Trump Announces Georgia Rally As Lin Wood Makes Fresh Call To Boycott Vote

US President Donald Trump holds up his fist as he leaves the stage at the end of a rally to support Republican Senate candidates at Valdosta Regional Airport in Valdosta, Georgia on December 5, 2020. - President Dona... US President Donald Trump holds up his fist as he leaves the stage at the end of a rally to support Republican Senate candidates at Valdosta Regional Airport in Valdosta, Georgia on December 5, 2020. - President Donald Trump ventures out of Washington on Saturday for his first political appearance since his election defeat to Joe Biden, campaigning in Georgia where two run-off races will decide the fate of the US Senate. (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP) (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images) MORE LESS
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December 28, 2020 10:47 a.m.

President Donald Trump on Sunday announced a rally in Georgia next week, the day before the state is set to vote in a crucial Jan. 5 runoff election. 

Trump announced the trip shortly before news broke that — after a weeklong tantrum and after-the-fact demands — he would in fact sign the COVID-19 stimulus and government funding deal that had been negotiated by Congress.

The President’s brief insistence that Congress increase the $600 per-person relief checks in the legislation to $2,000 had put the Georgia runoff candidates for whom Trump is campaigning, Sens. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) and David Perdue (R-GA), in political pinch: Oppose more spending, or support the party leader? Perdue kept quiet. Loeffler squirmed under questioning from reporters.

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Trump’s visit comes in the middle of a record period of COVID-19 diagnoses in Georgia. Fifty-three people died of the disease on Saturday alone, according to state figures.

So far, more than 2 million Georgians have voted early in the runoff elections, according to the U.S. Elections Project

And with the two Republicans polling neck-and-neck with Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, turnout in these final days is key.

At least one Trump ally continues his counterintuitive efforts to suppress the Republican vote. 

Lin Wood, the attorney who (along with Sidney Powell) has most vocally backed up Trump’s bogus claims of widespread voter fraud, took to Twitter on Christmas to convince Republicans to skip the runoff election — as a way to “break the algorithm” and prove, once and for all, that Democrats cheated. 

Trump has at times endorsed Wood’s line of thinking, retweeting Wood’s call to jail Georgia’s Republican governor and secretary of state. 

If Republicans sit out next week’s election in large enough numbers, according to Wood, “the fraud will be so obvious, SCOTUS can then invalidate the Presidential election. Real conservative senators can then be appointed after Kemp, Perdue and Loeffler’s arrest.”

It’s hard to measure the impact that Wood and some of his QAnon-adjacent allies are having with their calls to boycott the race. One recent but limited-in-size SurveyUSA poll suggested that some Republican voters were indeed considering sitting out the runoff.

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