Former GOP Sen. Kelly Loeffler of Georgia called on her state’s attorney general to investigate “unprecedented changes” made by Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger during the 2020 election cycle.
Loeffler — who narrowly lost in a runoff election in January to Democratic challenger Raphael Warnock — argued in a Wednesday letter to Republican Attorney General Chris Carr that Raffensperger’s actions hurt voter confidence and participation.
“We saw the impact of reduced faith in elections in the Senate runoffs, when over 339,000 Republican voters who voted in November did not vote in January,” she wrote.
“Voting rights are not a partisan issue, and the loss of electoral confidence disenfranchises voters of any political affiliation,” Loeffler continued.
The former lawmaker listed multiple issues from last year’s primary and general elections that resulted in lost confidence.
Loeffler first noted, “Georgia’s primary election on June 9, 2020 was administered so poorly the Georgia House Governmental Affairs Committee was tasked with investigating the election. The investigation identified the following: (i) multiple issues related to absentee ballots; (ii) inadequate training for the new voting machines; and (iii) procedural issues regarding COVID-19.”
She next chronicled that Raffensperger himself announced on September 8, 2020, that 1,000 people faced investigation for double voting by absentee ballot and voting in person during the primary.
Today, I sent a letter to Georgia’s Attorney General calling for an investigation into the Secretary of State’s handling of the 2020 elections.
We will keep fighting for more transparency, accountability, and integrity in our elections.
More here ⬇️https://t.co/DnnyeZ0WUD
— Kelly Loeffler (@KLoeffler) April 28, 2021
Loeffler went on to cite the consent decree the secretary of state entered into with Georgia Democrats in March 2020 “that materially altered the signature verification process for absentee ballot review — without informing the Georgia General Assembly or the general public.”
The change came “just weeks prior to mailing out mass, unsolicited absentee ballot requests statewide,” she wrote.
Loeffler also highlighted that Raffensperger’s office accepted $5.59 million from the Center for Election Innovation and Research, which received major funding from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Pricilla Chan.
The CEIR gave millions of dollars in grants to certain Georgia counties to turn out the vote, she claimed.
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— State Farm Arena (@StateFarmArena) December 18, 2020
Loeffler continued hitting Raffensperger for allowing “unsecure drop boxes whose number varied across the state, with some counties having dozens and others having none.”
Further, she wondered why the “status of hundreds of primary and general elections investigations allegedly opened by the Secretary of State’s office remains unknown.”
Loeffler suggested the secretary of state’s lack of diligence in these matters may be an attempt to protect his own political career.
“Georgians deserve answers regarding these issues and to understand the impact these and other matters may have on future elections,” she concluded. “Failure to acknowledge these issues and irregularities will lead to a continued loss of trust in our elections.”
Raffensperger dismissed Loeffler’s charges, saying in a statement, “Kelly Loeffler’s failure to convince anyone she actually was a Trump supporter is the reason Georgia doesn’t have a Republican Senator or the United States a Republican Senate. The letter and the allegations in it are laughable.”
Raffensperger responds: “Kelly Loeffler’s failure to convince anyone she actually was a Trump supporter is the reason Georgia doesn’t have a Republican Senator or the United States a Republican Senate.” #gapol pic.twitter.com/jArnXZZFKs
— Greg Bluestein (@bluestein) April 28, 2021
The Hill reported that Carr’s office turned down Loeffler’s request for an investigation on Wednesday, explaining as the lawyer for Georgia’s executive branch, the attorney general cannot investigate its own client.
“Under the Georgia Constitution, the Department of Law is the lawyer Executive Branch of government — which includes the Secretary of State’s Office,” a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office said in a statement.
“As such, we cannot investigate our own client on these particular matters. We’ve forwarded the letter to our client for their review and appropriate response.”
Last month, a Georgia judge indicated he may allow a government watchdog group to examine absentee ballots cast in November’s election in Fulton County, in the Atlanta metro area, for potential voter fraud.
Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero, who is overseeing the case, stated he needs to see a detailed plan first, which maintains the secrecy and security of the ballots, before giving the final go-ahead.
The judge said, “We want to do this in such a way that dispels rumors and disinformation and sheds light.”