The U.S. media reported that they have obtained an audio recording of a conversation between President Donald Trump and Georgia’s secretary of state, in which they claim the President is pressuring the state’s top elections official to “find” him enough votes to overturn the result of the presidential election in his favor.
The recording of an hour-long telephone call on Saturday was first published by The Washington Post. The New York Times and CNN also claimed that they are in possession of a recording of Trump’s call.
Trump reportedly told Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, “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.”
Winning the traditionally conservative -leaning state of Georgia alongside other swing states was crucial in Joe Biden securing 306 Electoral College votes against Trump’s 232.
“You should want to have an accurate election. And you’re a Republican,” Trump told Raffensperger.
The state’s top elections official said, “We believe that we do have an accurate election,” but Trump responded, “No, no you don’t. … Not even close. You’re off by hundreds of thousands of votes.”
“The people of Georgia are angry, the people of the country are angry. And there’s nothing wrong with saying that, you know, um, that you’ve recalculated,” Trump was recorded as saying, to which Raffensperger replied, “Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, the data you have is wrong.”
Trump, who continues to use his executive powers during the fag end of his presidency, threatened that Georgia Secretary of State and his chief lawyer Ryan Germany could face criminal prosecution if they did not obey his order, reports said.
CNN has shared on its website the recording of the 1 hour and 2 minutes long audio call between Trump and Raffensperger. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and several lawyers joined Trump on the call, it reported.
Before the audio clip was leaked, Trump revealed that he spoke to Raffensperger 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,” he tweeted.
Raffensperger, who continued to deny Trump’s claims of voter fraud in Georgia, replied to it strongly on Twitter Sunday: “Respectfully, President Trump: What you’re saying is not true. The truth will come out.”
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris described Trump’s act as “voice of desperation.” “Have y’all heard about that recorded conversation?…Well, it was yes certainly the voice of desperation, most certainly that… It was a bald-faced bold abuse of power by the president of the United States,” she told the crowd at a campaign event for Georgia Democratic Senate candidates Sunday.
Even after all 50 U.S. states certified the election result in Biden’s favor, Trump claimed that he won the election, and made allegations of widespread electoral fraud.
A joint session of Congress convenes on Wednesday to count the Electoral College votes and formally approve the election result, but a section of Republican lawmakers are set to oppose it.
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