From [HERE] and [HERE] Half a million Georgia voters were purged with no notice — and their provisional ballots likely won’t be counted. Brian Kemp, who until this week was Georgia’s secretary of state, is stealing the gubernatorial election from Stacey Abrams. Greg Palast who is presently suing Brian Kemp along with civil rights organizations obtained the list of purged voters through a federal court order.
When those half million voters showed up to vote, they were denied regular ballots – and most given something called a “provisional ballot.”
When some GOP voting chieftain takes away your vote, they don’t want you to raise hell. So they give you this “provisional” ballot. That way, you feel like you voted, but you haven’t. Not in Georgia.
Because, guess who decided the rules on whether to count your ballot? Answer: Candidate Kemp.
Voting rights activist Stacey Hopkins’ own son was purged – despite a court order Stacey obtained, with the help of the ACLU, to put him back on the rolls–along with 159,000 others Kemp wrongfully purged. Kemp apparently decided to ignore the courts. Again.
The result, says Hopkins, “They were handing out provisional ballots like Chicklets. In our precinct, which normally hands out eleven in an election, they handed out over 60.”
The Palast team went to historically Black Emory College on Tuesday night. The lines kept the poll open until 10pm, and they ran out of provisional ballots by 4pm. When Kemp’s office sent over a stack, the Black students filled out over one hundred provisionals in this precinct. This is just one of thousands of Black-majority precincts.
Salon.com previously reported that the Palast Investigative Fund hired experts at CohereOne to identify 340,134 voters they will swear in court Kemp removed illegally. And CohereOne is far from done going through Kemp’s voter-registration dumpster.
Those voters got no notice they were purged. When, like Rahiem Shabazz, Atlanta filmmaker, they showed up to vote, they were ambushed with the placebo ballot.
How many provisional ballots? Palast states, “given the number of purged; given the arcane rule of “exact match” of driver’s license data and voter forms, given Georgia’s racially targeted voter ID laws – I could go on – it’s reasonable to project provisional ballots reaching 50,000.”
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams' campaign disputed on Saturday her opponent Brian Kemp's claims that there are not enough outstanding provisional ballots for Georgia's governors seat to trigger a recount or runoff election.
Abram's campaign said their very conservative findings show a total of 26,846 provisional ballots are uncounted as of Saturday morning. Meanwhile, Kemp's campaign said 21,190 provisional ballots are still outstanding.
Kemp declared victory shortly after the election and abruptly resigned his position as secretary of state on Thursday. He began his transition to become the state's next governor.
The Georgia secretary of state's website lists 21,190 provisional ballots as being accounted for.
If Abrams is able to gain slightly more than 23,700 votes on Kemp, the race is pushed into a mandatory recount. If she can gain about 25,600, it is forced into a runoff. The Democrat is hoping that once all the votes are accounted for, her opponent's vote share drops below the critical 50 percent threshold, which would trigger a runoff election on Dec. 4.
Kemp currently has a 1.6 percent lead on Abrams but the race remains too close to call, according to NBC News. Abrams, who is seeking to become the first black woman elected governor in the U.S., has refused to concede, with her camp claiming that Kemp has not been transparent about the outstanding votes. [MORE]
Palast writes, “then there are voters like Yasmin Bakhtiari of Atlanta, trying to vote, and flatly denied even a provisional ballot—she asked three times over two hours—in direct violation of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA).
They tried to do that to Ashlee Jones in DeKalb County. She had registered to vote twice on Kemp’s website and got no confirmation. Ashlee, an American mix of Latina, Black and White, was told she could not even get a provisional ballot. (I admit, I got a little heavy with the precinct officials, and turned on the cameras. Ashlee got her provisional ballot. But that tiny victory was Pyrrhic: She knows Kemp or his replacement will shred it.)
Our researcher Rachel Garbus called several rural counties whose supervisors told her that no purged voter would get a provisional ballot, only those that “deserve” it. Having witnessed the scary Kemp-Trump rally on Sunday, I can tell you the color of “deserving” voters.
So far, it appears that most provisional ballots, and stacks of absentee ballots, have simply been rejected. Yet there is zero evidence that even one of these voters who signed their ballot envelopes under penalty of perjury are not qualified voters.
As I write this, Kemp has already declared himself the next Governor—and, under pressure from a federal judge, resigned as Secretary of State. Pyrrhic victory that: His voter roll slashing job done, he can step aside as Georgia’s Purge’n General.
So there you have it. You could say the real winner of the election in Georgia appears to be Jim Crow—or, should I say, Brian Kemp’s close friend, database expert Dr. James Crow.