It’s safe to assume no one anticipated Georgia flipping blue in the November election — and many still maintain that it never truly did.
Now Georgia House Speaker David Ralston has indicated that demands to find out exactly what went down in Fulton County during the 2020 election perhaps haven’t gone unheeded.
It’s no secret that Fulton County also houses a significant portion of the state’s Democratic voters. In fact, it’s one of the few blue islands in a sea of red every election season.
And these voters have little admiration for former President Donald Trump — as a Georgian, I can tell you that firsthand.
But perhaps Fulton County’s implicit liberal bias invites us to consider if it has something to do with the entire state’s “blue mirage,” if you will.
Ralston entertained that notion at least enough to make his request.
In a Thursday letter directed to Fulton County Elections Director Richard Barron, Ralston called upon the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to explore the possibility of election fraud in Fulton County.
“Recently, media reports have surfaced which call into question the way in which Fulton County conducted, counted and audited the November 2020 Presidential Election,” he wrote.
“These reports have been accompanied by video and other evidence which is part of on-going litigation and requires thorough examination and explanation,” Ralston said.
“Given the seriousness of this situation and the possible repercussions for our state and nation, it is time we have an independent investigation — once and for all — of the way in which Fulton County conducted, counted and audited the November 2020 Presidential Election.”
The speaker explained why this is so important, writing, “I am sure you would agree that it is paramount to the functioning of our government that citizens have the opportunity to participate in free and fair elections and that those same citizens have every confidence in the veracity of the results reported.”
According to the Washington Examiner, Joe Biden defeated then-incumbent President Donald Trump by approximately 12,000 votes in Georgia in November — a development that sent shockwaves through the nation.
Although the Peach State’s multiple recounts maintained Biden’s win, Trump and his allies refuse to loosen their grip on allegations of a stolen election.
Should they, though?
After all, Georgia has been a reliably red state since the 1990s and, as of 2020, hadn’t voted blue in a general election since 1992 — and it’s important to note the state’s government and voter demography were much different back then.
At the time, Georgia looked and acted like a blue state. Older generations of voters — lovingly labeled as “FDR Democrats” or “Southern Democrats” by many — still comprised a significant portion of the state’s voter base.
The governor at the time — Zell Miller — was a Democrat; both houses of the General Assembly swayed blue (and would remain that way until the early 2000s); and so forth.
Yes, Georgians would go on to vote for Republicans Bob Dole and George W. Bush in 1996 and 2000, but the national Democratic Party’s hard-left swing had a lasting impact on Democrats with more conservative values.
The state shifted from blue to purple and eventually red because of it.
It’s a long walk to say that, with its Republican state leadership, Georgia paints a different picture these days, and it isn’t unreasonable to question why a long history of red was suddenly disrupted by a general election administered atypically (new voting machines and mass mail-in ballots, anyone?).
We witnessed the same development with the senatorial elections of the Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff in January — no one anticipating the GOP would lose both seats.
But the general election affects most Americans more directly, so it garners the most attention.
And since we’ve seen Arizona step forward with its Maricopa County audit, it’s good to see Ralston encouraging Georgia to follow suit with Fulton County investigations.
He isn’t the only state legislator flirting with the idea that election officials may have some skeletons in their closets, either.
Republican state Sen. Burt Jones, a member of the Senate Government Oversight Committee, wrote a letter to committee Chairman Sen. Marty Harbin on Thursday calling for Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to testify about the election results, the Examiner reported.
According to the outlet, allegations that approximately 200 absentee ballots were scanned twice prompted both Ralston and Jones to make their proposals.
In fact, Raffensberger himself called for firing Fulton County’s elections director and its registration chief on Thursday, citing the county’s “continued failures.”
Fulton County’s continued failures have gone on long enough with no accountability. Rick Barron and Ralph Jones, Fulton’s registration chief, must be fired and removed from Fulton’s elections leadership immediately. Fulton’s voters and the people of Georgia deserve better.
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) July 15, 2021
Perhaps things are about to get interesting in Georgia.
Let’s hope Ralston’s proposal leads to a full investigation of the Fulton County vote.
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