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The United States’ sorest loser, soon-to-be ex-president Donald Trump, threatened Georgia’s secretary of state in an attempt to badger him to “find” the votes that would overturn the state’s presidential election results. In the call, audio of which was obtained by the Washington Post, Trump told Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger that he was taking “a big risk” by refusing to cooperate by falsifying verified election results that showed Biden winning by 11,779 votes.
“The people of Georgia are angry, the people in the country are angry,” Trump said. “And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, um, that you’ve recalculated.”
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Trump also told Raffensberger and his general counsel, “I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state.”
But Raffensberger stood firm, saying, “Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, the data you have is wrong.”
The audio gives a rare glimpse into what has been reported for weeks — that Trump has descended into a near-delusional state, desperate to somehow overturn the results of a free and fair election that will soon kick him out of the White House.
“There’s no way I lost Georgia,” Trump said on the call. “There’s no way. We won by hundreds of thousands of votes.”
To back up his assertions, the president brought up debunked, baseless conspiracy theories, claiming that voting machine manufacturer Dominion removed parts of machines in Fulton County, that dead people voted in droves, that election workers forged ballots, and that he actually won the state by a laughable 500,000 votes.
“Do you think it’s possible that they shredded ballots in Fulton County?” Trump said. “’Cause that’s what the rumor is. And also that Dominion took out machines. That Dominion is really moving fast to get rid of their, uh, machinery. Do you know anything about that? Because that’s illegal.”
Ryan Germany, the secretary of state’s legal counsel, replied: “No, Dominion has not moved any machinery out of Fulton County.”
Trump fired back, “But have they moved the inner parts of the machines and replaced them with other parts?”
But again, Germany refuted Trump’s lies. “No,” he said.
And when Trump brought up that he believed thousands of dead people voted, Raffensperger corrected him. “The actual number was two. Two. Two people that were dead that voted,” he said.
Raffensperger and Germany’s refusal to cooperate led the president to issue a vague legal threat against the secretary and his counsel, saying they were at “risk” if they did not investigate his conspiracy theories. “That’s a criminal offense,” Trump said. “And you can’t let that happen. That’s a big risk to you and to Ryan, your lawyer.”
Trump also told Raffensberger and Germany that because they refuse to go along with his wild claims, Republicans may lose Tuesday’s run-off Senate election.
“You have a big election coming up and because of what you’ve done to the president — you know, the people of Georgia know that this was a scam,” Trump said. “Because of what you’ve done to the president, a lot of people aren’t going out to vote, and a lot of Republicans are going to vote negative because they hate what you did to the president. OK? They hate it. And they’re going to vote. And you would be respected, really respected if this can be straightened out before the election.”
But Trump is a delusional loser and despite his sad attempts to hold onto power, he has little chance of success. Even if he did somehow, miraculously manage to overturn Georgia’s results, it would still not affect the Electoral College outcome.
It is disturbing, however, to see just how many Republicans are willing to jump on board with the president’s lies. Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) has even gone so far as to suggest that Georgia election officials invalidate legitimately cast mail-in ballots. And Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and other congressional Republicans have announced their intent to vote against the certification of the Electoral College results this week. All because they refuse to concede that a Democrat won the presidency.
The call ended, the Post reported, with Germany agreeing to speak with one of Trump’s lawyers, but the president also acknowledged that his ploy was hopeless. “I know this phone call is going nowhere,” he said.
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