Now 2 States Are Pursuing Criminal Cases Against Trump

Georgia reportedly joins New York
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2021 10:45 AM CST
Now 2 States Are Pursuing Criminal Cases Against Trump
In this Jan. 20, 2021, file photo, then-President Trump waves as he boards Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington en route to his Mar-a-Lago Florida resort.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and others reportedly got a letter from Fulton County prosecutors on Wednesday that made clear the state has started a criminal investigation into former President Trump, sources tell the New York Times and NBC News. The letter from Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis reportedly asks that documents tied to an hourlong phone call Trump had with Raffensperger on Jan. 2 be preserved. A recording of the call allegedly captures Trump saying, "All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes"—which is one more than the number of votes Joe Biden outpaced him by. Georgia becomes the second state after New York pursuing a criminal case against Trump, and the Times notes potential jurors there are "unlikely to be hospitable" to Trump, as the county contains the majority of Atlanta, which went for Biden.

As for what the potential criminal grounds for such an investigation would be, there are three, per the Times: criminal solicitation to commit election fraud and a related conspiracy charge, both of which can be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or a felony, and a misdemeanor that prohibits "intentional interference" with someone's "performance of election duties." The paper quotes the letter as saying the probe "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 government bodies, conspiracy, racketeering, violation of oath of office and any involvement in violence or threats related to the election's administration." Reuters reports that Raffensperger's own office had opened an investigation on Monday into Trump's alleged election interference. (More Donald Trump stories.)

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