Atlanta-Area Election Worker Goes Into Hiding After Viral Video Falsely Claims He Threw Away Ballots

Election vote counters in Georgia at a voting center.
Jessica McGowan / Getty Images

An Atlanta-area election worker has reportedly gone into hiding after a viral video falsely claimed he was seen throwing away ballots.

As the New York Post reported, a video circulated this week that showed the election worker crumpling up a piece of paper and throwing it away while processing ballots. The incident was seen on a livestream of the vote-counting taking place at the State Farm Arena in Fulton County, Georgia, outside of Atlanta. As the report noted, the clip attracted some viral interest on social media, with many claiming it showed evidence of election fraud that seemed to support unfounded claims made by President Donald Trump.

As The Associated Press reported, the clip accrued millions of views on Twitter along with the false explanation. Later, the elections director in Fulton County clarified that there was no fraud seen in the clip. Richard Barron said that the election counter was simply discarding the paper instructions included with the ballot, which contained no voting information.

“It’s been questioned whether the poll worker featured in the video was discarding one of those ballots. The answer is no, undeniably no,” he said at a press conference. “At no time was the poll worker able to extract a ballot.”

Barron went on to say that the election counter, who was not identified by name, had gone into hiding after facing harassment online.

“He’s having to leave his house and go stay with friends,” he said. “He’s afraid to drive his car, because the information about his car and his license plate is out there.”

A picture of people counting votes.
  ELAINE CROMIE / Getty Images

Trump and his allies have made a number of claims about election fraud, and critics have asserted that they’re being made without evidence. Twitter has placed warnings on a number of Trump’s posts, pointing out to readers that the information is disputed or unfounded.

Georgia emerged as a key battleground in the 2020 presidential election, with Democratic candidate Joe Biden taking a narrow lead as vote counting continued through the week. Both races for U.S. Senate seats in Georgia are headed to a runoff as neither candidate reached the 50 percent threshold needed to win outright.

As The Inquisitr reported, the margin in the presidential race was so thin that the vote appeared to be headed for an automatic recount, which could delay the final results even longer. The state remained uncalled by major networks early on Saturday, when many called the overall race in favor of Biden, declaring him the president-elect.