A Republican state lawmaker predicted this week that if a trial against former President Donald Trump in Georgia moves forward, it could lead to violence akin to civil war — which he would reluctantly join, he suggested.
Trump faces racketeering and other charges from Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis over his and his allies’ attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election results in Georgia following his loss in the state to now-President Joe Biden. Some Republicans in the state legislature, including Rep. Colton Moore (R), are demanding that Gov. Brian Kemp (R) call a special session to pass legislation to defund Willis’s efforts.
In an interview with right-wing provocateur Steve Bannon on Tuesday, Moore suggested that violence could result from Willis prosecuting Trump.
In Moore’s scenario, the violence would be orchestrated by Trump’s loyalists. But instead of using his airtime to discourage right-wing violence, Moore called on the state legislature to take extraordinary action to intervene in Willis’s case against Trump, which many legal experts have said includes damning evidence implicating the former president in state-based crimes.
“I told one senator… we’ve got to put our heads together and figure this out. We need to be taking action right now. Because if we don’t, our constituencies are gonna be fighting it in the streets,” Moore said in the Tuesday interview on “War Room,” Bannon’s online news program.
“Do you want a civil war? I don’t want a civil war,” Moore went on. “I don’t want to have to draw my rifle. I want to make this problem go away with my legislative means of doing so.”
Georgia State Law School professor Anthony Michael Kreis, who shared a video of Moore on X, the social media site formerly known as Twitter, condemned the lawmaker’s comments.
“Having a sitting state senator talking about the need to ‘draw his rifle’ as the alternative to a lack of a legislative response to the Fulton County indictments is a threat of political violence better suited for nineteenth century redeemers than 2023,” Kreis wrote.
Although a number of far right lawmakers in the Georgia legislature are demanding a special session, such an outcome is unlikely, particularly because GOP leaders in the legislature have already criticized the idea. House Speaker Jon Burns (R), for example, derided the strategy as a “reckless course of action” that could have repercussions on other criminal cases, and noted that such a move would distract from more important state matters, like the effects of Hurricane Idalia.
Republican Gov. Brian Kemp also responded to Moore’s demands for a special legislative session, saying on Thursday that Georgia state law “clearly outlines the legal steps that can be taken if constituents believe their local prosecutors are violating their oath.”
“As long as I am governor, we’re going to follow the law and the Constitution, regardless of who it helps or harms politically,” Kemp said.
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