An Atlanta-area election worker was threatened and is in hiding after he was falsely accused of throwing away ballots.
The frustrated worker was seen crumpling up a piece of paper while processing paper ballots in a viral video clip taken from the livestream of the State Farm Arena in Fulton County, Georgia, where the county is tabulating Tuesday’s vote.
Georgia is a key focus of the post-election count because it’s one of the few states still not called for either President Trump or former Vice President Biden. It also has two close Senate races going to runoffs, contests that could determine control of that chamber.
The video showed the man using a machine to separate the outer envelope from the inner envelope carrying a ballot, said Fulton County Elections Supervisor Rick Barron, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported.
The clip, which circulated widely on social media accompanied by speculative captions or commentary, led viewers to believe the worker was agitated, which resulted in the worker crumbling and discarding a ballot.
“However one thing that you need to know is that those ballots are 8 ½ by 19 inches long,” Barron said during a news conference. “At no time did you see him extract anything from the envelope, and that crumbled piece of paper, they were instructions and it was a smaller piece of paper.”
President Trump has leveled accusations of election fraud, without providing evidence.
Barron said Fulton County, which includes Atlanta, is considering providing protection to the worker.
“He’s having to leave his house and go stay with friends,” Barron said. “He’s afraid to drive his car, because the information about his car and his license plate is out there.”