Georgia election workers sacked amid allegations they shredded voter applications

A pair of Georgia election employees in Fulton County, the most populous in the state and historically Democrat-leaning, were dismissed late last week over allegations they shredded voting applications within the past two weeks.

In a statement, Fulton County officials said Monday that, per a preliminary review, the two workers “may have checked out batches of applications for processing but allegedly shredded a portion of the forms instead of fully processing them,” The Hill reported.

“Elections are the most important function of our government,” said Fulton County Commission Chairman Robb Pitts. “We have committed to transparency and integrity.”

A statement from officials said that Pitts “immediately” reported the incident to the office of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis for further inquiry.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, said that 300 applications for municipal elections were allegedly shredded by the workers.

The workers were fired on Friday. The shredding reportedly occurred within the past two weeks, according to Fulton County Registration and Elections Director Richard Barron.

According to The Associated Press, the deadline to register to vote was Oct. 4. Voters will go to the polls Nov. 2 to elect a mayor, city council members, and other city officials in Atlanta, the AP said, adding that other election workers detected the alleged illicit activity and reported the two workers to supervisors.

“Normally, processing a voter registration application involves entering them in the state system, updating them, verifying their information,” Jessica Corbitt, a spokeswoman for Fulton County, told the AP. “That is the matter that’s under investigation — was that process completed.”

Voters in the county do not register by party affiliation so that information would not have been included.

“Fulton County called the secretary of state’s office. We told them about this and we asked them to investigate,” Corbitt added.

Raffensperger has long been a critic of election operations in Fulton County, which has skewed heavily Democratic for years. In a release, he said his office would be launching a probe into the allegations and he also called on the Biden Justice Department to investigate the county’s elections as well.

“After 20 years of documented failure in Fulton County elections, Georgians are tired of waiting to see what the next embarrassing revelation will be,” he said. “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.”

The AP noted that the county has a lengthy history of problems with running elections to include “long lines, inefficiency in reporting election results and other issues.” For instance, the primary election in June 2020 “was especially problematic,” leading the State Election Board to enter a consent order with Fulton County election officials that included, among other provisions, the appointment of an independent election monitor.

County officials were also instructed to take several other measures to improve efficiency and reporting ahead of the November election this year.

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