ATLANTA, Ga. (CW69 News at 10/CNN) – Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger rejected calls from Republican U.S. Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue to resign, calling the Georgia election, “an embarrassment for our state.”
Both of their Senate races appear to be headed for a January runoff. At stake is the political balance of the U.S. Senate.
“Earlier today Senators Loeffler and Perdue called for my resignation,” Raffensperger said in a statement. “Let me start by saying that is not going to happen. The voters of Georgia hired me, and the voters will be the one to fire me.”
Statement from Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger pic.twitter.com/Sf1JIWH5qg
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) November 9, 2020
“As Secretary of State, I’ll continue to fight every day to ensure fair elections in Georgia, that every legal vote counts, and that illegal votes don’t count,” Raffensperger continued.
“I know emotions are running high. Politics are involved in everything right now. If I was Senator Perdue, I’d be irritated I was in a runoff. And both Senators and I are all unhappy with the potential outcome for our President.”
Earlier Monday afternoon, Loeffler and Perdue called for Raffensperger’s resignation in a joint statement that bemoaned the state’s election process without offering any specific evidence to back their claims.
— Kelly Loeffler (@KLoeffler) November 9, 2020
“Georgians are outraged, and rightly so. We have been clear from the beginning: every legal vote cast should be counted. Any illegal vote must not. And there must be transparency and uniformity in the counting process,” the pair said, echoing President Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that illegal ballots are shaping the election.
The senators claimed that Raffensperger “failed to deliver honest and transparent elections.” They maintained, “The Secretary of State has failed the people of Georgia, and he should step down immediately.”
Raffensperger responded to the transparency claim, “…we were literally putting releases of results up at a minimum hourly. I and my office have been holding daily or twice-daily briefings for the press to walk them through all the numbers. So that particular charge is laughable.”
On Capitol Hill Monday evening, Loeffler refused to respond to questions from reporters about Raffensperger’s statement.
CNN projected last week that a special election race between Loeffler and Democrat Raphael Warnock will advance to a runoff in January. And while CNN has not projected that the Senate race between Perdue and Democrat Jon Ossoff will advance to a runoff, both candidates are already campaigning to face each other on January 5.
Perdue is leading Ossoff by more than 88,000 votes, but has not received the more than 50% of votes needed to prevent a runoff.
“My job is to follow Georgia law and see to it that all legal votes, and no illegal votes, are counted properly and accurately,” Raffensperger said in concluding his statement.
“As Secretary of State, that is my duty, and I will continue to do my duty. As a Republican, I am concerned about Republicans keeping the U.S. Senate. I recommend that Senators Loeffler and Perdue start focusing on that.”
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