Georgia election officials ready, but lines and problems could arise

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger spoke in Piedmont Park in front of the Park Tavern where long lines plagued voting during the June 9 primary. Raffensperger said the state is ready for Tuesday's election and said that, so far, it "has gone very well. But no election is perfect, he warned. "Tomorrow," he said, "we’ll have challenges.” (John Spink / John.Spink@ajc.com)
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger spoke in Piedmont Park in front of the Park Tavern where long lines plagued voting during the June 9 primary. Raffensperger said the state is ready for Tuesday's election and said that, so far, it "has gone very well. But no election is perfect, he warned. "Tomorrow," he said, "we’ll have challenges.” (John Spink / John.Spink@ajc.com)

Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC

Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC

Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says Georgia is prepared for Election Day, but he warned there could still be problems at the polls.

“There’s never been a perfect election,” Raffensperger said Monday. “This one has gone very well so far. Tomorrow, we’ll have challenges.”

Raffensperger said voters could be forced into lines, especially if turnout is high and voters show up before polls open at 7 a.m.

But election officials made many changes to avoid the same issues seen during a chaotic June primary, Raffensperger said during a press conference at the Piedmont Park voting site in Midtown Atlanta where wait times exceeded three hours during the primary.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger spoke Monday in Piedmont Park in front of the Park Tavern where long lines plagued voting during the June 9 primary. He came to update the press on what his office has done to prepare for Tuesday's election. “Tomorrow will be a record — and successful — election here in Georgia,” Raffensperger said. “I want to assure all voters, regardless of party or ideology, that the outcome of the election will be accurate. We will have an audit to verify the results. You can all have faith in the outcome.” (John Spink / John.Spink@ajc.com)
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger spoke Monday in Piedmont Park in front of the Park Tavern where long lines plagued voting during the June 9 primary. He came to update the press on what his office has done to prepare for Tuesday's election. “Tomorrow will be a record — and successful — election here in Georgia,” Raffensperger said. “I want to assure all voters, regardless of party or ideology, that the outcome of the election will be accurate. We will have an audit to verify the results. You can all have faith in the outcome.” (John Spink / John.Spink@ajc.com)

Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC

Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC

Tens of thousands of new poll workers have been hired. Voting sites have also expanded, especially in Fulton County, which has added 91 polling places since June.

A record number of voters, 3.9 million, cast their ballots in advance of Election Day. And about 2,000 technicians will be available to respond to problems with voting equipment.

“Tomorrow will be a record — and successful — election here in Georgia,” Raffensperger said. “I want to assure all voters, regardless of party or ideology, that the outcome of the election will be accurate. We will have an audit to verify the results. You can all have faith in the outcome.”

ExploreEverything you need to know about voting in Georgia

Most election results will be revealed election night, said Gabriel Sterling, the state’s voting system manager.

A state elections rule passed in August allowed absentee ballots to be opened and scanned in advance, meaning they can be tabulated soon after polls close. But absentee ballots that arrive at county election offices on Monday and Tuesday might not be counted until later this week.

Raffensperger said most votes will be counted Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning. Final outcomes of close races might become clear Wednesday, he said.

ExploreHow votes are counted in Georgia on election night and beyond

Voting tips

  • Double-check that your voting location hasn’t changed by visiting the My Voter Page at www.mvp.sos.ga.gov.
  • Prepare for lines if you plan to vote when polls open at 7 a.m.
  • Bring photo ID, which is required under Georgia law.
  • Make sure to review your choices and insert your paper ballot into a scanner before leaving the polling place. Otherwise, it won’t count.

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