People across the country are watching Georgia again for the unending Trump saga surrounding the former president’s alleged attempt to alter election outcomes after urging Gov. Kemp and pressuring Secretary of State Brad Raffensberg to “find” 11,780 votes, declare him the winner in Georgia’s presidential election in order to get a second term in office.
Heightened security is causing street closures around the Fulton County Court, but the court is open for business and will remain open throughout the duration of the special grand jury probe into Trump’s nefarious action and attempts to change the outcome of Georgia’s election.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has taken the unusual step of requesting a special grand jury for the investigation, and the selection of that panel began Monday, May 2.
In February of 2021, following Joe Biden’s win, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, the first African-American woman to hold the position, sent a letter to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and other state officials asking that they keep documents related to “an investigation into attempts to influence the administration of the 2020 Georgia General Election,” according to the New York Times.
Trump’s infamous call to Raffensperger urging him to “find” 11,7800 votes and reverse his election loss in Georgia.
“This investigation includes, but is not limited to, potential violations of Georgia law prohibiting the solicitation of election fraud, the making of false statements to state and local governmental bodies, conspiracy, racketeering, violation of oath of office and any involvement in violence or threats related to the election’s administration,” the letter states.
Trump attempted to strong-arm Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find 11,780 votes,” one more than needed to overturn the 2020 election. At times Trump resorted to issuing thinly veiled threats that Raffensperger himself could face criminal charges if he did not comply the request.
Georgia will become the second state in which Trump faces criminal charges; he’s been facing an ongoing criminal fraud inquiry into his finances by the Manhattan district attorney, Cyrus R. Vance Jr., and a civil fraud inquiry by the New York attorney general, Letitia James.
If Mr. Trump were to be convicted of a state crime in New York or Georgia, a federal pardon would not be applicable. In Georgia, Mr. Trump cannot look to Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, for a state pardon, and not just because the two have a fractured relationship. In Georgia, pardons are granted only by the state board of pardons and paroles.