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Posted: November 17, 2008 5:00 a.m.

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State upset with Fulton County election officials

ATLANTA - Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel plans to report Fulton County officials to the state election board for sending workers home with thousands of ballots still uncounted.

Handel says the Fulton County tallying of more than 30,000 absentee ballots could have been finished had workers not left early Wednesday morning to rest. Fulton County election officials say the workers were exhausted and needed a break from the counting.

Officials were concerned sleepy workers would make mistakes. Fulton County counters have been working since Tuesday to get the ballots processed because of races too close to call without absentee votes.

Handel said Fulton County officials were told to remain until the ballots were processed "but they chose to leave."

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