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Special advocate subpoenas Georgian official

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who is also running for re-election on the Republican ticket, holds his first Election Day press briefing in Atlanta, Georgia on November 8, 2022.

Jonathan Ernest | Reuters

The Justice Department’s special counsel overseeing two criminal investigations into former President Donald Trump, Jack Smith, has issued a subpoena seeking documents from Georgian Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

Smith’s subpoena, which Raffensperger’s office confirmed to NBC News, is related to the investigation into Trump’s efforts to overturn his 2020 presidential election loss to President Joe Biden. Officials in four other battleground states — Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — have already received similar subpoenas.

A copy of the subpoena obtained by The Washington Post orders Raffensperger’s office to produce all communications from June 1, 2020 through January 20, 2021, originating from or involving Trump, his presidential campaign, or any employees or attorneys of that campaign.

A source familiar with the subpoena, which the secretary of state’s office received on Monday, told NBC that Raffensperger’s lawyers are “weighing the options” for a delay in responding to the subpoena.

Trump on January 2, 2021 unsuccessfully pressured Raffensperger to “find” the ex-president enough votes in Georgia to undo Biden’s victory there.

Georgia was one of the few swing states that gave Biden his margin of victory in the Electoral College, which selects the president.

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“All I want to do is this. I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have,” Trump told Raffensperger on that call.

“Because we won the state,” Trump said.

Raffensperger refused to comply with Trump’s request.

Smith issued the subpoena to Raffensperger three weeks after Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed him as special counsel.

Smith was tapped for the job days after Trump announced he would seek the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.

Smith is overseeing the investigation into whether Trump and anyone else unlawfully interfered with the transfer of presidential power after the 2020 election, or Congress’ certification of Biden’s Electoral College victory on January 6, 2021.

The attorney general is also investigating Trump for removing government documents from the White House when he left office.

An FBI raid of Trump’s residence at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Fla., in August found thousands of government documents, more than 100 of which were marked classified or highly classified.

A state grand jury in Atlanta is separately taking testimony and other evidence as part of the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office’s criminal investigation into whether Trump and various allies broke the law in their bid to quash Biden’s victory in Georgia.

Raffensperger testified before that grand jury in June.


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