Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) on Thursday testified before a special grand jury investigating former President Trump’s fruitless efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election results in the battleground state, according to multiple reports.
Raffensperger was reportedly summoned to appear before the special grand jury in the investigation last week. Raffensperger famously rejected Trump’s demand that he somehow “find” the votes needed to overturn Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia.
Upon arriving at the courthouse in downtown Atlanta on Thursday morning, Raffensperger replied that his testimony would be “hopefully short” when asked by a reporter about how long it would last, according to the Associated Press.
In reality, Raffensperger left the courthouse more than five hours later by another exit, avoiding reporters, the AP reported. Raffensperger’s testimony reportedly lasted for four hours, according to Georgia Public Broadcasting.
Raffensperger’s wife, Tricia, also spoke for about 10 minutes, someone briefed on the matter told GPB. She was with her husband when he received the infamous phone call with Trump. According to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, she declined to answer reporters’ questions after spending less than an hour in the building.
The investigation, led by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, looks into whether the former president’s attempts to pressure Georgia officials to subvert the election results may have been criminal.
Raffensperger is among several Georgia officials who have been subpoenaed in the investigation. Earlier this week, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr (R) was reportedly subpoenaed in the probe. The subpoena requests Carr’s testimony in late June.
Then-President Trump phoned Carr in late Dec. 2020 and urged the state attorney general not to join other Republicans in opposing a lawsuit that Trump’s allies filed with the Supreme Court. The lawsuit was part of Trump and his allies’ election steal scheme that sought to toss votes in the 2020 presidential election in Georgia and other battleground states that handed victories to Biden.
The Supreme Court rejected the lawsuit a day after Trump’s call with Carr.
Several of Raffensperger’s top deputies are expected to offer their testimony to the special grand jury in the coming week following subpoenas. They include: Ryan Germany, the general counsel for the secretary of state’s office; Victoria Thompson, who was an executive assistant in late 2020; deputy secretary of state Gabe Sterling and Frances Watson, the former chief investigator for the Secretary of State’s office. Additionally, former elections director Chris Harvey is scheduled to be interviewed Thursday.