Investigation shows no evidence of ballot harvesting in Georgia

(The Center Square) – A statistical analysis of the Nov. 3 election in Georgia showed no incidents of ballot harvesting, according to a federally funded research and development nonprofit.

The MITRE Corporation’s National Election Security Lab analyzed the 38 addresses in Georgia where more than 20 absentee ballots were received.

The lab’s analysis of absentee ballots requested compared with absentee ballots returned determined no statistical anomalies that would be associated with ballot harvesting existed, and the 38 locations were multiresident locations.

“The Georgia Secretary of State engaged MITRE to assess the Georgia electoral process and results of the 2020 U.S. presidential election,” said Jerry Hogge, senior vice president and general manager of MITRE Public Sector. “Based upon our analysis of the data provided by Georgia’s Secretary of State, we have concluded that there are no indications of alleged ballot harvesting.

The 38 locations included colleges or university dorms, apartment buildings, senior living facilities, RV parks, health care facilities, homeless shelters, jails, a boarding school and a monastery.

“This report by MITRE is nothing less than a resounding victory for secure elections and voter integrity in Georgia,” Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said. “Ballot harvesting can be a major source of voter fraud and can undermine the integrity of the vote. We made stopping ballot harvesting a top priority, and this report shows that we have succeeded in effectively eliminating the practice in Georgia.”

The results of Georgia’s presidential election, which showed President-elect Joe Biden beat President Donald Trump, have been counted three times amid criticism and voter fraud claims by Trump and his supporters.

Raffensperger ordered a hand recount and audit of the initial results to “help build confidence” in the election. The Trump campaign then requested a recount after the audit, which showed Biden won by more than 11,000 votes.

Trump repeatedly has attacked Gov. Brian Kemp and Raffensperger for not doing more to reverse the outcome.

Raffensperger’s office has launched an investigation into Coffee County’s recount procedures and a signature match audit of absentee ballots in Cobb County. Neither act will reverse the outcome of the election, officials said.

Researchers from the University of Georgia also will help Raffensperger’s office conduct a review of absentee ballot voting signatures from the 2020 presidential election. Raffensperger said the statewide review is aimed at increasing confidence in the absentee voting process.

Georgia banned ballot harvesting in 2019. The practice entails the collection and delivery of numerous absentee ballots by an individual or group for people with which they have no connection.

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