Just days before the crucial Georgia runoffs that will determine control of the US Senate, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger delivered a strong message to Donald Trump as the President persists in attacking the Peach State’s electoral process and the Republican leaders in charge of administering the system.
“Respectfully, President Trump: What you’re saying is not true. The truth will come out,” Raffensperger tweeted.
Raffensperger’s comment was in response to a tweet Sunday morning by the President, in which Trump said he spoke to Raffensperger on the phone in an attempt to convince Raffensperger to look into unfounded conspiracy theories about the vote in November. According to Trump, Raffensperger refused to do so.
“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!” Trump wrote.
The Secretary of State’s office told CNN that Raffensperger would have no additional comment on the conversation.
According to audio of the call, obtained by The Washington Post, Trump asked Raffensperger to “find” the votes necessary to alter the results in Georgia.
“So look. 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 said.
Raffensperger and his general counsel repeatedly disputed the President’s perception of the situation in Georgia and insisted that the results were fair and that he had lost, but Trump persisted.
“There’s no way I lost Georgia. There’s no way. We won by hundreds of thousands of votes,” he claimed.
Raffensperger, a Republican and a Trump supporter, has consistently turned back Trump’s claims of voter fraud in Georgia. He has overseen three different recounts of the vote and conducted several other reviews of the process. He recently tasked the Georgia Bureau of Investigation with conducting an audit of the signature match system in Cobb County that determined the system was 99.9% accurate and revealed no evidence of fraud.
Raffensperger and the state’s GOP Gov. Brian Kemp, another target of Trump’s ire, have repeatedly begged the President to shift his focus from the November results to the runoff.
“We just have to accept the facts of what happened in the November election,” Raffensperger told Fox News on Saturday. “I’m not happy with it and many conservatives aren’t either but at the end of the day we want to make sure that we have a fair, honest election coming up Tuesday and that’s what we’ll fight for.”
Trump travels to Georgia Monday for one final rally in support of Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue. Republicans are anxious that the President may spend more time complaining about the November election than he will encouraging his supporters to get out and vote for the GOP ticket.
This story has been updated with additional developments Sunday.