By Andrew Keiper
A group at the center of the investigation into voter fraud recently opened by the Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger hired contractors who were found to have forged ballot applications in 2014.
The group, The New Georgia Project, was founded by former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams to help register new voters. Ultimately, the 2014 investigation found no wrongdoing by the group, but did cite 14 people for forging 53 voter applications. All those cited were working as independent contractors, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
On Wednesday, Raffensperger announced an investigation into several progressive organizations he alleged “sought to register ineligible, out-of-state, or deceased voters” for the Jan. 5 Senate runoff elections. Among those named are Vote Forward, The New Georgia Project, Operation Voter Registration GA and America Votes.
“I have issued clear warnings several times to groups and individuals working to undermine the integrity of elections in Georgia through false and fraudulent registrations,” said Raffensperger in a statement. “The security of Georgia’s elections is of the utmost importance. We have received specific evidence that these groups have solicited voter registrations from ineligible individuals who have passed away or live out of state. I will investigate these claims thoroughly and take action against anyone attempting to undermine our elections.”
The New Georgia Project, which was led by Democratic Senate candidate Raphael Warnock until February, is accused by Raffensperger of several election violations. Almost all of them involve sending voter registration or absentee application mail to people who were either deceased or ineligible to vote.
The progressive nonprofit was founded in 2013 and works to build the progressive voting bloc in Georgia largely by registering young people to vote. In the 2018 election cycle, the New Georgia Project reported $96,000 in payments, with two payments worth a total of $35,000 going to the Working Families Party.
Vote Forward is a nonprofit founded by Scott Forman in 2017. The progressive group focuses on sending handwritten letters imploring people to vote. According to OpenSecrets, a campaign finance database, the organization had no filings for 2020 and raised just over $50,000 in 2018.
Forman, like many on the medium, has made a number of inflammatory Tweets about President Trump and his supporters. He insinuated the president is a “would-be dictator” and called his supporters deplorables.
Raffensperger alleged that Vote Forward sent a letter to a deceased person encouraging them to vote.
America Votes is a much larger operation, conducting voter education and mobilization efforts in 20 states. In his announcement, Raffensperger accused the progressive nonprofit of sending two absentee ballot applications in one week to an old address of a Georgia voter.
During the 2020 election cycle, according to campaign finance data, the nonprofit amassed more than $15 million in donations. The group dispersed money to a number of progressive political action committees.
The investigation is a formal acknowledgement that there was some impropriety in the voting process, though both sides of the aisle understand it’s nowhere near enough to upend Joe Biden’s victory in the state. Raffensperger’s office did not respond to requests for comment from Fox News.
The announcement comes about a month before two critical runoff Senate elections in Georgia, the results of which will determine the partisan balance of power in Congress during Biden’s presidency.