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SPECIAL GRAND JURY

Rudy Giuliani, Lindsey Graham subpoenaed in Georgia 2020 election probe

Rudy Giuliani, Lindsey Graham subpoenaed in Georgia 2020 election probe
Lindsey Graham and Rudy Giuliani. (Photo: Andrew Harrer / Bloomberg)

Rudy Giuliani, Senator Lindsey Graham and five others have been called to testify before a special grand jury in Atlanta as part of an investigation into attempts by President Donald Trump and his supporters to change the result of the 2020 election in Georgia, according to court filings.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has already taken testimony from Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Governor Brian Kemp is scheduled to testify before the special grand jury later this month.

Trump contacted both men in the weeks after the election, urging them to find him enough votes to change the results in his favour. In addition to Giuliani and Graham, Tuesday’s court-ordered subpoenas also went to four lawyers who supported Trump’s efforts to overturn the results: John Eastman, Kenneth Chesebro, Jenna Ellis and Cleta Mitchell.

The special grand jury issued a seventh subpoena to Jacki Pick Deason, a podcaster who also supported Trump’s efforts to change the outcome of the election. The grand jury was empanelled in early May at Willis’s request and began hearing testimony in early June.

Giuliani threw himself into the effort to alter the Georgia results. In presentations to the Georgia state legislature in December 2020, the former New York City Mayor claimed to have identified fraud involving two election workers. To support his claims, Giuliani played edited video of Fulton County election workers supposedly pulling suitcases of illegitimate ballots out from under a table.

For his part, Graham called Raffensperger on 13 November 2020 expressing concern about absentee ballots, according to Raffensperger’s autobiography “Integrity Counts”. Graham “seemed to be concerned that some counties might have approved absentee ballot signatures that should have been marked invalid,” Raffensperger wrote.

Eastman, who came up with a novel legal theory about how Vice-President Mike Pence could refuse to allow the counting of electoral votes on January 6, also testified before the Georgia legislature in December 2020. Mitchell worked as a lawyer for Trump and participated in the president’s now-famous phone call with Raffensperger on 2 January 2021, in which Trump urged the state official to “find” 11,780 votes, just enough to flip the election results.

(Reporting by Greg Farrell and Margaret Newkirk.)

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