Former President Donald Trump has faced persistent backlash from progressives for his claims that voter fraud played a role in his electoral loss in November’s election.
A judge in Georgia has added some credence to his concerns, however, by instructing state officials to provide updates about ongoing probes into alleged fraudulent ballots cast in Fulton County last year.
“Probably false ballots”
During a court hearing on Monday, Henry County Superior Court Judge Brian Amero declared: “It is important to me that we know whether or not counterfeit ballots have been introduced into the mix.”
His resulting order requests information from agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigations and elsewhere, who were given 20 days in which to provide the court with a response.
Two auditors lodged complaints after observing suspicious absentee ballots submitted in the last election, which they said appeared to have been fraudulently completed.
As advocate Garland Favorito of the election reform organization Voter GA argued, there were as many as 20,000 “probably false ballots” submitted in Fulton County.
Along with other plaintiffs in the case, he expressed a desire on Monday to further investigate whether roughly 147,000 mail-in ballots were legitimate or not.
“In front of cameras so everyone can decide”
“We don’t want some organization, claiming election official authorities, to tell us what these ballots are,” Favorito explained. “We the people of Georgia want to see the ballots for our own selves in front of the cameras so everyone can decide: Yes, they’re counterfeit or no, they’re not.”
A number of GOP state leaders have also demanded more accountability and transparency, including Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who has previously expressed skepticism that voter fraud had a measurable impact on the presidential election results.
As Politico reported, Trump’s voter fraud narrative has gained traction among his supporters, many of whom are concerned that irregularities will impact upcoming elections.
Of course, some in the GOP are worried that focusing on fraud will relegate their party to minority status.
Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, for example, asserted: “You pick a state, you pick an election, you pick a national election, and if we try the same approach, we will come in the same second place that we just did.”