National: Falsehoods and death threats haunt local election workers weeks after Capitol siege | Fredreka Schouten and Kelly Mena/CNN
His staff endured racist taunts. His voicemail overflowed with threats and wild conspiracy theories. And then one day, a caller warned that the Christmas Day bombing in Nashville “was a practice run for what was coming to our polling places.” The abuse and threats hurled at Fulton County, Georgia, Elections Director Richard Barron and his staff in Atlanta between last year’s general election and the state’s high-stakes Senate runoffs on January 5 marked a new low in his 21-year career working on elections. “I used to have a sense of pride about this work,” Barron told CNN. “But I don’t think that I do anymore.” Around the country, election supervisors and the rank-and-file workers who helped carry out the nuts and bolts of American democracy still are reeling from the barrage of threats and the flood of falsehoods they had to navigate as they helped a record number of people cast ballots in a pandemic.