Georgia House committee to take up election security

A state House of Representatives committee will meet next week to discuss election security ahead of the Jan. 5 U.S. Senate runoff.

Speaker David Ralston announced the move amid rising Republican concern about the integrity of elections as President Donald Trump continues to make unproven allegations of voter fraud in Georgia.

On Thursday two Senate committees examined allegations of voting fraud and improprieties during the November election and possible changes to election laws.

Now the House Governmental Affairs Committee will meet Thursday to discuss the “security and efficiency” of the runoff and future elections. But the move stops short of calls for a special legislative session to change election laws before the runoff. Absentee voting in the runoff has already begun.

“Ahead of the critical Jan. 5 U.S. Senate runoff, it is imperative that we ensure free and fair elections that inspire confidence and certainty in the result,” Ralston said in announcing the hearing.

The committee already has been studying problems that occurred during last June’s primary election. Among other things, Ralston has expressed concern about Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s decision to send absentee ballot applications to every active voter amid the coronavirus pandemic last spring.