Lawsuits fly following leaked phone call between Trump and GA’s Raffensperger
The Washington Post ran with a leaked confidential litigation call between President Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Raffensperger (R). They then released selected clips of the audio to make the president look as bad as possible and the media ate it up. It was alleged in the call that Trump pressured Raffensperger to recalculate the state’s votes from the 2020 presidential election.
Raffensperger’s team allegedly leaked the call to the Washington Post. Within 24 hours WaPo published a hit piece, using edited audio clips, on the president’s phone call.
There are reports that the Georgia State Election Board has also sent a letter to Raffensperger asking him to open an investigation into criminal or civil wrongdoing involving the phone call. According to Georgia law, only one party has to consent to have a phone conversation legally recorded outside of obtaining a warrant.
NewsMax and other conservative outlets are calling the claim false concerning pressuring Raffensperger. They contend that the transcript of the call shows Trump demanding an honest accounting of the ballots, which he says would give him more than 11,000 votes.
“I just want to find 11,780 votes which is one more than we have because we won the state,” Trump said. The president was referring to alleged voter fraud and how he feels the election in Georgia was stolen from him.
Georgia Republican Chairman David Shafer waded into the conflict mentioning two lawsuits.
“President @realDonaldTrump has filed two lawsuits – federal and state – against @GaSecofState. The telephone conference call @GaSecofState secretly recorded was a “confidential settlement discussion” of that litigation, which is still pending.”
Trump spoke to Raffensperger and his attorney, Ryan Germany, for over an hour presenting them with data showing he actually won the state of Georgia.
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and campaign lawyer Cleta Mitchell were both on the call with Trump.
“We have won this election in Georgia based on all of this and there’s nothing wrong with saying that Brad,” Trump told Raffensperger, claiming the final vote count was off by hundreds of thousands of ballots.
Raffensberger told Tump his data was wrong.
“They’re nothing wrong with saying you know, um, that you’ve recalculated,” Trump told Raffensperger.
The president also grilled him over rumors of shredded ballots in Fulton County and the Dominion voting systems removing and replacing parts of voting machines.
“You should want to have an accurate election. And you’re a Republican,” Trump stated. Raffensperger and his attorney countered saying he had no evidence of that happening.
“You know what they did and you’re not reporting it,” Trump replied. “That’s a criminal offense and you can’t let that happen.”
The president urged Raffensperger to reconsider his stance.
“We won the election and it’s not fair to take it away from us and it’s going to be very costly in many ways and I think you have to say that you’re going to reexamine it,” Trump said.
The audio published by @TheWashingtonPost is heavily edited and omits the stipulation that all discussions were for the purpose of settling litigation and confidential under federal and state law.
— David Shafer (@DavidShafer) January 3, 2021
Trump also warned that Georgia Republicans would be furious with him if he failed to act. The president also stated that he would share his Georgia numbers with the people of the state, presumably at his rally Monday night for Georgia Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R) and David Perdue (R) for the runoff election on Tuesday.
“The people of Georgia are angry and these numbers are going to be repeated on Monday night along with others that we are going to have at about that time,” Trump said.
Trump told Raffensperger he would be “really respected” if he revisited the vote in the state of Georgia and noted that his repeated assurances that the vote was correct were angering his supporters in the state.
“A lot of Republicans are going to vote negative because they hate what you did to the president,” Trump said.
Respectfully, President Trump: What you're saying is not true. The truth will come out https://t.co/ViYjTSeRcC
— GA Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (@GaSecofState) January 3, 2021
Trump lays out numerous examples of double voting, dead people voting, and other ballot irregularities and anomalies in the call.
Raffensperger counters Trump’s assertions mostly with simple claims that the matters Trump raised have been investigated.
Georgia counted its votes three times before certifying Biden’s win by an 11,779 margin, Raffensperger noted: “President Trump, we’ve had several lawsuits, and we’ve had to respond in court to the lawsuits and the contentions. We don’t agree that you have won.”
Trump insists he won Georgia’s presidential election on Nov. 3 and claims widespread fraud deprived him of that victory.
The recording given to the media by @GaSecofState begins immediately after Mark Meadows states that the call is for the purpose of discussing the settlement of pending litigation. https://t.co/gnZk9MH5DZ
— David Shafer (@DavidShafer) January 4, 2021
Biden senior adviser Bob Bauer called the recording “irrefutable proof” of Trump pressuring and threatening an official in his own party to “rescind a state’s lawful, certified vote count and fabricate another in its place.”
“It captures the whole, disgraceful story about Donald Trump’s assault on American democracy,” Bauer said.
Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat in that chamber, said Trump’s conduct “merits nothing less than a criminal investigation.”
Representative Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) told reporters at the Capitol Sunday that Trump’s call with Raffensperger is an “impeachable offense.”
“I absolutely think it’s an impeachable offense and if it was up to me, there would be articles on the floor quite quickly,” she said. “But he, I mean he is trying to – he is attacking our very election.” AOC admitted she had not listened to the entire call.