2:21 PM PDT, October 12, 2021
Two elections office workers in Georgia’s Fulton County have been fired for allegedly shredding around 300 voter registration forms ahead of local elections, according to a statement released by county elections officials. The county, which encompasses most of Atlanta, is the state’s most populous, and will begin early voting for municipal races less than 24 hours after the news was announced Monday.
Over the last two weeks, the employees allegedly destroyed batches of voter registration applications, officials said. The two employees were terminated Friday, and the incident was reported to the district attorney’s office for further investigation.
“Elections are the most important function of our government,” Chairman Robb Pitts said in a statement. “We have committed to transparency and integrity.”
Georgia voters do not register by party, which means the destroyed batches of paper voter registration applications are not necessarily specific to Democrat or Republican voters, The Washington Post reported.
County spokeswoman Jessica Corbitt clarified that the registration records may have made it into the system. “That’s the matter that’s under investigation – was that process completed,” she said, according to CBS News.
Any person who tries to vote and finds they are not registered, however, will be allowed to vote using a provisional ballot that will be subject to further review, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
But the allegations are expected to have larger implications for the Democrat-dominated county. The Fulton County elections office is also currently undergoing a Republican-led investigation related to the 2020 presidential election due to unfound claims that President Joe Biden did not win the election in Georgia.
“After 20 years of documented failure in Fulton County elections, Georgians are tired of waiting to see what the next embarrassing revelation will be,” Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, said in a statement. “The Department of Justice needs to take a long look at what Fulton County is doing and how their leadership disenfranchises Fulton voters through incompetence and malfeasance. The voters of Georgia are sick of Fulton County’s failures.”
Some of the long-cited failures of Fulton County’s elections include long lines and inefficiency in reporting election results, the Washington Post reported. It is also where many Donald Trump supporters baselessly claimed Republican poll watchers were ejected, and suitcases of ballots were hidden under tables.
But it was conclusively the overwhelmingly Democratic majority in Fulton County that swung the state in Biden’s favor, with three counts of the statewide vote finding no evidence of fraud, the Washington Post reported.
Raffensperger also famously rebuffed Trump’s pressure to overturn the election result following his loss in the 2020 presidential election.