The Trump 2020 Campaign and the Republican Party of Georgia filed a lawsuit
The Republican filed a lawsuit in the state Wednesday, alleging that officials in a Democratic-leaning county were counting ballots for the presidential race that were received after polls closed Tuesday.
The Trump campaign also filed two other lawsuits in the battlegrounds of Michigan and Pennsylvania over vote counting. The Georgia lawsuit was filed in the Superior Court of Chatham County, a population center that includes Savannah. As of early Thursday Biden was winning the county by a 16-point margin over Trump. The lawsuit asks a judge to make sure county officials are keeping track of all late-arriving mail-in ballots but not counting them, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The filing includes an affidavit in which a registered poll worker claims he saw at least 53 late ballots mixed in with others. “We will not allow Democrat election officials to steal this election from President Trump with late, illegal ballots,” deputy campaign manager Justin Clark said in a statement. “President Trump and the Georgia Republican Party have filed suit to require all Georgia counties to separate any and all late-arriving ballots from all legally cast ballots to ensure a free, fair election in which only legal, valid ballots count.”
David Shafer, chairman of the Georgia Republican Party, tweeted Wednesday he had authorized lawyers for the party to file an emergency petition against the Chatham County Board of Elections to “enforce election laws and prevent the unlawful counting of absentee ballots received after the election.”
The lawsuit said that failing to make sure late-arriving ballots are kept separate from on-time ones “as required under Georgia law, harms the interests of the Trump Campaign and President Trump because it could lead to the dilution of legal votes cast in support of President Trump,” according to the Journal-Constitution.
Chatham County Elections Supervisor Russell Bridges said he wasn’t aware of the lawsuit, but said Shafer doesn’t know what he’s talking about. “If he was observing something in our absentee center, there is a control on everything that moves through that building. There’s a log of every ballot that’s going in there and a log of every ballot that’s processed,” he said. “If somebody was mixing something or moving something, it was already recorded and accounted for.”
Trump had a solid lead in the state when polls first closed but once mail-in ballots started to be counted in the hours after, his lead shrunk substantially to just over 23,000 with more votes to be counted in Democratic strongholds.
The Chatham County Board of Elections has not yet officially commented on the lawsuit.
In news regarding the pandemic, the United States on Wednesday, the day after voting, recorded over 100,000 new coronavirus cases in a single day for the first time since the pandemic began, bursting past a grim threshold even as the wave of infections engulfing the country shows no sign of receding.
The total count of new infections was at least 107,000. Twenty-three states have recorded more cases in the past week than in any other seven-day stretch. Five states; Colorado, Indiana, Maine, Minnesota and Nebraska set single-day case records on Wednesday. Cases were also mounting in the Mountain West and even in the Northeast, which over the summer seemed to be getting the virus under control.