Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa Bay news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Charlotte news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Photo: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

A spokesperson for Georgia's secretary of state’s office tells Axios human error is responsible for the outsize number of ballots cast in a northeastern county (670) compared to how many voters were registered beforehand (276), numbers which McClatchy’s Christine Condon reported this week.

Why it matters: That's not Georgia’s only election problem. At least one of the state's county websites has been a target of Russian hacking attempts, according to a Mueller indictment. Cybersecurity experts have found vulnerabilities in an election server in the state, and court filings in a federal suit, brought by cybersecurity experts against the state, allege several issues with the state’s voting machines and voter registration.

From the court filing, per McClatchy: Several voters went on the record to describe frozen voting machines that seemingly failed to record votes on Election Day, machines that received the incorrect Congressional District's ballot to vote on, and voters who showed up at the polling location they were directed to by the state, only to be told to vote elsewhere.

  • It’s not clear these problems resulted from cybersecurity flaws or manipulation — they could have happened due to human error.

What they're saying: "We haven’t had any evidence that the voting equipment has ever been compromised," the spokesperson, Candice Broce, told Axios.

The big picture: Georgia’s voting systems are 16 years old, and the state can’t double check if its election results are accurate because it uses voting machines that don’t have a paper trail. It is one of 14 states in the U.S. that also have this problem.

The money: It’s unclear how Georgia plans to spend the more than $10 million it is receiving from Congress’ omnibus for election security improvements, per the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Secretary of State Brian Kemp has a bipartisan commission examining whether the state should change its voting machines before 2020, per McClatchy.

Other problems: A security researcher has repeatedly warned about a vulnerability in an election server in the state that would have allowed him to access and possibly alter the state's voter database.

  • There were PDFs with instructions and passwords for election officials on how to sign into a central server on Election Day, which were posted on Kennesaw State University’s Center for Election Systems' website, the system responsible for running Georgia’s elections.
  • Kemp was the only state election official to not take advantage of Department of Homeland Security resources to help bolster election security ahead of the 2016 elections, per Politico. Kemp has also claimed his state's voting systems were not at risk to 2016 election hacking because DHS told him the Russians didn't target Georgia. However, that doesn’t mean they weren’t at risk, and the Mueller indictment calls that into question.

Go deeper

The new Washington

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Axios subject-matter experts brief you on the incoming administration's plans and team.

Rep. Lou Correa tests positive for COVID-19

Lou Correa. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Lou Correa (D-Calif.) announced on Saturday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Correa is the latest Democratic lawmaker to share his positive test results after last week's deadly Capitol riot. Correa did not shelter in the designated safe zone with his congressional colleagues during the siege, per a spokesperson, instead staying outside to help Capitol Police.

Far-right figure "Baked Alaska" arrested for involvement in Capitol siege

Photo: Shay Horse/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The FBI arrested far-right media figure Tim Gionet, known as "Baked Alaska," on Saturday for his involvement in last week's Capitol riot, according to a statement of facts filed in the U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia.

The state of play: Gionet was arrested in Houston on charges related to disorderly or disruptive conduct on the Capitol grounds or in any of the Capitol buildings with the intent to impede, disrupt, or disturb the orderly conduct of a session, per AP.