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DEKALB BRE Special Call Meeting  Thursday, August 31, 2023, 4:00  


Karli Swift (At Large) Chair  

Vasu Abhiraman (D) Vice Chair (via Zoom)  

Nancy Jester (R) (via Zoom)  

Anthony Lewis (R)  

Susan Motter (D)  


Passes 5 – 0 


Betsy Shackleford: Naturalized citizens don’t enter their own birthdates so they may not be at fault for DOB errors. 

Stephanie Ali, New Georgia Project: Challenges are frivolous. “EagleAI” software is a flawed method for identifying problems in voter rolls. 

Paula Anderson: Challenges based on inconsequential errors hurt the most vulnerable, such as transients and students. 

Susan McWethy: The state needs better guidelines for challenges, and legislators need to be truthful about supposed election fraud. 

Libby Howze: Challenges undermine publics’ trust in elections 

Pam Woodley: Challenges are hardest on immigrants and refugees. One can contribute to fair elections by becoming a poll worker. 

Taylor Spicer: Trusts BRE to act in the public interest. 

Janet Grant: Notes high volume of challenges. Georgia needs better processes for maintaining accurate rolls in addition to ERIC. As poll worker, has seen legitimate voters whose votes don’t get counted because of technicalities. 

Haqiqa Bolling: Proud of DeKalb’s nonpartisan BRE. 

Julie Adamov: Current challenges are legitimate and based on voters being listed as being over 121 years old. Challengers aren’t questioning anyone’s right to vote. Claims electors who voted falsely signed an oath saying the data was correct. 

Adamov says “And I’d like to say for the immigrants coming in into our country, they have to be a citizen to vote.” 

Robin Shahar: Gov. Kemp and SOS Raffensperger say Georgia’s rolls are clean. Naomi Bock: Feels timeline to resolve challenges is too short and SEB should address this. She thinks challengers should be held to some standard of effectiveness or be made to change the basis of their complaints. 

Judy Sophianonpolis: It should be easier to vote. 

Joy Wasson: Use other processes to keep voter rolls clean. Challenges impede election administration. 

Liz Throop: People have unusual circumstances and shouldn’t be challenged without knowledge of their situations.

Bill Henderson: Resents aspersions voiced about challengers. Says birth dates can be easily  corrected if voters want to do it. 

Brandi Wyche: Persons of color are targeted by these challenges. 

Brittany Burns, Protect the Vote: Georgia needs stronger rules regarding challenges, such as  demanding proof of problems and consequences for those bringing false charges. Bethann Frillman: She was immediately removed from voter rolls when she moved to  temporary housing. In addition to costs to the county, challenged voters sometimes have to pay  for lawyers to help them resolve challenges. Her husband is an immigrant who has become a  citizen and legitimate voter. 

Kristin Nabers: All Voting is Local: Statewide, most challenges are against POC. Even a Fulton  County BRE member has been challenged. 

Beth Levine: Agrees with previous comments, thanks DeKalb Elections, and asks for more early  voting locations and Sunday voting hours. 

Marion Polock, LWV: Challenges should be rejected, as SB202 impacts POC, especially non English speakers, disproportionally. 

Melissa Manrow, LWV (Via email, read by staff): SB202 impacts POC, especially non-English  speakers, disproportionally. These challenges are not based on residency but on clerical errors. 


Director K Smith states 159 challenges under consideration were submitted 8/9/23, along with  a news article about the age of the oldest American, and that 150 more challenges were added  8/10/23. No challenged voters are present at this meeting. Smith says staff resolved all but 84  of the challenges via cross-checking other documents on file. 

Challenger Gail A. Lee cites 22-21-220(e) as justification for cancelling these 84 voters. Says she  is not alleging fraud on the parts of the voters. 

Smith says of challenges already resolved: 

55 got no-contact letters 

45 DOBs were corrected by staff 

9 are registered in other counties 

22 were registered twice so the records were merged 

1 was a non-citizen 

1 requested their registration be cancelled 

1 moved out of GA 

2 notices were returned to office  

Jester suggests public should speak to legislators if they don’t like the laws. 

Abhiraman cites 21-2-220 (e) and asks Lee if any of the challenged electors submitted false  DOBs. Lee responds she got the data from the SOS website and doesn’t know how the bad  DOBs got into the records. She says she works with 5 other volunteers from DeKalb and is not  being paid.

Motter says her professional work involves reviewing applications for pensions, and  inaccuracies are common – but applicants aren’t denied their pensions and likewise voters  shouldn’t be cancelled. Says the challenge don’t meet the burden of proof. 

Swift cites 21-2-229, which outlines methods for bringing challenges. Says challenger must  prove an elector is not qualified. Says SOS manages the voter rolls. 

Lee responds that she did find other DOBs for some of the challenged via research, and that  data indicated the electors were reasonable ages to be voting. Lee thinks the only way to  correct the rolls is to bring such challenges and let electors re-register with correct DOB. 

Swift says she thinks requiring electors to re-register is a burden, even if the bad DOB is not  administrative error. 

Jester says errors are egregious and Ms. Lee is an outstanding citizen and that challengers  protect other citizens’ undiluted votes. 

Abhiraman says if we don’t know how bad DOBs got into the records, they have no probative value. 

Swift asks Lee if she has proof that electors provided false DOBs. 

Lewis wonders if there are any patterns or connections between the various problems that got  resolved.  

Staff says that notices of the hearing were sent to challenged electors on August 21. 

Motter wonders if switch from ENET to GARVIS registration system may have had an impact.  Discusses existing procedures for correcting and updating the voter rolls including using ERIC.  She doesn’t think third parties (such as Lee) should be involved in this process. Wishes SEB  would provide guidance concerning burden of proof regarding challenges. 

Swift says there doesn’t appear to be evidence that e electors provided false DOBs. Says 21-2- 229 puts burden of proof on challenger, even though in practice, the main burden falls on the  Elections Department. 

Jester moves to accept challenges. Lewis seconds but then suggests that they can now table it  because they have sent out notices to electors and held a meeting as 21-2-229 requires.  

Atty Momo says a decision is “not necessary today.” 

Lewis makes substitute motion to table, 2nd by Jester. Vote 2 – 3, motion fails.

Lewis says he doesn’t want electors to be removed based on somebody’s mistake, but he also  doesn’t like leaving them on the rolls … 

Vote to accept challenges 2 – 3, motion fails. 

Atty Momo says it’s not necessary to have a motion to reject.  




Jester says she thinks some board members will never accept any challenges, ever, and this is shameful. Jester thinks that homeless people are supposed to register with their address being the county courthouse. Hopes SEB will tighten guidelines. 

Abhiraman says challenges are not an efficient way to maintain accurate lists. Whether or not  it’s easy to re-register, these challenges have not met the burden of proof.  

Motter asks for guidance from SEB on electors using PO Boxes as addresses.  

Lewis says the county elections office can be listed as an address and registration materials should explain that. Says he never considers race, immigration status, or ethnicity in registration matters.  

Swift says DeKalb has asked for guidance on bad information in voter rolls for years. Thanks, Gail A. Lee and SEB member Dr. Johnston for participating.  


These meetings are open to the public by Georgia law.  

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