Trump campaign files lawsuit in Georgia over absentee ballots
ATLANTA - As Georgia continues to count its ballots, the Trump campaign announced early Wednesday evening it has filed a lawsuit in the state seeking to ensure elections officials are following the law when it comes to absentee ballots.
The campaign, along with the Georgia Republican Party filed a lawsuit against the Chatham County Board of Elections asking a judge to order the county to secure and account for ballots received after 7 p.m. on Election Day.
State party chair David Shafer said in a statement Wednesday night that they planned to sue in a dozen counties.
The lawsuit alleges that a Republican observer watched a poll worker take unprocessed absentee ballots from a back room and mix them into processed absentee ballots waiting to be tabulated.
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In Georgia, ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on Election Day in order to count. Chatham County contains Savannah and leans Democratic.
A woman who answered the phone at the Chatham County Board of Elections offices declined to comment to the Associated Press.
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This is the third state in which the president's campaign has filed a lawsuit. Earlier in the day, lawsuits were filed in Michigan and Pennsylvania. The campaign also asked for a recount in Wisconsin.
The AP called Michigan for Democrat Joe Biden on Wednesday. Georgia, Nevada, and Pennsylvania are undecided. In the race to the 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency, Democrat Joe Biden currently has 264 while Trump has 214, as of 7 p.m. Wednesday.
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Election officials continued to count votes across the country, the normal process on the day following voting. Unlike in previous years, states were contending with an avalanche of mail ballots driven by fears of voting in person during a pandemic. At least 103 million people voted early, either by mail or in-person, representing 74% of the total votes cast in the 2016 presidential election.
Every election, results reported on election night are unofficial and the counting of ballots extends past Election Day. Mail ballots normally take more time to verify and count. This year, because of the large numbers of mail ballots and a close race, results were expected to take longer.
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The Georgia Secretary of State said there were still about 185,000 absentee ballots that needed to be counted in the state as of Wednesday evening.
Georgia has recently become a battleground state coming into play during the 2020 presidential race as demographics, particularly in the metro Atlanta area, have shifted.
The Associated Press contributed to this report