Georgia Prosecutor Granted Special Grand Jury to Investigate Trump’s Alleged Efforts to Overturn Election

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A Georgia prosecutor probing former president Donald Trump’s alleged efforts to illegally flip Georgia’s 2020 presidential election results in his favor now has the added asset of a special purpose grand jury to compel testimony from uncooperative witnesses.

A majority of the Fulton County Superior Court judges granted the request of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis on Monday. The special grand jury will be active starting May 2 and will not “exceed 12 months,” Christopher Brasher, chief judge of Fulton County Superior Court, declared. Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney will oversee and assist the special grand jury.

“The special purpose grand jury shall be authorized to investigate any and all facts and circumstances relating directly or indirectly to alleged violations of the laws of the State of Georgia, as set forth in the request of the District Attorney referenced hereinabove,” he said. “The special purpose grand jury … may make recommendations concerning criminal prosecution as it shall see fit.”

Her fact-finding mission has stalled because a “significant number of witnesses and prospective witnesses have refused to cooperate with the investigation absent a subpoena requiring their testimony,” Willis wrote to chief judge of Fulton County Superior Court, the jurisdiction that once lied at the heart of Trump’s election fraud allegations.

Willis argued in her letter to Brasher that she “has received information indicating a reasonable probability that the State of Georgia’s administration of elections in 2020, including the State’s election of the President of the United States, was subject to possible criminal disruptions.”

Evidence that could illuminate the investigation might come from Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who had a pivotal phone call with Trump on January 2, 2021 and has so far refused to engage with Willis until required by court mandate.

“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 allegedly told Raffensperger during the conversation. While Trump has denied the accusations that he asked Raffensperger to manipulate the vote counting in Georgia, Willis seemed confident the latter’s testimony would be crucial, calling him “an essential witness to the investigation.”

“I believe in 2022 a decision will be made in that case,” she said. “I certainly think that in the first half of the year that decisions will be made,” Willis told the Associated Press in early January.

During the 2020 election and for many months following, Georgia was consumed by political drama, first for being a target of election fraud claims after President Joe Biden won the state by a small margin and second for passing legislation that codified new voting standards in the aftermath of the debacle.

Biden recently visited Atlanta, a strategic location given the Democrats’ narrative that Georgia has fallen victim to the Republican legislature’s new “Jim Crow” voting law. Biden used the speech to lobby the Senate to change its filibuster rules to enact sweeping legislation that would erode state election security laws across the country. The effort failed after centrist Democrats Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema refused to weaken the filibuster.

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