Republican gubernatorial candidate Brian Kemp says he is resigning as Georgia's secretary of state.

Attorney Russ Willard with the attorney general's office of Georgia announced the resignation in federal court Thursday morning.

Willard said Kemp delivered a letter of resignation to Gov. Nathan Deal on Thursday morning, and it is effective at 11:59 a.m.

The state said Kemp will not perform any election-related duties Thursday. 

Kemp says only about 20,000 provisional ballots remain uncounted in the race.

He says even if his opponent Democrat Stacey Abrams "got 100 percent of those votes, we still win."

An interim secretary will oversee the rest of the vote counting.

That announcement came as a federal court hearing was being held on a lawsuit from five Georgia residents who asked a judge to block Kemp from having any further role in overseeing the election.

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