Republicans and Democrats blamed each other for the difficulties, and Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said his office would investigate the problems in two counties that are Democratic strongholds to resolve the issues before the November general election.
Many voters complained about long hours of waiting and voting machines that were not working. Raffensperger said the problems were most acute in Fulton and DeKalb counties of metropolitan Atlanta, although the Democratic Party of Georgia said it had received reports of problems “in every corner of the state”.
The main one was the first use of Georgia’s new voting equipment, which added a backup of the paper ballot, and officials said some places were having trouble starting the machines, had not received the equipment needed to start on time or had not properly trained poll workers. on their handling.
Polling places have been reduced in many counties due to a shortage of office staff due to concerns over the coronavirus epidemic. About one million Georgians voted by mail, the Raffensperger office said, and another 325,000 have already voted in person during the advance poll.
Raffensperger, who sent mail-in ballot request forms to the 6.9 million active voters in the state, called the voting situation in parts of Fulton and DeKalb counties “unacceptable” and launched an investigation .
“We knew it would be difficult to vote during a pandemic, but most countries could manage it very easily,” he told Reuters. “Fulton County has obviously had problems and the problems they have caused to county administrators. “
“If there is a leadership failure, it starts where the ball should stop, at the top,” said DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond, a Democrat who called for an office investigation from Raffensperger.
“It is the responsibility of the secretary of state to train, prepare and equip election workers throughout the state to ensure fair and equitable access to the polls,” he said.
“This election was a disaster,” said Kristen Clarke, Chair of the National Lawyers’ Committee on Civil Rights Under the Law.
The problems in Georgia follow similar complaints and confusion at a primary in April in Wisconsin and last week in Pennsylvania, Indiana and Washington, DC.
Georgia was one of five states to choose candidates for the White House and Congress on Tuesday. Voters from Nevada, South Carolina, North Dakota and West Virginia also held primaries.
Louise Hall has this report.