Sen. David Perdue is just fine with Donald Trump trying to pressure Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” enough votes to flip the presidential election results there, a likely crime. No, what Perdue is upset about is that Raffensperger made Trump’s behavior public.
Appearing on Fox’s America’s Newsroom show today, Perdue predicted he’ll win tomorrow’s runoff election against Jon Ossoff. Perdue called the election, which could determine control of the Senate, “the last line of defense against this radical, socialist agenda and really our last opportunity to protect everything President Trump has accomplished over the last four years.”
That, apparently, was reason enough to give a pass to Trump’s corruption and attack on our electoral process. Without being asked, Perdue lit into Raffensperger and defended Trump.
PERDUE: Let me say something about the secretary of state. I did say it was disgusting. I guess I was raised differently, Sandra. My Mom and Dad were schoolteachers but to have a statewide elected official, regardless of party, tape without disclosing a private conversation with the president of the United States and then leaking it to the press is disgusting.
But I didn’t hear anything in that tape that the president hasn’t already said for weeks now, since the November election, calling for some sort of investigation, some sort of resolution to the improprieties and the irregularities that we now see happened in November here in Georgia.
In fact, Trump has lost 60 lawsuits challenging the election and his own attorney general said there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud.
Host Sandra Smith let Perdue’s smear of our electoral process go unchallenged but she did challenge Trump’s shocking new low:
SMITH: Perhaps, then, you’re not seeing what Jonathan Turley saw when he said it was absolutely breathtaking to hear the president use the words, “I just want to find the 11,780 votes.” He’s a constitutional law professor. Ari Fleischer said, “Pretty much everything the president said on that call was wrong.” He used to be the press secretary for George Bush. Adam Kinzinger, Republican, called what the president did there, on pressuring the secretary of state, “absolutely appalling.”
So, sir, you’ve reacted to the leaking of that call and the actual taping of it. Got it. But what about the contents of that call?
PERDUE: Well, however he said it, Sandra, what he’s saying, a lot of people in Georgia – and 75 million Americans, I think, align with him right now. That something untoward happened here in Georgia and we have not gotten to the bottom of it.
… I’ve been calling for weeks to object to the electors because in the state of Georgia, I don’t believe that we should have certified this election yet.
But what’s so wrong about Trump’s call is how he sounded like a mob boss demanding Raffensperger “find the” votes for him. Trump said, “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.”
But instead of noting that Trump’s behavior was likely criminal as well as proof that he is relying on debunked conspiracy theories, Smith moved on to ask, “Are you concerned that that may discourage voters from coming out to vote for you and your Republican colleague, Kelly Loeffler, in Georgia tomorrow?”
When Perdue didn’t quite answer the question, Smith finally laid out the facts.
SMITH: Just to be clear, the ballots in the presidential election were counted in your state three times, including a mandatory hand count. And a Trump-requested recount. So, you’re asking for more than that, more should be done than that.
PERDUE: Sandra, I never called for a recount. That was a waste of time. A hand count and a machine recount, that’s not what I’ve been saying. I’ve been saying all along that there are things that went on around the signatures that we have not been given answers to and therefore, we need a full signature audit against the registration signature alone. Not an application signature or anything else. And oh, by the way we don’t even know that certain counties who were given discretion to do that, when they were burdened by an ever-increasing amount of applications for absentee ballots, we went from five percent to thirty percent absentee ballots in this race.
And yet, Perdue, who repeatedly noted that he won by two points in November (just not be enough to avoid a runoff), didn’t mention any problem with the voting results for his own race in November.
You can watch Perdue stab his own secretary of state in the back, as well as the rule of law and our democracy, for the sake of political power below, from the January 4, 2021 America’s Newsroom.
PS: IF YOU'RE A GEORGIA VOTER, MAKE SURE YOU KNOW YOUR RIGHTS.
It’s already bad enough that elections in the USA are run by state-level incumbents and not by a non-partisan commission. My brother is convinced that GWB won Florida in 2000 because the Republican Secretary of State had her thumb on the scale: many voters were simply purged from the voting rolls, many (my nephew included) had difficulty finding out where they were supposed to vote. And that’s only two of the things she did.
PS: While I am grateful to the GA republicans for sticking to their guns, it doesn’t make me trust them NOT to try to cook the election books in the future. Even Raffensperger tried several times to suppress the vote before the 2020 elections. Schizophrenia is a word that comes to mind.