Georgia Republicans Push Their Voters to Early Voting

Georgia Republicans are pushing their supporters to embrace early voting in the December 6 runoff election between Senator Raphael Warnock (D-Georgia) and Herschel Walker. Early voting began Wednesday in DeKalb County, and some other counties will have early voting on Saturday after a Georgia Supreme Court decision, but all counties must offer early voting beginning November 28.

If you are a conservative you should VOTE EARLY IN PERSON in Georgia. Don’t trust the Election Day madness. Learn from Maricopa and vote early and securely,” Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk tweeted Tuesday.

“Absolutely right,” Georgia Republican Party Chair David Shafer responded.

That’s a bit of a shift for the GOP, which has traditionally been more uncomfortable with early and absentee voting. DeKalb Republican Party Chairman Marci McCarthy said the election is the first runoff Georgia has had since passing the Election Integrity Act in 2021, creating uncertainty in interpreting the law.

“So some election boards were more progressive about it, like in DeKalb, they wanted as much voting as possible with the mindset, presumably, where Democrats either like to vote by mail, or early overall. And traditionally Republicans prefer to vote towards the end of an early voting cycle, or on Election Day,” McCarthy said.

The runoff early voting is compressed compared to the 19-day general election period down to about a week, making early GOTV efforts a priority for Republicans. McCarthy is worried that voters’ holiday plans or potential winter weather could keep Republicans from making it to the polls on Election Day, a problem in a race where Warnock won the preliminary election by just under one percent, about 40,000 votes.

“Regardless of your political affiliation, you’ve got to get out the vote. This is going to be about voter turnout,” she said.

In the 2020 general election, Republicans lost two senate seats in runoffs, which McCarthy attributed to 400,000 Republicans not voting in the runoff.

“Fast forward to present-day, I think Republicans have learned their lesson by staying home, and they’re very motivated to vote,” she said.

There’s concern that Democrats start the turnout battle with an advantage thanks to their embrace of early voting options.

Voter integrity nonprofit Greater Georgia spokeswoman Caitlin O’Dea said, “For the last two weeks, Greater Georgia has been encouraging voters to make a plan to vote early or by absentee ballot for the Tuesday, December 6th runoff election. As we like to say, early voting is the best way to avoid Election Day disasters – and it’s also the only way to ensure conservatives aren’t behind the starting line when Election Day arrives. Every Georgia voter has a full five days of early voting next week – and, starting Monday, we know they’ll make their voices heard.”

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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Georgia Star News and The Star News Network.  Email tips to [email protected].



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