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Tag: david perdue

Yes, ‘Madman’ Trump Believes He'll Be Back In White House By August

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

Earlier this week, the New York Times' Maggie Haberman reported that Donald Trump expects to be "reinstated" as president by August — inspiring some Republicans to accuse her of making it up. But conservative journalist Charles C.W. Cooke, in an article for the National Review, writes that Haberman was not fear-mongering and that Trump really does believe he will be returning to the Oval Office this summer.

"Haberman's reporting was correct," Cooke writes. "I can attest, from speaking to an array of different sources, that Donald Trump does indeed believe quite genuinely that he — along with former Senators David Perdue and Martha McSally — will be 'reinstated' to office this summer after 'audits' of the 2020 elections in Arizona, Georgia and a handful of other states have been completed. I can attest, too, that Trump is trying hard to recruit journalists, politicians and other influential figures to promulgate this belief — not as a fundraising tool or an infantile bit of trolling or a trial balloon, but as a fact."

Republicans, according to Cooke, are making a mistake if they "downplay the enormity of what is being claimed."

"The scale of Trump's delusion is quite startling," Cooke writes. "This is not merely an eccentric interpretation of the facts or an interesting foible; nor is it an irrelevant example of anguished post-presidency chatter. It is a rejection of reality, a rejection of law, and, ultimately, a rejection of the entire system of American government. There is no Reinstatement Clause within the United States Constitution. Hell, there is nothing even approximating a Reinstatement Clause within the United States Constitution. The election has been certified, Joe Biden is the president, and, until 2024, that is all there is to it."

Cooke notes that the "cold, hard, neutral facts" show that the 2020 election was "absolutely not" stolen as Trump claims — and that there is no process, under the U.S. Constitution, for "reinstalling" a former president. Even if it could be proven that the election was stolen from Trump, the election is over and settled, and there's no way to redo it.

"American politicians do not lose their reelection races only to be reinstalled later on, as might the second-place horse in a race whose winner was disqualified," Cooke writes. "The idea is otherworldly and obscene. There is nothing to be gained for conservatism by pretending otherwise."

Conservative pundit Noah Rothman, in response to Cooke's article, slammed Trump as a "madman" on Twitter:

Another conservative commentator, Allahpundit, speculated about the motivations of those who are anonymously telling reporters about Trump's delusions:

What Really Happened In Those Historic Georgia Runoffs -- And Why

Georgia voters are on the verge of sending two new Democratic senators to Washington as the finale of a presidential election season that has historically recast Georgia's political identity and will yield a Democratic Senate majority with a new mandate for Joe Biden's presidency.

Rev. Raphael Warnock was 40,000 votes ahead of Sen. Kelly Loeffler, the Republican incumbent, with more than 98 percent of an estimated 4.5 million ballots counted by early Wednesday. With most of the uncounted ballots in metro Atlanta counties, where 75-to-80 percent of an increasingly diverse electorate voted Democratic, Georgia is sending a Black minister to the U.S. Senate, a major historical achievement.

"We were told we couldn't win this election, but tonight we proved that, with hope, hard work and the people by our side, anything is possible," Warnock told his supporters after midnight. "I am so honored by the faith that you have shown in me, and I promise you this: I am going to the Senate to work for Georgia, all of Georgia, no matter who you cast your vote for."

Shortly before 2 AM Wednesday, the other Democrat in a runoff election, Jon Ossoff, pulled ahead of Sen. David Perdue, the Republican incumbent, as returns came in from populous metro Atlanta counties. While some rural counties had yet to finish reporting their counts, election officials said the majority of the remaining votes would favor Democrats.

"Yes, that's correct," Gabriel Sterling, a top state election official and a Republican, told CNN late on Tuesday, discussing the remaining uncounted votes. "It's really an irony because in the '60s and '70s, that [Atlanta region] was the hotbed of the Republican takeover in Georgia."

"We fully expect" to win, the Ossoff campaign said in a statement. "The outstanding vote is squarely in parts of the state where Jon's performance has been dominant."

Warnock's margin of victory exceeded the state's legal threshold for a recount. However, the Perdue-Ossoff race could be headed for a recount if its margin was less than 0.5 percent of the total votes cast. With 98 percent of the votes counted early Wednesday, Ossoff was ahead by nearly 13,000 votes.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told CNN that he estimated that 4.5 million votes were cast in the recount, making the recount trigger about 22,500 votes. The last votes to be counted will be 17,000 overseas and military ballots that can arrive as late as Friday, he said.

Early on Wednesday, Perdue's campaign issued a statement claiming that they won and said it would use "every available resource and exhaust every recourse to ensure all legally cast ballots are properly counted." If no recount were triggered, Perdue would have few options.

A Historic Finale to 2020

Should both Democrats prevail, the impact on the nation's political life and federal governance cannot be underestimated. On virtually every major issue that Democrats care about, the Biden administration would have been met with resistance had the Senate remained a Republican-led body. Once Georgia's senators are seated, the body will have a 50-50 split between parties, but Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would be a tie-breaker, giving Democrats control over the Senate agenda, committee assignments and administration's appointees, including judges.

Those ramifications will play out after the Trump administration leaves office on January 20. On Wednesday, the Trump administration and its allies are expected to try to block Congress's certification of the 2020 Electoral College votes. Trump's allies will claim that the 2020 election was stolen, as they have in 63 lawsuits that have been filed in state and federal courts to challenge the results in swing states where Trump lost. Trump and his allies have lost all but one of those lawsuits, often due to lack of vote fraud evidence.

On Tuesday night, Trump and several high-profile supporters—his White House spokeswoman and a Fox News host—tweeted the Georgia runoffs were fraudulent. Their claim was baseless because while there were some election administration problems on Tuesday, no observer or credible source reported any vote-forging chicanery. Every top statewide official in Georgia, including the governor and election director, is a Republican. If anything, the state has been very aggressive in investigating voter fraud in 2020. It has found almost no wrongdoing.

Trump's antics should not detract from the historic achievement seen in Georgia. The state emerged as a national political battleground in November after Biden's surprise victory. The apparent victory of two Democrats in a runoff that set voter turnout records affirmed that its political landscape was undergoing historic change. The heart of that transformation was the result of years of effort by grassroots organizing led by the Black community, but more recently expanding into other communities of color and the state's newest residents.

Some pundits outside Georgia will credit Trump's attacks on the state's election system and top elected officials—for not manipulating the count to ensure that he won—as the top reasonwhy insufficient numbers of Republicans did not vote in the runoffs. But that analysis is not the full story. The runoffs had near-presidential election turnout levels, which showed that Georgians in both parties were engaged. What the Trump-centric analysis omits are the unprecedented efforts by communities of color to unite to turn out voters in November and in the runoffs.

Old-line groups, such as the Georgia county-level NAACP chapters, found themselves working with tech-savvy organizers who had tens of thousands of volunteers from across the country. Frontline groups were supported up with post card, phone bank and texting campaigns. In the state's urban and rural communities, Black sororities, fraternities and community organizations partnered with new groups of younger activists and organizers. While the Senate runoffs set records for spending on political advertising, the grassroots efforts turned out voters across the state. In short, for the first time in many years, Georgians could see their votes mattered.

In coming days, there will be numerous analyses and reports affirming these trends. On CNN early Wednesday morning, campaign data analysts noted that Biden's 12,000-vote victory over Trump was a floor, or a baseline, for Democrats to prevail in a statewide race. With 150,000 or more votes yet to be counted, Warnock's margin was more than three times that size.

Smart analysts like CNN's Harry Enten noted that Warnock didn't just win in Atlanta's suburbs—where many moderate Republicans voted for Biden. Warnock's percentages in rural counties often was equal to, or exceeded Biden's percentages, by several points. Warnock's campaign, like many grassroots groups, targeted and turned out overlooked voters of color. Those rural counties are still mostly run by elected white Republicans, but their political complexion is changing as non-white voters are discovering that they have power.

While the coming days may see partisan Republicans accuse Georgia's election officials of running fraud-ridden Senate runoffs and even file litigation to challenge the results, there's little indication that those efforts will succeed. Trump's allies lost every lawsuit filed before Tuesday's runoffs. State law requires county officials to certify the results by January 15. The state must certify the election by January 22—two days after Biden's inauguration.

In Warnock's speech early Wednesday, he called on all participants in political life to start working together to help ordinary people solve life's problems.

"In this moment in American history, Washington has a choice to make; we all have a choice to make," he said. "Will we continue to divide, distract and dishonor one and other, or will we love our neighbors as we love ourselves? Will we play political games while real people suffer or will we win righteous fights together, standing shoulder to shoulder, for the good of Georgia, for the good of the country?"

With Ossoff Near Victory In Georgia, Democrats Closing On Control Of Senate

With only one percent of votes still outstanding, Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff held a lead of about 16,000 votes over incumbent Republican Senator David Perdue in yesterday's Georgia Senate runoff. The historic surge of Black voters that ensured victory for Rev. Raphael Warnock -- the Democrat who won the other Georgia Senate seat from appointed Sen. Kelly Loefller in the same election -- seemed likely to boost Ossoff, since remaining votes are from Democratic precincts, according to most analysts.

Victories by both Democrats will assure their party's control of the upper chamber in Congress as Joe Biden and Kamala Harris take over the White House. Although the Senate would be tied at 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans, Harris would be empowered as vice president to cast tie-breaking votes that assured her party's control.

At 33, Ossoff would be the youngest member of the Senate elected in decades and the first Jewish senator from his home state.

Both Georgia Democrats had lagged in the late evening count, but pulled ahead as votes from heavily Democratic DeKalb County came in early this morning. Neither Loeffler nor Perdue have conceded with both insisting that they will ultimately prevail.

Ossoff's campaign manager Ellen Foster issued a statement that stopped just short of claiming victory.

"When all the votes are counted we fully expect that Jon Ossoff will have won this election to represent Georgia in the United States Senate," said Foster. "The outstanding vote is squarely in parts of the state where Jon's performance has been dominant."

Nevertheless, Perdue's campaign issued its own statement: "This is an exceptionally close election that will require time and transparency to be certain the results are fair and accurate and the voices of Georgians are heard. We will mobilize every available resource and exhaust every legal recourse to ensure all legally cast ballots are properly counted. We believe in the end, Senator Perdue will be victorious."

Sen. Perdue Endorses Trump’s Attempt To Extort Georgia Officials

Reprinted with permission from American Independent

Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), rejected criticism offered by his fellow Republicans of Donald Trump's effort on a phone call to intimidate Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger into throwing the election in Trump's favor.

Fox News anchor Sandra Smith noted criticism from former Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer and current Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) of Trump's activities.

Instead of accepting the criticism, Perdue instead made a grandiose claim that "a lot of people in Georgia and 75 million Americans … align with" Trump's baseless assertions of election fraud in Georgia.

Perdue went on to praise his own previous attempts to have Raffensperger removed from his position when he would not bend to Trump's will.

"We have pulled out all the stops to try to fight with the president to get the right accounting," Perdue said, summarizing his campaign's efforts.

Georgia has repeatedly certified the election results in favor of a Joe Biden victory and an audit of the election did not show evidence of fraud or irregularities as Perdue and Trump allege.

Nonetheless, Perdue said that the state legislature should not have certified the result.

"I don't believe that we should have certified this election yet," he told Fox.

From the Jan. 4 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom:

SANDRA SMITH, Fox News: So, then you're not seeing what Jonathan Turley saw when he said it was
"absolutely breathtaking" to hear the president use the words, use the words, "I just want to find the 11,780 votes." He's a constitutional law professor.
Ari Fleischer said, "pretty much everything the president said on that call was wrong." He used to be the press secretary for George Bush. Adam Kinzinger, a Republican, called what the president did there on pressuring the secretary of state "absolutely appalling."
So, sir, you've reacted to the leaking of that call, and the actual taping of it, got it. But what about the contents of that call?
DAVID PERDUE: Well, however he said it, Sandra, what he's saying a lot of people in Georgia and 75 million Americans, I think, align with him right now that something untoward happened here in Georgia and we have not gotten to the bottom of it.
Right away, I asked the secretary of state for some things that didn't happen, we called for his resignation, and we asked for a special session of the general assembly to investigate, that didn't happen. So, we went to court, they told us it was a legislative issue and so, we have pulled out all the stops to try to fight with the president to get the right accounting.
Look, I missed this runoff by just a few thousand votes myself, we beat our opponent by two percent. In every other state but one, we would already be reelected.
We know the probability of the low number of absentee ballots that were rejected is 1 in 10,000. That's the probability that you would have numbers like we had in Georgia in November, so, until somebody looks at that, I've been calling for weeks to object to the electors because in the state of Georgia, I don't believe that we should have certified this election yet.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

Still Furious Over Georgia, Trump Isn’t Helping Perdue And Loeffler

Reprinted with permission from Alternet

The White House's post-Trump era will begin only a month from Sunday when Joe Biden is sworn in as president of the United States. One of President Donald Trump's activities during his final weeks in office will be campaigning for two GOP senators in runoff elections in Georgia, but according to New York Times reporters Shane Goldmacher and Maggie Haberman, Trump isn't overly enthusiastic about that task — and is only using the runoffs to promote his own fundraising.

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Georgia’s First Day Of Early Runoff Voting Breaks Record

Georgia voters are already smashing absentee ballot records as early voting begins for a pair of U.S. Senate runoff elections in the state.

Georgia's Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger told the Wall Street Journal on Monday, at the start of the early voting period, that it appeared the runoffs would be a "high-turnout election."

The outlet cited figures from the U.S. Elections Project, which tracks mail ballots using data from the Georgia secretary of state. The Journal reported 246,531 mail ballots had been accepted so far — a 20.1 percent return rate of requested ballots — and 1,227,285 mail ballots requested, which is a 16.1 percent request rate of registered voters, as of Monday.

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Sen. Perdue Sold Home To Finance Industry Official Who Lobbied Senate

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.

Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., sold his Washington, D.C., home last year to a brokerage industry official whose organization is under the purview of a committee Perdue sits on.

The deal was made off market, without the home being listed for sale publicly.

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Perdue Prefers Not To Debate These Nine Financial Scandals

Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) has in recent days come under renewed scrutiny for his financial activities, including trades in his stock portfolio.

With accusations of insider trading and other violations, Perdue has a lot going on in the lead-up to the runoff election for his Senate seat in Georgia on Jan. 5.

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