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Analysis: Trump’s bid to steal Georgia exposes GOP election ruse


Even before the latest outrage, this week already marked a watershed moment for Biden’s coming presidency, a ruptured Republican Party and for the integrity of the US political system.

All of this is coming to a head as Trump incites protests in Washington in a bid to disrupt the election certification effort, amid fears of violence, while ignoring a worse-than-ever pandemic and the consequent deaths of 350,000 Americans.

In fact, the President blasted the world-leading US death toll as “fake news” on Sunday, while disregarding growing evidence his White House has botched the rollout of crucial new vaccines just as it did earlier stages of the pandemic.

But Surgeon General Jerome Adams contradicted Trump’s false claim on CNN’s “State of the Union,” telling Jake Tapper: “From a public health perspective, I have no reason to doubt those numbers.”

‘I just want to find … votes’

The release of the stunning telephone conversation between Trump and Georgia’s GOP Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger escalated the constitutional crisis Trump started stoking even before his election loss.

“So look. All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state,” Trump said, in a comment that at best was an abuse of power and that could raise legal questions. Throughout the hour-long call, the President repeatedly prods Raffensperger to agree to his false claims that thousands of votes were illegally cast, that some ballots were destroyed or came from dead people or out-of-state voters. The Georgia secretary of state tells the President that he has false information.

Trump’s audio call with Georgia secretary of state

CNN has obtained the full January 2 audio call between President Donald Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Trump is joined on the call by White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and several lawyers. CNN obtained the audio from a source who was on the call and had direct knowledge of the conversation. CNN has redacted the name of one individual about whom Trump made unsubstantiated claims.

A string of recounts, audits and legal cases have affirmed Biden’s narrow victory in Georgia in November in one of the clutch of swing states he won on the way to 306 electoral votes and a clear victory over the President.
The tape recalled the kind of coercive, corrupt behavior that led to Trump’s impeachment over a call with Ukraine’s President, but that all Republican senators with the exception of Mitt Romney decided last year did not merit his ouster from office.

In the latest smoking gun call, Trump is heard trying to convince Raffensperger to announce that he had recalculated the vote totals and that the President won, and threatening criminal reprisals if his fellow Republican failed to act.

“At the very least it’s an abuse of presidential power which in a normal time would be impeachable,” said CNN presidential historian Timothy Naftali.

John Dean, a former White House legal counsel in the Watergate scandal, told CNN’s Fredricka Whitfield Trump was at “the edges of extortion.”

Biden’s senior legal adviser Bob Bauer said in a statement that the tape offered “irrefutable proof of a president pressuring and threatening an official of his own party to get him 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.”

Call heaps pressure on Trump’s GOP backers

Trump’s call with Raffensperger suddenly heaped new scrutiny on Republican members of the House and Senate who have pledged to challenge the normally pro forma certification of the election result in Congress.

As they criticize results already ratified by Republican-appointed judges and the conservative majority Supreme Court, as well as state officials, many of whom are Republicans, they must now decide whether they stand by Trump’s flagrant…



Read More: Analysis: Trump’s bid to steal Georgia exposes GOP election ruse

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