Raffensperger formed the task force in October with a mission of “improving the integrity of our elections and increasing voter confidence in their outcomes is vital.” Among its members are former Republican U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland and former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young, a Democrat.
Since it was created, Raffensperger has drawn widespread praise for rebuking President Donald Trump’s false claims of rampant voter fraud in Georgia – a rejection that’s infuriated the president and drawn promises of a primary challenge in 2022.
With a handful of Georgia county elections directors behind him, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announces the start of a hand recount of the Nov. 3, 2020, presidential election during a briefing outside of the Georgia State Capitol building in downtown Atlanta on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020. (Alyssa Pointer/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS)
But he’s also come under sharp criticism from Democrats for other decisions, such as a spate of recent investigations into left-leaning groups and frequent attacks at Stacey Abrams, the former gubernatorial candidate and voting rights advocate vilified by Republicans.
Woodall said Raffensperger is “playing partisanship 101” with his dual approaches.
“He’s trying to play tough and endorse voter suppression,” he said. “You can’t say that we need bipartisan election reform and then say we need to disenfranchise eligible Georgia voters to benefit the Republican Party.”
Like other officials and advocates, Woodall predicted more partisan turmoil after the Jan. 5 runoffs for control of the U.S. Senate – a high-stakes race that could trigger a new round of dubious lawsuits and misinformation.
“The Georgia NAACP is concerned that that come Jan. 5 and beyond, we’ll see voter suppression in Georgia that’s worse than anything we’ve ever seen,” he said.