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Judge dismisses Loeffler, Perdue lawsuit calling for segregation of ballots

The lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice in the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of Georgia on Friday - one day after it was filed.

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — A push to have Georgia elections officials separate the ballots of newly-registered voters from others has been dismissed with prejudice in a U.S. District Court.

The suit, brought by Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue along with the Georgia Republican Party and others, suggested that the influx of newly-registered voters in Georgia had brought with it people who had already voted in the regular election for senators in other states. The lawsuit described having these people register and vote in the Georgia U.S. Senate runoffs would constitute double voting.

The plaintiffs suggest that, because of the way Georgia approaches the privacy of the ballots, it would be impossible to tell which votes came from those who voted in other states' Senate races once the tabulation process had begun.

As a result, Loeffler, Perdue, and others urged that election officials be required to segregate all ballots cast by voters registering to vote between Nov. 4 and Dec. 7.

It also requested that the court clearly declare that it is unlawful for voters who previously cast ballots for senators in other states on Nov. 3 to cast them in Georgia's runoff. And, in the case where the votes play a major role in the runoff, the senators and state Republican party want election officials to be required to investigate these segregated ballots to ensure voters hadn't "double voted."

The lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia, also took specific aim at two of the district's largest counties by population - Chatham and Glynn - pointing to examples of increased voter registration and some cases of alleged double voters.

However, just one day after the lawsuit was submitted, Judge Lisa Godbey Wood dismissed it for lack of standing - or essentially that the plaintiffs failed to show how not taking these actions would lead to direct harm to them. The judge also denied the request as moot, dismissed with prejudice - the latter meaning permanently - with an order to the clerk to "terminate all motions and deadlines and close the case."

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