A criminal investigation into a phone call former President Donald Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in which he urged the elections official to “find” more votes and declare him the winner has been initiated, according to the New York Times:
“On Wednesday, Fani Willis, the recently elected Democratic prosecutor in Fulton County, sent a letter to numerous officials in state government, including Mr. Raffensperger, requesting that they preserve documents related to Mr. Trump’s call, according to a state official with knowledge of the letter. The letter explicitly stated that the request was part of a criminal investigation, said the official, who insisted on anonymity to discuss internal matters.”
Georgia becomes the second state — along with New York — where Trump is now the subject of a criminal investigation.
The Fulton County investigation comes two days after Raffensperger announced his office would start an investigative inquiry into the matter.
The phone call, which was taped, made by Trump to the Georgia Secretary of State on January 2, was only one of the attempts the former president made to overturn the results of the 2020 election which he overwhelmingly lost to President Joe Biden:
“He also called Gov. Brian Kemp in early December and pressured him to call a special legislative session to overturn his election loss. Later that month, Mr. Trump called a state investigator and pressed the official to ‘find the fraud,’ according to those with knowledge of the call.”
According to former prosecutors, Trump’s call to Raffensperger appears to be a direct violation of three Georgia laws:.
“One is criminal solicitation to commit election fraud, which can be either a felony or a misdemeanor; as a felony, it is punishable by at least a year in prison. There is also a related conspiracy charge, which can be prosecuted either as a misdemeanor or a felony. A third law, a misdemeanor offense, bars ‘intentional interference’ with another person’s ‘performance of election duties.'”
Georgia did three separate ballot counts to confirm that Biden did indeed win the Peach State: The initial election results, a hand recount, and a machine recount requested by the Trump campaign. Those results showed that Biden won the state by a total of about 12,000 votes, making him the first Democratic presidential candidate to win Georgia since Bill Clinton in 1992.
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