Five Georgia voters just filed an emergency lawsuit petitioning the courts to prevent Brian Kemp, governor’s candidate who is also the current Secretary of State in charge of overseeing Georgia’s elections, from playing any role in supervising the counting and recounting of votes and certification of election results in one of the closest elections the state has seen, according to an article on Mic.
Kemp’s conflict of interest has been obvious since the start of the race. generating a controversy over his perceived voter suppression in purging voter rolls and rejecting voter registrations by African-Americans at a much higher percentage than white voters in his race against Stacey Abrams, the first Black woman to run for governor of the state.
According to Mic:
“The lawsuit alleged Kemp was misusing his power to gain an unfair advantage in the governor’s race against Democratic candidate Stacey Abrams. The petition accuses Kemp of using his office to make an ‘unfounded accusation’ against the Democratic Party, which he reportedly posted on the official Georgia Secretary of State website and via his campaign, according to a statement.”
“That no person should be a judge in their own case is about as basic a rule of fairness as you can get,” Protect Democracy counsel Larry Schwartztol said in a statement. Protect Democracy, a nonpartisan legal organization, is representing the five voters alongside former U.S. attorney Michael J. Moore and former Department of Justice Voting Rights Section attorney Bryan L. Sells.
“That principle, embodied in the Constitution’s Due Process Clause, applies with special force to Secretary Kemp, who has misused his official position to try to tilt the playing field of the election in his favor.,” Schwartztol added. “The extreme facts of this case warrant emergency relief to protect the rights of Georgia voters.”
This latest lawsuit is in addition to the suit filed two weeks ago by the NAACP after complaints that voting machines were changing votes for Abrams to votes for Kemp in early voting.
With pundits still saying the Georgia Governor’s race is too close to call at this hour, the chance that a recount might be necessary mandates that Kemp be barred from being involved in supervising the recount of an election in which he has a such a tremendous stake. Hopefully, the courts will agree.
Any other option would only further reduce the trust of American voters in the legitimacy of the electoral process that has already suffered greatly since the Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
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