Earlier this week, the Trump campaign alleged that the identities of multiple deceased people were used to vote in Georgia, claims which were amplified by Fox News host Tucker Carlson—but numerous outlets have since debunked two of these allegations, and Carlson issued an on-air apology Friday night.
On Thursday, Carlson opened his show highlighting the alleged instances of voter fraud detailed by the Trump campaign, stating, “In moments like this, truth really matters more than ever,” and “false allegations of fraud can cause as much damage as the fraud itself.”
Carlson explained how a man named James Blalock and a woman named Linda Kesler had voted in Georgia last week, despite having died years earlier, promising his viewers: “We can prove it.”
However, Atlanta station 11Alive interviewed Blalock’s widow, Agnes, who said she voted as “Mrs. James Blalock,” and Newton County election officials confirmed Agnes Blalock voted using her married name.
Friday night, Carlson told his audience that “a whole bunch of dead people did vote, we showed you their names, we proved it,” but “James Blalock was not among them… So apologies for that.”
Kesler, another deceased person Carlson and the Trump campaign claim voted in Georgia last week, also did not vote — another, very much alive Lynda Kesler, did. “Mrs. Linda Kesler of Nicholson, Georgia, voted in the election. The only problem? She passed away 17 years ago, in 2003,” the Trump campaign tweeted Wednesday morning. But the Jackson County Board of Elections said she did not cast a ballot in the 2020 election. “Linda Kesler of Nicholson was marked deceased in 2003 and did not vote. Lynda Kesler, who has a different address, birthday, and zip who is entitled to vote—did vote,” the board of elections explained. Carlson did not apologize or address the case involving Kesler on Friday’s show. The Georgia Secretary of State’s office is reportedly investigating the two other deceased residents accused of voter fraud.
“I am very disappointed that anyone would make an allegation like that … without checking it out,” said Phil Johnson, chairman of the Newton County Board of Elections.
On Tuesday, the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in federal court in Michigan to stop the state from certifying its final vote count, claiming that a dead person named Mark D. Chase cast a ballot in Wayne County. However, state election officials say that is a false accusation. There are currently two other people named Mark D. Chase, both of whom are listed on Michigan’s Qualified Voter File.