Republican nominated to lead elections in heavily Democratic Fulton



Former Fulton Commissioner Lee Morris would put GOP in charge

A Republican has been nominated as chairman of the Fulton County Board of Elections, a move that could flip control of elections oversight in the county with Georgia’s largest number of Democratic voters.

Fulton Commission Chairman Robb Pitts, a Democrat, picked former Commissioner Lee Morris, a Republican, to lead the board responsible for certifying election results, setting the number of polling places and deciding whether to allow voting on Sundays during early voting.

Fulton includes almost all of the city of Atlanta, and about 73% of its voters supported Democratic U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock last November and Democratic President Joe Biden in 2020.

Morris’ nomination comes as the State Election Board is considering an attempted state takeover of Fulton’s elections board. A performance review recommended against a takeover in January, finding that the county had made improvements in operations and training since 2020, but the Republican majority on the State Election Board hasn’t yet voted on whether to dismiss the matter.

If appointed by the Fulton Commission during its Wednesday meeting, Morris would give Republicans three out of five members on the board. The Democratic and Republican parties each nominate two of the board’s members.

“We’re opening ourselves up to the same nonsense we saw in 2020 — voter restrictions, underfunded elections, and if attempts to steal elections are going to happen, it’s going to be in Fulton,” said Dana Barrett, a Democratic commissioner who defeated Morris in November’s election. “It literally is putting democracy at stake.”



Neither Morris nor Pitts returned messages seeking comment Monday. Current Board of Elections Chairwoman Cathy Woolard, a Democrat whose two-year term expires June 30, also didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Morris wrote on his campaign website that he doesn’t believe the 2020 election was stolen from Republican Donald Trump.

“I am proud to have the endorsements of many elected Democrats, including some of my fellow commissioners,” he wrote during his 2022 campaign for the Fulton Commission. “I have often stated that these county offices should be non-partisan.”

It’s unclear if Morris has enough votes on the Fulton Commission to be approved. Five of the Commission’s seven members are Democrats, meaning Pitts would need one other Democrat to get a majority in support of Morris.