On November 9, 2023, Brad Raffensperger, Secretary of State, addressed recent threats targeting election officials in Georgia. Raffensperger revealed that a Fulton County election official received a letter contaminated with fentanyl, mirroring incidents at local election offices in various states. The contaminated letter was intercepted by postal services.
Raffensperger emphasized that ensuring secure elections and safeguarding election officials is of utmost importance. Collaborations with state and federal entities are underway to ascertain if other officials in Georgia are at risk. Raffensperger condemned these acts as domestic terrorism, asserting they would not undermine the right to free and fair elections. He has advocated for heightened penalties for election interference to protect officials from fear and intimidation.
The Associated Press reported no immediate evidence of other Georgia election offices being targeted. An advisory was circulated by the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency regarding the incident.
Raffensperger also noted Georgia’s record-breaking voter turnout and participation, highlighting the significant increase in the 2018 midterm elections and the unprecedented turnout in 2020 and 2022. The 2022 midterm elections saw the highest single-day in-person early voting turnout in the state’s history, utilizing a secure, paper ballot voting system.