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All Eyes on Georgia: Recount Nears End and Runoff Politics Heat Up

12-01-2020
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Workers sort and stack ballots in preparation for scanning as the presidential recount process gets under way Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020 in the DeKalb County city of Lithonia, Ga. (AP Photo/Ben Gray)

As the snow fell and the temperature dropped in Georgia this week state politics turned the heat up.

Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says Georgia will complete its vote recount, as requested by President Trump, at midnight Wednesday. In a news conference Monday, he promised to release the results quickly online.

"Once this recount is complete, everyone in Georgia will be able to have even more confidence in the results of our elections, despite the massive amounts of misinformation that is being spread by dishonest actors," he said.

Raffensperger, a Republican, also indirectly chided the president for his election fraud concerns.

"There are those who are exploiting the emotions of many Trump supporters with fantastic claims, half-truths, misinformation, and frankly, they are misleading the president as well, apparently," he suggested. 

The recount comes amidst questions around vote spikes in Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

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On Monday, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) tweeted the findings from an anonymous analysis of New York Times vote data.

It showed an unusually large number of Biden votes coming in during the same five hour period on Nov. 4 in the three states.

Another driver behind the political battle in Georgia, the two races that will determine which party controls the US Senate. 

Democrats are trying to unseat incumbents as Jon Ossoff takes on Republican Sen. David Perdue and Rev. Raphael Warnock matches up against Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler.

Georgia voters will decide both races in a runoff election to be held on Jan. 5.

But here's the plot twist: even as Democrats have praised Raffensperger for pushing back against the president's allegations of fraud, the secretary of state is now investigating a voter registration group that Warnock had led before leaving in February.

Raffensperger says The New Georgia Project sent voter registration applications to New York City, a violation of state law.

The president's ongoing charges of voter fraud could also potentially work against the GOP. Party leaders worry they could turn moderate Republicans away from the January runoff, as well as Trump supporters who see the system as hopelessly corrupt.

Trump will attempt to head that off, traveling to the Peach State this weekend to campaign for Perdue and Loeffler.

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