'Increased Confidence' in Georgia's Elections as New Report Praises Georgia's Full Hand Recount

Monday, April 5th, 2021

new report  from The Carter Center “commends Georgia election officials for” executing November’s Risk Limiting Audit (RLA) triggered full hand recount in a way “that should serve as the basis for increased confidence in the electoral system in the state.” Specially designated observers from The Carter Center particularly highlighted the Office of the Secretary of State for the transparency of the hand recount and said Georgia’s elections workers did an “admirable job.”

“The new report is a ringing endorsement of the full hand recount that established conclusively that Georgia’s voting systems were accurate in November,” said Secretary Raffensperger. “Though there is always more work to be done in securing Georgia’s elections, this report should give confidence to those on the right and the left who have doubted Georgia’s election system for years. Additionally, I would like to thank The Carter Center for dedicating the time and resources to helping ensure Georgia’s election system is secure.”

The Carter Center deployed 52 monitors to 25 counties that comprised 60 percent of the votes counted and audited during the RLA-triggered full hand recount. The hand recount, the largest in U.S. history according to the report, “confirmed the original results of the presidential election in Georgia.”

The Carter Center report commends Georgia’s adoption of the paper-ballot system in 2019, which was key to making the RLA - the gold standard in post-election audits – possible. The report further notes that RLAs like the full hand recount conducted in Georgia “could guarantee, within a specified risk limit, that the winner of the original tally was indeed the voters’ choice.”

The report from The Carter Center reserves special praise for the thousands of elections workers around the state who executed the full hand recount on such a tight timeline. The report notes the “tense political environment” in which the full hand recount was executed and recognizes that the “secretary of state and county election officials conducted the RLA in an open and transparent way” notwithstanding. Notably, the Carter Center monitors reported that “in at least two counties… the election superintendent was advised by the Secretary of State’s Office to allow more monitors than the formula allowed in the interests of transparency and reducing partisan friction.”