If Georgia’s legislature comes into special session and votes to ditch the tabulation system of Dominion Voting Systems in the January 5th Senate runoff, it could be the rock that starts an avalanche to de-certify the results of the November election in Georgia and the other swing states that used Dominion to count their votes: Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada.
If Georgia says it cannot trust Dominion to count the ballots in the January election, how can it defend their count in the November balloting?
As the January 5th runoff for both Georgia Senate seats looms, some key conservatives have urged the state to scrap its reliance on the Dominion Voting System and replace it with hand counting and verification of paper and absentee ballots. But Georgia Governor Brian Kemp won’t agree to do so despite the dismal record of Dominion in the November election and widespread evidence of Dominion’s support of Democrats and its relationship with the Chinese companies that paid $400 million to Dominion’s parent company four weeks before the election.
Why not? Isn’t Kemp a Republican?
He is but he can’t drop Dominion because, in a high-profile row with fellow Republican former Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, he stood up for Dominion and opposed paper ballots.
In 2018, Kemp, then the Secretary of State and Cagle battled each other in the GOP primary for Governor. The Dominion v paper ballot controversy was front and center in the campaign with Kemp backing Dominion and Cagle pushing for paper ballots and hand counting.
Now, Kemp cannot back out and move to paper ballots because he has already vigorously pushed for Dominion and doesn’t want to admit he was wrong, even with the presidency on the line.
The issue was set up, oddly, by Democratic candidate for Governor Stacy Abrams who opposed the deal with Dominion and wanted paper ballots.
The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported, on January 26, 2018 that the feud between Kemp and Cagle “started when Cagle announced he would back a measure to scrap the state’s touch-screen voting machines and largely replace them with a paper-based system. He told NPR’s Atlanta radio station WABE that a paper-ballot trail ensures “no games” could be played.”
How right he was!
But Kemp, who had direct responsibility for the state’s voting system as Secretary of State (he was succeeded in that job by the much beleaguered Brad Raffensperger), defended Dominion and it became the key issue in the Secretary of State Republican primary of 2018.
The fight began when Democratic candidate for governor Stacy Abrams objected to the Dominion touch-screen voting network and called for paper ballots. The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported that Abrams “broadly supported efforts to make voting easier and more transparent, including paper ballots.” Abrams’ Democratic primary rival for the nomination, former state Rep. Stacey Evans agreed saying it was “long past time for Georgia to embrace a paper ballot system.”
In the Republican primary, Kemp attacked Cagle for impugning the Dominion Voting System saying that Cagle sided with “liberal conspiracy theorists” like Stacey Abram who were attacking Dominion.
Cagle’s campaign manager, Scott Brinkley shot back saying that that conservative Republicans who are backing the paper ballot measure “just don’t trust the current secretary of state [Kemp]to run a competent election — and with good reason.”
The Journal Constitution reported that “a growing number of lawmakers have recently pushed for paper backups to ballots and other new safeguards, worried that a system once considered state-of-the-art is now vulnerable to security risks and hobbled by buggy software. The state’s 27,000 touch-screen machines now leave no paper record of how people voted, making it impossible to audit elections for accuracy.”
The bill to switch to paper was introduced by Republican State Rep. Scot Turner who noted that paper ballots, used by about 70 percent of the nation, “are more secure than electronic machines because they can’t be hacked.”
Kemp was especially vulnerable on the Dominion v paper ballot controversy since his office — in 2015 –accidentally disclosed the Social Security numbers and other private information of more than six million voters to media outlets and political parties. The Journal Constitution said that Kemp “was forced to move the state’s elections work in-house after a private researcher discovered security lapses at a Kennesaw State University center that houses election servers that could have exposed more than 6.5 million voter records.”
So Governor Kemp is reluctant to admit another mistake in hiring Dominion and discarding any use of paper ballots.
But now the presidency is at stake. If Georgia’s state legislature comes into special session, recognizes the problems with Dominion in the November election, and replaces it with a paper voting system in the January 5th Senate runoff, it will cast doubt on the accuracy of Dominion’s vote tally in Georgia and in the other states that used its vote tabulation system:
As Secretary of State, it was Brian Kemp who contracted with Dominion in 2019 to handle the 2020 vote tabulation. Now, he must put aside personal pride and pique (or any other conflict of interest he acquired along the way) and send the signal that will cause all swing states to re-examine the Dominion vote totals that are the basis for their certification of a Biden victory in their states.
Governor Kemp must call a special session of the Georgia Legislature to sever the relationship with Dominion and adopt other reforms to assure the integrity of the January 5th Senate runoff including mandatory signature verification, audits of those who vote to determine their eligibility, and prohibition of the use of drop boxes so that all paper ballots have postmarks.
BELOW IS CONTACT INFORMATION FOR GEORGIA REPUBLICAN LEGISLATIVE LEADERS AND THE GOVERNOR.
Use these contacts and URLs below to call, email and/or write them demanding passage of these reforms before the runoff election.
Brian Kemp (R)
206 Washington St.
111 State Capitol
Atlanta, GA 30334
Speaker of the House
David Ralston (R)
P.O. Box 188
Blue Ridge, GA 30513
Senate Majority Leader
Mike Duggan (R)
106 Champion Drive
Carrollton, GA 30116
Georgia Governor = https://gov.georgia.gov/contact-us
Georgia State Senate = http://www.senate.ga.gov/senators/en-US/SenateLeadership2018.aspx
Georgia House of Representatives Leadership = http://www.house.ga.gov/Representatives/en-US/Leadership.aspx
Georgia House of Representatives List = http://www.house.ga.gov/Representatives/en-US/HouseMembersList.aspx
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