The Georgia Elections Board has approved a subpoena to secure evidence and testimony in an ongoing investigation into whether third-party liberal activists illegally gathered thousands of absentee ballots in the 2020 general election and a subsequent runoff that determined Democrat control of the U.S. Senate.
The vote was a major win for Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who announced the investigation into alleged ballot harvesting in January and was seeking the subpoena authority to assist the probe.
The subpoena power will allow Raffensperger’s team to secure evidence about a whistleblower who alleged to an election integrity group that he participated in a large operation to gather ballots in which activists were paid $10 for each ballot they delivered.
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says he supports a national law that bans ballot harvesting, the third-party gathering and delivering of absentee ballots for voters.
“One thing that I do think we need is to make sure that nationwide there should be a law that bans ballot harvesting,” the Republican politician said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “I don’t think that ballot harvesting is good. The only person that should touch your ballot is you and the election official. So I think that’s one solid election reform measure.”
Ballot harvesting is legal in some states but not in Georgia.
Regardless of one’s political affiliation, it’s not difficult to find voters in Georgia who were discouraged by the messiness of the 2020 election process.
It’s one thing to be disappointed by the outcome. It’s entirely another to feel disenfranchised and frustrated by questions and uncertainties surrounding absentee ballot handling, unsecured drop boxes, and questionable third-party funding of local elections.
In evaluating federal, state, and local voting safeguards, these and other serious complications — glitches, missing votes, even water pipe breakages at polling locations or ballot drop boxes — raised legitimate concerns and weakened voter confidence in Georgia’s election integrity.
Twenty-one civil rights leaders and prominent black conservatives defended Georgia’s new election law in a letter to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, rejecting opponents’ comparisons to Jim Crow laws.
“It has become clear that even well-intentioned critics of the law simply have no idea what the law is,” the black leaders write in the letter, adding:
It is clear they have no idea how favorably Georgia’s new law compares with most other states—including President Biden’s home state of Delaware. And it is clear they have no idea that a majority of black voters across the country support the key provision under attack by critics—the simple requirement that voters be able to identify themselves when voting. This is the same simple requirement needed to pick up baseball tickets or board a plane—activities hardly as important as voting.