Courtesy of WaPo:
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said Monday that he has come under increasing pressure in recent days from fellow Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.), who he said questioned the validity of legally cast absentee ballots, in an effort to reverse President Trump’s narrow loss in the state.
In a wide-ranging interview about the election, Raffensperger expressed exasperation over a string of baseless allegations coming from Trump and his allies about the integrity of the Georgia results, including claims that Dominion Voting Systems, the Colorado-based manufacturer of Georgia’s voting machines, is a “leftist” company with ties to Venezuela that engineered thousands of Trump votes to be left out of the count.
The atmosphere has grown so contentious, Raffensperger said, that he and his wife, Tricia, have received death threats in recent days, including a text to him that read: “You better not botch this recount. Your life depends on it.”
“Other than getting you angry, it’s also very disillusioning,” Raffensperger said of the threats, “particularly when it comes from people on my side of the aisle. Everyone that is working on this needs to elevate their speech. We need to be thoughtful and careful about what we say.” He said he reported the threats to state authorities.
What I found particularly interesting about this article is what Raffensperger said about Lindsey Graham:
In the interview, Raffensperger also said he spoke on Friday to Graham, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, who has echoed Trump’s unfounded claims about voting irregularities.
In their conversation, 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.
Raffensperger said he was stunned that Graham appeared to suggest that he find a way to toss legally cast ballots. Absent court intervention, Raffensperger doesn’t have the power to do what Graham suggested because counties administer elections in Georgia.
“It sure looked like he was wanting to go down that road,” Raffensperger said.
Well, that certainly sounds several shades of illegal.
Of course, Graham denies he ever said any such thing:
In an interview on Capitol Hill on Monday evening, Graham denied that he had suggested that Raffensperger toss legal ballots, calling that characterization “ridiculous.”
But he said he did seek out the secretary of state to understand the state’s signature-matching requirements. Graham said he contacted Raffensperger on his own and was not asked to do so by Trump.
“The main issue for me is: How do you protect the integrity of mail-in voting, and how does signature verification work?” he said.
“If he feels threatened by that conversation, he’s got a problem,” Graham added. “I actually thought it was a good conversation.”
“A good conversation?”
Doesn’t that sound like the way that a certain tangerine despot describes conversations where he said something possibly illegal?
The bottom line is that these Republicans are clearly desperate to keep their fearless leader in power, and seem willing to do anything to make that happen.