In Georgia, a state whose results Trump heavily contested as fraudulent (but only in predominantly black, urban areas), Republican lawmakers are pushing bills to restrict voting in the state. Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger, who famously received a phone call from then-President Donald Trump, that may have been illegal due to the pressuring of Raffensberger to change the outcome of the election, is refusing to support those measures, breaking with the GOP’s positions.
We are reviewing bills. Once we see something that prioritizes the security and accessibility of elections, we’ll throw in support. At the end of the day, many of these bills are reactionary to a three month disinformation campaign that could have been prevented. pic.twitter.com/HciII3AsKP
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) February 24, 2021
Explaining his position, which is that nothing questionable happened in the Georgia elections, Raffensberger said that he would give his support to any legislation that prioritized potential voting fraud, but that the legislation being proposed would not do that. He called them “reactionary,” but what they really aim to do is ensure Republican victories in what was once a longtime red state.
Raffensberger tweeted that:
‘Once we see something that prioritizes the security and accessibility of elections, we’ll throw in support.” Raffensperger added that the bills were mostly “reactionary to a three month disinformation campaign” that he said could have been prevented.’
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger shot down President Trump’s suggestion Tuesday that Dominion voting machines failed and compromised Republican votes in the Senate runoff elections. https://t.co/igLKIZHI86
— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 5, 2021
Most specifically, many of the GOP’s bills aim to restrict mail-in voting. A significant portion of the vote in 2020 was done through mail-in voting as a result of the coronavirus, an issue that Democratic voters took seriously while Trump voters bought into the lie that the virus was not really a threat, also pushed by Trump. Because of the high turnout of blue voters through absentee ballot, the GOP is working to change the rules that were in place when they lost the state in both the presidential as well as two senatorial races.
According to The Hill:
‘Republicans in Georgia have said the voting measures are designed to boost confidence in election security, though Democrats and voting rights advocates have said they’re more in response to GOP losses both in the presidential election and the Senate runoffs in January. A number of the Republican measures would place restrictions on absentee voting after the state saw record high numbers of absentee ballots in the November general election.’
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger just sent out a press release titled "BREAKING: Stacey Abrams Funded Group that Pushed Voting Machine Disinformation in Georgia."
It links to a "report" that's actually a misleading story from the Ben Shapiro's site the Daily Wire.
— Kevin Collier (@kevincollier) February 24, 2021
In case anyone was thinking of hailing Raffensberger as some GOP hero, he made sure to advance that whataboutism Trump narrative, as well as to spread disinformation, by making a statement based on a “breaking” story by Ben Shapiro accusing Democrat Stacey Abrams of undermining trust in the electoral system after protesting laws and practices that restricted black voting in 2018.
In a press release, Raffensberger said:
‘Many people think that President Trump’s onslaught on Georgia’s election integrity was new, but outside groups, apparently heavily supported by Stacey Abrams, have been pushing these conspiracy theories for years. In light of the devastation election disinformation caused on January 6 in Washington, D.C., Abrams needs to finally accept her 2018 election loss and stop funding attacks on Georgia’s election integrity.’
Georgia Secretary of State Raffensperger joins other Republicans in opposing no-excuse absentee voting, saying it will help combat ballot fraud. | Just The News https://t.co/hizddgN6ZK
— John Solomon (@jsolomonReports) December 24, 2020