2020 General Election Risk-Limiting Audit
Following the November 2020 General Election, the Secretary of State selected the presidential contest for a statewide risk limiting audit ("RLA"). Due to the tight margin of the race and the principles of risk-limiting audits, this audit was a full manual tally of all votes cast. The audit confirmed that the original machine count accurately portrayed the winner of the election.
The differential of the audit results from the original machine-counted results was well within the expected margin of human error that occurs when hand-counting ballots. A 2012 study by Rice University and Clemson University found that “hand counting of votes in postelection audit or recount procedures can result in error rates of up to 2 percent.” In Georgia’s recount, the highest error rate in any county recount was 0.73%. Most counties found no change in their final tally. The majority of the remaining counties had changes of fewer than ten ballots.
Note: As you are reviewing batch-level results, you may notice that Gwinnett County has a disproportionately high number of blank ballots. This is because some voters received two-page ballots, and the second page was considered a blank ballot since it did not have the presidential contest.