After an election marred by voting problems, Georgia voters will decide in Tuesday’s runoff who should fix them. One candidate for Georgia secretary of state wants to tackle voter purges, long lines and voting rights. His opponent prefers leaving most elections management to county officials and improving training. Democrat John Barrow, a former U.S. congressman, said he’d seek both voting fairness and accuracy if elected as the state’s top elections official. He faces Republican Brad Raffensperger, an engineering firm CEO who said he would ensure only U.S. citizens can vote and mostly maintain Georgia’s current election process.
Voting rights became a major issue during this year’s close election for governor that dragged on for nearly two weeks amid confusion over how to count ballots with missing information, voters whose registrations weren’t processed and equipment malfunctions. Georgia’s former secretary of state, Republican Brian Kemp, won the election for governor against Democrat Stacey Abrams, whose allies filed a federal lawsuit this week over election irregularities.
Barrow trailed Raffensperger by less than 1 percentage point in the Nov. 6 general election, and a runoff is required because neither candidate won a majority of the votes. Libertarian Smythe DuVal, who has endorsed Barrow, received just over 2 percent of the vote.