No ‘illegal votes’ in Georgia, officials say

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No ‘illegal votes’ in Georgia, officials say

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Early voters wait outside George Pierce Park Community Recreation Center in Suwanee on Wednesday, October 26, 2016. Current wait time was 2 hours. Georgia, which is nearing 1 million ballots cast during the state’s early voting period, will open its polls this Saturday for a mandatory weekend voting day ahead of the Nov. 8 presidential election. In the last presidential election, nearly 2 million people in Georgia cast early ballots ahead of Election Day — almost half of all ballots cast in that election. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

While President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday calling for a “major investigation” into voter fraud, Georgia officials had already begun making assurances against his suggestion about “millions” of illegal votes during last year’s presidential election.

“We haven’t had illegal votes in Georgia,” said David Dove from the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office, who testified Tuesday before a state House hearing on Georgia’s elections system.

Georgia lawmakers in 2005 passed one of the nation’s first voter ID laws, requiring people to show photo identification at their polling location. State officials — who won court approval to implement the law in 2007 —have called it a key component to preventing fraud at the polls, and it is strongly supported by the state’s conservative GOP leadership including Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp.

Dove said the November election saw only a handful of problems among what was a record turnout in Georgia, with more than 4.1 million votes cast. In Fulton County, for example, five residents are being investigated for repeat voting, an action which at least one of them told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution came from concern that their votes had not been properly counted. The double votes were caught, however.

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