Cobb begins recount in presidential race

11/17/2020 Ñ  Marietta, Georgia Ñ Cobb County elections workers continue to count and sort ballots during a Cobb County  hand recount of Presidential votes at the Jim Miller Park Event Center  in Marietta, Tuesday, November 17, 2020.  (Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com)
11/17/2020 Ñ Marietta, Georgia Ñ Cobb County elections workers continue to count and sort ballots during a Cobb County hand recount of Presidential votes at the Jim Miller Park Event Center in Marietta, Tuesday, November 17, 2020. (Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com)

Credit: Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com

Credit: Alyssa Pointer / Alyssa.Pointer@ajc.com

Cobb County began its recount of the presidential race Tuesday by testing the eight scanners that will be used to tally votes in order to make sure they are operating properly.

President Donald Trump lost to President-elect Joe Biden by less than half a percentage point statewide, and his campaign has availed itself of the right to demand a recount based on that razor thin margin. In Cobb, the race was not so close: Biden won 56 percent of the approximately 393,000 votes cast.

Cobb Elections Director Janine Eveler said election workers will use a test deck of 100 ballots, 25 of which are hand-written and 75 from the ballot-marking devices used at precincts.

“We have to take the memory sticks out of the scanners and take them back to the main office,” Eveler said. “If they don’t come up with the same result as what we expect, then they can’t be used in the scanning.”

Observers from both parties were on hand to monitor the recount at Jim R. Miller Park Event Center, said county spokesman Ross Cavitt.

Eveler said she expects Cobb’s recount to continue until the deadline on Dec. 2. She said it was “time-consuming” but part of the normal process.

“We do have a short timeframe for the runoff, so we do have lot of work ahead of us,” she said, referring to the two Jan. 5 senate runoffs.

Cobb has already received more than 30,000 absentee ballot applications for that race.

Map: How each Cobb precinct voted for president

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