The Republican head of the Georgia Elections Commission said Tuesday that a newly released film alleging ballots were illegally collected and cast in the 2020 presidential election incorrectly suggests there were dozens of thousands of illegitimate votes in the state.
Still, State Election Board Chairman Matt Mashburn has promised a “fair” investigation into her allegations.
“It’s not going to be a witch hunt,” he told a board meeting. “It’s going to be done soberly and with great care by people who know what they’re doing.”
The film, titled “2000 Mules,” paints an ominous picture suggesting that Democrat-aligned “mules” were paid to illegally collect and deposit ballots in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. It was hailed by former President Donald Trump as exposing ‘gross voter fraud’, but election security experts say it is based on faulty assumptions, anonymous accounts and incorrect analysis of phone location data. laptops.
Mashburn, who said he watched the film, said he suggested there were 92,000 “illegitimate and fabricated votes” in the state, but said that was not true. Even if a ballot is cast illegally, it goes through the same checks as other ballots to ensure the vote is legitimate, he said.
“A vote taken by ballot could be a perfectly legal vote,” he said. “It’s just that the way it was delivered was illegal.”
The film uses research from the Texas-based nonprofit True the Vote, which has spent months lobbying states to use its findings to change election laws. In an email, a representative for True the Vote said the film presented “a wide variety of information, including summarized data from 5 jurisdictions in 5 states, showing only a fraction” of the available evidence.
“It included elements that did not relate to Georgia at all,” said Catherine Engelbrecht.
An investigator with the secretary of state’s office told the council on Tuesday that he investigated three complaints that people illegally delivered ballots in Georgia and found in each case that the person was legally depositing the ballots. members of his family. The board dismissed all three cases.
Engelbrecht said True the Vote also filed complaints with the Georgia Secretary of State’s office, but these were not investigated.
“We look forward to moving forward with a formal investigation process, based on all of the data and video that supports our complaints,” she said.
One of the video clips reviewed by the investigator had appeared in the background of a Fox News broadcast. Republican board member Ed Lindsey warned people making the allegations not to publish them until a full investigation is complete so as not to “put anyone’s good name into question”.
“To assert that someone is committing a crime without further investigation also carries legal liability,” he said. “I would like people who are just exercising their right to vote and exercising their family’s right to vote not to have allegations thrown at them.”
The board’s only Democrat, Sara Ghazal, said the film’s claims have been “reviewed and rebutted by numerous appointed and elected Republican officials.”
“The analysis is flawed and there are claims that are completely unsupported by any evidence I have received other than individual isolated cases that I can rely on a hand with fingers to spare,” he said. she declared. “I have seen no credible evidence of organized efforts by unauthorized people delivering ballots, let alone invalid votes on a large scale.”
Despite the film’s dubious claims, Georgian officials issued subpoenas to True the Vote to investigate them. Ryan Germany, a lawyer with the secretary of state’s office, told the board on Tuesday that the group had genuine privacy concerns and had yet to release any information.