David Ralston, the House Speaker for the state of Georgia, has told top election officials that absentee ballot signatures need to be verified. His request comes on the backdrop of President Trump declaring that the process would unearth massive vote fraud and would swing the election in Trump’s favor.
Absentee ballot rejection rates in the Georgia elections have been lower than usual this time around. For the 2016 general election, the rejection rate was 0.28 percent. For the 2018 general election, it was 0.20 percent. And for the 2020 primary, it was 0.28 percent. However, the rejection rate for the 2020 general election was only 0.15 percent. This abnormality resulted in Trump insisting on re-verifying the signatures of the absentee ballots.
The re-verification process will require matching the signatures on the ballots to the signatures present on the envelopes that these ballots came in. Alternatively, the verification can also be done by comparing the envelope signatures against signatures on other voter registration records. Ralston noted that free and fair elections are the cornerstone of American democracy and that all available tools should be used to protect vote integrity.
“I’m not saying that it was necessarily a widespread conspiracy. I’m just concerned since we had so many absentee ballots with 1.3 million absentee ballots in Georgia, the timing to process all of those stayed the same, and I’m concerned that some of those just move through much, much faster than they should have without the tight inspection that we would have had in years past. So I think it’s very important that we have an audit of all of those signatures to make sure that the ballots that are being counted were actually legally cast ballots,” conservative activist, Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, told NTD.
Some are arguing that the re-verification process would be impossible. Once absentee ballots are received, the ballots are separated from the envelope and no personal details of the voter remain linked with the ballot. This is done to maintain secrecy of the voter. As such, it is being argued that since there is no way to match the ballot with the exact envelope it came in; re-verification cannot be done. However, David Shafer, chairman of the Georgia Republican Party, points out that it does not matter that the ballot has been separated from the envelope. The re-verification process can match the name and signature on the envelope to the name and signature on the absentee ballot application as well as the original voter registration. This can provide a good enough idea of any potential fraudulent absentee ballots in Georgia.
Meanwhile, Democrat groups have upped their efforts to divide Republican voters ahead of the runoff elections to be held in January. Really American, a left-wing group that spent half a million dollars to campaign against Trump in the Presidential election, is now spreading the message that Republican candidates Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue have failed in supporting President Trump’s claim of voter fraud.
Really American is currently in the process of installing billboards across the state of Georgia with such a message. The organization says that if Republican voters make Perdue and Loeffler win in the runoff election, they will deliver Trump and MAGA a “serious political defeat.” The Republican Party has called Really American’s tactics deceitful and disappointing.
“It’s disappointing to see an extreme left-wing super PAC come into Georgia with the sole intention of deceiving voters… but no amount of billboards will divide Georgia Republicans who know that Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue continue to stand with President Donald Trump,” Georgia GOP spokeswoman Abigail Sigler said to Breitbart. Trump will be campaigning for both Republican candidates this week.