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Georgia: Election Denial in Races for Election Administration Positions

A collection of examples illustrates the prevalence of election denial in 2022 contests for the offices that will run the next elections in Georgia.

Published: March 29, 2022
Illustration featuring the state of Georgia
Brennan Center for Justice
View the entire Election Denial in Races for Election Administration Positions series

Below, we compile quotes from campaigns’ ads, websites, social media posts, and state­ments repor­ted in the media that illus­trate endorse­ment or oppos­i­tion to elec­tion denial — claims that the process or result of the last pres­id­en­tial elec­tion was ille­git­im­ate. Each of the candid­ates is running for an office that will play a role in admin­is­ter­ing future elec­tions in Geor­gia. Inform­a­tion about the finan­cing of these campaigns and those in other battle­ground states can be found here.

Governor

Cath­er­ine Davis (lost primary)

The campaign website of nonprofit exec­ut­ive Cath­er­ine Davis (R) features claims about a "barrage of anom­alies includ­ing alleg­a­tions of ballot harvest­ing, dead people voting, under­age teens voting, [and] chain of custody viol­a­tions,” and a plan to “steal the elect­oral college votes.”

In public remarks posted on Davis’s campaign Face­book page, she claimed that “drop boxes is how they stole the elec­tion,” and said she saw elec­tion work­ers “pull the ballots from under­neath the table,” a refer­ence to a disproven claim about vote count­ing in Fulton County.

Brian Kemp (won primary)

Gov. Brian Kemp (R) has defen­ded himself and the 2020 results against elec­­tion denial attacks and said, “I believe Joe Biden is the pres­id­ent of the United States. The elec­­tion got certi­fied. There’s noth­ing anybody can do about that.” He has touted his role enact­ing a voting bill called the Elec­­tion Integ­rity Act.

David Perdue (lost primary)

Former U.S. Sen. David Perdue (R), who lost his bid for reelec­tion to the Senate in the 2020 elec­tion cycle, said: “In my elec­tion and the pres­id­ent’s elec­tion, they were stolen. The evid­ence is compel­ling now.” He said he would not have certi­fied the 2020 elec­­­tion. After his campaign announce­­­ment, he joined a lawsuit seek­ing to show that there “were seri­ous viol­­­a­­­tions of Geor­­­­­gia law in the Fulton absentee ballot tabu­la­­­tion."

David Perdue Facebook ad

Vernon Jones (with­drew to run for Congress)

Campaign ads from the abor­ted gubernat­orial campaign of former state repres­ent­at­ive Vernon Jones (R) prom­ise he will “author­­ize a full statewide forensic audit of the 2020 pres­id­en­­tial elec­­tion.” Jones has said on Twit­ter, “If it weren’t for Brian Kemp, Donald Trump would still be Pres­id­ent of these United States.”

Vernon Jones tweet

Kandiss Taylor (lost primary)

Educator Kandiss Taylor (R) said, “Arizona helped Geor­­­gia commit the voter fraud,” and she deman­ded that the governor conduct a “full forensic audit” in Fulton and Chatham Counties. In a Janu­ary, she posted on Face­book that the Geor­gia elec­tion had poten­tially “over a million illeg­ally harves­ted ballots! DECER­TIFY GA NOW!”

Secretary of State

David Belle Isle (lost primary)

The former Mayor of Alphar­etta, Geor­gia, David Belle Isle (R) has said that Geor­gia “certi­fied the wrong result,” and that “I believe on stat­ist­ics alone that Trump won Geor­gia.” He has released ads featur­ing parody versions of popu­lar coun­try songs with the lyrics changed to claim there was miscon­duct in the 2020 elec­tion. The lyrics of one, in part:

Well way down yonder deep in Fulton County

Ballot count­ing’s fish­ier than the Chat­ta­hoo­chee

You can hardly find a camera on a Geor­­­gia drop box

Might’ve been some cheat­in’ but they never got caught

State Farm Arena on a Tues­day night

A pyramid of ballots in the pale moon­­light

Well Fulton’s miss­in’ ballots and it’s caus­ing trouble

Happy faces count Biden’s ballot double

Screenshot of David Belle Isle Facebook ad

John Eaves (lost primary)

John Eaves (D), who used to chair the Fulton County Board of Commis­­­sion­ers, posted on Face­­book: “there is no indic­a­­tion of fraud in last year’s elec­­tion. The results still stand that after three ballot counts and multiple invest­ig­a­­tions Demo­crat Joe Biden defeated Repub­­lican incum­bent Donald Trump in Geor­­­gi­a’s pres­id­en­­tial elec­­tion by about 12,000 votes. It is time we move past the ‘big lie’ as it is a consist­ent waste of tax dollars.”

Jody Hice (lost primary)

Rep. Jody Hice (R) has said, “If we were to get an accur­ate count of the votes in Geor­gia, I believe abso­lutely Trump won Geor­gia.” In an April debate, Hice made repeated claims about fraud in 2020 and alleged that Secret­ary of State Brad Raffen­sper­ger made a “deal” with Stacey Abrams that lead to fraud. He has claimed that “700,000 people are illegal voters.” As a member of Congress, Hice voted against certi­fy­ing Biden’s victory.

Screenshot of Jody Hice Facebook ad

Bee Nguyen (advanced to primary runoff)

State Rep. Bee Nguyen (D) has made her oppos­i­­tion to elec­­tion denial cent­ral to her campaign, describ­ing her fear of “a secret­ary of state who is anti-demo­cratic and refuses to certify the results of the elec­­tion.” In Decem­ber 2020, she debunked claims of ineligible voters from outside the state in a video that went viral. In an email to support­ers, Nguyen attacked Jody Hice as “trying to decer­tify” the 2020 elec­tion and a “Big Lie promoter.” She wrote: “Imagine if the next person to over­see our elec­tions liter­ally called the results of the 2024 elec­tion into ques­tion if the outcome didn’t suit their party."

Brad Raffen­sper­ger (won primary)

Secret­ary of State Brad Raffen­sper­ger (R) said in an April debate that Hice has been spread­ing “disin­form­a­tion,” noting: “That’s what destroys voter confid­ence.” Raffen­sper­­ger wrote a book, published in late 2021, called Integ­rity Counts, in which he defends the way he ran the 2020 elec­­tion and decries the trend of candid­ates refus­ing to accept elec­­tion results and rais­ing money on “unfoun­­ded claims of fraud and corrup­­tion.” In a Novem­ber 2021 op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Raffen­sper­­ger wrote, “I’m mostly known for stand­ing up for the integ­rity of Geor­­­gi­a’s Novem­ber 2020 elec­­tions. I spent months debunk­ing conspir­acy theor­­ies, refut­ing lies about our voting proced­ures, and endur­ing threats because I refused to bend on the facts. . . . If Amer­­ican demo­cracy is to survive, polit­ical figures of both parties need to aban­­don stolen-elec­­tion claims once and for all.”

Chatham County Board of Elections

Trish Brown (won primary)

Trish Brown (D), asked why she is seek­ing a seat on the board of elec­tions, said: “We need people that are will­ing to fight against believ­ers of the Big Lie.”

Robin Greco (lost primary)

Robin Greco (R) wrote in a Face­book post asking community members to place campaign signs: “I am running on Elec­tion Integ­rity and One And Done , which means You only get ONE VOTE ! We have got to Stop this Fraud.” In a speech to a local polit­ical group, Greco said, “citizens of Chatham County do not think that the elec­tion was fair.” She went on to say that the 2020 vote “should have been looked at differ­ently, should have coun­ted, should have had signa­tures, everything should have been veri­fied.” In a pinned Face­book post, Greco wrote “We The People Can Not Stand for this!” about an article in which a state legis­lator states his lack of trust in Fulton County elec­tion admin­is­tra­tion, drop boxes, and signa­ture match­ing proto­cols.

Jennifer Salandi (lost primary)

Since she qual­i­fied as a candid­ate for the board of elec­tions in March, Jennifer Salandi (R) has shared content on her Face­book page related to the 2020 elec­tion, includ­ing a video claim­ing Fulton County’s elec­tion results were “elec­tron­ic­ally manip­u­lated” and another stat­ing that dona­tions to fund elec­tion admin­is­tra­tion from Face­book CEO Mark Zuck­er­ber­g’s char­ity “changed the outcome of the 2020 pres­id­en­tial race.” She also shared a video from Steve Bannon’s show featur­ing claims of voting machine irreg­u­lar­it­ies in Mesa County, Color­ado.