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Georgia audits one county signature on voting envelopes

Atlanta – The Secretary of State of Georgia announced on Monday an audit of the signature of a county absentee ballot envelope, but the results of the state’s presidential election remain unchanged.

“We feel that we need to take steps to regain confidence in the elections because signature collations have been attacked many times without evidence,” Secretary of State Brad Lafenceparger said at a news conference. It was. Cobb County on the outskirts of Atlanta.

Also on Monday, 16 presidential electors in Georgia formally voted for Joe Biden as the electors confirmed the Democratic victory.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is supposed to support the audit, which will be completed in two weeks, Raffensperger said. He added that his office is working with the university to audit and study third-party signature matches across the state. The steps he said are endorsed by the Governor and the Speaker of the State House.

“The Trump campaign claimed that Cobb County did not properly conduct a signature match in June,” said Deputy Secretary of State Jordan Fuchs. “After a county-wide audit, we’ll investigate the entire state. We’ll look at the entire election to make sure the signature match was done properly.”

President Donald Trump and his allies have repeated a wide range of unfounded allegations of fraud, especially demanding a signature consensus audit. The president severely criticized Republican associates Lafence Purger and Governor Brian Kemp.

“We are pleased that Secretary Lafence Purger has finally taken this necessary step to regain confidence in the state’s election process,” Kemp said in an email statement after Lafence Purger’s announcement. Said in. “I have repeatedly asked for signature audits since the November 3 elections. When Georgians return to the January 5 vote, all votes are legal and only legitimate votes are counted. Is absolutely essential. “

The president also erroneously claimed that election officials could not confirm the signature of the absentee ballot envelope due to an agreement signed by Lafence Purger earlier this year to settle a proceeding filed by the Democratic Party.

Georgians can request an absentee ballot through the online portal established by La Fenceparger in September or by submitting an application. For online requests, we will provide you with your driver’s license number and date of birth to verify your identity. If you use the application, you need to sign it for confirmation.

Upon receipt of the application, county electoral workers will compare the signature of the application with the signature of the registered voters, and if it is consistent, a ballot will be mailed, Lafenceparger said. It was.

Before submitting an absentee ballot, voters must sign an affidavit on the outer envelope. If the county elections manager receives an absentee ballot, the signature must be compared to the absentee ballot application, if any, with the registered signature. The signatures need to be consistent, but not exactly the same, Raffensperger said.

If the signatures do not match, the voter will be notified and other steps can be taken to verify their identity. If the signatures match, the ballot will be separated from the envelope to protect the ballot confidentiality rights guaranteed by Georgia law.

Lafence Purger said at a press conference at the State Capitol that he decided to seek an audit after receiving reports that Cobb County “may not have performed a proper signature match in June.” It was. His office said a statistically significant subset of signed absentee ballot envelopes would be audited.

In a statement, Cobb County Election Director Janine Everer said her office would support the audit, but is awaiting a court order.

“We are confident that every audit will show that our office has followed the steps and counted only ballots that have been processed correctly,” Eveler said. “Our resources are already scarce due to pre-voting and preparation for the January 5th final vote, but we will help make this process as quick as possible.”

Secretary of State’s Returning Officer, Chris Harvey, also showed confidence in Cobb County, saying it is well known for being one of the best election offices in the state.

“Performing this audit does not imply that Cobb County did not properly follow the election process or collate signatures,” Harvey said in a news release. Stated.

Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax-All rights reserved.

Georgia audits one county signature on voting envelopes

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