Nov 9, 2020

Georgia Press Conference on Election Count Updates Transcript November 9

Georgia Press Conference on Election Count Updates Transcript November 12
RevBlogTranscriptsGeorgia electionGeorgia Press Conference on Election Count Updates Transcript November 9

Georgia election officials held a press conference on November 9 to provide updates on the election process and vote counts. Read the transcript of the news briefing here.

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Gabriel Sterling: (05:21)
Morning. I’m Gabriel Sterling, the Statewide Voting System Implementation Manager for the State of Georgia, and this is my first time working with a signer, and as you all have seen, I talk relatively quickly so I’ll do my best on this one. As you know, we continued to work through the weekend. I’m going to go over some of the numbers as to where we stand right now as we close in on counties beginning the certification process. I know there were some questions mainly concerning the military balance, which were the last ones to be able to come in on Friday. So with, at the end of the day, there were 18,407 UOCAVA military votes that were accepted and outstanding, which means they can’t come in now. But these were the ones that were out there available that could have come in but did not, with 7,786.

Gabriel Sterling: (06:16)
Now, separate from that was the regular absentee ballots. So with that, the ballots cast were 1,303,749 absentee ballots. And then there’s 126,400 that were not cast. So you will see that that’s a lower number than the original full request, because we literally had hundreds of thousands of people show up to vote in person who had their absentee ballots canceled, which is a process that’s legal in the state of Georgia. Now, so far, we’ve seen a little over 7,000 of the provisionals that have been made part of the reports that have come in from the counties. So we know at least 70, I think 7,300 provisionals have been accepted already and we are continuing to work with counties to find out how many might be parts of their final reports. But at the same time, they are working diligently to bring us those final reports.

Gabriel Sterling: (07:05)
47 counties so far have given us their certified results in. I don’t have the list of them right here, but you can go to our website to look for those counties. On the map, they’ll be colored orange. So then I have a few items that happened if we watched over the weekend, that for lack of a better word or different terminologies, fake news, disinformation, misinformation, misunderstandings, and all those things that are feeding into the situation we see, not just in Georgia, but across the country. So I’m going to go through, and I may go into the weeds on some of these because I think they need to be fully understood as we see people who are genuinely upset with the outcomes to people who are genuinely thrilled with the outcomes.

Gabriel Sterling: (07:53)
The facts are the facts, regardless of outcomes, and that’s one of the things we’re focusing on here is getting our account accurate and right, and getting accurate information so that the end of the day, everybody, regardless of whose side won and whose side loss understands that in Georgia, we had an actual accurate outcome. So first, as you all know, we use the Dominion Voting System. There was an early report of a “glitch or software issue or problem in Michigan.” There was no software issue in Michigan in that county. What happened there was a people and a process issue. And this is going to get very much into the weeds, and I apologize for that, but I want to make sure people have a full understanding of how this situation of misreporting of original results occurred, and how it was corrected so it did not affect the outcomes.

Gabriel Sterling: (08:42)
Essentially, what happened is you have a small county in the upper peninsula of Michigan with a clerk there, who happens to be Republican, and they had 17 scanners, I believe. And in one scanner, she’d forgotten to add a school board race. So she called her vendor, which I believe is called Election Source on Saturday and said, “Hey guys, I need you to come here and add this …”

Gabriel Sterling: (09:03)
… Saturday and said, “Hey guys, I need you to come here and add this particular race back to this election so that people could vote on it.” They reprinted their ballots, because they have hand marked paper ballots there for that particular precinct. So like the source said, “Okay, here’s your new database. Now, remember, you have a new universal database for your county, which means you have to burn new media, not just for your one precinct, but for all of the precincts.” So what happened was is she just did the one precinct and in doing so, the tabulators themselves, the scanners themselves, all saw the ballots they thought they needed to see, and they scanned properly. So they got the results. When they closed down the election, you get a tape off and it shows you what the votes were. Now, the situation came up because she has 17 scanners and she has one database.

Gabriel Sterling: (09:53)
Now the database she has, only the one new scanner is aligned with that database, the other 16 are not. So I want you to think about it this way. If anybody’s worked with an Excel spreadsheet and you put in formulas and then your formulas all work, and then you add a column, the formulas all go to crap. They just make no sense, then the numbers go different places. So the database could not recognize what it was looking at. And obviously they had people who were getting zero results. And when they were looking at it on their election night reporting system, because of the way this happened, they realized that very quickly, they took those numbers down. I believe they hand input into the EMS from the tapes because the tabulators, the scanners did everything right. This was just a simple reporting issue because of an error because she forgot to change her media output.

Gabriel Sterling: (10:42)
That is not a glitch. That is not a software issue. That’s a human being who made a mistake under trying circumstances. The county has 44,000 people and it’s not very resourced. That’s one. So there is no software issue with the Dominion software. I think some people saw some very entertaining video of some people dumpster diving in Spalding County and looking for “ballots”. There were no ballots there. We sent investigators down. What they found was empty security envelopes. So there was nothing there that affected the outcome of the election. It made for good video, but doesn’t actually have any there there on that front. The issue with the Gwinnett ballots cast being almost twice as much as what was shown as the overall vote. The issue is many of y’all who are from Georgia understand that under the National Voting Rights Act, Gwinnett is the one county in Georgia that has to use two languages, Spanish and English. In doing so, essentially have the double the size, or double the number of their pages on their ballots.

Gabriel Sterling: (11:43)
So common sense kind of made us realize this, that in the reporting, report says ballots cast, it’s really pages scanned, and we’ve already talked to Dominion about the fact that language needs to be changed, and the fact that it’s not exactly double is because sometimes people just turn in the front page and there’s one of our president, that’s it. They don’t care about the rest of it and they leave it behind. So that’s where that comes from. So there is no double ballots vote cast in Gwinnett.

Gabriel Sterling: (12:08)
Why is the Gwinnett count going slowly? What was the issue? Their results were all uploaded on Tuesday night, what they have was a situation where they tried to make something work better and they ordered an additional adjudication module. Now, in this particular case, the adjudication module was not being used to discern a person’s vote, it was being used to get the write-ins off of the BMDs, ballots. Okay. Because there’s no way to get that off of the scanner. So you have to go through the adjudication module because in the presidential race, we do have some certified write-in vote candidates. So you have to have those votes for your final counts.

Gabriel Sterling: (12:48)
Now, the issue they had, and this was truly a configuration issue, not a software issue, now software glitch, it was a configuration issue where they have a single adjudication server and that server was then going to multiple workstations. Now to send out the ballot images on that, they have to use something called Microsoft Q or MSQ. Now the MSQ configuration for this was just done incorrectly. Dominion said, “Yep, we messed that up. Our fault.” And that’s what held them up.

Gabriel Sterling: (13:20)
So in doing that, it sort of slowed down their server and the secondary part of this is because they had so many extra ballots, more than anybody else, and so much more data on those ballots because they had more information on them, there’s a lot more white space on a standard ballot because they don’t have much printing on it. So it requires much more memory. It just slowed everything down. So an engineer came from Denver to optimize their server. Everything went through on Sunday really well. And they have now uploaded their final items. The Spalding poll pad issue where somebody supposedly called or showed up, or it was a man, or a woman, or a person named Crystal, because the story kept on moving.

Gabriel Sterling: (13:58)
Essentially, here’s the things that are the facts that we know: according to the log files, nothing touched the poll pads after October 31st. That was the last poll pad update. So that is what we know, that’s what I can say. So there was nothing that was done to the system after that date. So the night before, nothing was happening to the system. Saturday night, which was so much fun after the Georgia game, I got to drive down to State Farm Arena because Fulton found an issue. We didn’t know what it was, but we made sure immediately we had our monitor onsite. Carter Jones was there. We had an investigator onsite immediately. The secretary dispatched, Deputy Secretary Jordan Fusch to the scene as well. Because again, anybody who’s grown up in this state, in this area, knows there’s just Fulton being Fulton sometimes, and we know that many national media and all the campaigns with wondering what’s going on. So we wanted to make sure we had boots on the ground to keep an eye on the situation.

Gabriel Sterling: (14:58)
What happened there was again, bad process. They upload our results on Friday. They addended the reconciliation after. In general, when you’re about to tell the world, “These are the numbers.” When everybody around the world and the country is looking at them, you probably want to do your reconciliation prior to uploading them. They did not, and unfortunately the gamble did not pay off. They figured out, hours later, that the reconciliation did not match something to the tunes of, and forgive my math I’m off on this, I’ll come back to correct it, I think it was 484 total votes that they were off and it was all inside the provisional bucket. Okay. So they went back there about three o’clock.

Gabriel Sterling: (15:38)
And inside of that, the first thing that discovered was there was 126 of the provisional ballots that were scanned into the absentee module. So what that means is in the original reporting, the absentees were 126 higher and the provisionals were 126 lower. So from that, that was the first thing they found. Then while they were onsite at State Farm Arena, they discovered there was a box of 358 damaged ballots. Because what happens is when you vote a provisional, you have to put it inside a provisional ballot, a provisional envelope, with an explanation as to what the issue is, signatures by peoples so you can identify it, and then to figure out if it needs to be verified or just counted. So what they do is they put that through an automatic opening machine, has a little knife that goes through and opens it up. Now on occasion, that knife will slice the ballot. You cannot scan a damaged ballot. So the normal process is you take those ballots and you replicate them on a BMD. And then you scan those ballots. That process should have been done on Friday. It was not.

Gabriel Sterling: (16:43)
So when they got there, they discovered these, they did the replication, Republican and Democrat monitors were there in the room. Like I said, our monitor was there and the processes here, it went on a very long time. They got there at three, we tag teamed to get some people in and out of there, but there was always people on site, I was there until about 10:30 myself, and the process took a long time and I don’t have a good answer as to why it took so long, but it did. So they went through that process, they scanned those ballots, added them to the totals, backed out the results they put it on Friday, put the new ones back in. And even at the end of the day, they were trying to do a reconciliation one last time, and they were seven ballots short.

Gabriel Sterling: (17:25)
They couldn’t find seven ballots. So then somebody brought up the, “Hey, have you looked in the spoiled ballot bin?” And sure enough, that’s where the seven ballots were. So they were able to get to a full accounting of all those ballots. And the problem we have is when people don’t follow their processes and the procedures, it undermines people’s faith in the overall outcomes. It’s a silly little thing, sometimes people, but these details are very important, and Fulton unfortunately had a history of some of this stuff and they did so much to clean up their act from the June election, and I want to note a couple of other things about that. I’m going to give the rest to someone to note a couple of things at the end. So then there’s been sort of a-

Gabriel Sterling: (18:02)
So then there’s been sort of a description there, “Georgia suddenly flipped from Republican for years to Democrat.” Again, anybody who has been here is aware of the fact that none of this was sudden, I mean, there was a very close race for governor in 2018. We saw people getting elected as Democrats in Gwinnett and Cobb County for the last few years. None of this is sudden. None of this is really overly surprising to the pundits who track what’s going on in Georgia. And I don’t think you can say it’s a massive flip when the Biden lead seems to be 10,000, well, it’s probably more than this now. It was 10,353 before we did the last uploads. And I haven’t done the math to see what it was last time, and it should be something similar to that.

Gabriel Sterling: (18:39)
So the other thing we’ve discovered is from our initial assessment, there was a lot of ticket splitting going on. There’s many people who did not vote for the president who did vote for David Perdue or Kelly Loeffler or Bubba McDonald or Doug Collins. So we saw a lot of ticket splitting. And you see a lot of it regionally, a lot of it in the suburbs. I mean, all this stuff kind of tracks with the political environment we’ve seen. So a lot of this has to do with ticket splitting, not from any sudden, odd thing.

Gabriel Sterling: (19:06)
This is the one that’s a little more, for lack of a word, crazy town, which is the Hammer and Scorecard issue. Frankly, it doesn’t make a lot of sense, but I’m going to quote the Chris Krebs, who’s the director of CISA, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. He uses the words, “It’s flat out a hoax and nonsense.” So we can’t be having people out there who are putting out hoax and nonsense from the people who were designed and designated to protect our cyber infrastructure in this country. So don’t buy into these things, find trusted sources.

Gabriel Sterling: (19:43)
Another thing I want to point out that in this state, this time, this election on election day was an amazing success. We had an average two minute wait time. That’s unheard of in this state ever. Even when we had DREs. Because the people of Georgia did a very good job of adopting Secretary Raffensberger’s November action plan and moving their voting behaviors to early voting. We had 2.7 million early in person votes. We had about a little over 1.3 million absentee votes, and 975,000 in person election day votes, which goes back to what many people thought we would have a 50%, 60% mail-in vote, absentee vote adoption.

Gabriel Sterling: (20:28)
Georgians culturally enjoy voting in person. That’s why the vast majority of them be the early in-person or in-person on election day. That’s what we saw a lot of was people defaulting to type. They like being there, they like seeing their ballot. They like putting it into the scanner. And we saw a lot of people who believe in that system now. And what I don’t like is people out there trying to undermine this system that was put together so hard by the Secretary’s office and those county elections directors.

Gabriel Sterling: (20:55)
Now, let me be perfectly clear on another point, we are going to find that people did illegally vote. That’s going to happen. There are going to be double voters. There are going to be people who did not have the qualifications of a registered voter to vote in this state. That will be found. Is it 10,353? Unlikely. But every election, as I’ve said I think every day at this podium, is imperfect. The issue now is with margins. We are the winner for the closest in the country at 0.2%. When the margins are this tight, every little thing matters. So this office will thoroughly investigate and we will work to find ways. We know the system counted properly. We know the ballots that were there were counted properly and correctly. We know that. We’re going to have an audit to prove it. And it looks like more than likely the president will ask for a recount to reaffirm that.

Gabriel Sterling: (21:45)
But on the front end, we need to make sure that the absentee ballot process is as tight as it can be so we can stop illegal voting and prevent double voting now and in the future. So with that, I’ll take any questions you all might have.

Speaker 1: (21:59)
You addressed several issues. One I wanted to bring up, US Representative Doug Collins alleged there was ballot harvesting. Have you seen any ballot harvesting or know what he’s talking about?

Gabriel Sterling: (22:09)
We have not seen that at this time, but I do believe we have some reports of this. Our investigators would likely be looking into it, but I don’t have specific information at this time. Yes. Either one. You all have time.

Speaker 2: (22:17)
[inaudible 00:00:22:23].

Gabriel Sterling: (22:28)
Okay. So with 47 having certified so far, that means we have 112 more to go, which is not insignificant. And some of them are the larger counties. But we have some of the larger counties. Richmond’s already certified, Muskogee’s already certified. So we already have some of the larger counties in here, but it will be a process as they continue to wrap up the final pieces of the provisionals. We feel like most of the uploads were already done over the weekend. And now you’ll find the ticky-tacky things where they do their reconciliations and make sure that yes, we’ve got all the ballots we uploaded. So that’s what happens first. We’re trying to move them as fast as they can in certification so that we can do our risk limiting audit. And no, the decision has not been made as to which race that will be done on. But the outward bounds of all these, again, are the counties have to certify by this Friday. And then the following Friday, the state has to be certified. And again, that’s because that is the outward edge bound before we have to get the UOCAVA ballots out for military and overseas voters on Saturday, November 21st. Now you. No, nothing? Okay. CNN.

Speaker 3: (23:29)
[inaudible 00:23:30].

Gabriel Sterling: (23:29)
Okay, it’s loud. You got to step forward so I can hear you.

Speaker 3: (23:31)
[inaudible 00:23:36].

Gabriel Sterling: (23:37)
No. Okay. What else?

Speaker 4: (23:41)
Very good. We also heard allegations from the president that there were missing military ballots. Were you missing military ballots?

Gabriel Sterling: (23:50)
The only thing we have, and I’ll go back over the numbers again, was the approximately 7,000 that just did not make it here in time legally. And I’ll go over those numbers again, one second. 7,786 of them did not make it here to their county in time. So I wouldn’t call those missing. There’s people who either didn’t vote them or they got lost in the USPS or any other number of ways why they didn’t get there. Steven.

Steven: (24:13)
Can you talk about the audit timing and process since this is the first time we’ve had a state-wide risk-limiting audit?

Gabriel Sterling: (24:21)
We’re working to get the deadline for the counties to get their ballot manifests into the state is basically today. I’m sure there’ll be some stragglers we’re working with because again, like you said, this is the first time we’ve done something like this. Now, we cannot do the audit itself until we get a certification from the counties because that gives us our final count of the ballots, which is then put into the Arlo system where we’re a partner with VotingWorks, A nonpartisan group who’s helping us organize this risk-limiting audit. And again, we’re kind of at the mercy of the last county to come in before we can get everything going. But I believe, and it’s either Tuesday or Wednesday, I think, the secretary will make the announcement as to which race will be audited. I’m not sure, at the time, which one it is. And frankly, I just remember it’s Tuesday or Wednesday. And I’ll try to get that answer to you. Yes, sir.

Speaker 5: (25:05)
[inaudible 00:25:10].

Gabriel Sterling: (25:20)
Well, frankly, the Secretary ran for this job, we took these jobs. The pressure is more internal than external to get it right. Our job is to get it right for the voters and the people of Georgia and for the people of the United States to make sure the outcomes of this elections are correct and trustworthy. And at the end of the day, no matter which side of the aisle you’re on, no matter which candidate you supported, you can have trust and believe in the outcome of these things. Listen, we understand that there’s one side of this country that is ebullient, they’re ecstatic, they’re in the streets partying. I guess COVID’s over. So then you have the other side, which are extremely upset. They’re angry. They, in their heart of hearts, know in their gut that something terrible happened. And their guy lost and it’s not fair.

Gabriel Sterling: (26:10)
And when you’re this close and the emotions run this high, it’s understandable. And the president, to a strong degree, has a responsibility to the 70 million people or so who voted for him to say, “I’m going to go through all the legal means to make sure your vote’s defended.” We understand that. Our job in this state is to follow a law of this state. If a judge comes in and tells us to do something else, we will do that. But our job is to follow the law, get the accurate counts, and get them out as fast as we can legally.

Speaker 6: (26:34)
Is it just provisional ballots, to your understanding, that are left to count? Or are there some overseas ballots which still need counting?

Gabriel Sterling: (26:41)
I couldn’t answer that right now. It’s down to the county level, but I know they’re working diligently to get through those. Yes, ma’am.

Speaker 7: (26:51)
[inaudible 00:08:54].

Gabriel Sterling: (26:54)
Well, this is it. It was a configuration issue on a single machine. It was one of those things where they try to get extra machinery in to help the process. And this falls in something my dad calls help don’t help-

Gabriel Sterling: (27:03)
… extra machinery and to help the process, and this falls in something my dad calls, “Help don’t help unless it helps.” This did not help. But going forward, it’s going to be easy to look for that and know that. We’re looking on some procedures to make sure that in the future, this becomes such an important part of this, that we do an extra step of verification before we deploy it. And we’re looking for another way, that basically, all of these to be adjudicated ballots get put to one side over here and the rest of them can be done. They get uploaded and those results are out there. Which is what they did, but the process of getting back through this because of that misconfigurations, it’s taken longer than it should have.

Gabriel Sterling: (27:31)
Yes. Wait a second. She’s been patient.

Speaker 8: (27:33)
Thank you. There’s some reports now that workers have been threatened. [inaudible 00:27:36] Is your office looking into this at all where you’re going to usher [inaudible 00:27:43]

Gabriel Sterling: (27:44)
I am unaware. I’ve heard some of those rumor wise, but I don’t have a specific thing on that. We have to check with our lead investigators on that, but I would think normally that would be handled under the state constitution. Election security is the responsibility of the county sheriff. So they should be the ones who would be providing the lead security for anybody who sees any threats. Nobody should be threatened for doing what is a great American job to volunteer and work hard in these elections.

Gabriel Sterling: (28:07)
Steven, Mark, you yelled aside.

Speaker 9: (28:09)
How confident are you in the accuracy of the unofficial results reported so far and if you are, does that mean that not much will change in the recount?

Gabriel Sterling: (28:18)
We are very confident. We never had a recount so we don’t know what will happen yet. Especially with this much paper that is hand marked. Steven.

Speaker 10: (28:23)
Yeah. So with a recount everybody’s watching and waiting and wondering what the outcome’s going to look like. Can you describe what the recount process will take, now that we have all the paper ballots?

Gabriel Sterling: (28:33)
Yeah. This is where we get into the fun really geeky level of insider baseball but I know you love. Essentially what it is, we have HB 316, which called for there being an audit statewide. The decision was made internally months ago, you would have something called a risk limiting audit. Now in doing that, you have to make a few decisions. You have to decide what it’s going to be. And the rules around that decide for the ones that’s the easiest in terms of efficacy to achieve. That’s one of the parts of the rules, but there are many other things that feed into it. So I’m not going to presuppose with the secretary may or may not choose.

Gabriel Sterling: (29:05)
Functionally at the county level, they have these things called ballot manifests. So they know how many ballots they have to do. Wesley am I doing RLA or recount? I just realized this.

Speaker 10: (29:15)
We could take both but I have-

Gabriel Sterling: (29:17)
I’ll go through RLA first because that’s the next step. So we have ballot manifests. We rolled 20 10-sided dice, like from Dungeons and Dragons and you get random numbers and you put those into the Arlo software. And those will give you a randomized version. After you’ve put in all the battle manifests and the computer will basically say, “In Spalding County, you pull one ballot from batch three. In Fulton County, you pull two ballots from batch 77. In Dougherty County, you pull one ballot from batch 17.” Around the state, until you get to the scientific number that says, once you run these things through, and a human being reads these, they write them down on a card, they put their results back into the Arlo system. It will give you a percentage of confidence that the outcome is correct. So that’s how that works. And if it doesn’t get to that percentage of confidence, you do it all again, to get another round of ballots and keep adding to it and adding to it until you get to that confidence level.

Gabriel Sterling: (30:17)
Now, a recount is something that is similar, but very different. And there’s rules around that as well. That was defined by the state election board. Every county would have to get their ballots prepared. We did do the investment to provide a high-speed, high-capacity scanner for every single county, regardless of size. Big counties have multiples of these. And what they’re going to do is they will create… I misspoke slightly the other day. They will not be taking actual live ballots. They will create a test deck that they know the outcome from it. They will go on a BMD and vote and they will do some hand mark and vote to say, “We’re going to make it 42 for the president, 56 for Joe Biden and two for Jorgensen.” They run that through the scanner to say, that’s the outcome we expect. Then you clear those votes off. Because you know the scanner is operating properly.

Gabriel Sterling: (31:11)
Then you take all the balance, regardless of where they came from. Be they the absentee in person, which is the early vote, the absentee, which is the hand-marked or the BMD on election day, which is the traditional ballot we would be seeing. And they get all put through those central scanners to get you a final count. The intent is obviously that that count will be very, very similar to the other one, but let me caution everybody. It’s going to be a little bit different. It always is. In every recount in the history of mankind, that’s always a little bit different. Machines look at things slightly differently. Sometimes their reflection might be a little off, but fundamentally it will not be off. But it’s always going to be a little bit different. That is not suspicious. That is normal.

Gabriel Sterling: (31:52)
And another thing about this is, all those ballots that were adjudicated with ambiguous marks or over votes, they get adjudicated again. So you have a different panel of human beings looking to make those decisions. So that’s another reason that could be affected. Every one of these processes involves people. The least reliable parts of all these processes is people because we are all fundamentally flawed. We will all make mistakes. And I guarantee you, if I get a deck of a thousand votes and I give it to people to count, it will come up with a different thing every time. If I give it to a computer to count, 99% of the time, it’s going to come up with the same outcome. That’s just the way human beings are built. And we all have to kind of accept that. And again, it doesn’t mean there’s skullduggery going on. It means humans are going to be humans. And we all got to know that at the end of the day.

Gabriel Sterling: (32:37)
What else we got?

Speaker 11: (32:38)
We have Congresswoman Elect Marjorie Taylor Greene saying that she contacted your office to try to get an investigation to her husband, elect [inaudible 00:32:48] Are you aware of that? Have you looked into this issue and do you contest it?

Gabriel Sterling: (32:53)
That would be with the investigators and essentially we get all those all the time. We get plenty of them. And they are very busy with people who are making some of these claims. I, myself, my fiance just sent me one that she ran into somebody at the Dollar General about one to see if they’d voted or not. So yes, where every single one that comes in, we’re going to investigate. We’re going to track it down. It doesn’t mean anything happened. It doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. What we have to find is evidence of something happening. And that’s the main goal of our investigators when they go out there.

Speaker 11: (33:23)
You have to find evidence. Have seen any evidence at all to back up any of these claims of fraud?

Gabriel Sterling: (33:29)
Again, fraud is a very large vague kind of thing. The one thing I do know is there’s evidence of illegal votes. And that’s a very binary thing. Fraud is this emotionally fraught word. And let me just say this, for the people out there who are as irritated with people talking about voter fraud right now, they should be equally irritated with people who were talking about voter suppression two years ago. Both undermine confidence in the system, both were false then. Both are false now. And I’m telling you that because that is the truth. And the one thing we’ve got to realize is that illegal voting is going to happen. It’s a minor part of this thing. And we’re putting every safeguard we can get to, to make sure it doesn’t happen now or in the future. But again, the whole thing about human beings being flawed, guess what? That’s going to happen.

Gabriel Sterling: (34:13)
And we’re trying to do everything we can. The electronic part of this thing, the software, the scanners, all that stuff worked exactly well. The only point where we have some issues occasionally, is where human beings have to interact with it. And we have literally 159 counties, 2,419 polling locations, 330 early voting polling locations, staffed by tens of thousands of poll workers that had, between all the systems, nearly 5 million Georgians casting votes. Guess what? Mistakes will be made. That’s going to happen. You have to be realistic about that. And yes, there’s a highlight on this now because of just the sheer tightness of our race.

Gabriel Sterling: (34:49)
Anybody else? Yes ma’am.

Speaker 12: (34:51)
I have a question. So the mayhem that had ensued for all this mail-in ballots, is that going to be going forward, what the American people can expect at every single election going forward? Are you looking at this saying, this did not work-

Gabriel Sterling: (35:04)
I wouldn’t necessarily say that there was mayhem. There was processing and in this state, it’s very different than in other states. We do not send out unsolicited ballots. You have to make a request online with your driver’s license. You have to send in a request in with your signature. So we have a first stop point on that. The second stop point is, then it has to be signature matched again at the backend. So in this state, we know there’s going to be some issues with this, but we do not see any widespread issues with the absentee balloting process. And for the vast majority of the voters in this state, they voted in-person on a BMD.

Gabriel Sterling: (35:38)
Anything else? All right, thank you all very much.

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