Georgia Secretary of State Wants to End Runoff Elections

With two runoff elections for the U.S. Senate in the past two years, the state of Georgia gained national attention for its pivotal role in the balance of power between Republicans and Democrats. Judging from recent comments Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, the attention isn’t wanted anymore. calling on legislators to do away with the state’s runoff system for general elections, arguing that the process places too heavy a burden on voters and election officials. 

In a statement released yesterday, Raffensperger said: “Georgia is one of the only states in the country with a General Election Runoff,” said Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. “We’re also one of the only states that always seems to have a runoff. I’m calling on the General Assembly to visit the topic of the General Election Runoff and consider reforms.”

The General Assembly convenes in January and could select from a wide range of options to address this topic to help further the goal of safe, secure, and efficient elections.

“No one wants to be dealing with politics in the middle of their family holiday,” said Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. “It’s even tougher on the counties who had a difficult time completing all of their deadlines, an election audit and executing a runoff in a four-week time period.”

Georgia’s 2022 midterms shattered previous turnout records and achieved a high level of access for Georgia voters. Some counties had as many as 19 days of Early Voting in the General Election, and Georgia voters needed no excuse to vote early or by mail. Georgia continues to be a national leader in providing safe, secure, and accessible elections to all eligible Georgians.”

Raffensperger was a name not recognized by many people outside of Georgia politicos, but that all changed in January 2021, when Trump pressured him to change the state’s Presidential vote totals. Unmoved by the power of the Oval Office, Raffensperger stood his ground, openly defied Trump’s claims and asserted that there was no evidence to support claims of voter fraud. Audio of the call was published worldwide the following day, and from that point on, Raffensperger was lumped into the same group of “disloyal” Republicans who frequently receive public rebuke from the former President.

Considering the damage typically inflicted on any Republican who contradicts Trump, it was easy to expect a primary election loss for Raffensperger, yet he defied the odds. His principled stance gained popularity and support from Georgia voters, including Democrats, who are allowed to vote in Georgia’s open primaries. Ultimately, he defeated his primary opponent, Rep. Jody Hice, 52.3 percent to 33.4 percent. Last month in the Midterm General Election, Raffensperger defeated Democrat Bee Nguyen, 53.23 percent to 43.99 percent.

Ben Burnett
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