GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Hundreds attended an event at Furman University Wednesday night to hear from the Georgia Secretary of State.
State election laws, accessibility to elections, and integrity of elections were all discussed at the event. Secretary Brad Raffensperger also spoke about election security.
Raffensperger gained national attention from a phone call with former President Donald Trump.
“I listened to it the day it was released, and I couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” said Tom Coughlin, who attended.
Raffensperger took the stage as part of Furman University’s “Straight Talk” events.
When he took the stage, the crowd gave him a standing ovation.
“Since day one, my number one, my number priority has been election security,” he said.
Prosecutors said the secretary was pressured by Trump to find 11,780 votes.
“Nobody else in the room has had that experience of the president calling and saying, ‘Can you find me 11,000 votes?’ As Secretary of State what was his role, how does he react to that?” said Dr. Danielle Vinson, moderator for the event.
“I think Mr. Raffensperger has a lot to say, he’s a very brave public servant and he’s been through a lot,” stated Coughlin.
“We’ll be looking at from Secretary Raffensperger’s perspective, what he’s doing in Georgia, what threats he’s seen to the election integrity in Georgia. And people’s understanding and trust in elections,” said Vinson.
Secretary Raffensperger spoke about the investigation into the election.
“28,000 people skipped the presidential race. Senator David Purdue, in metro Atlanta, actually got about 20,000 more votes, I shared those data points,” he said.
The phone call was also discussed.
“The president says I would like a word with you. Tell us about that, how did you react to it, how does it affect your job?” asked Vinson.
“I just tried, best I could, that we didn’t have thousands, didn’t have 5,000, but two dead people. No one was shredding ballots or tearing up things in Cobb County. Just tried to give data points and information,” replied Raffensperger.
Some who attended said they feel like a lot of key swing states, like Georgia, are on notice.
“I don’t see how somebody can stuff a ballot box in those states, I think they’re on notice,” said Coughlin.
“On a positive note, more people have paid attention to it, there’s also been on the local level and the state level. There will be more watching, hopefully it’s going to be more watching with an open mind and for safety,” said Larry Harris, who attended the event.
Vinson said part of the treat to the election process is politicians being unwilling to accept the results.
The third part of the series will be held Tuesday, September 12, at Furman University at 6:30 p.m.