The office of Georgia Secretary of State, which is headed up by Brian Kemp, the Republican candidate running for governor in a hotly contested race, announced on Sunday an investigation into the state’s Democratic Party for unspecified cyber crimes, according to The Hill. The investigation stems from an alleged hack of the state’s voter registration system.
“While we cannot comment on the specifics of an ongoing investigation, I can confirm that the Democratic Party of Georgia is under investigation for possible cyber crimes,” Candice Broce, press secretary for Kemp’s office, said in a press release.
“We can also confirm that no personal data was breached and our system remains secure,” she added.
Kemp faces Democrat Stacey Abrams in the election for governor. Kemp has denied and refused calls to resign his secretary of state position as he campaigns for governor, according to The Hill. Some allege doing both poses a conflict of interest.
Democratic Party of Georgia Executive Director Rebecca DeHart issued a statement on an Kemp’s investigation, calling it “yet another example of abuse of power by an unethical Secretary of State,” according to The Hill.
“To be very clear, Brian Kemp’s scurrilous claims are 100 percent false, and this so-called investigation was unknown to the Democratic Party of Georgia until a campaign operative in Kemp’s official office released a statement this morning,” she said, the news outlet writes. “This political stunt from Kemp just days before the election is yet another example of why he cannot be trusted and should not be overseeing an election in which he is also a candidate for governor.”
“Brian Kemp is desperate to save his failing campaign, and it’s likely we’ll see even more of his abuses of power as the election nears, but Georgians will keep working hard, knocking on doors, making phone calls, and voting to make sure he doesn’t get a promotion,” she added.
This campaign season has been quite controversial in Georgia, with Kemp facing allegations of suppressing minority voters following a report last month that found 53,000 voter registration applications were on hold with just weeks to go before the election. The majority of those applications were for African-American and female voters under the state’s exact match law, which requires information on voter applications to exactly match that held by the government.
Thankfully, a federal judge last week upheld an injunction blocking election officials in Georgia from throwing out absentee ballots when a resident’s signature doesn’t exactly match the signature on their voter registration card, according to The Hill.