GA Secretary of State Says Lindsey Graham Pressured Him to Throw Out Legal Votes and Graham Just Responded
President-elect Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump in the 2020 election, earning 306 electoral votes—well over the 270 vote threshold needed to take the White House.
The President is refusing to acknowledge these results, instead launching multiple lawsuits in an all but futile attempt to overturn the outcome. Exacerbating this is Trump's Twitter account, where he's deployed a near-constant stream of lies and misinformation alleging with no evidence that widespread voter fraud tipped the race to Biden.
In one of the most unexpected outcomes, Biden narrowly won the state of Georgia—which had been reliably red since 1992—by around 14,000 votes.
The state is currently auditing its votes before certification, part of which requires signature verification of ballots sent by mail.
Georgia's Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger—a Republican—has pushed back against claims of voter fraud from Trump's allies, and in an interview with the Washington Post, Raffensperger relayed that Trump loyalist Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) pressured him to throw out legally cast votes through the signature verification process.
According to the Post:
"Graham questioned Raffensperger about the state's signature-matching law and whether political bias could have prompted poll workers to accept ballots with nonmatching signatures, according to Raffensperger. Graham also asked whether Raffensperger had the power to toss all mail ballots in counties found to have higher rates of nonmatching signatures, Raffensperger said."
Graham has denied the accusation, claiming that he was simply concerned with potential faults in Georgia's signature matching process and wondering if there was bipartisan oversight of the signature matching process.
"I think that's just ridiculous. If he feels threatened by that conversation, he's got a problem. I actually thought it was a good conversation."
Raffensperger said of Graham's denial:
"It sure looked like he was wanting to go down that road ... The implication is 'Look hard and see how many ballots you can throw.'"
People are disgusted at Graham's purported attempt to subvert legal ballots, and they want him to answer for it.
This is both outrageous and should be investigated by the Senate Ethics Committee. https://t.co/7Xkp7aQN0v
— Marc E. Elias (@marceelias) November 16, 2020
Lindsey Graham should be expelled from the Senate for trying to subvert free & fair elections https://t.co/eNbqXwReBz
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) November 16, 2020
If these allegations are true, @LindseyGrahamSC should resign. He's the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, for goodness' sake. Even Graham's defense is troubling. It Raffensperger “feels threatened by that conversation, he's got a problem"? What might that be, Lindsey? https://t.co/C41Lt7sXNJ
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) November 16, 2020
If this is true, it's a serious federal crime. At the least, Graham should be impeached. https://t.co/i9g8qFBb0p
— Robert Reich (@RBReich) November 17, 2020
None of these moves ever had a real chance. But big names effectively announcing they'd toss out votes en masse or even replace electors in a heartbeat if they could get away with it has much more serious long-term implications. https://t.co/XW88KhWEez
— Benjy Sarlin (@BenjySarlin) November 16, 2020
They were concerned that Graham was committing the same fraud Republicans railed about for months.
You count every vote. Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. It's the essence of our democracy.
Unless you're Trump's GOP.
Then you either win, or cry fraud and try to get legal votes thrown out.
Biden won. The only question now is how much damage Trump will do on his way out. https://t.co/RbOcmh2kBH
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) November 17, 2020
I'd like to report some voter fraud. https://t.co/Fe2591SBBD
— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@RepJayapal) November 17, 2020
So this seems like something that would come under the guidance Bill Barr recently gave DOJ to investigate 👀 https://t.co/QvKO3nUUIx
— Asha Rangappa (@AshaRangappa_) November 16, 2020
Georgia's audit is far from expected to change the outcome in the state.