Kemp formalizes election certification while calling for signature audit and endorsing Voter ID for Mail-In Balloting

In a press conference Friday, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp said he would be formalizing the results of the Georgia General Election. According to the certified results, former Vice President Joe Biden earned 12,670 more votes than President Donald Trump, giving Binden the win in Georgia.

Kemp also urged Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to conduct an audit of signatures on the absentee ballots and the signed envelopes. He also said it was unacceptable that 1000s of ballots were found two weeks after the election.

The audit revealed significant errors in four counties, including the 225 votes in Walton County that gave President Donald Trump an extra 176 votes over former Vice President Joe Biden. Kemp noted, however, that the audit did not include an audit of the signatures on absentee ballots, something he said caused a great deal of concern for voters.

“It is important to note that this audit only looked at ballots, not the signatures on the absentee applications or the signatures on the ballot envelopes. The Georgians I have heard from are extremely concerned about this,” Kemp said. “So I encourage Sec. Raffensperger to consider addressing these concerns. It seems simple enough to conduct a sample audit of signatures on the absentee ballot envelopes and compare those to the signatures on applications and on file at the SOS’s office.”

He said that Raffensperger also had expressed his support for voter ID being required in the case of absentee ballots as well. Kemp said the discrepancies in voting procedures need to be addressed before the runoff elections of Jan. 5, 2020.

Kemp said in keeping with the law, he is now required to formalize the election results which have Biden the winner of Georgia’s election. He said that is necessary before Trump can pursue any other legal action that he may consider.

Watch the full press conference at the link below or read the text as follows.

Atlanta, GA – Today from the Governor’s Ceremonial Office at the Georgia State Capitol, Governor Brian P. Kemp delivered the following remarks regarding the results of the 2020 election in Georgia:”Good afternoon. COVID-19 has introduced numerous challenges to county and state elections officials as they work to keep Georgia elections secure, accessible, and fair. Given the record number of absentee ballots and narrow margin in the November 3rd election for president in Georgia, I joined many in backing a hand recount and urging a thorough investigation into any voting irregularities. The Secretary of State oversaw a complete audit which revealed significant errors made in several counties, including: Floyd, Fayette, Douglas, and Walton.”It is important for Georgians to know that the vast majority of local election workers did their job well under unprecedented circumstances, and I thank them for their service. However, it’s quite honestly hard to believe that during the audit, thousands of uncounted ballots were found weeks after a razor-thin outcome in a presidential election. This is simply unacceptable. I have heard directly from countless Georgians. They expect better, and they deserve better.”It’s important to note that this audit only looked at ballots, not the signatures on the absentee applications or the signatures on the ballot envelopes. The Georgians I have heard from are extremely concerned about this, so I encourage Secretary Raffensperger to consider addressing these concerns. It seems simple enough to conduct a sample audit of signatures on the absentee ballot envelopes and compare those to the signatures on applications and on file at the Secretary of State’s Office.”This morning, the Secretary announced his support of strengthened photo ID requirements for absentee balloting. Voters casting their ballots in person must show photo ID, and we should consider applying that same standard to mail-in balloting. I have heard from many members of the General Assembly, and I appreciate their input and share their concerns. I look forward to working with Lt. Governor Duncan, Speaker Ralston, and members of both bodies to address the issues that have been raised over the last few weeks.”Earlier today, Secretary Raffensperger presented the certified results of the 2020 general election to my office. Following Judge Grimberg’s ruling yesterday, state law now requires the Governor’s Office to formalize the certification, which paves the way for the Trump campaign to pursue other legal options and a separate recount if they choose. Georgia has runoff elections for two U.S. Senate seats and a Public Service Commissioner scheduled to occur over the next several weeks. We demand complete explanations for all the discrepancies identified so that our citizens will have complete confidence in our elections. In the runoff election, we cannot have lost memory cards or stacks of uncounted ballots. We must have full transparency in all monitoring and counting. Every legal vote must be counted, and the security of the ballot box must be protected.”As Governor, I have the solemn responsibility to follow the law, and that is what I will continue to do. We must all work together to ensure citizens have confidence in future elections in our state. Thank you, God bless you, and may God continue to bless the Great State of Georgia.”

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