Georgia-Based Group Alleges Voting Irregularities in Cobb County

A group of about 30 Georgia residents who have formed the group Project Opal said this week they have identified certain irregularities in last year’s presidential election in Cobb County. Project Opal spokesman Paul Nally told The Georgia Star News Tuesday that group members are trying to determine if criminal acts took place.

Read More

Fulton County Chain of Custody Documents Purportedly Given to Georgia Public Broadcasting on June 17 Have Been Denied to The Georgia Star News

Georgia Public Broadcasting building

In a stunning development Wednesday, Fulton County has denied The Georgia Star News the same chain of custody documents for absentee ballots deposited into drop boxes during the November 2020 election, that they purportedly gave to Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) News on or before June 17.

Fulton County’s Legal Assistant Shana Eatmon’s emailed response informed The Star News said that there are no documents that meet our open records request.

Read More

Georgia Republican Senate Candidate Gary Black Takes Aim at Herschel Walker

Herschel Walker and Gary Black

Georgia Agriculture Secretary and candidate for U.S. Senate Gary Black launched a new ad on Monday and took aim at Herschel Walker, a potential primary opponent.

In the nearly 30-second ad, Black mocks Walker for a recent video released by the former NFL running back that hinted at a campaign launch.

Read More

DeKalb Residents Won’t Face Eviction as Local Judge Orders Moratorium to Continue

Front porch of a home with chair and plant

A local judge has ordered that DeKelb County landlords may not evict tenants as the national moratorium on evictions expires.

“DeKalb Chief Superior Court Judge Asha Jackson recently signed a new emergency order creating a ban on evictions throughout the county for another 60 days,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution said. “The order was based on the continued COVID-19 public health emergency and the cyberattack that targeted DeKalb’s Tenant-Landlord Assistance Coalition earlier this year, dramatically slowing its distribution of federal aid.”

Read More

Republican Running for Georgia Congressional Seat Reportedly Not a Fan of Donald Trump

Georgia State Rep. Timothy Barr (R-Lawrenceville), currently running for Georgia’s 10th Congressional District, is not friendly to former U.S. President Donald Trump, according to a recent article on NationalFile.com Barr did not return The Georgia Star News’ two requests for comment before Monday’s stated deadline.

Read More

U.S. Rep. Austin Scott Says Wage Disparities Across the Border Make It Hard for American Farmers to Compete

U.S. Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA-08), who serves on the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, shared his worries about cheap produce imports, the impact of cheaper labor costs in Mexico, and how this affects Georgia farmers. Committee members held a hearing entitled, “21st Century Food Systems: Controlled Environment Agriculture’s Role in Protecting Domestic Food Supply Chains and Infrastructure.”

Read More

Georgia to Start Accepting Applications for American Rescue Plan Funds Sunday

COVID Testing station

Georgia is still deciding how to divide more than $8.1 billion from American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which was signed into law by President Joe Biden in March.

Applications for more than $4.8 billion in funding opens up Sunday. State government entities, local governments, businesses and nonprofits have 30 days to apply for the aid.

The aid will be issued in two installments and cover expenses from March to the end of 2026, but the state has until December 31, 2024, to allocate all of the funds.

Read More

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter Files Bill to Back up Federal Immigration Officers

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA-01) has introduced the Empowering Law Enforcement Act to provide backup to federal immigration enforcement officials. “I’ve visited the border four times as a member of Congress, including twice this year, to fully understand the struggles we face there. Immigration is getting out of control and every state is becoming a border state. As of last month more than 1.1 million illegal immigrants have been encountered at the border,” Carter said in an emailed newsletter to his constituents Sunday.

Read More

Georgia Nonprofit Joins Groups Calling on Congress to Restore Cuts to Charter School Funding

A Georgia nonprofit is among a coalition of more than 70 organizations calling on the U.S. House Appropriations Committee to restore proposed cuts to charter school funding.

The committee voted to cut $40 million from the federal Charter Schools Program. The budget they approved for fiscal year 2022 also includes language that would prevent federal funds from being awarded to charter schools ran by for-profit entities.

Read More

Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Vos Expands Election Probe

Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) said Friday he plans to hire more investigators and anticipates allowing more time for a probe into the 2020 presidential contest for Wisconsin’s 10 Electoral-College votes, the Associated Press has reported.

The official vote count in Wisconsin last November put Joe Biden ahead of Donald Trump by 20,682 votes. The margin was just over 0.6 percent of the nearly 3.3 million votes cast statewide. 

Read More

Georgia to Now Require Proof of Employment for Pandemic Assistance Claims

Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) officials have announced they will require people who receive Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits on or after December 27 of last year to provide proof of employment or self-employment. Those people must also show a valid officer to begin employment and proof of wages by August 14.

Read More

Raffensperger’s Office Seeks Over $100,000 to Complete Open Records Request Submitted by Georgia Secretary of State Candidate David Belle Isle

Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office will charge David Belle Isle, who is challenging Raffensperger in the GOP primary for the top elections post, more than $100,000 to complete an open records request. 

Further, Raffensperger’s office claimed producing the documents would take approximately 230 business days to complete — a timeline that conveniently places the results after the GOP primary election for secretary of state.

Read More

Arizona Senate President Karen Fann and Audit Liaison Ken Bennett Confirm Bennett Will Remain as Senate Liaison, Pledge Bennett Will Have ‘Full Access’

Ken Bennett

Arizona Senate President Karen Fann released a statement on Friday that confirmed former Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett will continue to serve as the Senate’s Liason to the ongoing audit.

Further, Fann promised that Bennett will be granted “full access” to all aspects of the forensic audit, after Bennett threatened to leave the post earlier this week.

Read More

Georgia Gov. Kemp Says No New Lockdowns Coming, Encourages Vaccination

There will not be any new shutdowns or mask mandates in Georgia, as concerns over the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases grows. 

“Georgia will not lock down or impose statewide mask mandates,” Gov. Brian Kemp said Wednesday on Twitter. “As the first state in the country to reopen over a year ago, we’ve proven that Georgians know how to come together and protect themselves and their loved ones.”

Read More

Georgia Officials File Motion to Dismiss U.S. Department of Justice’s Lawsuit Against SB 202

Georgia officials have filed a motion to dismiss the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ’s) lawsuit against the state’s new voter integrity law, Senate Bill 202. Gov. Brian Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr this week released a statement and called the lawsuit “politically-charged” and said it seeks “to intrude into the State of Georgia’s constitutional authority to regulate the time, place, and manner of its elections.”

Read More

Twitter Suspends Accounts Documenting Arizona Audit

Twitter permanently suspended several accounts dedicated to documenting the Arizona audit. The social media giant also permanently suspended other similar or affiliated accounts covering the audit or calls for an audit in Michigan, Wisconsin, Nevada, Georgia, and Pennsylvania.

The suspended accounts were: @arizonaaudit, @AuditWarRoom, @AuditMichigan, @AuditWisconsin, @AuditNevada, @AuditGeorgia, @Audit_Arizona and @Audit_PA. The latter 7 accounts are associated with an Instagram account, @auditwarroom, that hasn’t been suspended from the Facebook-owned platform. That account notified the public that it joined GETTR, a social media platform created by former President Donald Trump’s aide Jason Miller.

Read More

Georgia Department of Community Health Says COVID-19 Justified No-Bid Contract

Georgia officials rewarded an Alpharetta-based medical company with a generous no-bid contract and cited a provision in state law that allowed them to do so during emergencies — in this case, COVID-19. Jackson Healthcare provides medical staff to several of Georgia’s hospitals and nursing homes through its subsidiary Healthcare Workforce Logistics (HWL). Company CEO Rick Jackson donated generously to Georgia’s top politicians, including Gov. Brian Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Jackson’s company subsequently received a $434 million no-bid contract. Company officials said politics “had absolutely nothing to do with it.”

Read More

Georgia Spa Shooter Receives Four Life Sentences After Guilty Plea

The man who killed eight in a rampage against massage parlor employees in Georgia received four life sentences. 

Robert Aaron Long formalized his deal, agreeing to plead guilty in exchange for being spared the death penalty, in Cherokee County Tuesday morning, according to several reports. He received 35 years tacked onto the life sentences, and will not be eligible for parole. 

Read More

Georgia Campaign Donor Says Politics Did Not Influence Generous No-Bid COVID-19 Contract

Richard L. Jackson

The president of an Alpharetta-based medical company whose CEO donated generously to Georgia’s top politicians and subsequently received a $434 million no-bid contract said Tuesday that politics “had absolutely nothing to do with it.” Rick Jackson, the CEO of Jackson Healthcare, donated roughly $1 million to various statewide political candidates. Jackson donated to, among others, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

Read More

Critical Race Theory Activist Resigns from the Cobb County School District in Georgia

Jennifer Susko

A Cobb County school counselor who advocates for Critical Race Theory (CRT) and intersectionality has resigned from her job. That woman, Jennifer Susko, said the school district’s ban on anti-racism curricula prompted her to leave. Susko announced her intentions this week.

Read More

Savannah Reinstates Indoor Mask Mandate Effective Immediately

The city of Savannah has reinstated its indoor mask mandate, effective immediately. 

“Many people have just let their guard down,” Mayor Van Johnson said, explaining the decision. “They’ve stopped masking, they’ve stopped social distancing regardless of vaccination status. None of us want to take a backward step in our return to normalcy, but wearing a mask is the simple, easy, most inexpensive thing we can do to protect ourselves and those around us.”

Read More

Corporate Donor to Brian Kemp, Geoff Duncan, and Brad Raffensperger Got Exclusive No-Bid Contract for COVID-19 Services

Outside shot of Jackson Healthcare in Alpharetta, GA.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger accepted generous campaign donations from a medical company that got a $434 million no-bid contract  with the state to help fight COVID-19. This, according to a new article in The Georgia Health News.

Read More

Georgia Residents Allegedly Used Paycheck Protection Program Loans on Luxury Items

Federal officials in Georgia have charged 22 people in connection with what they call a fraudulent scheme to obtain approximately $11.1 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. Those people allegedly used that money to purchase luxury vehicles, jewelry, and other personal items.

Read More

Georgia to Issue Licenses to Companies for Medical Marijuana Production

Zane Bader

The Georgia Access to Medical Cannabis Commission will pick six companies to start producing the plant for medical uses in the state.

Nearly 70 companies applied for licenses to grow marijuana and convert it to oil to treat various illnesses. Once the commission approves them, the companies could be looking at paying up to $200,000 in licensing fees to the state. They will have one year to get product to thousands of Georgians who have been waiting for more than five years.

Patients with a Low THC Oil Registry card legally can purchase up to 20 fluid ounces of the THC oil from licensed dispensaries or pharmacies under legislation signed into law by former Gov. Nathan Deal in 2015. However, without guidelines and a medical marijuana marketplace, the 14,000 registered patients in Georgia have no way of legally obtaining the oil.

Read More

Mitch McConnell Mocks Amy Klobuchar, Other Democrats for Georgia Hearing

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) reportedly disapproves of a field hearing that U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) held in Georgia last week to undermine that state’s new voter integrity law, Senate Bill 202. This, as Klobuchar and four other Democratic U.S. senators who attended refused to answer The Georgia Star News’ questions about other states whose voting requirements are stricter than Georgia’s.

Read More

Former President Trump Holds Rally in Phoenix, Highlights Election Security

PHOENIX, Arizona – The Star News Network Wire Service – Former President Trump took the stage to thunderous applause at his rally in Phoenix, Arizona on Saturday, where he highlighted efforts across the country he said are needed to ensure the integrity of elections.

“Thank you to Charlie [Kirk] for that introduction which was so beautiful, and for   your fearless leadership at Turning Point Action and Turning Point USA,” Trump told the crowd as he began his speech at 3:55 p.m. Mountain Standard Time.

“Let me also express my appreciation to the thousands of bold, young, and proud American Patriots that are with us today. What a crowd, what a crowd … You are the pulse of our movement, you are the ones who will make America Great Again,” the 45th President of the United States added.

Read More

Georgia County GOP Clashes with Raffensperger After Office Brushes Off Voter Fraud

Just days after Secretary of State’s office chief operation officer Gabriel Sterling brushed off concrete proof of illegal voting in the 2020 election, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) was met with protests in Bibb County. 

GOP protestors in Bibb County held up signs and demanded a full forensic audit of the vote tallies in the Peach State as Raffensperger spoke to the Bibb County GOP, according to WMAZ. 

Read More

Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan Proposes Alternate Way to Lower State’s Crime Rate

Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan (R-Cumming) on Thursday proposed a $250 million state tax credit that he said will lower crime statewide. Duncan, in a press release, said he plans to work with members of the Georgia General Assembly on this Law Enforcement Strategic Support (LESS) Crime Act during next year’s legislative session.

Read More

Pennsylvania Punishes County That Allowed Audit of Vote Counting Machines

The Pennsylvania Department of State decertified Fulton County’s voting machines on Wednesday after officials there participated in a third-party audit.

The voluntary probe came at the request of Sen. Doug Mastriano (R-Gettysburg) who’s currently spearheading a larger effort to audit machines in Tioga, York and Philadelphia counties amid his ongoing campaign to ferret out fraudulent activity during the past two elections.

Read More

Secretly-Recorded Audio Reveals Oconee County Teacher, in Class, Railing Against Donald Trump

Oconee County High School

A now-retired English instructor at Oconee County High School in Watkinsville used her platform to proselytize to captive students last January in an attempt to turn them against former U.S. President Donald Trump and his supporters. The teacher, Lynne Ely, did not return The Georgia Star News’ requests for comment Wednesday. But angry Oconee County residents uploaded a nearly-45 minute recording of Ely ranting against Trump and the events of January 6 on the Facebook group Oconee County 411 (GA).

Read More

Gov. Brian Kemp Appoints Verda Colvin to Georgia Supreme Court

Georgia Governor Brian Kemp on Tuesday appointed Judge Verda Colvin to fill a vacancy and serve on the state’s Supreme Court, after the resignation of Justice Harold D. Melton.

“It is an honor to appoint such an experienced and accomplished justice to our state’s Supreme Court. With Justice Colvin on the bench, Georgia’s highest court is gaining an immensely talented and principled judge who will help guide it in the years to come,” Kemp said of his decision to select Colvin.

Read More

David Ralston Proposes New Resources to Fight Atlanta’s Crime Problem

GA David Ralston

Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) this week proposed spending $3 million in additional state law enforcement resources to fight Atlanta’s worsening crime problem. This, according to an emailed press release.

Read More

Former Speaker Newt Gingrich Endorses Mike Collins in Race to Replace Rep. Jody Hice

Newt Gingrich

Former Georgia U.S. Representative and Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich endorsed Mike Collins in the GOP primary to represent Georgia’s 10th Congressional District.

The seat, which Collins is aiming for, is being vacated by Congressman Jody Hice (R-GA-10). Hice, instead of running for reelection to Congress, has decided to launch a primary challenge attempt against embattled Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

Read More

Speaker of Georgia House Demands Investigation into Fulton County Election Irregularities

Speaker David Ralston presides over the Georgia House chamber

Georgia’s Speaker of the House David Ralston is demanding an investigation to “determine if any irregularities or willful fraud occurred” in the state’s largest metropolis last November, saying recent revelations about problems with vote counting in Fulton County merit an independent probe.

Ralston sent a letter late last week to Fulton County election officials requesting that the Georgia Bureau of Investigation be allowed to conduct the investigation.

The request comes after Just the News reported last month that an independent observer for Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger noted two dozen pages of irregularities in the Atlanta vote counting center last Nov. 3, including double scanning of ballots, insecure transportation of ballots and possible voter privacy violations.

Read More

Democrat Claim of ‘Smoking Gun’ at U.S. Senate Rules Hearing Immediately Debunked as Quote Taken Out of Context

Amy Klobuchar Atlanta

ATLANTA, Georgia —  U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) came to Atlanta Monday to bash Georgia’s Senate Bill 202, and she left believing she had uncovered “a smoking gun” that proved the law was a case of overreach.

That “smoking gun” was testimony from Georgia State Sen. Sally Harrell (D-Atlanta). But Harrell’s words were refuted by another state legislator — a Republican — when The Georgia Star News contacted that man Monday.

Read More

Georgia Election Official Brushes Off Proof of Voter Fraud as ‘Normal’

Andrew Sterling Elections

One Georgia election official who gained national notoriety for pushing back against former President Donald J. Trump’s claims of voter fraud in the state is now shrugging off proof that such fraud existed. 

After a voter data analyst named Mike Davis said thousands of Georgians voted in the wrong counties in 2020, based on data he requested from Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office. 

Read More

Americans for Prosperity-Georgia to Host Rally Against Joe Biden’s Reckless Spending

Members of Americans for Prosperity – Georgia (AFP-GA) are scheduled to host an event opposing what they said was U.S. President Joe Biden’s proposed $4 trillion infrastructure plan. AFP-GA has scheduled the event for 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday July 23 at Tom Triplett Community Park, Pavilion No. 1 in Pooler, Georgia.

Read More

Fulton County Commission Chair Says All Georgia Counties Should be Investigated for Potential Fraud

Robb Pitts Fulton County

Robb Pitts, chairman of the Fulton County Board of Commissioners, sent a letter to Georgia House of Representative Speaker David Ralston claiming that all counties within the state should be investigated for potential fraud.

“If you are requesting that Fulton County be the subject of such an investigation, then I believe it would only be fair that all counties with issues be subject to investigation,” Pitts wrote in his letter to Speaker Ralston.

Read More

Georgians ‘Overwhelming Support Key Provisions’ in Highly Politicized Election Law Changes

"VOTE ONE MORE TIME" sign on an electric pole in Atlanta, Georgia

The results of a poll of likely Georgia voters indicates overwhelming support for requiring absentee voters in the state to provide photo identification – including from minorities and independents.

The poll, conducted July 12-14 by ARW Strategies of Illinois, puts overall support for the absentee “voter ID” measure – part of a new election reform law signed by Republican Governor Brian Kemp in March –  at 67 percent (2-1) of those likely to vote.

Read More

Fulton County Fails to Meet Their Own Extended Response Date for Providing Absentee Ballot Chain of Custody Documents from the November 2020 Election

Fulton County Response

Fulton County officials have failed to meet the extended response date they set for providing The Georgia Star News with complete chain of custody documents for absentee ballots deposited into drop boxes during the November 3, 2020, general election.

More than seven months and five follow-up requests after The Star News filed an initial open records request on December 1, 2020, Fulton County Legal Assistant Shana Eatmon said they needed until July 15, to provide the requested documents.

Read More

Georgia Senate to Hold Hearing on Buckhead ‘Divorce’ from Atlanta

Atlanta skyline at night

The Buckhead neighborhood’s efforts to secede from Atlanta have cleared another hurdle, as the state Senate will convene to debate a pair of bills aimed at separating the suburb from the city during its upcoming special session. 

“Bill sponsor Sen. Brandon Beach (R-Alpharetta), who has served in the state legislature’s upper chamber for ten years, told Breitbart News he has ‘never seen’ Buckhead cityhood gain so much traction before,” Breitbart reported. 

Read More

Atlanta’s Rising Crime Rate to Get Scrutiny from Georgia Legislators

Members of the Georgia House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee are scheduled to meet Monday to address Atlanta’s rising rates of crime. State Rep. J. Collins (R-Villa Rica) chairs the committee. Those committee members are scheduled to meet at 11 a.m. Monday, July 19, in Room 406 of the Coverdell Legislative Office Building in Atlanta.

Read More

State Sen. Burt Jones Requests Senate Investigation into Numerous and Documented Failures of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Cited by 45th President Donald Trump

Burt Jones

Georgia State Senator Burt Jones (R-Jackson) on Thursday made a formal request for an investigation by the Senate Government Oversight Committee into the failures of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, which he characterized as numerous and documented, catching the attention of 45th President Donald Trump.

In a statement issued by Trump Friday, which included a copy of Jones’ letter, he said:

The Governor of Georgia, Brian Kemp, together with Brad Raffensperger, allowed this Election in Georgia to be Rigged and Stolen. Why they ever agreed to Stacey Abram’s Consent Decree nobody will ever know. Thank you to Senator Burt Jones and all of the other Patriots for continuing the fight. Brian Kemp and Brad Raffensperger have done an absolutely terrible job of watching over Voter Integrity in Georgia. They must be held accountable!

Read More

Convicted Felon Sentenced to Prison for Robbing Traveler at Georgia I-75 Rest Area

James Clemente Holloway

Federal officials have sentenced a Florida man — also a convicted felon — to federal prison following a high-speed chase along Interstate 75 after he robbed a traveler at gunpoint. U.S. District Judge Louis Sands sentenced that man, James Clemente Holloway, 43, of Jacksonville, Florida, to serve 80 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release. This, after Sands previously pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Read More

Trump Praises Efforts of State Sen. Burt Jones, Hits Gov. Kemp and Secretary of State Raffensperger

Former President Donald Trump praised State Senator Burt Jones (R-Jackson) for his efforts in examining the results of the 2020 election, while knocking Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger for their lack of action.

“Thank you to Senator Burt Jones and all of the other Patriots for continuing the fight. Brian Kemp and Brad Raffensperger have done an absolutely terrible job of watching over Voter Integrity in Georgia. They must be held accountable!” Trump said in a statement.

Read More