The Trump campaign has called for a recount in Georgia, the campaign announced Saturday night. Elected President Joe Biden won the state by more than 12,000 votes.
Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and Governor Brian Kemp, both Republicans, have already done so.election result. Georgia allows a candidate to request a recount after certification if the margin of victory is within 0.5 percentage points. Mr. Biden won by just over 2%.
“President Trump and his campaign continue to insist on an honest recount in Georgia, which should include signature matching and other important guarantees,”
Georgia earlier this week already conducted a full hand count of all ballot papers in the state at the request of Raffensperger. During the recount, several memory cards were found in various counties that contained votes not reported in the original count. The inclusion of these votes reduced Biden’s lead a bit, but was not close enough to overturn the preliminary results of the election.
Since the election, President Trump has claimed on several occasions without any evidence that thousands of accepted absentee ballots in the state of Georgia did not have properly matching signatures. After certifying the results, Kemp urged Raffensperger to “consider tackling these concerns” and conduct a “sample audit of signatures on absent ballot papers and compare them with the signatures on applications and archives provided by the Secretary of State.”
Georgia’s State Department has repeatedly said that at this point in the process it is not possible to match signatures – which already took place as part of a two-step signature verification process – because ballot papers are separated from envelopes to ensure voter secrecy.
On Thursday, Raffensperger issued a statement saying, “2,011 absentee ballots were rejected in the November 2020 election for missing or non-matching signatures out of 1,322,529 ballot papers.” He noted that “the rejection rate of 0.15% for signature issues was the same in both the 2018 and 2020 general elections” and that the increase in the number of rejected votes was in line with the increase in the number of votes received.
The recount required by the Trump campaign will be a machine count.
Georgia was one of five states that Mr. Biden turned around from Mr Trump’s victory in 2016. The state has not voted to send a Democrat to the White House since former President Bill Clinton won it in 1992.
Caroline Linton contributed with reporting.