A Fulton County employee moves voting machine transporters at the Fulton County Election Preparation Center on November 4, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Jessica McGowan | Getty Images
The state of Georgia announced Tuesday that an official audit of its voting machines found no evidence of fraud or foul play during the 2020 elections.
Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who had ordered a certified testing laboratory to conduct an audit of a random sample of Georgia’s machines, said that the probe was both complete and successful in ensuring that the machines hadn’t been manipulated.
“We are glad but not surprised that the audit of the state’s voting machines was an unqualified success,” Raffensperger, a Republican, said in a press release. “Election security has been a top priority since day one of my administration.”
“We have partnered with the Department of Homeland Security, the Georgia Cyber Center, Georgia Tech security experts, and wide range of other election security experts around the state and country so Georgia voters can be confident that their vote is safe and secure,” he added.
The announcement from Raffensperger came as the state works to recount by hand its ballots following a close outcome between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden in the Peach state. Georgia is trying to certify its election results by the Nov. 20 deadline.
NBC News, which called the presidential race for Biden on Nov. 7, also projected that Biden is the first Democrat to win Georgia’s presidential race for the first time since 1992. Biden as of Friday was leading Trump by 49.5% to 49.2% of the ballots tallied so far, a margin of about 14,000 votes.
Raffensperger said that a lab certified by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, Pro V&V, used forensic techniques to inspect ballot scanners and marking devices.
The lab also extracted the software or firmware from the scanners and marking devices to guarantee that only approved technology had been used in the state’s devices during the election.
According to Pro V&V, all of the software and firmware on the sampled machines was verified to be the Georgia-sanctioned technology.
“Coupled with the risk-limiting audit of all paper ballots relying solely on the printed text of the ballots, these steps confirm the assessment of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency that there are no signs of cyber attacks or election hacking,” Georgia officials said in the release.
Despite an acknowledgement that Biden won, Trump has nonetheless continued to challenge the integrity of the voting process without evidence. The president took to Twitter on Saturday evening to reiterate his assertion, again failing to provide evidence of the fraud he alleged.
“There is tremendous evidence of wide spread voter fraud in that there is irrefutable proof that our Republican poll watchers and observers were not allowed to be present in poll counting rooms,” Trump wrote. “Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia and others. Unconstitutional!”
In announcing its audit findings, Georgia — a state long controlled by Republican politicians — marked yet another blow in the claims of rampant fraud the president insists is real.
Last week, Trump’s lawyers dropped a legal challenge of a number of ballots in Maricopa County, saying Biden’s overall lead in the state is too big for the disputed ballots to make a difference. And in Michigan, a judge declined a request by Trump backers to block the certification of election results in Detroit.