Major legislative elections in Georgia to be decided after “unacceptable” voting problems

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The problems in Georgia also led to back and forth between state officials. Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his office called the questions “unacceptable” and blamed local election officials in a handful of counties, claiming that they were ultimately responsible for the training of election officials and that voters in other parts of the state were able to run their elections with minimal problems. Those county officials replied that the money should stop with Raffensperger, the state’s chief electoral officer.

The most important race in Georgia was the primary of the Democratic Senate. Jon Ossoff came out on top, leading by a wide margin in public polls in the past few weeks. But the race will end in August if Ossoff does not manage to obtain the majority of votes. Teresa Tomlinson, the former mayor of Columbus, is considered the most likely opponent in a possible second round, although businesswoman Sarah Riggs Amico is also in the running.

Ossoff, who lost a large-scale special house election in 2017, launched an anti-corruption message and drew on his fundraising prowess and identifying the name of the House race to boost his candidacy. It also has approvals from representatives John Lewis and Hank Johnson. Tomlinson has drawn heavily on his experience as mayor, arguing that the party should appoint a candidate who won the previous election and served in government.

National Democrats did not weigh on the primary, despite their general strategy of sponsoring candidates in races that are considered a priority as they seek to win back the Senate. If the race ends, it is not clear whether the National Democrats will weigh on the race.

No matter who wins Tuesday or if the race ends in a second lap, Perdue will start with a considerable financial advantage. He had $ 9.4 million in the bank as of May 20, while Ossoff had the most among the Democrats with $ 950,000.

The two sides will choose candidates for two Atlanta House suburban battlefields that will feature expensive races in November. In one district, former representative Karen Handel (R-Ga.), Who defeated Ossoff in the 2017 special election, should easily clinch the Republican nomination, setting up a rematch with representative Lucy McBath (D-Ga .).

McBath, a gun control advocate whose son was murdered in Florida, beat Handel by one point in the middle of his term, ending Handel’s brief stint in Congress.

Meanwhile, Democrats and Republicans hold disputed primaries in an open neighboring seat, which was the country’s closest House race in 2018. GOP representative Rob Woodall retires after coming to 450 voice after being ousted.

Voters also went to the polls on Tuesday in four other states: South Carolina, West Virginia, North Dakota and Nevada.

In South Carolina, Senator Lindsey Graham (RS.C.) Easily won his primary – unlike some of his most competitive nomination fights against conservative competitors – and will face Democrat Jaime Harrison, who ran without opposition in the Democratic primary.

House Republicans avoided a runoff in the 1st district of the state, where state representative Nancy Mace, the first woman to graduate from The Citadel, won the nomination to take on representative Joe Cunningham (DS.C .), one of the most vulnerable members of Congress. President Donald Trump won his Lowcountry seat by 13 points.

The most important race in West Virginia was the attempt to change the party of Governor Jim Justice for a second mandate. Justice was first elected Democrat in 2016 – but, spurred on by President Donald Trump, he changed his registration and became a Republican less than a year after his term. He easily won Tuesday’s primary and will face Democrat Ben Salango in the legislative elections.

In Nevada, Republicans select candidates in two Las Vegas-area seats held by Democratic officials Susie Lee and Steven Horsford. Lee, one of 30 Democrats in a district Trump won in 2016, is likely to face a former state treasurer or a former professional wrestler.

The long lines of in-person voting in Georgia came at a time when the state saw a massive wave of postal voting. Raffensperger’s office sent mail-in ballot request forms to all active voters in the state. By Monday, a record number of 943,000 voters had returned a mail-in ballot, a drastic increase for a state that typically sees around 40,000 voters mailed.

One of the state’s most prominent Democrats, Stacey Abrams, was critical of Raffensperger. “We found ourselves in the midst of incompetence and malevolence,” she said at a press conference. “And unfortunately, the secretary of state is now trying to blame it and trying to create a pretext that only a few countries are affected. , and that this is a localized problem. “

Georgia was not alone in adapting to the holding of elections during a pandemic. Nevada Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske, Republican, sent a ballot to all active voters in her state, while Clark County, home to more than seven in ten voters, went further and sent ballots to voters labeled “inactive” after the National Democrats filed a complaint. Inactive voters are voters who do not return an address confirmation card election officials or have not voted in the past four years, The Nevada Independent reported at the time.

Even still, some Nevada voters voted in person and also faced long queues. Some voters told the Associated Press that they had waited until five hours to vote.

In Nevada, ballots mailed on polling day and received with a week will count, which means that a late increase in the number of ballots could overturn tight elections.

Laura Barrón-López contributed to this report.

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