Differing Accounts On The Process Of Election Legislation?

Editor’s Note: Buzz initially posted this on April 5th after receiving the joint letter from Senator Max Burns and Representative John LaHood. Since we have learned about some additional insight, I am updating with additional context in italics below Buzz’s original post.

Recently Deputy Secretary of State Jordan Fuchs went on the AJC’s “Politically Georgia” podcast and said:

“I think if you’re going to draft legislation that has an impact on election officials, you should sit down with them (and) get their input.”

Today the House and Senate Chairmen of the committees that deal with election legislation said they were in regular contact with folks in the SOS office as the various pieces of Legislation moved through the process.

In listening to the podcast, Fuchs is responding to a question from Greg Bluestien about a provision of SB 189 which would make it easier for third party Presidential candidates to get on the ballot if they are qualified in at least 20 other states.

In other words, Fuchs was not making a general statement about the interactions with the two Committees, but on one specific provision added late in the session.

I know Chairman Burns and Chairman LaHood to be honorable fellows and from my vantage point, it seemed the Legislature and SOS Office were working well together. I hope a misunderstanding over a small comment in a podcast doesn’t sour what seems to be a good working relationship.

Editor picks up here: As Buzz pointed out, Jordan Fuchs was clearly discussing the 20 state ballot access clause in SB 189 while visiting with Greg Bluestein for the AJC’s podcast. However, the AJC initially reported it in such a way that it made it seem like Fuchs was talking about all election proposals from this legislative session, not just that one. The initial wording has created strife where there shouldn’t be any.

The AJC has since clarified their article to indicate that Fuchs was being more specific, but by then the damage had been done. This type of shoddy reporting has a real impact that can damage professional working relationships and the AJC needs to do better. Their article as it is posted today makes no mention that they updated it to clarify Fuch’s actual meaning.

The 20 state clause would give third parties like the Constitution Party or Conservative Party the ability to automatically gain access to Georgia’s Presidential Ballot in November if they have ballot access in 20 other states.

5 Replies to “Differing Accounts On The Process Of Election Legislation?”

  1. SO….I have several questions with regards to SB 189 (and they will be rolled out over several posts here, likely):

    1) Lines 94-96 (Link: https://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/64471) states as follows:

    “(1.1) The mailing address for election purposes of any person of this state who is
    homeless and without a permanent address shall be the registrar’s office of the county in
    which such person resides;”

    WHICH person(s) dreamed-up this legislation of sheer stupidity?

    So, EVERY political campaign that isn’t up-to-speed on what this law is in Georgia will be sending POLITICAL MAIL for every voter who has a mailing address of the county board of elections?

    Thus deluging each Board of Elections with political mail…at the same time in which Absentee Ballots will be being mailed and accounted for at the respective Board of Elections?

    The legislators who dreamed-up this idea are M-O-R-O-N-S.

  2. 2) Lines 239-245 present the requirement that the election superintendent must report the tabulated results of absentee ballots by 8 PM or 1 hour after close of polls…there are several problems with this:

    a) How can ANY BOE ensure that the delivery of the mail on the day of the election gets delivered early enough to process those absentee ballots that arrive on Election Day in time for these time deadlines?

    b) What happens when the deadline cannot be met? Does the SOS then have the power to replace the election superintendent who could not meet the deadline? Of which, I suspect, there will likely be about 159 of them…

    c) If the Election Superintendents cannot meet this deadline, are they criminally liable? Can they be charged with “interfering with an election?”

    So much cluster-f*ckiness with this section, it ain’t even funny. BUT, it is typical of people writing legislation who have NO CLUE as to the actual logistics required to accomplish said deadlines.

  3. 3) And then there’s Lines 224-231, dealing with elimination of any “evil” QR Code or whatever, in favor of requiring a machine to read the text portion of the ballot in order to determine how a voter voted.

    Huh??? Are they trying to force the removal of the BMD method of voting and switch to filling-out bubbles with a pencil? Great….that’ll stack-up voting lines for miles outside of a poll.

    By the way…just as a REMINDER….Trump WON the BMD machine vote in 2020…..and he also won the machine vote in the county that had the idiots gain access to peek inside of a machine.

    VoterGA and their acolytes are chock-full of Luddite-minded people. And, we have legislators that hang-on to their every word…I just SMH in disbelief….

    1. Bill, don’t confuse folks by saying the BMD machines tallied more votes for Trump than Biden. We all know that Hugo Chavez rigged those machines and stored the servers in China to be overseen by two guys in Italy. LOL.

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