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3,039 more uncounted ballots found in 2 Georgia counties

Mock absentee ballots left by protesters. (Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA/TNS)
November 18, 2020

Over 3,000 more uncounted ballots were uncovered in two Georgia counties during a statewide audit of the 2020 presidential election between President Donald Trump and Democrat candidate Joe Biden. The ballots came from Fayette and Walton counties.

A hand-count of nearly 5 million ballots across the state-led officials in Fayette County to discover 2,755 ballots on a memory card that were not included in the initial tally, the Associated Press reported. Of those votes, 1,577 were for Trump, 1,128 for Biden, 43 for Libertarian Jo Jorgensen and seven write-ins.

“There was an issue where we noticed there were more people on the absentee ballot filed for voting in person in Fayette County than was in the actual reporting,” Georgia election official Gabriel Sterling said, according to Fox 5 Atlanta. “It was discovered today for certain. Because of the audit, we found this.”

According to Sterling, the issue is the result of several people not following procedure correctly.

In Walton County, 284 uncounted ballots were unearthed, of which 176 were for President Trump.  The Walton Tribune reported that local Board of Elections chair Lori Wood said the problem arose after votes were uploaded from only one of the two ballot scanners.

“We would have discovered it,” Wood said. “Maybe not this week, but we would have discovered it.”

So far, the three batches of uncounted ballots that have been found during Georgia’s audit have boosted President Trump’s numbers, shrinking the already-narrow margin between the incumbent and Joe Biden.

Last weekend, over 2,600 previously uncounted ballots were uncovered in Floyd County. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that President Trump could be looking at an almost 800 net vote increase from the unearthed ballots. Of the 2,600 ballots, 1,643 were for Trump and 865 for Biden.

According to the state’s voting system manager, Gabriel Sterling, county election officials failed to upload votes from a memory card in a ballot-scanning machine. He said the problem was “an amazing blunder” and called for the election director to resign.

After the uncounted votes were discovered, Floyd County Republican Party chair Luke Martin labeled the problem “concerning” but said it “didn’t appear to be a widespread issue.”

However, as more ballots were unearthed, Martin suggested that the lack of adequate observation during the tallying process around the state could be a factor in the number of mistakes.

“If this was human error and the Board of Elections allowed the parties, allowed the public to view the counting of the ballots, we could have seen that,” Martin told Fox News. “But we didn’t get the opportunity to be there.”