Fulton responds to Trump’s criticism, says they’re ready for election

Fulton County leaders responded Monday to criticism from President Donald Trump and others claiming the county mishandled the election.

“We have been unfairly, and I’ll state that unequivocally, unfairly criticized by any number of people,” Fulton Commission Chairman Robb Pitts said during a virtual press conference, “no justification whatsoever.”

The county’s rebuke comes after a call in which Trump tried to cajole the Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” enough votes to overturn the statewide election results. Fulton — home to a tenth of all Georgians — was mentioned by name 16 times during the Saturday call.

Trump said Fulton was “totally corrupt” and that people “dumped ballots into Fulton,” which is Georgia’s most populated county.

In the call, the leaked audio of which was obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and other outlets, Raffensperger and his office’s general counsel Ryan Germany pushed back on Trump’s allegations.

Trump tried to convince Raffensperger, a fellow Republican, that not overturning Joseph Biden’s 12,000-vote statewide victory would harm their party’s chances of keeping control of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday. Democrats hold the majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Trump has filed multiple lawsuits trying to have Georgia’s election results overturned. Trump has chastised Fulton for months, bringing up debunked conspiracy theories as proof he was wronged. Following recount after recount, no court has sided with Trump’s claims of election fraud.

“When it gets out there and fingers are pointed at us, then others just simply pile on, but the facts do not support the criticism that we received,” Pitts said.

Pitts and Fulton elections head Richard Barron said they are ready for Tuesday’s election, which will determine who controls the U.S. Senate — which has been called, sarcastically and otherwise, the “world’s greatest deliberative body.”

Barron said Fulton has already received 100,000 mailed ballots, and roughly 270,000 people voted early for the runoff. Those 370,000 ballots in hand, he said, means early turnout has out-paced November’s presidential contest. He said he expects to have between 60,000 and 150,000 voters cast ballots in person Tuesday.

“I gave us an A-plus back in November, and we’re on track to receive an A-plus tomorrow,” Pitts said.

Local election officials react to controversial Trump phone call

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