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Ex-Georgia candidate calls for probe, says more than a hundred thousand votes went 'missing'
Sarah Riggs Amico, a former Democratic candidate for Georgia lieutenant governor, is calling for an investigation after she said more than a hundred thousand votes went missing in her hotly contested race against Republican incumbent Geoff Duncan.
Amico told Hill.TV on Friday that her campaign initially noticed the ballot discrepancy on election night when the entire lieutenant governor's race was running considerably behind the statewide ticket. She believes there was been programming glitch or malfunction with the voting machines.
"We believe there are at least 130- to 138,000 votes missing and these are in predominately Democratic counties, so obviously could have affected the outcome," she told Hill.TV.
"But even if it didn't, I think this is still worth investigating," she added.
The former Democratic candidate said that her opponent's votes, meanwhile, appeared to be "completely unaffected."
"We've also seen evidence that this appears to be very targeted," Amico said. Hill.TV has reached out to Duncan's office to request comment.
This isn't the only Georgia race to be contested following November's midterm elections.
The House Oversight and Reform Committee announced Wednesday that it was launching an investigation into various reported voting hurdles put up during Georgia's midterm election races.
Committee Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and chairman of the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) said they sent letters to Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) requesting documents related to reports of people having their voting rights restricted.
"The Committee is particularly concerned by reports that Georgians faced unprecedented challenges with registering to vote and significant barriers to casting their votes during the 2018 election," the chairman wrote in a statement.
The move comes after Gov. Brian Kemp (R) narrowly beat Democratic nominee Stacey Abrams in a gubernatorial race that was marred by voter suppression allegations. Abrams has since formed voting rights advocacy organization Fair Fight, and is reportedly being floated as a potential vice presidential pick for former Vice President Biden, who is said to be about to enter the 2020 White House race.
Amico's remarks come in light of a lawsuit brought forth by the Coalition for Good Governance and three Georgia voters, who are challenging the results of the 2018 Georgia lieutenant governor's election, which Amico lost by roughly 123,000 votes.
The lawsuit alleges that tens of thousands of votes were never recorded in the race due to a flaws in the state's electronic voting system, and therefore the results of the election aren't accurate.
The former candidate revealed that she is not a plaintiff in the case, saying she didn't want to make the lawsuit about the "outcome of a particular race," but rather about "whether we live in a functioning Democracy."
But so far, Amico said lawmakers in the state have yet to step up and demand more action.
"The cricket chorus from the Republicans here in Georgia on what they think happened - how do they explain that this only happened on machines," she said. "The lieutenant governor really hasn't really issued a very strong statement and I think those are all the more reasons why we need a through investigation of what happened."
Amico said she remains hopeful that officials will get access to the voting machines, emphasizing that the case couldn't come at a more critical time.
"Georgia's about to spend $150 to $200 million on new versions of these machines," she said.
"To reward this vender with 150 million of new contracts before they explained what happened is really irresponsible."