Harris: Trump Georgia phone call shows a ‘voice of desperation’
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris said Sunday that President Trump’s phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) showed a “voice of desperation” from the president.
The incoming vice president became the highest-ranking member of President-elect Joe Biden’s administration to comment on the audio of the Saturday phone call released by The Washington Post on Sunday.
In the recorded phone call, Trump repeatedly asked Raffensperger to “find” more than 11,000 votes to put him ahead of Biden in the state.
“Have y’all heard about that recorded conversation?” she asked the crowd at a campaign event for Georgia Democratic Senate candidates the Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.
“Well, it was yes certainly the voice of desperation, most certainly that,” Harris continued. “It was a bald-faced, bold abuse of power by the president of the United States.”
The audio from the phone call represents the first tangible evidence of Trump attempting to pressure a state official to overturn the election results. During the call, Trump told Raffensperger that “the people of Georgia are angry, the people in the country are angry. And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, that you’ve recalculated.”
“All I want to do is this,” he continued. “I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state.”
The president had previously requested that Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) initiate a special legislative session with the goal of altering Biden’s win. But Kemp declined, prompting Trump to respond with criticisms of the governor and calls for him to resign.
In her speech, Harris also slammed the president for calling the Georgia Senate runoffs set for Tuesday “illegal” and “invalid” in tweets, saying that he was “suggesting that the people of Georgia are trying to commit a crime.”
“And I raise all this to remind us to ask a question always when we see these powerful people that are trying to make it difficult, trying to make it confusing, trying to invalidate our voice,” she added.
“Whenever we see this happen, I think it requires not only action, but it requires a question: Why are such powerful people trying to make it difficult for us to vote?” the vice president-elect continued. “And I think we know the answer. It’s because they know our power.”
Harris spoke in Savannah, Ga., two days before the Senate runoffs that will determine which party has control of the U.S. Senate over the next two years.
Warnock and Ossoff will face Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.), respectively, for the second time after none of the candidates achieved a majority of the vote in November.
If either senator keeps their seat, the Senate will remain in GOP control, but if both lose, the Senate will be split 50-50, with Harris being the tiebreaking vote.