A ruling issued by a Georgia judge on Friday will allow officials to conduct an audit of roughly 145,000 absentee ballots cast in Fulton County in the 2020 election.
The scope of the audit will allow for the examination of signatures on these ballots to ensure that they are legitimate.
Individuals across the state are celebrating the decision by the judge and the opportunity to ensure the security of the state’s elections.
“Voter confidence in our election system is the bedrock of our republic. Unfortunately, inconsistencies in Fulton County’s November 2020 absentee ballots cast serious doubt on voters’ faith in our elections,” former Senator Kelly Loeffler said in a statement.
Fulton County has been a specific cause for concern among residents of the state. Specifically, files provided by Fulton County officials show that there are no chain of custody documents called “absentee ballot transfer forms” for 385 out of the 1,591 drop box collections that took place in Fulton County between September 24, 2020 and November 3, 2020, in an investigation conducted by The Georgia Star News.
Maricopa County in Arizona is undergoing a complete forensic audit of the November 3, 2020 election results, after Arizona Senate Republicans wanted to ensure the legitimacy of the votes. However, the individuals conducting the audit in Arizona have been met with constant resistance. In early May, Arizona State Senate officials claimed Maricopa County officials withheld materials subpoenaed by the state legislature, claiming that surrendering them would constitute a security risk for both law enforcement and federal agencies. Further, Arizona State Senate officials claimed Maricopa County election officials tampered with election records just days before the equipment was delivered to the Arizona Senate.
However, unlike the audit in Arizona, the Fulton County ballots will not be transferred to an independent third party for examination. The judge ruled the ballots must remain in the possession of Fulton County officials, according to a report from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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