Fact Check: Georgia Gov. Kemp Lawyers Did NOT Notify Sec. of State Raffensperger '17,852 Invalid 2020 Votes' Counted In Fulton County

Fact Check

  • by: Alexis Tereszcuk
Fact Check: Georgia Gov. Kemp Lawyers Did NOT Notify Sec. of State Raffensperger '17,852 Invalid 2020 Votes' Counted In Fulton County Citizen Claim

Did Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp's legal staff notify Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in late 2023 that 17,852 invalid 2020 votes were counted in Georgia's Fulton County? No, that's not true: The State Election Board told Lead Stories that Kemp's office forwarded a claim by one Georgia citizen to Raffensperger and to the state Election Board in 2022. Kemp's office did not state that "17,852 invalid votes" were counted in Fulton County. A spokesperson for Kemp told Lead Stories that "retelling the same lies for three years does not make them true," adding, "2020 election in Georgia was not stolen."

The claim appeared as a post published on X, formerly known as Twitter, on December 15, 2023 (archived here) which opened:

BREAKING: Georgia Gov. Kemp's legal staff has notified Ga Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger that 17,852 invalid 2020 votes were counted in Fulton County, GA, alone. A public meeting will be held next week at the Georgia State Capitol building.

This is what the post looked like on Twitter at the time of writing:

Screen Shot 2023-12-18 at 11.57.26 AM.png

Twitter screenshot

(Source: Twitter screenshot taken on Mon Dec 18 19:36:57 2023 UTC)

Kemp sent a letter to the secretary of state on July 15, 2022, Alexandra Hardin, a paralegal with the Georgia Secretary of State, told Lead Stories via email on December 18, 2023. The letter did not state "that 17,852 invalid 2020 votes were counted in Fulton County, GA, alone," as the tweet said. Here is a link (archived here) to the letter that read:

Per our conversation, I write to inform you that Mr. Joseph, Rossi, a Georgia citizen, has brought fourth claims regarding the 2020 general election. The Office of the Governor does not have the authority to investigate election matters; such authority resides with the State Elections Board.

I ask that you contact Mr. Rossi, and review his claim to determine whether any consideration of such claims by the Board is warranted.

Hardin told Lead Stories the letter was the only "correspondence received from the Governor's office regarding the matter." She said the letter initiated an investigation into the claims made by Rossi but declined to disclose details about the claim. Hardin said the findings were scheduled to be released on December 19, 2023, but instead would be brought before the board at a later date:

The case was originally set to be heard at tomorrow's State Election Board meeting, but the matter has been continued to a future meeting.

Governor Brian Kemp adviser Cody Hall told Lead Stories via email on December 18, 2023, that the claims about the 2020 election were "bogus":

Retelling the same lies for three years does not make them true, even when citing bogus online blogs. The moon landing was real, Bigfoot does not roam the forests of North America, and the 2020 election in Georgia was not stolen.

Gabriel Sterling, chief operations officer for the Brad Raffensperger (archived here), Georgia Secretary of State, tweeted (archived here) about the claim on December 18, 2023, calling the accusation "lies":

Other Lead Stories fact checks regarding Georgia and the 2020 election and Secretary of State Raffensperger can be found here and Governor Brian Kemp can be found here.

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  Alexis Tereszcuk

Alexis Tereszcuk is a writer and fact checker at Lead Stories and an award-winning journalist who spent over a decade breaking hard news and celebrity scoop with RadarOnline and Us Weekly.

As the Entertainment Editor, she investigated Hollywood stories and conducted interviews with A-list celebrities and reality stars.  

Alexis’ crime reporting earned her spots as a contributor on the Nancy Grace show, CNN, Fox News and Entertainment Tonight, among others.

Read more about or contact Alexis Tereszcuk

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