Georgia presidential vote more likely to go to a recount, state official says

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© Reuters. Workers of the Fulton County Board of Registration and Elections course of ballots in Atlanta

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By Simon Lewis, Daphne Psaledakis and Katanga Johnson

WASHINGTON/ATLANTA (Reuters) – Georgia’s secretary of state on Friday mentioned he expects a presidential vote recount within the battleground state, the place Democrat Joe Biden has a small lead over Republican President Donald Trump.

The candidates every had 49.4% of counted ballots, although Biden was forward by about 1,500 votes as of Friday morning with 4,169 common ballots left to depend, Georgia’s voting system implementation supervisor, Gabriel Sterling, mentioned.

Brad Raffensperger, Georgia’s secretary of state, mentioned he expects the margin within the presidential race to be only a few thousand votes.

“With a margin that small, there might be a recount,” Raffensperger informed reporters.

Officers additionally mentioned about 9,000 army and abroad ballots have been nonetheless excellent and may very well be accepted in the event that they arrive on Friday, and are postmarked on Tuesday or earlier.

A recount can’t be began till Georgia’s present votes are licensed, which this yr is predicted on or earlier than Nov. 20.

Sarah Wilcox, 50, a furnishings designer who attended an Atlanta occasion for Democratic candidate for Senate Jon Ossof on Friday, mentioned she was not stunned by the probability of a recount.

“I feel it’s affordable even amid the unreasonable stories of voter fraud and mail-in ballots. I want they’d simply name the depend, however I settle for the recount as reputable,” she mentioned.

LITTLE CHANGE EXPECTED

There are three official causes for a recount in Georgia.

A presidential candidate who loses by 0.5% of the vote or much less can ship a written request to the secretary of state, or a candidate can allege “discrepancy or error” within the vote tabulation. Within the latter, state legislation offers the secretary discretion about whether or not to conduct a recount.

Native election officers in Georgia can also conduct recounts of their counties in the event that they assume there’s a discrepancy within the outcomes.

The Southern state switched to new touch-screen voting machines this yr, that produced a marked paper poll that’s fed right into a scanner that counts the vote.

Absentee voters – a whole lot of 1000’s this yr – stuffed out the identical ballots by hand, which additionally have been fed into the scanners.

If the scanner can not learn the poll, a bipartisan group of election officers evaluations it to find out whether or not or the way it ought to be counted. A recount primarily repeats that course of.

Recounts hardly ever yield huge modifications in voting leads to the US. A recount of Wisconsin’s voting leads to the 2016 election added https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-recount/green-party-u-s-election-recount-bid-comes-to-a-close-idUSKBN1411QE 131 votes to Trump’s over 22,000 vote lead.

“I might not anticipate a recount to vary the numbers very a lot,” mentioned Bryan Sells, an election lawyer in Atlanta who doesn’t signify both marketing campaign.

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