Athens, Oconee Co finish vote recount

Statewide audit ordered by Ga’s Sec of State

Athens-Clarke and Oconee counties have completed their hand recounts of presidential election ballots that were cast on or before November 3. The recounts revealed few changes in the outcome of the Trump vs Biden contest, in which former Vice President Joe Biden became the first Democrat to carry Georgia since 1992.

From WSB TV…

The Georgia Secretary of State’s Office says another county has found missing votes during their audit of the ballots in the presidential race.

This comes as Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has started firing back after more than a week of criticism from President Donald Trump.

Raffensperger says it was the president’s own attacks on absentee ballots that cost him the election in Georgia.

“He would have won by 10,000 votes. He actually suppressed, depressed his own voting base,” Raffensperger said.

The Secretary of State said some 24,500 Georgia Republicans who voted absentee in the June primary, didn’t vote in the general election.

Raffensperger told Channel 2 investigative reporter Justin Gray that the president cost himself the election here.

“Those 24,000 people did not vote in the fall. They did not vote absentee because they were told by the president, ‘Don’t vote absentee it’s not secure.’ But then they did not vote in person,” Raffensperger said.

The deadline for the statewide audit is Wednesday at midnight.

During the hand recount Tuesday, Fayette County uncovered 2,755 votes that were not included in the initial count. Secretary of State official Gabriel Sterling said those ballots were scanned onto a card, but those votes were never uploaded into the initial count. He says there were several backups designed to catch this issue and that it falls to workers who didn’t follow procedure.

Of the votes that are now being added to the total, 1,577 were for President Donald Trump, 1,128 for Joe Biden and the rest were for Jo Jorgenson or write-ins. That changes the margin in the state by under 500 votes. with Biden now leading Trump by 12,929 votes.

Fayette is the second county to report an issue with missing votes. On Monday, Floyd County uncovered 2,600 votes that were missed during the initial count on election night. The Secretary of State’s office said it was human error and called for the elections director in the county to step down. An investigation has been opened in the county.

Those votes changed the margin by about 800 in favor of President Trump. The margin was similar in the Perdue-Ossoff race and will not affect the runoff, Secretary of State Official Gabriel Sterling said.

“The guardrails that were there caught this and we’re going to be able to put those results in the final amounts,” Sterling said.

Sterling said they are also investigating a potential memory card with 224 votes on it in Walton County that may have been missed.

Counties across the state have spent days recounting each ballot. More than 5 million ballots were cast in the state of Georgia.

All counties must be completed by midnight Wednesday so the state can certify its election results by Friday.

The Secretary of State’s office also opened two investigations in Fulton County. The first is into how the water leak at State Farm Arena was handled, and the second is how election monitors were handled.

Sterling emphasized that a reason for this audit is to catch problems such as these and investigate any potential issues before they certify the vote.

Of the other counties that have completed their recounts, here is the breakdown of the results:

· 57 counties had no deviations from their original ballot count

· 21 counties were either plus or minus one off the original ballot count

· 32 counties are off by single digit numbers and are being investigated

Tim Bryant

Tim Bryant hosts Classic City Today, 6-10 weekday mornings on 98.7FM & AM 1340 WGAU in Athens.

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