Cory Booker says the Georgia election is being ‘stolen from’ Stacey Abrams

WASHINGTON — New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker said he believes the Georgia gubernatorial election is being “stolen” from Democrat Stacey Abrams. He spoke during an interview at  Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit on Tuesday.

“There should be a federal investigation. The Justice Department should be investigating that election to make sure it was fair and the decisions that were made were not to politically advantage someone, but to protect voters and the voting process,” Booker said.

Booker, who was not up for reelection this year but is a potential presidential candidate in 2020, noted that he was commenting “from a perspective where I have not been in the weeds,” but said, based on what he’s seen, he is convinced Abrams isn’t getting a fair shot.

“I think that Stacey Abrams’ election is being stolen from her, using what I think are insidious measures to disenfranchise certain groups of people,” said Booker.

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Stacey Abrams, Georgia's first-ever black female gubernatorial candidate
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Stacey Abrams, Georgia's first-ever black female gubernatorial candidate
Stacey Abrams, running for the Democratic primary for Georgia's 2018 governor's race, speaks at a Young Democrats of Cobb County meeting as she campaigns in Cobb County, Georgia, U.S. on November 16, 2017. Picture taken on November 16, 2017. REUTERS/Chris Aluka Berry
Stacey Abrams, running for the Democratic primary for Georgia's 2018 governor's race, speaks at a Young Democrats of Cobb County meeting as she campaigns in Cobb County, Georgia, U.S. on November 16, 2017. Picture taken on November 16, 2017. REUTERS/Chris Aluka Berry
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Supporters of Georgia Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, cheer during a primary election night event on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. If elected, Abrams would become the first African American female governor in the nation. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Stefanie Roberts (left) and Tonetta Collins, Spelman College friends of Georgia Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, cheer during a primary election night event on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. If elected, Abrams would become the first African American female governor in the nation. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 25: House Minority Leader for the Georgia General Assembly and State Representative, Stacey Abrams delivers a speech on the first day of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Philadelphia, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Democratic National Convention kicked off July 25. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 27: House Minority Leader for the Georgia General Assembly, Stacey Abrams speaks onstage at EMILY's List Breaking Through 2016 at the Democratic National Convention at Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts on July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images For EMILY's List)
Representative Stacey Abrams, a Democrat from Georgia, speaks during the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., on Monday, July 25, 2016. The Democratic National Committee gloated as Republicans struggled to project unity during the party's national convention, but they are now facing a similar problem after their leader resigned on the eve of their own gathering. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Georgia Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams takes the stage to declare victory in the primary during an election night event on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. If elected, Abrams would become the first African American female governor in the nation. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 03: Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams attends EMILY's List 30th Anniversary Gala at Washington Hilton on March 3, 2015 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images for EMILY's List)
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Supporter Nina Durham is adorned with political pins during the primary election night event for Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. Abrams is running against former state representative Stacey Evans. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Georgia Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams takes the stage to declare victory in the primary during an election night event on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. If elected, Abrams would become the first African American female governor in the nation. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - MAY 22: Georgia Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams takes the stage to declare victory in the primary during an election night event on May 22, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. If elected, Abrams would become the first African American female governor in the nation. (Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)
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A spokesperson for the Justice Department declined to comment about whether it would open an investigation into the Georgia results.

The results in the race between Abrams and Republican Brian Kemp, who was Georgia’s secretary of state during the campaign, have yet to be certified a week after voters went to the polls. Kemp declared victory and resigned as secretary of state last Thursday based on initial results that showed he received just over 50 percent of the vote. However, Abrams and her allies have fled lawsuits and raised questions about thousands of provisional ballots that were given to voters who were told they did not show up in the registration rolls or that they lacked proper identification. Abrams’ camp says there were thousands more provisional ballots cast than were reported by Kemp’s office. As secretary of state, Kemp oversaw an election in which he was also a candidate.

Georgia law requires a runoff election if no candidate earns over 50 percent of the vote. The state also conducts recounts if the margin between candidates is less than one percent. As of now, Kemp’s lead is just 1.5 percent and he is only three tenths of a percentage point over the 50 percent threshold to avoid a runoff. There was a third-party candidate with a small share of the vote as well. Abrams has been gaining ground as the provisional ballots have been counted.

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Midterm election night in America 2018
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Midterm election night in America 2018
A rainbow forms over the U.S. Capitol as evening sets on midterm Election Day in Washington, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Democratic Texas U.S. Senate candidate Rep. Beto O'Rourke is accompanied by his wife Amy as he concedes to Senator Ted Cruz at his midterm election night party in El Paso, Texas, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Supporters for Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis celebrate during his midterm election night party in Orlando, Florida, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Georgia Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams speaks to supporters during a midterm election night party in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., November 7, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
California Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gavin Newsom hugs his wife Jennifer as he celebrates being elected governor of the state during an election night party in Los Angeles, California, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Democratic congressional candidate Ilhan Omar is greeted by her husband’s mother after appearing at her midterm election night party in Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Eric Miller TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Democratic U.S. Senator Bob Menendez reacts after appearing at his midterm election night party in Hoboken, New Jersey, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Republican U.S. Senate candidate Rick Scott holds the hand of grandson Auguste Guimard as he waves to supporters at his midterm election night party in Naples, Florida, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Joe Skipper TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer reacts with her daughters, Sydney (L) and Sherry after declaring victory at her midterm election night party in Detroit, Michigan, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jeff Kowalsky TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A supporter of Trump and Republican senate candidate Mike Braun attends the election night party in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Chris Bergin TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Deidre Brown Collins holds her daughter, Vitalia Collins, as they watch returns during a midterm election night party for Georgia Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Supporters of Republican U.S. Senator Ted Cruz hold signs at his midterm election night party in Houston, Texas, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Cathal Mcnaughton TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Supporters of Democratic Florida gubernatorial nominee and Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum react as they listen to him concede the race to U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis at Gillum's midterm election night rally in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Lawrence Malloy, a supporter of Georgia Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams, shows off socks adorned with an image of Abrams outside the site of a midterm election night party in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Supporters await the arrival of U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi at a Democratic U.S. midterm election night party in Washington, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi reads results of the U.S. midterm elections as she talks to an aide backstage at a Democratic election night rally and party in Washington, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Bobby Mines waves an American flag outside a polling place in Chapmanville, West Virginia, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Lexi Browning TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Voters cast their midterm election ballots at the Santa Ana Methodist Church in Santa Ana, California, U.S. November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Kyle Grillot TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. Democratic Congressional candidate Deb Haaland, who is trying to become the first Native American woman in the U.S. House of Representatives, hugs Dottie Tiger at a Native Vote Celebration on midterm elections night in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S., November 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
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Even before the messy finish to the Georgia governor’s race, Abrams and other Democrats accused Kemp of abusing his power as secretary of state to hurt Abrams’ chances. He purged over 300,000 people from Georgia’s voter rolls and launched an investigation into the Georgia Democratic Party in connection with an alleged hack into the state’s registration system two days before the election. Kemp’s office initially provided no evidence for the probe.

In his interview with Yahoo on Tuesday, Booker accused Kemp of using his office to “disenfranchise people.”

“The Trump Justice Department should conduct an investigation into what happened,” Booker said. “That’s not just appearance of impropriety. To me, it’s the appearance of voter fraud, voter disenfranchisement, voter suppression.”

Georgia isn’t the only state where last week’s elections are ending with legal battles. In Florida, the Senate race between Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Republican Gov. Rick Scott has gone to a recount. As of now, Scott is leading by just two tenths of a percentage point and local officials are conducting a machine recount. If the pair are separated by less than 0.25 percent at the conclusion of that tabulation, state law calls for a hand recount.

President Trump and other Republicans have made allegations of fraud against Democrats in the Florida Senate race. But Trump’s claims have not been supported by evidence; the state’s Department of Law Enforcement has found no indications of fraud in the vote counting.

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Sen. Cory Booker
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Sen. Cory Booker
Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) speaks at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 25, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Segar
Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) listens to CIA Director Mike Pompeo respond to his question as Pompeo testifies before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing on Pompeo's nomination to be secretary of state on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 12, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis
U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) answers questions at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music Film Interactive Festival 2017 in Austin, Texas, U.S., March 10, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) waves after Senate Republicans unveiled their version of legislation that would replace Obamacare on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., June 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) attends New York premiere "Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice" at Radio City Music Hall in New York, March 20, 2016. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) testifies to the Senate Judiciary Committee during the second day of confirmation hearings on Senator Jeff Sessions' (R-AL) nomination to be U.S. attorney general in Washington, U.S., January 11, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) addresses the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Legislative Conference and Presidential Forum in Washington March 9, 2015. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS)
U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) speaks during a news conference with fellow Democrats and unemployed Americans to highlight their political divide with Republicans over unemployment insurance legislation, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, January 16, 2014. Efforts to renew emergency federal jobless benefits for 1.5 million Americans stalled in the Senate on Tuesday when Democrats and Republicans rejected each other's proposals. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT)
U.S. Senators' Cory Booker (D-NJ) (C), Marco Rubio (R-FL) and John McCain (R-AZ) (lowerR) are pictured in the gallery prior to U.S. President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech at the U.S. Capitol in Washington January 28, 2014. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS)
U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) stands next to his mother Carolyn Booker (C) after U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden (R) ceremonially swore in Booker as the latest U.S. Senator in the Old Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, October 31, 2013. U.S. President Barack Obama's fellow Democrats welcomed a new colleague to the U.S. Senate on Thursday, newly elected Booker, and the additional vote Booker gives them in the Senate. REUTERS/Larry Downing (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS)
U.S. Senate candidate Cory Booker delivers a speech during his campaign's election night event in Newark, New Jersey, October 16, 2013. Democrat Booker, the charismatic mayor of Newark, was the unofficial winner of a New Jersey special election on Wednesday, handily defeating a conservative Republican to fill the state's vacant U.S. Senate seat. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)
Newark New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker listens to U.S. first lady Michelle Obama speaking to students during a visit to the Maple Avenue school in Newark, New Jersey, November 18, 2010. Michelle Obama was making the visit along with Booker to promote her "let's Move" initiative to reduce childhood obesity. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES)
Newark Mayor Cory Booker (R) speaks to the media outside a burned house in Newark, New Jersey, April 13, 2012. Booker said on Friday he was no superhero, only a good neighbor when he broke free from his security detail to dash into a burning house and rescue a woman. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS SOCIETY)
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Booker told Yahoo that both the Florida and Georgia races have his “attention.” However, he contrasted the situation in Florida with the Georgia election. While Booker expressed doubt the Georgia race is proceeding fairly, he said he believes Florida officials are engaged in a “reasonable” process.

“In Florida right now I hear a lot of allegations coming from the Republican candidate. But clearly, you have local officials right now who are pushing back and trying to do a reasonable recount,” Booker said, adding, “I’ve called into– some of the Democratic lawyers who are down there. And there’s a feeling that right now, the process is moving along … as we would expect.”

Booker further expressed optimism Nelson, who has been gaining ground as the recount proceeds, would “continue to close that gap” if there is a “fair” count.

“I just want a fair process. I want votes to be counted. People who participate in elections should have the confidence that their vote’s going be counted,” Booker said.

Booker appeared at Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit to discuss his proposal to reduce income inequality by providing “baby bonds” to all American children. You can view the full interview here.

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