A prosecutor in Atlanta is among those in the state considering opening up a criminal investigation into President Donald Trump for challenging the state’s controversial election results, according to a report.
The New York Times reported that new Fulton County district attorney Fani Willis, a Democrat, is taking the matter under serious consideration. No determination has been made about a possible criminal probe, but it is reported to be on the table.
Much of the anger from state Democrats is reported to be over a Jan. 2 phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, per David Worley, who is the only Democrat sitting on Georgia’s state election board.
The Washington Post obtained a recording of the call on Jan. 5, in which Trump laid into the secretary over what he saw as either obvious election ineptitude or corruption at the state level.
A transcript of the call from the paper showed Trump laid into Raffensperger over voter discrepancies. Trump lost Georgia by 11,779 votes, but he cited voting irregularities such as dead voters casting ballots on the call with the Georgia official.
“The other thing, dead people. So dead people voted, and I think the number is close to 5,000 people. And they went to obituaries. They went to all sorts of methods to come up with an accurate number, and a minimum is close to about 5,000 voters,” Trump said.
“The bottom line is, when you add it all up and then you start adding, you know, 300,000 fake ballots. Then the other thing they said is in Fulton County and other areas,” Trump said, according to the Post’s transcript.
“But Brad, if you took the minimum numbers where many, many times above the 11,779, and many of those numbers are certified, or they will be certified, but they are certified. And those are numbers that are there, that exist,” he added. “And that beat the margin of loss, they beat it, I mean, by a lot, and people should be happy to have an accurate count instead of an election where there’s turmoil.”
The call has drawn the outrage of opponents of Trump, one of whom accused the president of attempting to “strong-arm” the state GOP official.
“If you took the fact out that he is the president of the United States and look at the conduct of the call, it tracks the communication you might see in any drug case or organized crime case,” former U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Georgia Michael J. Moore told The New York Times.
“It’s full of threatening undertone and strong-arm tactics,” he added.
Moore concluded the call was “a clear attempt to influence the conduct of the secretary of state, and to commit election fraud, or to solicit the commission of election fraud.”
Other Georgia state prosecutors told the Times that in their estimation, the president had broken the law.
The Times added in its reporting that should the election board not make a referral of an investigation into Trump by Feb. 10, Worley said he would go directly to Willis to demand a probe in Fulton County.
The Times report seems to signal that even as Trump prepares to become a private citizen next week, his political adversaries will remain committed to exacting revenge against him following a divisive election in which many voters, especially in Georgia, feel that the election was conducted unfairly.
Representatives for Trump have not commented on the report.