The state of Georgia has been hotly contested this year in the midterms, with Democrat Stacey Abrams giving Republican Brian Kemp a hard time at the polls. As of the time of writing, Georgia’s gubernatorial race results have still not been announced, as Abrams and Kemp are still neck-and-neck, with a strong possibility of a runoff.
Meanwhile, one of the scandals that has dominated the conversation when it comes to Georgia’s elections is the voter purge that took place. While plenty of ineligible people — read “deceased” — may have been removed, there was plenty of talk that many very much alive people had also been taken off the voter rolls. Ninety-two-year-old Christine Jordan discovered yesterday that she was one of them, as Greg Palast reported.
According to her granddaughter Jessica Lawrence, Jordan has been voting at the same polling station since 1968. One of Kemp’s excuses for removing people from the voter roll was that they had not voted in a number of consecutive elections, but Jordan assured Palast she has voted in every election for the past five decades. Somehow, her entire voting history has been erased in the purge.
Lawrence herself was in tears as she described the moment her grandmother was turned away from the polling station.
“It’s horrible, …she held civil rights meetings in her home …and they had no record of her. She was here in the West End community when we couldn’t….” Lawrence was unable to finish her sentence to say the word “vote” through the emotion. “And today, not being able to come out and vote… It’s extremely emotional. And it bothers me. Bothers me to my core.”
Palast has a running court case against Kemp over the purging of voter rolls, and Jordan was not the only person in Georgia who had been turned away from the polls after suddenly and mysteriously being removed as a registered voter.
Rahiem Shabazz was another who was told he was not registered to vote, and he insisted on a provisional ballot instead. Unfortunately, Kemp has already ruled that provisional ballots will not be counted in the state of Georgia. Shabazz went a step further, asking Palast if going to federal court would force Kemp to count his vote and is now in touch with lawyers regarding the matter.
While Kemp is staunchly against counting provisional ballots, Abrams has agreed that every single vote should be counted, regardless.