Since November, Donald Trump has been spinning unhinged conspiracy theories on Twitter, in speeches and in private meetings with staff, always about how he was “cheated” or defrauded out of electoral victory. Trump is such a Hector Projector, I think we can safely assume that he had big plans to defraud his way to “electoral victory,” only to see his plans disrupted significantly by the move towards absentee ballots (a paper trail of documentation) and historic turnout. So all of the sh-tty conspiracies he’s projecting onto Democrats are probably the plans he had to win. Anyway, since the election, we also know that Trump has been personally calling up various state officials in Georgia, Michigan, Arizona and Pennsylvania to get them to somehow reject the will of their states’ voters and simply overturn the election results. Like, those calls and meetings have been happening for two solid months. And finally, someone bothered to record one of those calls.
President Trump urged fellow Republican Brad Raffensperger, the Georgia secretary of state, to “find” enough votes to overturn his defeat in an extraordinary one-hour phone call Saturday that legal scholars described as a flagrant abuse of power and a potential criminal act.
The Washington Post obtained a recording of the conversation in which Trump alternately berated Raffensperger, tried to flatter him, begged him to act and threatened him with vague criminal consequences if the secretary of state refused to pursue his false claims, at one point warning that Raffensperger was taking “a big risk.”
Throughout the call, Raffensperger and his office’s general counsel rejected Trump’s assertions, explaining that the president is relying on debunked conspiracy theories and that President-elect Joe Biden’s 11,779-vote victory in Georgia was fair and accurate.
Trump dismissed their arguments.
“The people of Georgia are angry, the people of the country are angry,” he said. “And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, that you’ve recalculated.”
Raffensperger responded: “Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, the data you have is wrong.” At another point, 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.” He later added: “So what are we going to do here, folks? I only need 11,000 votes. Fellas, I need 11,000 votes. Give me a break.”
The rambling and at times incoherent conversation offered a remarkable glimpse of how consumed and desperate the president remains about his loss, unwilling or unable to let the matter go and still asserting he can reverse the results in enough battleground states to remain in office.
I heard someone describe Trump as surprisingly lucid-sounding on the call, but… I don’t know. He clearly had notes in front of him and talking points he was trying to hit, which is even scarier to me, the fact that his staff presumably wrote out a document for him to reference as he committed multiple ratf–king crimes. Something else that’s sort of stupid-funny-crazy: this f–king call happened on JANUARY 2. Like, as of Saturday, Donald Trump is still sitting in his diaper, calling up state election officials and demanding that they “find” 11,000 votes for him.
You can hear the full hour-long call at WaPo. They posted a damning clip on YouTube:
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.
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