AUGUSTA, Georgia — Georgia Republican Party chairman David Shafer said Thursday during Vice President Mike Pence’s rally for the upcoming Senate runoff election that the state party is “trusting no one” as it prepares for Georgia’s voting process to begin.
Shafer told the rally crowd of several hundred Thursday afternoon that Georgians must vote for Republican Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler regardless of accusations that voter fraud occurred in the November 3 general election. “The fight for election integrity and the fight for David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler go hand in hand,” Shafer said.
Shafer was adamant that the state party is preparing accordingly to avoid questions of election integrity in the runoff election, taking place January 5, and confirmed his organization has recruited 4,000 poll watchers for the race.
“I want to promise you that we are trusting no one and taking nothing for granted,” Shafer said. “We have recruited 4,000 poll watchers for the upcoming runoff elections. We filed suit against our own secretary of state. We’re gonna make sure we have eyes on every part of the process.”
Shafer’s promise comes as the Georgia secretary of state’s office gave an update Thursday insisting full transparency was present in the state’s election process, including in the signature verification part, which has faced particular criticism from President Donald Trump, Trump’s legal team, and the Georgia GOP after the state’s hand recount of election results did not include signature verification.
“As a belt and suspenders, we sent out an official election bulletin to remind the election directors around the state that signature match is a public process as are all the pieces and processes involved in the election process,” Gabriel Sterling, the state’s voting system implementation manager, said during the state update, adding that Shafer specifically requested this because “[Shafer] said counties had denied them this access.”
Sterling said he has asked Shafer for a list of said counties and that Shafer has not provided this list. Sterling said that “the second” he receives a list, his office will open an investigation into those counties.
Sterling said the state has opened 132 investigations related to the general election, with 23 investigators handling them.
Election integrity was a theme throughout Thursday’s rally. Breitbart News talked to several attendees who said they intended to vote in the runoffs despite voter fraud allegations.
“We can’t just give up. We can’t let them just have it,” Tracy, of Augusta, said. “That’s counterproductive to me. I mean you might as well try.”
“I think they’ll be much more careful than they were the first time around,” Susan, of Augusta, said. “And we will do more harm if we don’t vote. We gotta make our voice heard.”
“I felt like we’ve learned our lesson, and I think they can’t hide stuffing the ballots and doing all of that because I think we know what we’re looking for this time,” Meredith, also of Augusta, said. “So I encourage everybody to vote.”
Her friend Becky added, “No matter what age, stage, we’ll find you a ride. We’ll come pick you up ourselves.”
Pence echoed Shafer’s sentiments during the rally, telling the crowd, “We’re fighting every day for integrity in our elections,” and also repeated the promise he has made in his other recent rallies that his team would keep fighting until “every illegal vote is thrown out.”
As of now, Joe Biden appears to have won Georgia’s presidential election by about 12,000, although Trump and Shafer currently have a lawsuit filed together in Fulton County Superior Court challenging those results.
Write to Ashley Oliver at [email protected].