The combination of May 20, 2018, photos shows Georgia gubernatorial candidates Stacey Abrams, left, and Brian Kemp in Atlanta. With the Georgia governor’s race now set, the contest between Kemp and Abrams becomes a question of which candidate can move beyond their partisan bases to capture the electoral middle in this emerging battleground state. (AP Photos/John Amis, File)

A federal judge has ordered a review of all provisional ballots which could delay the certification of last week’s election for Georgia Governor.

The order could get Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams a little closer to putting the race into runoff status. Republican Brian Kemp leads Abrams by almost 60,000 votes, and county elections officials were expected to certify the election Tuesday. Kemp is up by 1.5 percentage points with just over 50 percent of the vote, enough to win the election.

Late on Monday, a federal judge ordered the review of 27,000 provisional ballots, according to Atlanta news outlets. Those provisional ballots are from those whose registration identification could not be confirmed.

If Stacey Abrams gains about 19,000 of those votes, the election would qualify for recount status. And if she can win about 22,000 votes, she would force a runoff election. Under state law, the winner of the election must obtain 50 percent plus one vote. If that number is not obtained, then a runoff election is issued.

The order from the judge does not change Tuesday’s deadline for counties to certify their election results. However, it does prevent the state from certifying election results before this Friday, providing time for provisional ballots to be reviewed.



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