Georgia replaces voting machines in a province after ‘unauthorized access’

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By Kanishka Singh

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said his office is replacing some electoral equipment in a South Georgia county where former officials reportedly granted unauthorized access to former president’s allies in the weeks following the 2020 election. Donald Trump.

The move comes after recently released video surveillance footage showed outsiders accessing Coffee County’s voting machines and copying sensitive software and data.

The Washington Post has reported that forensic experts who worked for pro-Trump attorney Sidney Powell last year copied virtually every part of the voting system. Powell alleged voter fraud after the 2020 election, but federal and local investigations showed otherwise.

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“To allay the fear fueled by perennial election deniers and conspiracy theorists, we are replacing Coffee County’s election machines,” Raffensperger said in a statement Friday, adding that the investigation into the former officials who allowed the unauthorized access would continue.

“But current election officials in Coffee County should move forward with the 2022 election, and they should be able to do so without this distraction,” he said.

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Separately in Georgia, a grand jury in Fulton County examines Trump’s efforts to reverse the former president’s 2020 election defeat.

Trump has falsely claimed that rampant voter fraud caused his loss in Georgia, a battleground where President Joe Biden’s victory propelled him to the White House.

Fulton County special grand jury is conducting a criminal investigation into alleged misconduct. Trump was included in a Jan. 2, 2021 phone call that pressured Raffensperger to “find” enough votes to undo his loss to Biden in the state.

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Trump has denied any allegation. The grand jury had also subpoenaed Trump allies and members of his former legal team.

(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Washington; editing by Alistair Bell)

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