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‘Suitcase’ Video Shown During Georgia Election Hearing Sparks Reaction From Gov. Kemp

‘Suitcase’ Video Shown During Georgia Election Hearing Sparks Reaction From Gov. Kemp

 

Republican Governor Brian Kemp called for a signature audit of Georgia’s election results on Thursday night, reacting to video and allegations presented during the Georgia Senate’s Government Oversight Committee hearing held earlier in the day.Security camera footage from Election Day presented during the hearing generated buzz on social media, and caught the attention of Kemp. Allegations and corresponding video appear to reveal a Fulton County election supervisor pulling suitcases filled with ballots from under a table after poll workers were allegedly told to leave.These claims were later denied by Georgia’s voting system implementation manager Gabriel Sterling and chief investigator for the Georgia secretary of state Frances Watson. The officials claim the video is not suspicious but shows normal procedure.

Specifically reacting to the video, Kemp said Thursday on Fox News that he hopes Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger will quickly come forward to explain “exactly what is going on.”

Kemp called the video “concerning,” adding, “We’re working right now, and hopefully the secretary of state will update us on exactly what was going on.”

“I’ve heard they had a monitor there,” he continued. “I think it’d be good for him to come out and say exactly what was going on. … We need to get answers from the secretary of state on exactly what happened. Obviously, they should be investigating this. I would image they already are.”

On Thursday night, Sterling told left-wing fact-checking site Lead Stories that the video was “normal procedure,” adding that “nothing looks ‘bizarre or odd.'” Lead Stories reported:

Election workers known as “cutters” because their job was to open absentee ballot envelopes and verify ballots for eventual scanning and counting were dismissed for the night sometime after 10 p.m. on November 3, 2020, because their work for the evening had been completed, [Sterling] explained. Those workers who remained were responsible for conducting the scanning portion of the process, since ballots could not be left without being scanned overnight.

“If you look at the video tape, the work you see is the work you would expect, which is you take the sealed suitcase looking things in, you place the ballots on the scanner in manageable batches and you scan them,” Sterling said.

Watson told the fact-checking site that the “suitcase” was actually an “empty bin.”

“There wasn’t a bin that had ballots in it under that table,” Watson said. “It was an empty bin and the ballots from it were actually out on the table when the media were still there, and then it was placed back into the box when the media were still there and placed next to the table.”

“Nobody told them to stay. Nobody told them to leave,” she said of the allegedly dismissed election observers. “Nobody gave them any advice on what they should do. And It was still open for them or the public to come back in to view at whatever time they wanted to, as long as they were still working.”

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported on Election Day that “no official could explain before press time why Fulton was stopping its count of absentee ballots” at 10:30 p.m., “only saying that was the procedure.”

“They planned to stop scanning absentee ballots at 10:30 p.m. and pick it up back in the morning,” the report said. “No official could explain before press time why Fulton was stopping its count of absentee ballots at that time, only saying that was the procedure.”

“As planned, Fulton County will continue to tabulate the remainder of absentee ballots over the next two days,” a county spokeswoman said in a statement. “Absentee ballot processing requires that each ballot is opened, signatures verified, and ballots scanned. This is a labor-intensive process that takes longer to tabulate than other forms of voting. Fulton County did not anticipate having all absentee ballots processed on Election Day.”

The video can be viewed below. Twitter has tagged a “warning” to the video, reading, “This claim about election fraud is disputed,” which links to general language about “widespread voter fraud”:

Experts and officials said there has been no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 US elections. The election process was secure and voter fraud of any type is incredibly rare, according to The Associated Press and Reuters. Officials and experts warned ahead of Election Day that most interference in US elections, whether from foreign or domestic players, comes in the form of misinformation campaigns, many of which are intended to create distrust in the US’s electoral process.



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