of Fulton County’s inability to produce the critical chain of custody documents for absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes during the November 3, 2020 election.
Raffensperger made his announcement via Twitter, following the lead story Monday in The Georgia Star News that a Fulton County election official admitted that chain of custody documents are missing for absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes in the 2020 election.
Fulton County told The Star News in response to Open Records Requests initiated in December 2020 that “a few forms are missing” and that “some procedural paperwork may have been misplaced.”
Seven months after the election, Fulton County has been unable to produce 385 transfer forms out of an estimated 1,565 transfer forms according to their own documentation. Those 385 transfer forms represent 18,901 absentee ballots placed into 37 drop boxes placed throughout Fulton County.
The number of transfer forms and the absentee ballots they represent are about 25 percent of the total transfer forms and absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes in Fulton County during the November 2020 election – significantly greater than “a few,” by any objective standard.
Since the election, Raffensperger has maintained that Georgia had safe, secure and honest elections.
As recently as an early April press release, Raffensperger gave Fulton and 119 other counties a clean bill of health with regard to filling out and retaining absentee ballot drop box transfer forms in accordance with Georgia rules.
Raffensperger said at the time that of the 123 Georgia counties that had absentee ballot drop boxes for the November election, only three small counties violated Georgia Rules and Regulations by failing to do their absentee ballot transfer forms. The three counties – Coffee, Grady and Taylor – were referred for investigation, said Raffensperger.
The three small counties accounted for only 0.37 percent of the absentee ballots cast in the November election, according to Raffensperger.
Meanwhile, Fulton County had 75,000 to 79,000 absentee ballots submitted via drop boxes – a number that varies in Fulton County’s documentation – which represents more than 12 percent of the estimated 600,000 absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes throughout the state.
Earlier this month, the Georgia GOP convention censured Secretary of State Raffensperger for “dereliction of his Constitutional duty.” That dereliction of duty included, “Undermining the security of our elections by allowing mass mailings of absentee applications by his office and third parties which created opportunities for fraud and overwhelmed election offices; rendering accurate signature matching nearly impossible; allowing ballot drop boxes without proper chain of custody; and ignoring sworn affidavits and disregarding evidence of voter fraud.”
Raffensperger now says he supports the audit in Fulton County, which Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero granted last month in response to a lawsuit filed by Georgia voting watchdog Garland Favorito.
Raffensperger, in an interview with The New York Times, made a prediction about the absentee ballot audit.
“At the end of the day they’re going to get the same results we got after November.”
The lack of a chain of custody of the absentee ballots, however, presents a very different situation than an audit of the ballots themselves.
In conjunction with the announced investigation, Raffensperger expressed concern about the elections leadership in Fulton and the impossibility of restoring confidence in elections without new leadership to step up and take charge.
Will Georgia perform a full forensic audit similar to the audit in Maricopa County?
Only time will tell!
For the sake of election integrity and trust in the electoral process, we hope that it happens!