A new book by Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) details his infamous conversation with former President Donald Trump, who asked the state official to “find” him votes in order to overturn President Joe Biden’s Georgia win in the 2020 presidential race.
In his book, titled Integrity Counts, Raffensperger said that Trump’s order seemed like a demand to do as he said — or else.
“I felt then — and still believe today — that this was a threat,” Raffensperger wrote.
“Some of Trump’s more radical followers have responded as if it was their duty to carry out this threat,” the Georgia official went on. He then noted that he and his family received death threats because of his refusal to overturn the statewide election results, which narrowly favored Biden.
Raffensperger’s book contains 40 pages of transcripts from the day Trump called him. In early January, around the same time the state certified the win for Biden, Trump told Raffensperger, along with his official counsel, Ryan Germany, to conjure up ballots to help him win the statewide race for Georgia’s 16 Electoral College votes.
“Fellas, I need 11,000 votes. Give me a break,” Trump said, per Raffensperger’s transcript.
“This repeated request for votes showed me that President Trump really had no idea how elections work,” Raffensperger said in his book. “The secretary of state’s office doesn’t allocate any votes.”
In an interview with The Hill, Raffensperger, who describes himself as “a conservative-with-a-capital-C Republican,” said he was disappointed in the results from his home state last year, as he had wanted the former president to defeat Biden. “But the cold hard facts are that President Trump did come up short in the state of Georgia,” he added.
Trump made several false claims in the call, including saying that 5,000 dead people had voted in the state, and that Fulton County officials had shredded ballots. Post-election audits and investigations carried out in Georgia found that both of these claims are completely unfounded.
“I wanted to respond to him respectfully, but also let him know in no uncertain terms that what he just said was not supported by the facts,” Raffensperger said. “Every single allegation that he made in that call and every allegation that his surrogates made, we ran those down and they were not supported by the facts.”
Over the weekend, Raffensperger suggested that he would be willing to discuss the conversation with Georgia officials who are presently investigating the former president’s actions.
Earlier this year, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis opened an inquiry into Trump’s attempts to get the election results in Georgia overturned. According to state law, it’s a felony for anyone to solicit, request or command another person to engage in election fraud.
Although it began several months ago, Willis’s inquiry is still ongoing, and her office has said it would be interested in knowing more about what Raffensperger details in his book.
“Any relevant information is part of the investigation, whether it’s a book, testimony in a congressional committee or information we gather ourselves,” said Jeff DiSantis, a spokesperson for Willis.
In an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday, Raffensperger said he would “gladly participate” in the investigation regarding Trump’s efforts to change Georgia’s election outcome, noting that some in his office have already spoken to Willis’s team of investigators but that he himself has not yet done so.