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Georgia Presidential Race Likely Headed For Recount, Secretary Of State Says

Georgia Secretary of State Ben Raffensperger holds a press conference on the status of ballot counting in Atlanta on Friday.
Jessica McGowan
Getty Images
Georgia Secretary of State Ben Raffensperger holds a press conference on the status of ballot counting in Atlanta on Friday.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told reporters that the state will conduct a recount given the razor-thin margin between former Vice President Joe Biden and President Trump.

"The focus for our office and for the county elections officials for now remains on making sure that every legal vote is counted and recorded accurately," Raffensperger said.

"As we are closing in on a final count, we can begin to look toward our next steps. With a margin that small, there will be a recount in Georgia," he predicted.

In Georgia, a recount can only be requested after the state has undergone a "risk limiting audit" and a state certification of the vote, according to Georgia elections official Gabriel Sterling. As of now, the state certification process is set to be finalized by Nov. 20.


Recounts can be requested if the margin of victory is within .5%. Biden currently leads Trump by just over 1,500 votes after surpassing the president's lead early Friday morning.

Sterling said in Friday's press briefing that there were 4,169 ballots left to be counted in Georgia, with portions largely in Gwinnett County, as well some in Cobb, Floyd and Cherokee counties.

Sterling added that counts may be finalized by this weekend, though it remains unclear how long the count of incoming military ballots and cured or damaged absentee ballots could take.

"When you have a narrow margin, little small things can make a difference," Sterling said. "We are literally looking at a margin of less than, you know, a large high school," he added.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Elena Moore is a production assistant for the NPR Politics Podcast. She also fills in as a reporter for the NewsDesk. Moore previously worked as a production assistant for Morning Edition. During the 2020 presidential campaign, she worked for the Washington Desk as an editorial assistant, doing both research and reporting. Before coming to NPR, Moore worked at NBC News. She is a graduate of The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and is originally and proudly from Brooklyn, N.Y.

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