BREAKING NEWS: Georgia is now looking at Lindsey Graham’s phone call with Brad Raffensperger as part of criminal investigation into Trump’s bid to overturn the election
- Lindsey Graham called Raffensperger 10 days after the November 3 election
- Graham, one of Trump’s closest allies, wanted to understand the Georgia vote
- He said he rang on Nov 13 to find out more about verification of mail-in ballots
- Critics accused Graham of pressuring the election officials on behalf of Trump
- Graham’s spokesman said the idea the call was improper was ‘ridiculous’
- On Friday it emerged the Fulton County district attorney will look into the call
- Fani Willis, the DA, announced the investigation on Wednesday
- She will also look at Donald Trump’s January 2 call to Raffensperger
- A second inquiry, from Raffensperger’s office, was launched on Monday
- Georgia was called for Joe Biden on November 19, to the shocked fury of Trump
Lindsey Graham‘s November 13 phone call to Georgia’s secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, is being called into question as part of a wider investigation into Donald Trump‘s actions in the hard-fought swing state.
Fani Willis, the district attorney for Fulton County – the most populous county in the state – opened an inquiry on Wednesday.
She will look at Trump’s actions in the state, and focus in particular on his January 3 call to Raffensperger when he asked the election official to ‘find’ votes for him.
Lindsey Graham, pictured on Wednesday, called Georgia’s secretary of state in November
On Friday The Washington Post reported that Graham’s November call was also being investigated.
Raffensperger raised alarm at the time about the call from one of Trump’s staunchest allies.
During the call, Graham asked him whether he had the power to toss out all mail ballots in certain counties, Raffensperger told the paper.
He said Graham appeared to be asking him to improperly find a way to set aside legally cast ballots.
Graham’s spokesman, Kevin Bishop, said that suggestions the call was dubious were ‘ridiculous’.
‘Sen. Graham was asking about how the signature verification process worked,’ Bishop said.
‘He never asked the Secretary of State to disqualify a ballot cast by anyone.
‘The timing on this is also quite curious. It seems to be a less than transparent effort to marginalize anyone who helps President Trump.’
Shortly after Graham’s call, on November 19, the state was called for Joe Biden – a surprise victory for the Democrats, after 25 years of Georgia voting Republican. The result enraged Trump.
On January 2 Trump himself telephoned Raffensperger, a Republican, and asked him to ‘find’ votes for him, to prevent Biden claiming the White House.
The call was taped, and leaked to the media.
Willis’s investigation will look into both Trump and Graham’s calls to Raffensperger.
Raffensperger’s own office announced on Monday that they too had opened an investigation, in response to an outside complaint. Graham’s call will not form part of Raffensperger’s office’s inquiry as they do not have any taped recordings of it, The Post reported.