Stars and Stripes stripes.com 05 Jan, 2021 01:15 am

Georgia election officials reject Trump's call to 'find' more votes

Georgia election officials reject Trump's call to 'find' more votes
In an interview Monday, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told The Associated Press that he is confident in Georgia’s general election outcome, despite an electoral college challenge supported by some Republicans in Congress.

PATRICK SEMANSKY/AP WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump pressured Georgia's Republican secretary of state to “find” enough votes to overturn Joe Biden's win in the state's presidential election, repeatedly citing disproven claims of fraud and raising the prospect of a “criminal offense" if officials did not change the vote count, according to a recording of the conversation.The phone call with Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on Saturday was the latest step in an unprecedented effort by a sitting president to press a state official to reverse the outcome of a free and fair election that he lost.The secretary of state said his deputy previously met with White House chief of staff Mark Meadows when Meadows was in Georgia last month, but that he hadn’t had any other direct contact with the White House since the general election.Once the secretary of state’s office completes an investigation, Worley wrote, the board will determine whether there is probable cause to refer the matter to the state attorney general and Fulton County district attorney.

Also during the conversation, Trump appeared to threaten Raffensperger and Ryan Germany, the secretary of state’s legal counsel, by suggesting both could be criminally liable if they failed to find that thousands of ballots in Fulton County had been illegally destroyed." Raffensperger said the White House reached out to his office and he assumed the president wanted to talk about the status of the November election.

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