US President Donald Trump on Saturday pressed Georgia’s secretary of state for a recalculation of votes in Georgia, a state he lost in the November presidential election.
Trump and his supporters had alleged fraud in multiple states he lost as Democrat Joe Biden won the election.
The Washington Post published a transcript of the hour-long phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. “The people of Georgia are angry, the people in the country are angry. And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, um, that you’ve recalculated,” Trump was quoted as telling Raffensperger.
When Raffensperger, a Republican, told Trump his data was wrong, the president claimed “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… There’s no way I lost Georgia. There’s no way. We won by hundreds of thousands of votes.”
Georgia went Democratic for the first time since 1992 and attempts by Trump supporters to invalidate the count there had failed.
Noah Bookbinder, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, told The Guardian that Trump should be impeached for a second time. “The president of the United States has been caught on tape trying to rig a presidential election. This is a low point in American history and unquestionably impeachable conduct. It is incontrovertible and devastating,” Bookbinder told The Guardian.
A number of Democrats attacked Trump over the phone call to Raffensperger. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a representative from New York, termed the act by Trump as impeachable. She told a Bloomberg reporter, “I absolutely think it’s an impeachable offense and if it was up to me, there would be articles on the floor, quite quickly.”
Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives in December 2019 for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. He was acquitted by the Senate in early 2020.
Despite the criticism, Trump stuck to his stance. On Sunday Trump tweeted, “I spoke to Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger yesterday about Fulton County and voter fraud in Georgia. He was unwilling, or unable, to answer questions such as the ‘ballots under table’ scam, ballot destruction, out of state ‘voters;, dead voters, and more. He has no clue!”
Raffensperger responded to Trump, tweeting, “Respectfully, President Trump: What you’re saying is not true. The truth will come out.”
The US Congress is scheduled to meet on Wednesday to ratify the election results and barring the likelihood of a lengthy debate in the Senate, Biden’s victory will be confirmed. Biden is scheduled to be sworn in as president on January 20.