COBB COUNTY, Ga. — Cobb County this week entered into a consent agreement with the county Republican Party and a national veterans voter group to settle a lawsuit over election monitor access.
A pro-Trump election group, the Committee to Defend the President, billed it as the first the first legal victory for Republicans in Georgia ahead of the Senate runoffs.
The consent agreement did not, as the suit had sought, declare Cobb County’s procedures to “not be fair and honest.” Its language does not acknowledge fault on the county’s behalf.
The original complaint had alleged two poll watchers designated by the Cobb County Republican Party and National Defense Committee, a Virginia-based group, were not being given sufficient access by the county for the Senate runoff proceedings.
The suit argued there was a particular violation of special protections for military and overseas voters, because the National Defense Committee specifically advocates on behalf of military voters.
The suit included five principal accusations:
- That the monitors were not being allowed to observe or view absentee ballot processing as it happened.
- That they were “corralled at the entryway with no way to view absentee ballots at any station in the vast processing hall.”
- That the county “set up too many stations, spread too far apart, for actual monitoring.”
- That monitors were improperly blocked from viewing the signature verification process.
- And that the Cobb County Republican Party and National Defense Committee were not being allowed to rotate in new monitors as relief.
The language of the agreement stipulates that Cobb County will allow monitors to be rotated in accordance with Georgia law.
The Cobb County Republican Party and National Defense Committee monitors will be “permitted to substitute poll watchers specifically assigned to the particular advance voting or absentee processing location, as long as they are properly credentialed and there are no more than two per polling location at any given time.”
The agreement adds that monitoring of absentee ballot processing and signature verification will be allowed, as currently provided for under Georgia election laws and rules. It also says voting day poll watchers shall be governed under existing Georgia law.
The chairman of the Committee to Defend the President, Ted Harvey, said in a statement that he applauded Cobb Superior Court Judge George H. Kreeger for “helping us bring accuracy, fairness, and transparency to Georgia.”