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Live Updates | Georgia vote count continues

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ATLANTA — **Below is a post-Election Day blog archive for Nov. 4**

For the Nov. 5 blog click here.

The count continues, and an outcome that many experts predicted could possibly take a number of days to become clear is, indeed, still in the balance after Election Night has come and gone.

After an unprecedented wave of early voting across the country, people headed to the polls on Election Day to complete America's voting marathon. Because of those early numbers, the voting process itself appeared to go smoothly in most states.

2020 Atlanta and Georgia Election Results

Georgia's count has not yet finished, with ballots to be counted in counties such as Fulton, DeKalb, Gwinnett and Cobb for a variety a reasons.

RELATED: Where things stand after Election Night in Georgia

Our team of journalists will continue to be up around the clock to offer the latest developments and insights as the count goes on.


2:30 a.m. | The Fulton County  Director of Elections, Richard Barron said They are still counting votes with about 13,000 ballots left. At this time, they expect to be done by noon with the exception of about 1,300 to 3,000 ballots that need review. 

2 a.m. | 11Alive's Chenue Her says the Secretary of State's website hasn't updated in a while. However, 11Alive's tracker that is linked to data from the Associated Press has been updating. Here's a look at where the presidential race stands.

1:35 a.m. | 11Alive's Natisha Lance tweets that Fulton County has 14,000 ballots left to scan and count. 

12:30 a.m. | Disks have been delivered to the Fulton County Elections Preparation Center from State Farm Arena, where the ballots were processed. 

11Alive's Natisha Lance reports that the ballots that need it will go through adjudication.

12:20 a.m. | DeKalb County election officials said they have finished the unofficial count for the election. They plan on certifying the votes on Friday, Nov. 13. 

Here is a breakdown of the processed 369,948 votes:

  • Election Day 47,553
  • Advance Voting 195,376
  • Absentee by Mail    127,019

County officials added that DeKalb has 201 ballots that need to be cured. Those voters will be contacted by phone or overnight mail. And, DeKalb County also has approximately 1,600 provisional ballots.

Uniformed Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act ballots will also be put into the final certified tabulations. The county said that they've received just over 1,700 of those; applicable voters have until 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 6 for the ballots to arrive to the office. However, they have to be postmarked by Nov. 3 to be accepted.

11:35 p.m. | Votes are still rolling in for Fulton County. The last update shows about 27,800 votes were counted with Biden picking up more thank 22,100; Trump picked up about 5,600. See the breakdown from 11Alive's Brendan Keefe below.

10:29 p .m. | Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said that as of 10:15 p.m., there are approximately 90,735 ballots still outstanding.

10:10 p.m. | The latest numbers for Fulton County show a high number for Biden.

9:12 p.m. | DeKalb County officials gave an update on their absentee ballots.

They said in a news release that out of the 500,000 absentee ballot applications mailed, 174,720 voters applied and received absentee ballots. As of the submission deadline, 128,392 mail-in absentee ballot were returned and verified.

"This number represents almost 25 percent of the DeKalb electorate, up from 4 percent that returned absentee ballots in both 2016 and 2018," the news release says.

8:47 p.m. | Georgia is continuously counting votes. In the 8:30 p.m. update, Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said there are about 107,751 ballots still outstanding.

8:30 p.m. | Cobb County absentee ballots have now been recorded on the Secretary of State's reporting site. Biden picked up 10,103 votes. Trump picked up 3,929. Jorgensen grabbed 479 votes.

8:15 p.m. | Another update from the Secretary of State's Office shows that as of 8 p.m. there were approximately 122,535 ballots still outstanding.

7:35 p.m. | Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said that as of 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, there were about 149,350 ballots still outstanding. 

“Officials in numerous counties are continuing to count ballots, with strong security protocols in place to protect the integrity of our election,” said Raffensperger. “We have long anticipated – and said publicly – that counting would most likely take place into Wednesday night and perhaps Thursday morning. We’re on pace to accomplish that responsibly, ensuring that the voice of every eligible voter is heard. It’s important to act quickly, but it’s more important to get it right.” 

7:26 p.m. | The Fulton County elections director goes over how many ballots they have scanned and adjudicated in the latest update.

Richard Barron said they hope to finish Wednesday night. They are processing the last of the absentee ballots, with about 28,000 to go.

Barron explained the process where he said they open, flatten and then scan the ballots. Then they are sent to another location to be counted. He also added that more people would be coming to help with the process. You can watch Barron's comments below

7:07 p.m. | Fulton County elections officials are expected to give an update shortly. 

7 p.m. | President Donald Trump's campaign and the Georgia Republican Party have filed a lawsuit against the Chatham County Board of Elections asking a judge to order the county to secure and account for ballots received after 7 p.m. on Election Day.

State party Chairman David Shafer said in a statement Wednesday night that they planned to sue in a dozen counties.

FULL STORY: Trump campaign files lawsuit in Georgia

The Trump campaign claimed in a statement that a Republican poll observer "witnessed 53 late absentee ballots illegally added to a stack of on-time absentee ballots." 

"We look forward to the court swiftly resolving this issue and to President Trump’s upcoming repeat win in Georgia," the statement from the campaign said.

Click to read the full statement.

6:35 p.m. | Additional vote totals have been reported in Georgia, bringing the total to 4,827,106. 

President Trump's lead over Joe Biden has been reduced to 55,575 votes.

6 p.m. | Joe Biden has been projected as the winner in Michigan and its 16 electoral votes. 

This takes Biden to a total of 264 electoral votes, just six votes short of the 270 electoral vote total needed to become the next President of the United States.

Credit: Tegna

5:15 p.m. | President Trump posted two tweets shortly before 5 p.m., saying that his campaign had "claimed, for Electoral Vote purposes, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (which won't allow legal observers) the state of Georgia, and the State of North Carolina," citing the large lead that his campaign appeared to have Tuesday night.

Twitter flagged Trump's tweets as having potentially misleading information.

5:00 p.m. | Another 1,000 came in, did not do much to move the 66,000-ish lead the president maintains. Vote total now at 4,794,754.

4:45 p.m. | Nearly 20,000 votes just came in over the secretary of state website. They titled quite a bit toward Joe Biden and have brought President Trump's lead down to about 66,000 - roughly 10,000 down from where it was at 76,000.

There are now 4,793,116 total votes in the count.

4:40 p.m. | Cobb County says it had an issue today when a group had a "disagreement" about where it could go to observe ballot counting:

RELATED: 'Disturbance' with poll watchers at Cobb County absentee ballot counting facility

4:25 p.m. | About 10,000 votes added to the secretary of state's total, bringing us to 4,774,849. President Trump's lead is a little more than 76,000, down from about 77,500 a little earlier.

4:20 p.m. | You might have noticed a viral post going around - it was even quoted by John Legend - that claimed 40,000 ballots could be thrown out in DeKalb County.

DeKalb County Elections Director Erica Hamilton clarified in a press conference today they don't "reject" ballots, but are put into provisional status if they're flagged for issues.

Those ballots can then be "cured" by the voter if they go to the county elections office and clear up the issue. DeKalb says there are not 40,000 of those, but rather 200.

4:00 p.m. | Joe Biden will make a public statement shortly.

3:45 p.m. | Amid all this vote counting, it's worth a reminder: If you voted by mail, you should check your ballot status here to make sure it's been accepted. If there was an issue with it, you may have to "cure" your ballot, a process you can learn more about in the article below:

RELATED: How can a Georgia voter 'cure' a rejected absentee ballot?

3:35 p.m. | Another roughly 4,500 votes were just added to the secretary of state's total, bringing it to 4,764,487. They were split pretty much evenly between President Trump and Joe Biden.

3:25 p.m. | If you've been keeping your eye on the returns trickling in, 11Alive's Joe Henke reports a big Cobb dump could come in between 6-8 p.m. They had floated the possibility of it finishing their count as late as tomorrow at one point:

3:20 p.m. | We haven't gone deep into the Georgia General Assembly races today, but it's notable that the minority leader of the Georgia House, Democrat Bob Trammell, lost his re-election campaign to Republican David Jenkins. 

Trammell represented Georgia's 132nd House District, which extended from Newnan down to LaGrange and to the east over Meriwether County.

2:50 p.m. | Bigger batch just added to the count, about 7,000 of them, we're now up to 4,759,581 and President Trump's lead has dipped from about 81,000 to about 77,600.

2:40 p.m. | 11Alive's Andy Pierrotti reports on the vote-counting - vote-wrangling, in some respects - process in Fulton County. The county Republican Party told him there are 12,000 mail-in ballots that will be examined by representatives from both parties.

2:35 p.m. | Little fewer than a thousand votes added to the official state total, now at 4,752,763. Obviously didn't move the needle either way.

2:10 p.m. | Georgia GOP Chairman David Shafer is voicing some complaints about the tabulation observation process in Fulton County:

1:45 p.m. | Another small update on the secretary of state website: About 4,000 more votes added to the total, which is now 4,751,973, with President Trump's lead down from about 84,000 to 81,000.

1:40 p.m. | Rep. Lucy McBath, who has won re-election in Georgia's 6th District House race, will deliver remarks in a live statement on her Facebook page in five minutes.

1:30 p.m. | Asked for a timetable to finish processing the final 24,000 votes in DeKalb County, elections director Erica Hamilton said "as soon as possible."

1:25 p.m. | In a news conference, DeKalb County Elections Director Erica Hamilton says there are 24,000 ballots left to count, down from about 48,000 this morning.

1:20 p.m. | A very small update on the secretary of state's website reflects about another 4,000 votes counted, with President Trump's lead over Joe Biden dropping slightly from about 85,000 to about 84,000. There are now 4,747,842 votes in the total.

1:15 p.m. | Fulton County says in a statement that last night 74,000 absentee ballots were tabulated and included in reported results. The county says there are 42,400 "to be opened, scanned and adjudicated" today, with another 25,000 that have been scanned and still need to be adjudicated (added to the total, basically).

"An adjudication review panel will meet at 2 p.m. today," the county said, to complete the work of processing those ballots.

That would mean there's 67,400 votes total to be counted in Fulton County.

1:10 p.m. | The secretary of state's website is now showing President Trump with a lead of about 85,000 votes, down from 100,000 earlier. About 20,000 votes were added to the total in the most recent update, bringing it to 4,743,028.

12:50 p.m. | In an interview with CNN, Raffensperger was asked about a potential recount in Georgia, and indicated it could be a possibility.

He said he "wouldn't be surprised" if a recount were necessary for state House or Senate seat, given that sometimes those races are as close as a couple hundred votes. But he added it could be possible for a congressional, Senate or "perhaps presidential" election.

"We'll face that if it comes to it," he said, adding that a candidate can request a recount and "we can do that."

As for resolving the count today, he said, "we're pushing the counties really hard to finish that up today."

12:30 p.m. | More county data... Gwinnett spokesman Joe Sorenson told 11Alive's Liza Lucas they have 4,400 absentee ballots outstanding and around 1,000 provisional ballots, which will need to be certified by the voter. (Provisional ballots are issued when a voter doesn't have ID or goes to the wrong polling place, for instance, and they then have a few days to go to the county elections office and resolve the issue.)

12:15 p.m. | To recap things again a little bit, here's what we know about the remaining votes: The secretary of state says there are 200,000 of them left to count, but we don't know how it breaks down at the county level, and whether what individual counties are working through and the current figures the state has will entirely line up.

We also know the official tabulation has only budged a little bit through the morning, as counties like Fulton and DeKalb and Cobb work through their batches of outstanding ballots.

Right now the secretary of state's website says there have been 4,723,537 votes cast, with President Trump holding a lead of about 100,000 votes.

11:43 a.m. | Asked for a county breakdown of outstanding votes, Raffensperger did not have a complete list on him but did offer these figures:

  • 52-54,000 in DeKalb
  • 74,000 absentee votes in Fulton
  • 7,0000 in Forsyth

11:38 a.m. | The secretary says there are 200,000 ballots left to be counted. He vows "every legal ballot will be counted in Georgia."

11:35 a.m. | Touting the success of Election Day, Sec. Raffensperger says, "This election puts to rest inflamed by those in our state, or not in our state, who have looked to sow doubt about our systems and those who have wrongly claimed there's a lack of access to voting."

11:20 a.m. | 11Alive's Maura Sirianni reports Fulton County has 67,000 absentee ballots left to count as of 11:15 a.m.

11:15 a.m. | NBC reports the U.S. Postal Service processing rate for Atlanta yesterday was 82%, among a number of areas in battleground states where the that rate was down for normal figures. According to NBC, the average processing rate is usually 95%.

By Georgia policy, no mail-in ballots were accepted after polls closed last night at 7 p.m.

11:10 a.m. | 11Alive's Joe Ripley reports DeKalb County's count on remaining absentee and provisional ballots is underway. Elections Director Erica Hamilton did not have an exact number for how many remain to be counted, but they expect to be done by the end of the day.

11:05 a.m. | Remember, Raffensperger also has a press conference coming up in about 25 minutes.

10:58 a.m. | Raffensperger also affirms count will be finished today. Cobb County, at least, has left open the possibility they may not complete counting outstanding ballots until early tomorrow.

10:55 a.m. | On TODAY Show, Sec. Raffensperger says there's "about 2% left to go" of votes to be counted.

Also says, "I don't think they'll change any of the outcomes."

10:25 a.m. | Cobb County now saying they have about 15,000 votes to count, with an estimated time of completing it for late tonight or early tomorrow.

10:00 a.m. | With the vote count here obviously being of the highest importance today, we're looking ahead to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger's press conference at 11:30 a.m. We'll be streaming it here and on our YouTube channel.

9:50 a.m. | The secretary of state's official count now shows President Trump up by about 102,000 votes, 50.47% to Joe Biden's 48.31%. We know there are vote counting processes to be completed at least in Fulton, Cobb, Gwinnett and DeKalb counties.

The Associated Press estimates about 6% of Georgia's vote remains to be counted.

9:13 a.m. | To recap the outstanding absentee ballots that need to be counted: 11Alive's Maura Sirianni just reported 16,000 need to be counted in Cobb County, Jerry Carnes reported this morning there are about 30,000 that need to be counted in Fulton County and Joe Ripley reported there is an unspecified amount that still need to be counted out of several DeKalb County drop boxes.

There also remains the issue of some ballots needing review due to a scanning issue in Gwinnett County, though officials believe the vast majority won't need it out of a batch of up to 60,000 that need to be sorted through for potential review.

9:10 a.m. | 11Alive's Maura Sirianni reports Cobb County still has 16,000 absentee ballots to count, which they expect to complete today.

9:05 a.m. | Democrat Carolyn Bourdeaux just gave some remarks in a Facebook live. She holds a lead of over 8,000 votes against Republican Dr. Rich McCormick in the Georgia 7th District race and is declaring victory, though the race has not yet been called.

8:50 a.m. | Also highly noteworthy: The Brunswick circuit district attorney who was sharply criticized for her initial handling of the Ahmaud Arbery case, Jackie Johnson, was beaten by an independent candidate, Keith Higgins.

8:15 a.m. | If you're waking up, just to recap: The secretary of state's office is reporting President Trump has a lead of about 117,000 votes with a number of outstanding votes still to be counted in Fulton and DeKalb. The race is too close to call.

Sen. David Perdue leads Jon Ossoff, and in the other Georgia Senate race, Republican incumbent Sen. Kelly Loeffler will face Rev. Raphael Warnock, a Democrat, in a January runoff.

In the House, Rep. Lucy McBath is projected to have held her seat in Georgia's 6th District, while Democrat Carolyn Bourdeaux has a narrow lead in the other bellwether 7th District race against Republican Dr. Rich McCormick. Bourdeaux lost the 2018 race for the seat by less than half a percent.

We'll also have at least two new U.S. representatives out of Georgia, with Republicans easily winning north Georgia seats that were being vacated by their current congressmen. In the 9th District, Andrew Clyde will replace Rep. Doug Collins, who vacated his seat for a losing Senate bid, and Marjorie Taylor Greene will replace the retiring Tom Graves in the 14th District.

7:45 a.m. | Interested in how some of the local races played out around Atlanta? The biggest news might be the defeat of Republican incumbents in key Cobb County positions: District Attorney Joyette Holmes, Sheriff Neil Warren and County Commission Chairman Mike Boyce all appear to have lost to Democratic challengers.

Democrat Flynn Broady Jr. would become the next DA, Democrat Craig Owens would be the next sheriff, and Democrat Lisa Cupid would be the next county commission chair if current results hold.

In a major shift, Gwinnett County DA Danny Porter lost to Democrat Patsy Austin-Gatson and the county also looks like it has just barely - by fewer than 200 votes - rejected a 30-year 1% sales tax increase to expand public transit.

And if you're into earlier Sunday alcohol sales, votes to allow them at 11 a.m. in East Point and Clayton County appear headed for wins.

7:15 a.m. | If you're interested in a general recap of where things stand with everything in Georgia from the presidential race to the Senate races down to some county-level races, we've published this helpful story: Where things stand after Election Night in Georgia

6:30 a.m. | Another thing that needs clarification right now is a discrepancy on the secretary of state's official results site. It says two counties are still not fully counted - Fulton and DeKalb - but DeKalb's precinct level data indicate all precincts have in fact completely reported.

11Alive's Joe Ripley reports votes from several drop boxes in the county haven't yet been counted. That count is to resume at 11 a.m. today.

6:15 a.m. | Regarding Fulton County's outstanding vote, 11Alive's Jerry Carnes reports this morning that about 30,000 absentee ballots need to still be counted.

5:45 a.m. | Here's where things currently stand in Georgia: The secretary of state's official count lists all but two counties - Fulton and DeKalb - as completed. In those two counties, it says 16 precincts have not yet fully reported their results. On the current count, President Trump leads Joe Biden by about 117,000 votes. 

It's not fully clear how many votes might still be outstanding in those precincts.

Meanwhile, in Gwinnett, officials said some absentee ballots will need to be reviewed after a software error with the scanning system. While the malfunction impacted more than 60,000 ballots, officials say the vast majority will not need to be reviewed.

4:30 a.m. | The Presidential race has yet to be officially called in Georgia. 

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