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Georgia secretary of state: Trump, supporters' emotions being exploited with 'fantastic claims, half-truths, misinformation'

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) on Monday warned of misinformation efforts targeting supporters of President TrumpDonald TrumpHouse passes voting rights and elections reform bill DEA places agent seen outside Capitol during riot on leave Georgia Gov. Kemp says he'd 'absolutely' back Trump as 2024 nominee MORE as the state plans to post the election recount results online.

“There are those who are exploiting the emotions of many Trump supporters with fantastic claims, half-truths, misinformation. And, frankly, they are misleading the president as well, apparently,” Raffensperger said during a press conference.

He also said the results of the election recount would be available online soon after the Wednesday midnight deadline, saying, “The truth matters, especially around election administration.”

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The results would affirm that Georgia’s voting system was sound, Raffensperger added.

“That is the great thing about our paper ballot system. It is auditable, it is accountable and can provide voters the confidence that the outcomes are correct,” he said. “Once this recap is complete everyone in Georgia will be able to have even more confidence in the results of our elections.”

Raffensperger previously certified the results of the election in the state, showing President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenThe West needs a more collaborative approach to Taiwan Abbott's medical advisers were not all consulted before he lifted Texas mask mandate House approves George Floyd Justice in Policing Act MORE leading Trump by more than 12,000 votes. He is the first Democratic presidential nominee to win Georgia since 1992.

The secretary of state also said he would continue to investigate claims of voter fraud, stating there are more than 250 open cases from this year. Those cases involve claims of double voters and deceased voters.

He also announced an investigation into third-party voting groups that have reportedly been encouraging people from other states to register to vote in Georgia.

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“We have opened an investigation into a group called America Votes, who is sending absentee ballot applications to people at addresses where they have not lived since 1994; Vote Forward, who attempted to register a dead Alabama voter, a woman, to vote here in Georgia; the New Georgia Project, who sent voter registration applications to New York City; and Operation New Voter Registration Georgia, who is telling college students in Georgia that they can change their residency to Georgia and then change it back after the election,” he said.

Two runoff elections in Georgia on Jan. 5 will determine which party controls the U.S. Senate next year. The deadline for registering to vote in the runoffs is Dec. 7.

“Voting in Georgia when you are not a resident of Georgia is a felony, and encouraging college kids to commit felonies with no regard for what [it] might mean for them is despicable. These third-party groups have a responsibility to not encourage illegal voting. If they do so, they will be held responsible,” he said.

"Your vote matters. Anyone telling you to boycott an election is not on your side. Your vote, your right to vote, is sacred. Don't let someone con you out of it," said Raffensperger.

On Monday, the Trump campaign issued a fifth request for an immediate audit of signatures on ballots.

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"It is not possible for you to accurately certify the results in the presidential race from the November 3, 2020 election until and unless there is a thorough audit of the Signatures," attorneys from the law firm Smith & Liss wrote in a letter to Raffensperger.

The secretary of state has already carried out audits on voting machines as well as a hand recount.

"If your office is confident of your position, then you should welcome an audit of the Signatures to put to rest any doubt as to whether the laws of the State of Georgia were followed for purposes of processing absentee ballot applications and verifying the identity of the voters allowed to cast absentee ballots," the attorneys added.

Georgia Gov. Brian KempBrian KempGeorgia Gov. Kemp says he'd 'absolutely' back Trump as 2024 nominee Democrats must prepare now for a contested 2024 election Raid the Republican Party to save the party MORE (R) has called for a sample audit of signatures and has yet to endorse the results of the election. On Monday, he rejected calls from President Trump to use his emergency powers to "overrule" the results of the election in Georgia.