Federal judge blocks Sec. of State from certifying election until Friday

Federal judge blocks Sec. of State from certifying election until Friday
Provisional ballots (Source: WALB)

ATLANTA, GA (WALB) - On Monday, a federal judge issued an order blocking the Georgia Secretary of State’s office from certifying state-wide election results until, at the earliest, Friday, November 16 at 5 p.m.

The Secretary of State's office said it had planned to certify the results by Wednesday, November 14.

The ruling is in response to a lawsuit filed by Common Cause Georgia against Brian Kemp in his official capacity as Secretary of State, on Monday, November 5, the day before the election.

As acting Secretary of State, Robyn Crittenden, appointed by Governor Nathan Deal, is substituted as the defendant, according to the order.

According to the federal ruling, the Secretary of State’s office has to do one of two things when it receives county certified election returns:

  1. Tell the county election superintendent to cancel its certified return if it has 100 or more provisional ballots, and the county must then do a “good faith review” of the eligibility of voters who were issued provisional ballots.
  2. Do an independent review of the eligibility of voters who submitted provisional ballots.
“This remedy is necessary and warranted, based on the nature of the evidence in the record, the fundamental importance of the interest of the voters that cannot be remedied after final certification, and the urgency of the situation. The remedy has been narrowly crafted and does not disturb the status quo for election certification deadline.”
COMMON CAUSE GEORGIA, as an organization v. BRIAN KEMP, in his official capacity as Secretary of State of Georgia

The court also ordered the Secretary of State’s office to create a secure and free-access hotline or website for provisional ballot voters to find out if their provisional vote was counted, and if not, why.

Below is a full copy of the ruling:

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