The US state of Georgia has completed its hand recount of the presidential race and affirmed that President elect Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump.
The President elect won by a razor thin margin of just 12,284 votes, according to the final results from the audit. The margin had narrowed after the audit, compared to a pre-audit result, which had put Mr Biden slightly further ahead.
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Officials have denied allegations of widespread voter fraud in the highly publicised election.
The full hand recount was requested by the Trump campaign a week after the election. Brad Raffensperger, the Georgia Secretary of State announced shortly afterwards all 159 counties in the state would recount their votes in what he called a “risk-limiting audit”.
The approximately five million votes had been recounted by Wednesday afternoon, Georgia time.
Multiple major news outlets called the state of Georgia for Mr Biden last week. However Mr Trump raised accusations of voter fraud in the state. The President also accused the recount of meaning “nothing” because counters weren’t verifying signatures.
The President’s claim has been disputed by election experts, who say while signatures aren’t being checked during the recount in Georgia, they were checked twice before the initial count.
Georgia is required to certify the results of its election by Friday, Georgia time.
The hand recount did unearth some significant issues in four different Georgian counties.
In Floyd, Fayette, Walton and Douglas, votes were discovered that had not been included during the initial count, according to the New York Times.
Mr Trump won Floyd, Fayette and Walton counties and Mr Biden won Douglas county.
In Floyd, officials discovered some 2600 ballots that had been left uncounted. Following the discovery, the County’s Board of Elections voted to sack their chief election clerk.
The New York Times reported that across most of Georgia’s counties the hand recount delivered minor, single digit changes to the final vote tallies.
After Georgia certifies its results on Friday, the Trump campaign will have a window of two business days to request a second recount.
If the Trump campaign requested a second recount, it would be conducted with high speed scanners.