What’s next after Alabama Special Election results are certified?

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Doug Jones (D- Senator-elect) is now certified as Alabama's next Senator.

The State Canvassing Board held a brief meeting to certify and confirm the results Thursday afternoon. The certification was complete at 1:10 PM.

Roy Moore has 48 hours from that time to make a decision about what to do next.

John Merrill, Alabama Secretary of State, said the candidate has 48 hours if he wants to file for a recount.

"If he chose to do that, it has to occur within 48 hours of confirmation," he stated.

Before the confirmation took place, Moore had asked a judge to delay certification. The judge struck down his request, in which Moore also detailed situations in which he said voter fraud took place.

Moore said in his filing that Merrill did not do enough to get to the bottom of the voter fraud claims, writing, "The Defendant never conducted nor fully completed a meaningful, in-depth investigation of election fraud in connection with the Special Election."

Merrill stated that his office investigated 110 reported instances of fraud, and adjudicated 85 of them. 33 remain active, he said, and of those 33, 31 were submitted by Alabama citizens.

"If there was ever a question about whether or not the state of Alabama conducts honest and fair, safe and secure elections, that question has been eliminated from anyone's thought and mind. Period," said Merrill Thursday.

He debunked claims in Moore's filing that might have insinuated fraud:

"That there was a town that was some 20 miles from Birmingham named Bordallama, where they had only 2200 residents and more than 5000 people had cast their ballot. That would make some sense, except there is no town or community called Bordallama," he stated.

Moore had also brought up other complaints, including one that several busloads of people had been brought to Mobile from Mississippi to vote in the election.

"It was determined that was all made up," Merrill stated.

Merrill also said a video in which a man appears to insinuate that he brought in colleagues from around the nation to canvass for Jones is not what it appears.

"He is not from Alabama," Merrill said of the man, "but he does indeed live in Alabama. He has been living here for more than a year."

The most concrete evidence Moore gives of alleged voter fraud, comes from an affidavit of a poll worker. In the filing, Moore writes that the poll worker saw an "unusual" large amount of people using out-of-state licenses to identify themselves at the polls.

Merrill said you can use that form of ID as long as you are registered to vote, though.

"Alabama state law allows for an out-of-state driver license that meets the standard to serve as an identification mechanism for a voter," he said. "We think it's very important to note that there are a number of items that are identified as proper, standard identification items that can be used. That's one of them."

Thursday's step to certify the election results is virtually the last hurdle for Jones before he can become the Senator from Alabama.

Doug Jones will be sworn in soon, said Merrill, when the Senate reconvenes.

Our news partners at AL.com and The Huntsville Times report that swearing-in ceremonies for Jones are set for Jan. 3 when the Senate reconvenes from its winter break. He will be sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence and will assume his duties immediately after.