Democratic Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams said Monday her Republican opponent, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, was abusing his power by investigating the Georgia Democratic Party over what his office describes as an attempt to hack the state's voter registration system.
Georgia Democrats have vehemently denied the claim, and Kemp's office has not provided any evidence or indicated why the Democratic Party is being investigated as part of its probe. As secretary of state, Kemp is overseeing an election in which he is also running, and he has resisted calls to step aside to avoid potential conflicts of interest.
"It's wrong to call it an investigation," Abrams told CNN's John Berman on "New Day." "It's a witch hunt that was created by someone who is abusing his power."
Abrams pointed to a recent federal lawsuit in which Kemp was accused of failing to secure his state's voting system and allowing a massive breach that exposed voter records and other sensitive election information.
"Instead of owning up to it, taking responsibility and seeking a way to fix the flaw, he instead decided to blame Democrats, because he does that," Abrams said. "He doesn't take accountability, he doesn't take responsibility -- what he does instead is find someone else to blame."
"It's a complete and utter fabrication," she added.
In a press release Sunday morning, Candice Broce, a Kemp spokeswoman, would not comment on "the specifics of an ongoing investigation" but confirmed that the state Democratic Party was "under investigation for possible cyber crimes."
The Secretary of State's Office later said the decision to launch the investigation was made after "receiving information from our legal team about failed efforts to breach the online voter registration system and My Voter Page."
Broce said the office immediately alerted the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. The FBI declined to comment.
- Stacey Abrams reacts to Kemp's hacking probe
- Stacey Abrams: Kemp investigation is desperate
- What Stacey Abrams should say about Brian Kemp's victory
- Abrams' campaign demands Kemp resignation
- Stacey Abrams campaign demands GOP's Kemp resign as Georgia secretary of state amid voter registration uproar
- Stacey Abrams calls Kemp investigation into Georgia Democrats a 'witch hunt'
- Stacey Abrams calls Kemp Georgia's 'legal' governor, won't say he's legitimate
- Abrams: Kemp is abusing his power
- Abrams acknowledges Kemp win in Georgia race
- Abrams won't say Kemp is 'legitimate' governor