ATLANTA, Ga – Elected officials are taking aim and Fulton County and its elections director Richard Barron, following new details regarding the 2020 election.
Today, Speaker of the House David Ralston (R – Blue Ridge) released the letter he sent to Fulton Elections Director Richard Barron. In the letter, Ralston requests Barron ask the GBI to investigate November 2020 election. He cited the mounting allegations against Fulton County as his reasoning behind the need for an investigation.
“Recently, media reports have surfaced which call into question the way in which Fulton County conducted, counted and audited the November 2020 Presidential Election. These reports have been accompanied by video and other evidence which is part of on-going litigation and requires thorough examination and explanation. Given the seriousness of this situation and the possible repercussions for our state and nation, it is time we have an independent investigation – once and for all – of the way in which Fulton County conducted, counted and audited the November 2020 Presidential Election,” Ralston wrote.
Raffensperger calls for Barron’s firing
Throughout the week, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R-Ga) has issued several tweets, and last month, he held a press conference in front of headlines concerning Fulton’s lengthy history of election problems.
Most recently, a report of the double-counting of 200 absentee ballots came to light after the new voting law made it public.
“Fulton County’s continued failures have gone on long enough with no accountability. Rick Barron and Ralph Jones, Fulton’s registration chief, must be fired and removed from Fulton’s elections leadership immediately. Fulton’s voters and the people of Georgia deserve better,” one of Raffensperger’s tweets read.
Earlier this year, the Fulton County Elections Board voted to fire Barron, but the commissioners rejected the termination.
Another tweet stated, “Long before November, I had been working to get Fulton to clean up their decades of election mismanagement. Restoring confidence in our elections should be a bipartisan concern. Fulton County’s poor elections management is making that impossible.”
Raffensperger’s also gone on record urging Republicans to take “the lead on election regulation reform” and that the SOS assigned monitor found “significant management issues.”
Fulton County Commission Chairman Robb Pitts (D – Fulton) described Raffensperger’s call to fire Barron and Jones as a “sell out to conspiracy theorists.”
“His ultimate goal is based on the provisions of Senate Bill 202, he would like to take over the elections in Fulton County, that is not going to happen, period,” Pitts told Fox 5 Atlanta.
Under the Election Integrity Act (SB 202), the Secretary of State’s Office does have the authority to take over a county’s elections process if numerous instances of problems are documented. The Department of Justice is currently suing Georgia over the bill on the grounds that it violates voter’s civil rights.
Read the entirety of Ralston’s call for an election investigation below:
ELLIJAY. Ga – Fulton County filed a motion to dismiss the election integrity lawsuit. Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero issued a motion to stay in the case until he could rule on it.
Friday, May 28, was originally the day plaintiffs’ and Fulton County’s council convened to decide a process for reviewing the unsealed November 2020 election absentee ballots. However, Fulton County’s motion to dismiss resulted in a delay of the case until June 21.
Plaintiff Garland Favorito, of VoterGa.org, explained that Fulton County’s attempting to get out of the lawsuit and place the case solely on the shoulders of Fulton’s Board of Elections and Registration. VoterGa.org originally sued the board of registration and elections, but the court added Fulton County to the suit. Amero’s interpretation of Georgia’s new sovereign immunity law in such a way that the county would need to be included.
Fulton County’s hired the law firm Garland, Samuel, and Loeb to represent it. The firm specializes in three areas criminal, personal injury, and business litigation.
Favorito commented that the new motion “doesn’t appear to have a ton of validity” and is hopeful the judge will throw it out at the next hearing. His group is currently working on their response.
As for the Department of Justice becoming involved, Favorito doesn’t believe the federal government will intervene with the state’s case.
Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) has gone on record supporting legal investigations into election integrity while condemning corruption in Fulton County. His office has also filed an amicus brief in this case, trying to protect voter’s rights, but Judge Amero decided to unseal the ballots anyway.
Favorito added the plan to review the ballots will probably continue after July 4 unless Judge Amero dismisses the case.
HENRY COUNTY, Ga – Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero will grant the plaintiffs access to ballots from the November 3, 2020 election in Fulton County with some limitations.
They will be able to inspect and scan the unsealed ballots but only according to protocols and practices set in place by the court.
Judge Amaro agreed that the plaintiffs should have access to 600 dpi (dots per inch) images. He was against a third party handling the ballots.
“The question that I have really is whether instructing the county to do that, requiring the petitioners to pay is sufficient,” Amero remarked.
All parties involved were told to meet where the ballots are being stored in Fulton County next Friday, May 28. Amaro specifically stated he only wanted council in attendance with a potential exception for forensic experts. From there, they will continue to iron out protocols and procedures for ballot inspection.
“I’m wondering also whether or not it’s possible to produce the envelopes in a way that does 100 percent eliminate any identifying information,” Amero asked.
The attorney general counsel representing the Secretary of State’s office explained the envelopes are signed which is considered identifying information. The signature and time and date stamp are on the back of the envelope. Plaintiffs have asked for the time and date information.
Secretary of State requested a “truly independent” audit rather than conducted by the petitioners who may have “preconceived biases.”
“I have no inclination at all to release these ballots to anyone other than the clerk and the council,” Amero told the Secretary of State’s attorney, “Whether they have the right to conduct these independent viewings, maybe not a physical inspection, but an inspection none the less, a visual inspection, combined with an opportunity to have ballot images at a resolution that allows them to peruse their claims that seems to be something that they have the authority and the right to do.”
Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said the following about election integrity and ballot audits following today’s ruling:
“From day one I have encouraged Georgians with concerns about the election in their counties to pursue those claims through legal avenues. Fulton County has a long standing history of election mismanagement that has understandably weakened voters’ faith in its system. Allowing this audit provides another layer of transparency and citizen engagement.”
According to the plaintiffs’ legal counsel, a special scanner would need to be brought in to achieve 600 dpi images of the ballots. The judge will take that into consideration along with the time and labor necessary to complete the task.
Garland Favorito, a voting rights advocate, is one of the plaintiffs in the case, and his group VoterGa has partnered with Jovan Pulitzer for forensic inspection.
“Jovan is the only expert we have found who clearly understands all details of what is needed in a forensic ballot inspection. His unique, patented technology is unmatched in the country. He has assembled a remarkable team of forensic experts who can be on site to assist VoterGA inspection team members. His technology team and our Georgia election expertise represent the perfect combination of teammates who can find the truth about Georgia ballot integrity no matter what that truth may be.”
All election contest suits have been dismissed. This particular case pertains to a violation of individual rights pertaining to the state constitution.
ATLANTA, Ga – Republican Senators David Perdue, Kelly Loeffler, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) trade barbs concerning the integrity of Georgia’s election process.
In a joint statement, Perdue and Loeffler requested the resignation of Raffensperger, citing “the management of Georgia’s elections has become an embarrassment for our state” and failure to deliver honest elections.
However, the statement lists zero evidence of voter fraud or specific examples of the Secretary of State’s election failures. The Georgia Republicans and Senators are both in separate January 5, 2021 runoffs. Perdue is facing Democrat challenger Jon Ossoff. Loeffler is in contention against Democrat Raphael Warnock.
The statement goes on to address that every legal vote should be counted and for transparency in the county process.
“We believe where there are failures, they need to be called out – even when it’s in your own party. There have been too many failures in Georgia elections this year and the most recent election shined a national light on the problems.”
In a rebuttal statement, Raffensperger asserts that he has no intention of resigning, “the voters of Georgia hired me, and the voters will be the one to fire me.”
The Secretary of State lists the facts pertaining to the November 3 election and the days following. Almost five million Georgians cast ballots in this election. 75 percent voted in person, and 25 percent voted no-excuse absentee ballot. The no-excuse absentee law was passed by a Republican legislature with support from Speaker David Ralston and signed by then-Governor Sonny Perdue.
Senator Perdue received more votes from Georgians than President Trump, and the president garnered the most votes ever for the Republican presidential candidate in Georgia.
The Secretary of State’s office is and will be investigating any “specific allegations of illegal voting.” It also has a monitor in Fulton County, “one of the longtime problem Democrat-run counties.”
“I care about counting each and every legal vote… and assuring that illegal votes won’t be counted,” Raffensperger added.
He agrees that illegal voting probably occurred in Georgia, but not to the extent, or margin necessary, to change the presidential race outcome.
Concerning the lack of transparency charge, he directed attention to the daily, sometimes twice daily, press conferences and hourly number updates.
Raffensperger alludes to problems with federal law when it comes to maintaining “clean voter rolls.”
“Federal law, not state law, is what allows people to register to vote before a runoff even if they weren’t registered in for the general election. Now that Senators Perdue and Loeffler are concerned about elections, hopefully, they can fix these federal laws.”
Secretary of State ends with a promise to do his duty as an elected official and is concerned about Republicans maintaining the U.S. Senate. He suggests that Perdue and Loeffler “focus on that.”
Statement from Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger pic.twitter.com/Sf1JIWH5qg
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) November 9, 2020
On Oct. 2, Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler and Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn hosted a meet and greet at Black Diamond Grill. Both Senators were behind schedule – planned to start at noon – due to getting tested for COVID-19 prior to their arrival.
Both. Loeffler and Blackburn had been in contact with President Trump in recent days. Both senators’ tests came back as negative. Loeffler’s goal for her campaign and the upcoming election is to shake up the status quo as a businesswoman.
Blackburn –who introduced Loeffler – said since Trump has been in office, the economy has grown as well as the strength of the country. It will continue to grow with the leadership of figures like Trump and Loeffler, according to Blackburn.
“This country is coming back because with Donald Trump and Republican leadership, we can do this again and we will,” Blackburn said.
Loeffler said Washington is in need of more businesspeople like herself and Trump. Her fight for the Georgian’s will not stop, according to Loeffler.
“There’s nothing that the radical left fears more than a strong, conservative businesswoman, so I am proud to stand by you,” Loeffler said. “The radical left is working overtime to take away our freedoms, our opportunities, our way of life here in Georgia. They’re trying to get outsiders, like myself, like President Trump out of Washington but we’re not going to let them.”
Loeffler’s campaign is based on the American Dream and to continue to fight for it. Loeffler has focused on her core values of pro-life, pro-second amendment and holding China accountable.
“I have stood up to the radical left’s cancel culture and I’ve drawn the line and said we will not be canceled; we will not be silenced. I’m going to be that voice for every single Georgian who feels like they can’t speak out,” Loeffler said. “I am working for you…for all Georgian’s.”
RABUN COUNTY, Ga – The polls have closed for the August 11 runoff election. To review the unofficial election returns for your local, state, and federal races, check out the list below. Please remember all the results are unofficial until certified by the Secretary of State.
Precincts: 100% reporting
State Senate District 50
Stacy Hall – 1,005
Bo Hatchett – 925
U.S. House of Representatives District 9
Andrew Clyde – 1,003
Matt Gurtler – 955
Devin Pandy – 60
Brooke Siskin – 33
To see the state election returns, click here. This article contains the overall race winner and identified runoffs for State House, State Senate, U.S. House, and U.S. Senate in FYN’s coverage area.
The General Election is scheduled for November 3 as well as the jungle primary for Senator Kelly Loeffler’s seat.
RABUN COUNTY, Ga – The polls have closed for the June 9 General Primary. To review the unofficial election returns for your local races, see below. Please remember all the results are unofficial until certified by the Secretary of State.
Commissioner Post 1
Presumptive Winner: Will Nichols (Incumbent) 2,094
Mary P. Smith 679
Commissioner Post 2
Presumptive Winner: Tom Garrison 2,057
Commissioner Post 3
Presumptive Winner: Greg James (Incumbent) 2,056
Presumptive Winner: Lauren Benfield 1,554
Lisa McCall 669
Presumptive Winner: Chad Nichols (Incumbent) 2,166
Clerk of Superior Court
Presumptive Winner: Holly Henry-Perry (Incumbent) 2,158
Presumptive Winner: Carlton Hobie Jones III 3,051
Cary Brown 1,842
Judge of Superior Court Mountain Circuit
Presumptive Winner: B. Chan Caudell (Incumbent)
District Attorney Mountain Circuit
Presumptive Winner: George R. Christian (Incumbent)
Board of Education Post Two
Presumptive Winner: Thomas Wayne Stevens (Incumbent) 2,031
Paulette Williams 667
Board of Education Post Four
Presumptive Winner: Steven Cabe (Incumbent) 2,084
Board of Education Post Five
Presumptive Winner: Molly Lima 2,029
Presumptive Winner: Samuel Robert Beck 2,168
Soil and Conservation
Presumptive Winner: William Enloe
U.S. House of Representatives District 9
Michael Boggus – 1.17%
Paul Broun – 10.44%
Andrew Clyde – 8.49%
Matt Gurtler – 54.69%
Maria Strickland – 1.45%
Kevin Tanner – 4.18%
Ethan Underwood – 2.82%
Kellie Weeks – 2.09%
John Wilkinson – 14.66%
Devin Pandy – 20.81%
Brooke Siskin – 34.45%
Dan Wilson – 44.74%
State Senate District 50
Andy Garrison – 9.79%
Dan Gasaway – 3.25%
Stacy Hall – 29.12%
Bo Hatchett – 29.86%
Tricia Lynne Hise – 18.31%
Lee M9ore – 9.67%
Dee Daley -100%
State House District 8
Stan Gunter – 53.09%
Steve Townsend – 46.91%
Dave Cooper – 100%
To see the state election returns, click here.
Run-off elections will be held on August 11 if needed. The General Election is scheduled for November 3 as well as the jungle primary for Senator Kelly Loeffler’s seat.
ATLANTA — Doug Collins appeared this morning on Fox News Channel’s Fox and Friends to announce his decision to run for U.S. Senate in the November special election to fill former U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson’s seat.
As a lifelong Georgian, Doug has lived a life of faith, public service and conservative values. Since 2013, he has proudly represented Northeast Georgia in the U.S. House of Representatives. Over the last year, Doug has served as the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, leading the fight against Democrats’ baseless attacks on President Trump.
Doug has served as chaplain in the Air Force Reserve since 2002, including a tour in Iraq in 2008. He is the only military chaplain in the House.
Click here to read more about Doug Collins.
GEORGIA NINTH DISTRICT – State Senator John Wilkinson announced today that he plans to run for the Ninth District Congressional seat. This election will be to replace Congressman Doug Collins, who has announced that he will be running for a seat in the United States Senate. Senator Wilkinson, who was elected to the State Senate in a special election in 2011 and has been re-elected to 4 additional terms, was raised on a small farm in Stephens County. Working with projects in 4-H and FFA, he learned the value of hard work, cooperation, and responsibility at an early age. Those values have stayed with him during his career in agriculture, education and politics. He has not missed a day of work during his eight years of service in the Senate.
“This is a critical time for our country, and we need an experienced, conservative voice willing to stand up for the values that residents of North Georgia hold dear”, said Wilkinson. “For the past eight years in Atlanta, I have fought to eliminate useless red tape and regulation of business, defended the sanctity of all life, and fought for our constitutional rights guaranteed by the 2nd Amendment. I look forward to continuing that fight in Washington.”
A native of Toccoa and graduate of Stephens County High School, Wilkinson earned degrees in agriculture and education from the University of Georgia. He has experience as a classroom teacher and served on the State Agricultural Education staff for 26 years. He has served as State Advisor to the Georgia FFA Association, as well as the Georgia Young Farmer Association. He was recognized as the Outstanding Member of the National Association of Supervisors of Agricultural Education in 2006. He and his wife Debbie have two children and five grandchildren. John and Debbie are active members of Tates Creek Baptist Church.
Senator Wilkinson has served as Chair of the Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee in the Senate for the past eight years. He also serves as Vice Chairman of the Education and Youth Committee, as well as a member of the Natural Resources and the Environment, Appropriations and Rules Committees. He has served as Secretary of the Senate Majority Caucus for the past 6 years.
The Ninth Congressional District includes all of Banks, Dawson, Elbert, Fannin, Franklin, Gilmer, Habersham, Hall, Hart, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union, White and parts of Clarke, Forsyth and Pickens counties. To learn more about Senator John Wilkinson, please visit www.VoteWilkinson.com.
RABUN COUNTY, Ga – Georgia District 8 State Rep. Matt Gurtler appeared to be the only House Republican to vote against HR 882, and he asked the public to read the entire resolution before making any conclusions.
“I support [President] Trump and our Armed Forces,” Gurtler told FYN over the phone. “He’s really been trying to keep us out of [middle east] wars. I think he’s shown immense restraint in doing that. This resolution was really a constitutional issue for me.”
The non-binding resolution praised the president and the military for the successful “operation that neutralized Qasem Soleimani.” Gurtler cited HR 882 as unconstitutional due to the disregard for Article 1, Section 8, and references to past president’s foreign policy. He urged constituents to read the document for themselves and come to a conclusion.
“War is a serious thing, and we want to do it right…In the Constitution, war powers [are] delegated to the legislative branch that’s Article 1, Section 8….When you look at the constitution, I can’t pick and choose which parts I want to uphold and which ones I don’t,” said Gurtler.
“If we want to go to war with any country, lets openly debate it,” said Gurtler. “Under the war powers act, we have not been doing that. We’ve been giving all the power to the executive with many different administrations.”
“Even in the resolution, it mentions [President] George W. Bush and his foreign policy, and Trump has criticized the past two administrations overwhelmingly about getting in entangled alliances with these foreign counties,” the District 8 Rep. explained.
Here’s an excerpt from HR 882 that mentions Bush’s foreign policy:
“President George W. Bush designated Iran as a pivotal part of the “Axis of Evil” that “aggressively pursues these weapons and exports terror while an unelected few repress the Iranian people’s hope for freedom.”
Gurtler agreed that the world is better off without the Iranian General Soleimani. If the resolution only asked the public to support Trump and our troops, Gurtler said he would have voted for it.
He viewed HR 882 as a “political stunt.” The no vote isn’t a disagreement over the neutralization of Soleimani, rather the role of executive and legislative branches of government. According to Gurtler, the resolution was pushed through within 24-hours, and no one knew it was coming until it landed on their desks. “We had more pressing business to attend to if this came up later in the session, that’s fine,” he commented.
The resolution passed 93-86, just over the majority needed.
In response to claims that Gurtler’s a closet Democrat, he said:
“It’s disingenuous. You have to look at what the resolution actually says, and what it’s approving of. Republican Senators and Representatives in the U.S. House share my same concerns.”
Stan Gunter, who is Gurtler’s opposition in the 2020 race for the District 8 seat, has commented on the issue as well.
“That is a perfect example of why I got into this race,” Gunter said. “This isn’t the first time that a vote like this occurred. You can imagine what he does to his relationships with other Republicans because this bill went down the party line. The Democrats all voted against it, and he joined the Democrats.”
Gurtler released a statement on the controversial vote Friday, Jan. 17, which can be seen in it’s entirety below:
The same establishment that passed the largest tax increase in Georgia history just a few years ago, and passed another $150 million tax increase yesterday somehow has the audacity to call themselves conservative.
It’s one more reason why we must be skeptical of their messaging, they don’t care about being consistent.
If I didn’t take my job as your representative seriously I could vote based on the one sentence explanations and propaganda Ralston gives us, and repeat those lies to you. I think Georgians deserve better, and just like at the national level with Trump, I think the people are starting to see through the political theatre.
I’m writing this today because the latest attack is that I didn’t vote for a resolution. As usual the main idea is something that sounds good, and I wish they would have simply stated “We support President Trump and the brave men and women of our military.” But instead they added in a bunch of misrepresentations of our Constitution and even used George W Bush as a reference about our involvement in the middle east.
The fact that there’s any positive mention of Bush means Trump himself wouldn’t have voted for this resolution, and I’ll happily stand with him on that. The important part is the misrepresentations of the Constitution. As Trump has said over and over, we should have never gotten into these stupid wars, and ignoring our Constitution is what allowed that in the first place.
Below is my official response, and as always I hope this helps you understand where I’m coming from. Thank you for your encouragement, it makes what I’m doing possible.
From day one, President Trump has wisely pointed out that over the last couple decades, the many foreign wars that our country has been dragged into have been stupid mistakes. They have also been dreadfully costly—both in terms of treasure and more importantly, American lives. Time and time again, who has the President always singled out? The last two administrations! George W. Bush, the one who started the whole thing, and Barack Obama, the one who made it even worse—by arming the very enemies who have threatened our brave men and women of the military.
War is very serious and President Trump inherited perpetual foreign conflicts that he has tried to end. The Deep State though, along with the military-industrial complex that our President talks about, has made much of this important task nearly unachievable. These are the same people by the way that have continually lied to the American public—first about the Russia hoax, and when that didn’t work, they lied to the American people about the Ukraine. Ever since, they have tried to impeach and remove the President over much ado about nothing.
I do understand the President’s difficult position though—he needs to defend America while defending himself at the same time, and I support him in his executive position.
I, on the other hand, am part of the state legislature, which rarely has any input over matters of war and peace. When we do though, I’m going to take that responsibility seriously and as my oath requires, I will always put the Constitution first—precisely when doing so may help avoid these huge, foolish wars to begin with.
War comes at the cost of blood, sweat, tears and American lives and should always be declared by a vote in Congress according to our founders and the US Constitution in Article 1 Section 8. The legislative branch holds the sole power to declare war. Passing a resolution like this—one filled with half truths and absurd conclusions—is insulting and demeaning to the Constitution to which every member of our strong military swore an oath to protect and defend.
While I agree the Iranian terrorist deserved what happened to him, we obviously won’t always have presidents who make good decisions unilaterally. And this is why the responsibility ultimately lies with the Congress. If I can help encourage the Congress to do their Constitutional job, I’m alright with taking a few arrows along the way.
That being said, I’m quite sure many of my colleagues only had good intentions and simply wanted to support President Trump and more importantly, offer support for our troops. However, I don’t think a resolution that condones and supports the bankrupt foreign policy of Barrack Obama and George W. Bush—which our president unfortunately had to inherit—is the best way to go about doing so.
Lastly, I don’t believe that Trump himself would vote for this meaningless resolution, as he would never utter one single positive thing about Georgia W. Bush and Barack Obama’s foolish, expensive quagmires in the quicksand of the Middle East.
Thank you very much for your support…and God Bless America, our president, and the men and women of our military—I for one can’t wait to bring them home!