U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) speaks during the third day of the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings on Justice Jackson’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, on Capitol Hill in Washington, 23 March 2022.
Kevin Lamarque | Reuters
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina will challenge a grand jury subpoena seeking her testimony in an investigation into possible criminal interference in Georgia’s 2020 election by former President Donald Trump and his allies , lawyers for the lawmaker said on Wednesday.
Fulton County, Georgia investigators told them that Graham, a Trump ally, was “neither a subject nor a target of the investigation, merely a witness,” his attorneys said.
They claimed that if Graham’s subpoena were upheld, it would erode the constitutional checks and balances and affect his ability to do his job as a congressman.
“This is all just politics. Fulton County is engaged in a fishing expedition and is working in concert with the January 6 Committee in Washington,” Graham’s attorneys, Bart Daniel and Matt Austin, said in a statement. .
A Fulton County judge on Tuesday signed subpoenas issued by a special grand jury in Atlanta to Graham and six attorneys — including former New York mayor and former federal prosecutor Rudy Giuliani — who worked directly or informally advised Trump’s presidential campaign in its effort to overturn President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory in Georgia.
The subpoena issued to Graham says he called Georgian Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his staff at least twice to “review certain absentee ballots cast in Georgia to explore the possibility of a more favorable outcome for former President Donald Trump.”
In their statement Wednesday, Graham’s attorneys said that as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, “Graham was well within his rights to discuss with state officials processes and procedures related to the ‘election administration’.
“If upheld, the subpoena issued today would erode the constitutional checks and balances and the ability of a member of Congress to do their job,” the attorneys said. “Senator Graham plans to go to court, challenge the subpoena and expects to prevail.”
The Fulton County prosecutor opened a criminal investigation last year after it was revealed that Trump called Raffensperger on January 2, 2021, while he was still president, and asked him to “find” him enough of votes to undo Biden’s victory.
“All I want to do is this: I just want to find 11,780 votes,” Trump told Raffensperger.
That call came four days before the U.S. Congress begins meeting in joint session to confirm Biden’s victory in the Electoral College.
A special House committee is investigating the riot in the United States Capitol that began that day, which interrupted the proceedings of the joint session for hours.