ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s online voter database morphed into a last-minute curveball in one of the nation’s hottest governor’s races, with Republican nominee Brian Kemp making a hacking allegation against Democrats just as reporting emerged of a gaping vulnerability in a system that Kemp controls as secretary of state.
Kemp’s office did not detail any nefarious acts by Democrats, offering no evidence for Sunday’s unusual action that effectively means the state’s chief elections officer began a probe of his partisan opposition days before an election.
Polls suggest Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams are locked in a tight race that even before Sunday had evolved into a bitter back-and-forth over voting rights and ballot security.
The state Democratic Party called Kemp’s accusation “a reckless and unethical ploy” and said he was using the FBI to support “false accusations.”
According to interviews conducted by The Associated Press and records released by the Georgia Democratic Party, the saga built steam quickly in the days before Kemp’s statement.
An attorney who represents election-security advocates already suing Kemp over his job performance said a private citizen alerted him Friday to a suspected major flaw in the voter database that is used to check in voters in Tuesday’s midterm.