Former President Jimmy Carter — a lifelong Georgia resident — is now publicly asking Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp to resign to protect the integrity of the upcoming election.
Jason Carter, who is a former Georgia state senator and grandson of the ex-president, tweeted an image of the letter his father wrote to Kemp, saying, “as a Georgian, I hope Secretary Kemp steps aside. And no matter who is elected, we have to reform our election system.”
Actual copy of my grandfather's letter to Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Everyone knows who I personally support. But as a Georgian, I hope Secretary Kemp steps aside. And no matter who is elected, we have to reform our election system. pic.twitter.com/cSONlexMut
— Jason Carter (@SenatorCarter) October 29, 2018
“In Georgia’s upcoming gubernatorial election, popular confidence is threatened not only by the undeniable racial discrimination of the past and the serious questions the federal courts have raised about the security of Georgia’s voting machines, but also because you are now overseeing the election in which you are a candidate,” President Carter wrote. “This runs counter to the most fundamental principle of democratic elections — that the electoral process be managed by an independent and impartial election authority.”
“In order to foster voter confidence in the upcoming election, which will be especially important if the race ends up very close, I urge you to step aside and hand over to a neutral authority the responsibility of overseeing the governor’s election,” he added.
In a debate earlier this month with Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, Secretary Kemp said he would continue to serve as Secretary of State even if the election was close enough to merit a recount. This is obviously a concern with voters of color, many of whom Kemp has purged in his removal of 340,000 registered voters from the rolls, according to a recent investigation by journalist Greg Palast. Although a judge recently ruled that absentee ballot applications can’t be thrown out due to signature errors, that ruling only affects a small percentage of those purged.
Currently, the polls for the Georgia gubernatorial race are split between Abrams and Kemp, with Kemp leading by an average of just 1.5 percentage points, according to RealClearPolitics. The typical margin of error is between three and five percentage points.
Tom Cahill is a contributor for Grit Post who covers political and economic news. He lives in Bend, Oregon. Send him an email at tom DOT v DOT cahill AT gmail DOT com.
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