Loeffler, Perdue Praise Trump’s Latest Election Gambit, Which Georgia’s Own AG Called ‘Wrong’

VALDOSTA, GEORGIA - DECEMBER 05: President Donald Trump attends a rally in support of Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) and Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) on December 05, 2020 in Valdosta, Georgia. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
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December 9, 2020 11:11 a.m.

Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) and David Perdue (R-GA) released a statement late Tuesday night praising a bizarre lawsuit out of Texas — part of Trump’s ongoing gambit to overturn the election — even after Georgia’s own Republican attorney general dismissed it as “constitutionally, legally and factually wrong.” 

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a request with the Supreme Court Tuesday, asking the justices to review a lawsuit seeking to toss the election results in Georgia, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan. 

Loading up the lawsuit with plenty of conspiracy theories, Texas is asking that the results in all of those states be blocked so the state legislatures — all of which are Republican-controlled — can appoint their own slate of electors. Trump has suggested his campaign will get involved in the case.

“We fully support President Trump’s legal recourses and Attorney General Paxton’s lawsuit,” Georgia’s U.S. senators wrote in a joint statement Tuesday. “The President has every right to use every legal recourse available to guarantee these simple principles: every lawful vote should be counted, any illegal vote submitted cannot be counted, and there must be full transparency and uniformity in the counting process.” 

Thus far, few of the lawsuits brought by the Trump campaign or allied lawyers have made it as high as the Supreme Court, and in those cases the justices have signaled they would not get involved. 

This particular lawsuit is so out there as to prompt an outright dismissal from the office of Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr, a Republican.

“With all due respect, the Texas Attorney General is constitutionally, legally and factually wrong about Georgia,” spokesperson Katie Byrd told TPM.

Loeffler and Perdue have consistently supported Trump’s baseless election fraud claims though, as they try to both maintain their MAGA support while convincing Republicans that the runoff election won’t be too rigged to bother voting in. 

Recently, calling for a signature audit has become a convenient way for them to thread that needle — that way, they can agree that the general election was in some way irregular, while pointing to a mechanism that would fix the system in time for the runoff. 

In reality, the idea of a signature audit is as silly as the Texas lawsuit: It would require a judge to be willing to toss thousands of legally cast ballots to have any discernible advantage for Trump.

But runoffs, historically, are about turnout. And the Republican incumbents have showed themselves unwilling to do anything that could jeopardize their ability to turn out Trump’s diehards, even if it means casting doubt on the Nov. 3 election.

“Regardless of what happened and what people think happened on November 3, they have a continued responsibility to make sure that we get back out on January 5 and get our Republican vote out,” summarized Perdue in a recent interview on Newsmax with Sean Spicer. “This is the last line of defense.”

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