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Election 2020: GA Sec. of State announces recount by hand

On Wednesday, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announced at a press conference that there will be a recount of ballots by hand in the swing state.

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On Wednesday, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger announced at a press conference that there will be a recount of ballots by hand in the swing state.

This comes as former Vice President Joe Biden leads President Donald Trump in the Peach State by about 14,000 votes with 99% of expected ballots counted, according to the Associated Press.

Furthermore, this follows all the major news outlets on Saturday calling the presidential election for Biden after increasing his victory margin in Pennsylvania and other swing states, as well as world leaders, all living former U.S. presidents, and other high-profile figures congratulating Biden. Trump, refusing to concede the election, has continued to file lawsuits in multiple states on the grounds of alleged voter fraud.

“With the margin being so close, it will require a full, by-hand recount in each county,” the state’s chief election official told reporters. “This will help build confidence. It will be an audit, a recount and a recanvass all at once. It will be a heavy lift, but we will work with the counties to get this done in time for our state certification.”

On Friday, Raffensperger said that the state was headed toward a recount, saying that the race, whose margin was just under 2,000 votes at that time, was “too close to call”.

RELATED: 2020 ELECTION: What voters should know about a recount in Georgia

When Monday came around, however, both of the state’s incumbent Republican U.S. senators in an unprecedented move called for Raffensperger, also a Republican, to resign because of his alleged “mismanagement” and “lack of transparency” in running the election. Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Purdue will face side-by-side runoff elections in January as they try to maintain control of their seats, which could determine if the GOP still holds a Senate majority during the 117th Congress.

Raffensperger, refusing to step down, shot back at Loeffler and Perdue in a statement on Monday.

“Earlier today Senators Loeffler and Perdue called for my resignation. Let me start by saying that is not going to happen,” he said. “The voters of Georgia hired me, and the voters will be the one to fire me.”

Historically, recounts have rarely changed the outcome of elections in states. In 2016, for example, then-candidate Donald Trump requested a recount in Wisconsin, where he beat Sec. Hillary Clinton by over 20,000 votes. After recounting the state’s millions of ballots, the new results gave him only 131 additional votes.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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FBI punishing employees who attended Jan 6 rally by revoking security clearances

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United States Congress

The official Twitter account of the GOP House Judiciary Committee released an alarming warning: “Whistleblowers alert that the FBI appears to be attempting to terminate the employment of employees who were engaged in protected First Amendment activity on January 6, 2021.”

A letter from ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH), to FBI Director Christopher Wray, addresses how several whistleblowers exposed the FBI of stripping employees of security clearances.

The letter cites claims of multiple whistleblowers who say the FBI has been purposely punishing those who attended then-president Donald Trump’s “Stop the Steal” rally on January 6, 2021, by revoking their clearances. Reportedly many of them did not even enter the U.S. Capitol.

“While FBI employees may not participate in partisan political campaigns, [they] do not give up their rights to engage in political speech activity,” wrote Jordan. “We have serious concerns that the FBI appears to be retaliating against employees for engaging in political speech disfavored by FBI leadership,” he added.

The primary whistleblower is described as a 20-year veteran of the FBI and U.S. military. Jordan believes the FBI’s actions could potentially result in the administrative extermination of the individuals’ employment because the FBI requires top-secret security clearances for majority of its employees.

Jordan has required that the FBI brief the committee on the security clearances matter by May 20.

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