July 2021 Regular Meeting

The Fannin County Republican Party’s next meeting will be on Monday, July 19, at the Fannin County Senior Center, 440 West 1st Street in Blue Ridge. Andrew Abbott of the Georgia Young Republicans and Fannin High Lady Rebels basketball coach Ryan Chastain will be guest speakers. At 6 pm, dinner will be served and the executive committee will meet. The general meeting will begin at 7...
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REAL Voter Suppression, Summary

This series has presented some parts of Georgia’s Election Integrity Act of 2021, including these: In order to receive an absentee ballot, a voter must apply for one and must provide identification. Vote computation, once begun, cannot stop until all the vote counting is completed. The State Election Board can suspend superintendents for violations of the election laws and can appoint a temporary superintendent who has the authority to hire or fire the director of elections, election supervisor, and all poll officers. Election superintendents and the county boards of registrars cannot accept any funds from sources other than the local, State or Federal governments. The Secretary of State no longer chairs the State Election Board but is only a non-voting member. The State Election Board must notify the Governor, the Speaker of the State House of Representatives and other state officials if it intends to make emergency rules. Each county will have at least one absentee ballot drop box, and there is a cap limiting each county’s total number allowed. Ballot drop boxes are only open during advance voting hours and must be under constant surveillance. Ballots must be printed on security paper with identifying features as an official ballot. Here are a few more provisions of the new election law: The Attorney General is authorized to set up a telephone hotline for voters to file complaints of voter intimidation and election fraud. The Attorney General can review each complaint and determine if it should be investigated or prosecuted. Any person who knowingly accepts an absentee ballot from a voter for delivery to the board of registrars except as authorized by subsection (a) of Code Section 21-2-38 shall be guilty of a felony. Any emergency rule adopted by the State Election Board may be suspended upon the majority vote of the House of Representatives or Senate Committees on Judiciary within ten days of the receipt of such rule by the committees. An informed voter is an empowered voter. Here is the new law to read yourself, if you are interested:...
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REAL Voter Suppression, Part 5

Susan Voyles was a polling manager with 20 year’s experience handling ballots when she participated in Fulton County’s November 2020 hand recount audit at the Georgia World Congress Center of the votes cast in the presidential election. She was going through a box of absentee ballot batches when she came to a batch that stood out from all the others. The paper felt different, and the ballots were in pristine condition, while the other batches of ballots had worn edges, had been written on by people, and showed obvious use. The strange batch of ballots lacked the folds from being placed in envelopes for mailing out to voters and being returned, and the markings on the ballots for the candidates were unusually uniform. She saw only 2 ballots for Donald Trump in the batch of 110. Voyles was one of four Fulton County poll monitors who signed affidavits swearing they observed a similar pattern of irregularities in stacks of ballots for Joe Biden. All of them suggested the ballots had been photocopied. These affidavits convinced a state judge to unseal all of the 147,000 mail-in ballots in Fulton County and allow a closer inspection for evidence of counterfeiting. The petitioners were ordered to meet on May 28, 2021 at the warehouse where the ballots are stored, to settle the terms of the inspection of the ballots. The day before the scheduled meeting, Fulton County filed motions to dismiss the case, delaying the inspection indefinitely. When a fraudulent ballot is counted in an election, its vote for one candidate cancels out a genuine voter’s ballot for the opposing candidate. It’s as if the legitimate vote was never cast. If evidence of potential voter fraud is not investigated, people may start to believe that elections are rigged and that there is no point in participating. One of the provisions of the Election Integrity Act of 2021 is that “ballots shall be printed on security paper that incorporates features which can be used to authenticate the ballot as an official ballot,” and this could help identify and exclude counterfeit ballots from the voting tally. Another provision states that scanned ballot images are public records, which should allow investigators to more easily examine ballot images if there is evidence of possible...
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REAL Voter Suppression, Part 4

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, through the Center for Election Innovation and Research, donated over $5 million in 2020 to the Georgia Secretary of State (SOS)’s office. The State Election Board, chaired by SOS Brad Raffensberger, made an emergency rule to use absentee ballot drop boxes in 2020. The SOS’s office provided grants to counties to install drop boxes, and a total of 104 boxes were used in the presidential election just in the four counties in Atlanta’s metro area. Drop boxes could be accessible 24 hours a day, and the location of boxes ranged from government centers to fire stations, libraries, gyms and the Fulton County airport. The election board required that chain of custody transfer forms be completed for each box collection, recording the date, time, location and number of ballots and signed by the collection team and the county registrar receiving the ballots. The Georgia Star News did an analysis of the drop box transfer forms provided by Fulton County in response to an Open Records request and discovered that 385 transfer forms out of the 1,565 forms Fulton County said should have been provided were missing. When The Star News notified Fulton County that about 25% of the transfer forms were missing, a Fulton County election official admitted that “a few forms are missing” and that “some procedural paperwork may have been misplaced.” Stellar record keeping like that really inspires confidence in ballot security, doesn’t it? As pointed out by The Georgia Star, President Biden won Georgia’s 16 electoral College votes by a margin of less than 12,000 votes over former President Donald Trump out of a total of 5 million votes cast statewide. The total number of absentee ballots whose chain of custody was supposed to be documented by the 385 missing Fulton County absentee ballot transfer forms was 18,901, according to a spreadsheet provided from Fulton County. The 2021 election integrity law makes the SOS a nonvoting member of the State Election board and no longer the chairperson, who is now to be elected by the General Assembly. The new law limits the board’s power to adopt emergency rules, requiring that the board first notify the Governor, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and other members of state government prior to the meeting taking place of the intended action. The law makes major changes to future use of absentee ballot drop boxes. Drop...
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REAL Voter Suppression, Part 3

Did you know that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg poured more than $400 million into the 2020 election, most of it through the Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL), which distributed the money as grants to county and city election officials throughout the country to “help” them conduct the 2020 election? CTCL claims the grants were for expenses related to COVID-19 and denies any political pattern in the distribution of the money. According to Capital Research Center’s (CRC) trace of the CTCL grants, however, the biggest funding consistently favored large Democrat-leaning areas. Georgia received $31 million from CTCL for the 2020 general election and $14.5 million for the 2021 senate runoff election. The counties receiving the largest 2020 election grants were Fulton at $6 million, Cobb at $5.6 million, Gwinnett at $4.1 million, and Dekalb at $4 million. CRC put together a spreadsheet of the CTCL grant dollars by Georgia county along with a comparison of Republican and Democrat vote totals for president in the 2016 and 2020 elections, and the results are startling. Fulton county’s Republican vote total was 110,372 in 2016 and 137,247 in 2020, an increase between 2016 and 2020 of 26,875. That seem like a nice gain until you look at the Democrat numbers: 281,875 in 2016 and 380,212 in 2020, an increase from 2016 to 2020 of 98,337! There were similar, much higher jumps in Democrat vote counts in Cobb, Gwinnett, and Dekalb counties between 2016 and 2020 compared to the Republican numbers. Maybe it’s a coincidence that a lot of money from a progressive billionaire distributed to certain counties for elections is followed by a HUGE spike in Democrat votes in those counties, but as the Foundation for Government Accountability put it, “…there appears to be a direct relationship between the distribution of Zuckerbucks and the election outcome in Georgia.” Voters would have reason to feel like all future voting is bought and paid for, if targeted floods of money were now the norm going forward. Georgia’s 2021 Election Integrity Act should prevent that from happening, because it prohibits county or municipal superintendents or the county boards of registrars from accepting any grants, funds or gifts from sources other than the local, State, or Federal governments. The State Election Board is required to propose a method by October 1, 2021 for accepting donations for administration of elections and a method to equally distribute...
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REAL Voter Suppression, Part 2

On the day after the November 3, 2020 presidential election, Americans learned that there were pauses in the vote counts in some states during the middle of the night, followed by big vote dumps for Biden early the next morning. The late election night camera footage from State Farm Arena in Atlanta certainly caught people’s attention, with election workers who appeared to be waiting for everyone else to leave and who then got back to work counting ballots once no election observers were present. These were two of the many weird anomalies that must cause some people to fear that our election process may now be permanently flawed, and people who feel that way are less likely to vote in future elections. Georgia’s new voting law S.B. 202, the Election Integrity Act of 2021, is far from perfect, but it attempts to remedy a substantial number of the fraudulent-appearing irregularities of the 2020 election. One of the provisions of the new law is a requirement that the election superintendent and the poll officers shall not cease counting ballots or postpone the computation until all ballots are counted and the computation of the votes has been fully completed. Not allowing a pause in the counting makes it difficult for anyone with evil intent, to estimate how many ballots are needed to swing an election in favor of one candidate, or to discover additional ballots in interesting places. Another provision of the new law is related to enforcement. The State Election Board may now suspend county or municipal superintendents due to violations of the election code, and the board may appoint a temporary superintendent with all the powers and authority to make personnel decisions related to employees including the director of elections, the election supervisor, and all poll workers. This new rule should help ensure election law compliance by election workers at all levels. Requiring that the final results of an election are quickly available to the public and that election workers can be removed from their jobs for wrongdoing should help restore confidence in the integrity of our elections. Part 3 of this series will address changes to the election code on private funding and...
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