Atlanta – Georgia is a nationally-recognized leader in election security and voter access. One reason for Georgia’s success is that the General Assembly voted on and passed two of Secretary Raffensperger’s election integrity bills (HB 316 and SB 202) in 2019 and 2021 to address security concerns related to elections. In 2019, the General Assembly passed legislation, HB 316, to secure future Georgia elections by instituting an auditable paper ballot voting system. This system provides multiple layers of security to ensure accountability and to give every Georgia voter the power to secure his or her ballot. SB 202 further strengthened election integrity by requiring photo ID for absentee by mail voting and drop box security measures.
Secretary Raffensperger has been defending these laws in court against left-wing activist groups and Biden’s Department of Justice to ensure that these common-sense laws remain in place for 2024.
In addition to defending Georgia’s election integrity laws, Secretary Raffensperger has implemented a four-step “Secure the Vote” plan to further ensure the security and accuracy of the 2024 election. Every step of the Secure the Vote plan mitigates risks and holds every level of the election process accountable to Georgia’s voters. Giving voters the power to review their ballot before turning it in allows for Georgia voters– not activists or lawyers–to decide whom they selected to vote into office.
The four-step “Secure the Vote” plan strengthens accountability at each stage of the election process to ensure the accuracy of Georgia’s election results:
Testing before the election (Logic and Accuracy Testing)
Each piece of voting equipment in all 159 counties is tested to assure each contest is voting properly, by testing every candidate and ballot position on the Ballot Marking Devices, and that all scanners are reading ballots properly.
Testing during the election (Parallel Monitoring)
Live election equipment will be randomly selected and securely transferred for test voting in 3 regions of the state every day of voting from the start of early voting through Election Day. This testing will detect any active, ongoing threat.
Voter review and accountability
Since 2020, Georgia voters have had the ability to review their own ballot for accuracy before turning it in for tabulation. In 2020, the University of Georgia conducted a study of Georgia’s live elections and found that more than 80% of Georgia’s voters review their ballots.
Testing after the election (Risk Limiting Audits)
With the passage of HB 316 and SB129, Georgia now has robust post-election audit procedures in place to detect any anomalies in the outcomes of elections.
Secretary Raffensperger has also partnered with the Department of Homeland Security and others to review the physical security of every location where voting equipment is stored. Georgia continues a strong partnership with the U.S. Election Assistance Commission and only uses EAC-certified voting equipment in any statewide election. County election officials also implemented the policy of transferring election projects on Read Only media to prevent possible manipulation. In developing this plan, the Secretary of State’s office has received helpful suggestions from legislators and election security experts who understand the risk of installing software without thorough user testing and looks forward to implementing as many of those recommendations as possible.
These layers of prevention and detection mitigate against every potential vulnerability to free, fair, high turnout, and secure elections that Georgia is nationally recognized for running. There are people who have long been critics of Georgia’s election system who are now making irresponsible calls to install new software prior to thorough testing with Georgia systems despite the obvious risks of that approach. Those same people would probably also criticize Secretary Raffensperger for installing software without thorough testing. The Secretary of State’s office is going to continue to make responsible decisions regarding our elections systems that are in the best interests of Georgia voters and that will ensure our systems remain secure, accessible, and fair. The detractors who want our system to fail won’t succeed.