About 1,000 voters in Georgia voted twice in the state’s June 9 primary, and will be prosecuted for election fraud, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announced on Tuesday.
In total, about 150,000 people went to their polling station on election day after having requested an absentee ballot, but most did so because they either did not receive one, or decided not to use one. County election officials found that 1,000 of those who did submit their absentee ballot also voted in-person on the day of the primary.
“A double voter knows exactly what they’re doing, diluting the votes of each and every voter that follows the law,” Raffensperger told reporters at the state Capitol, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Those that make the choice to game the system are breaking the law. And as secretary of state, I will not tolerate it.”
He added that the double ballots did not affect the outcome of any of the races, and that the Georgia attorney general’s office will work with local prosecutors to decide who should be charged on a case-by-case basis. Double-voting is a felony in the state, and carries a maximum punishment of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000, according to Raffensperger.
The Journal-Constitution notes that State Election Board records show that absentee voting fraud is rare in the state, but Raffensperger said that the recent dramatic rise in absentee voting creates the opportunity for fraud.
Democratic Party of Georgia Executive Director Scott Hogan told the AJC that “It is clear that rather than do his job of promoting the safety and security of our voting process, the secretary of state is instead pushing the GOP’s voting conspiracy theories and disinformation.”
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