Fulton County Admits Missing Ballot Docs. It is Missing Documentation for an Astonishing Number of Absentee Ballots.
The Fulton County, Georgia election audit may be on hold until the end of the month, but there are still developments unfolding that are cast the county’s election processes in doubt.
On Monday, the Georgia Star published a report showing that Fulton County admitted to missing chain-of-custody records for absentee ballots that were put into “drop boxes.”
“Seven months after the election, Fulton County has failed to provide the transfer forms for approximately 19,000 drop box absentee ballots,” The Star News reported.
“The transfer forms are a requirement of the State Election Board Emergency Rule 83-1-14-0.8-.14, promulgated by the State Election Board on July 1, 2020, to document the critical chain of custody of absentee ballots collected from drop boxes and transferred to the county registrar,” the report continued.
Free, fair and accountable elections require that voters know where ballots are coming from and who cast them. That cannot be said for nearly 24% of absentee ballots in the county, according to current records.
As background, the Georgia Star explains why the number of ballots without proper documentation is significant.
“President Biden was certified as the winner of Georgia’s 16 Electoral College votes in the 2020 election by the narrow margin of less than 12,000 votes over former President Donald Trump out of a total of 5 million votes cast statewide,” the Star notes.
The Georgia Star has published records that back up its reportage. It also reached out to a Fulton County election official and got a response about the missing documentation.
As we review the documents provided to you and our daily log. We noticed that a few forms are missing, it seems when 25 plus core personnel were quarantined due to positive COVID-19 outbreak at the EPC, some procedural paperwork may have been misplaced.
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Registration & Elections
The Georgia Star also provided the latest on the election lawsuit at the heart of the Fulton County election audit.
“These absentee ballots are at the center of a lawsuit filed by Garland Favorito and eight other Georgia residents, who have sued Fulton County to produce these ballots for a forensic audit,” the Star reported. “Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero ruled in May that this audit could proceed, but allowed the plaintiffs to review only the digital images of these 145,000 absentee ballots. . . An estimated 145,000 absentee ballots – between 75,000 and 78,000 of which were originally deposited in drop boxes and between 67,000 and 70,000 of which were sent via the United States Postal Service – were transferred from the centralized counting facility at the State Farm Arena in downtown Atlanta to the EPC [the Election Preparation Center warehouse located at 1365 English St. NW, Atlanta] at some point after the counting of votes for the November 3 election was completed. . . Fulton County subsequently filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, and Judge Amero put the audit on hold. Judge Amero has scheduled a hearing later this month to consider Fulton County’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit and stop the audit.”
A Georgia judge in May allowed an inspection of physical ballots to resolve what litigants describe as “large discrepancies” uncovered in ballot images from the 2020 election. VoterGA.org, Garland Favorito, and another plaintiff are being allowed access to audit the phyical ballots to check if there was double counting in the 2020 election. The decision was reported as made in an ongoing hearing by Henry County, GA judge, the Honorable Brian J. Amero.
“In the hearing, lawyers for VoterGA.org described large discrepancies (21%) between the number of ballot batches reported by the GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger who certified the election, and the number of ballot batches actually provided by court-ordered access in the previous April hearing in the case,” CDM reported.
“VoterGA.org has been examining the ballot images at a low resolution since the hearing in April, and declared they need the actual physical ballots to understand the number of counterfeit ballots certified,” the report continued. “Fulton County attorneys pushed for a sampling of the ballots instead of access to all of the ballots. They particularly objected to access to physical ballots.”
It appears that Fulton County election officials are taking the probe very seriously. So much so that they have hired two top criminal defense attorneys for the case. Election officials Ruby Freeman and her daughter Wandrea Shaye Moss were both served with subpoenas for the investigation.
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