As Trump Assaults Georgia Republicans, Occasion Worries About Senate Races
Like Mr. Kemp, Mr. Raffensperger is in a precarious position; While he refuses to take steps to override the will of Georgian voters, he is also trying to convince Republicans that he will be aggressive in tracking down allegations of liberal fraud.
“There are people who exploit the emotions of many Trump supporters with fantastic claims,” he said at a press conference on Monday morning. “Half-truths, misinformation and frankly, they apparently mislead the president as well.”
He also announced that his office is investigating four voting groups, including the New Georgia Project, founded by Stacey Abrams, Mr Kemp’s rival in the 2018 governor’s race and de facto leader of the Georgia Democrats. Mr Raffensperger said the groups were “working to register people in other states to vote here in Georgia”.
Newt Gingrich, former Georgia House of Representatives spokesman and Trump supporter, said dissatisfaction with Mr. Kemp and Mr. Raffensperger was so widespread among Republican activists that he anticipated primary challenges against both men in two years.
“I’ve had very close friends who wrote to me saying, ‘I have a Republican governor and secretary of state, and both of them are useless. So why do I stay involved?'” Gingrich said. “But I think they are going to take pretty active steps to get people to evolve based on the long-term historical significance of these two seats.”
Some Republicans are trying to convince Trump supporters to get back on the very same system the president is denigrating. Surrogate mothers, including Vice President Mike Pence, have fought in Georgia. Other Trump allies form a super PAC that sends ads featuring Donald Trump Jr., a right-wing figure, asking their supporters to vote in the runoff elections.
So far, the president himself has spent little time focusing on the Senate races and instead much more on his desire to recount his own loss. But advisors have told him that a Republican Senate is important, and since Mr Pence was also traveling to Georgia on Saturday, Mr Trump agreed to leave too.