Fulton County DA Smacks Down Lindsey Graham’s Latest Attempt to Wriggle Out of Grand Jury Subpoena
Fulton County, Georgia District Attorney Fani Willis has filed a 15-page response to U.S Senator Lindsey Graham‘s motion to “quash” a subpoena ordering him to appear before the grand jury investigating Donald Trump’s attempts and those of his allies to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Willis dissects and obliterates Graham’s motion point by point, accusing him of merely re-submitting his original arguments which the court has already rejected. She also destroys Graham’s central argument, that his telephone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger had a “legislative purpose.”
“Provided with an opportunity to demonstrate to this Court that his subpoena should be narrowed or partially quashed, Senator Graham has decided to once again argue that every avenue of inquiry available to the Special Purpose Grand Jury requires quashal,” Willis writes in the motion posted by Politico’s Kyle Cheney.
READ MORE: Fulton County DA Slams Lindsey Graham’s Efforts to Avoid Testifying: Causing ‘Substantial Injury’ to Grand Jury
“Because Senator Graham largely repeats the same arguments he has already presented, he has failed to respond to this Court’s own findings,” Willis writes.
“The most glaring example of this is the heart of the Senator’s position: that his phone calls to Secretary Raffensperger were, by the nature, inherently legislative acts, and the Special Purpose Grand Jury’s inquiry actually only contemplates the phone calls. This is precisely the opposite of what this Court has found: ‘the specific activity at issue involves a Senator from South Carolina making personal phone calls to state-level election officials in Georgia concerning Georgia’s election processes and the results of the state’s 2020 election. On its face, such conduct is not a ‘manifestly legislative act.'”
Willis then uses Graham’s grandstanding against him.
“Senator Graham explicitly told reporters that he had tried to persuade Raffensperger to adopt a different method of signature verification, one which the Senator preferred to the method being used at the time in Georgia. He went further to say that he wanted to discuss how Raffensperger could make the process ‘better,’ explicitly not for some future legislative purpose, but to alter either the ongoing recounts or the upcoming Senate runoff elections.”
READ MORE: ‘Direct Personal Knowledge’: Federal Judge Denies Lindsey Graham’s Request to Quash Subpoena Ordering Him to Testify
And while she does not indicate a conspiracy, Willis carefully notes that “Senator Graham was not the only person with signature verification on their minds on November 13, 2020. On the very same day that the Senator called Secretary Raffensperger, attorney Lin Wood filed a filed a federal suit against Raffensperger and the Georgia State Election Board.”
“Still later on that same day,” Willis adds, “former President Trump tweeted ‘Georgia Secretary of State, a so-called Republican (RINO), won’t let the people checking the ballots see the signatures for fraud. Why? Without this the whole process is very unfair and close to meaningless. Everyone knows that we won the state. Where is [Governor Brian Kemp]?’ Secretary Raffensperger did not fail to note the significance of a lawsuit by one of the former president’s allies being filed on the same day as telephone calls from the Senator, another of his allies, followed by a statement by Trump himself, all focusing on the same issue.”
Willis also quotes the well-known former Director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, Walt Schaub, saying: “On its face, [Senator Graham’s] explanation suggests misconduct. Any call by a sitting chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee to a state election official during an ongoing count of votes is inherently coercive and points to an attempt to influence the outcome of the ballot counting.”
Schaub concludes, “the conduct Senator Graham has admitted is deeply troubling. There can be no legitimate reason for the Judiciary Committee’s chairman to call a top election official regarding an ongoing vote count.”
Enjoy this piece?
… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.
NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.
Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.
Dominion Wins ‘Blockbuster Victories’ Against Fox News – Last Legal Issue Will Be Decided by a Jury: Report
Dominion Voting Systems won what are being called “blockbuster victories” Friday afternoon when a judge ruled the company suing Fox News for $1.6 billion in a major defamation lawsuit had met its burden of proof that Rupert Murdoch‘s far-right wing cable channel had repeatedly made false statements.
The final, and likely greatest legal issue Dominion will have to prove will be actual malice. That issue will be decided in a jury trial, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric M. Davis ruled Friday, according to Law & Crime.
Unlike previous cases, Fox News will reportedly not be able to argue the on-air statements its personalities made were opinion.
CNN legal analyst and Brookings senior fellow Norm Eisen calls Friday’s decision a “huge win for Dominion on their summary judgment motion against Fox News.”
READ MORE: Capitol Police Issue Warning Over Possible Trump Protests ‘Across the Country’
“Dominion won partial summary judgement that what Fox said about them was false! Now they just have to prove actual malice and damages,” Eisen says. “Meanwhile Fox’s motion was totally denied.”
Former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, an MSNBC contributor adds: “Dominion’s evidence Fox made false statements with reckless disregard is as strong as any I’ve seen.”
The judge was very clear in his ruling.
“While the Court must view the record in the light most favorable to Fox, the record does not show a genuine issue of material fact as to falsity,” Judge Davis wrote. “Through its extensive proof, Dominion has met its burden of showing there is no genuine issue of material fact as to falsity. Fox therefore had the burden to show an issue of material fact existed in turn. Fox failed to meet its burden.”
READ MORE: ‘Propaganda Network’: Media Reporter Says Dominion Filing Exposes Fox News as ‘Void of the Most Basic Journalistic Ethics’
Attorney and MSNBC host and legal analyst Katie Phang points to this key passage in Judge Davis’ ruling.
Dominion has won the argument on the issue of falsity, meaning that as the Court funds below, “it is CRYSTAL clear that none of the Statements relating to Dominion about the 2020 election are true.” pic.twitter.com/7lKEspN0WI
— Katie S. Phang (@KatiePhang) March 31, 2023
Court watchers and news junkies are familiar at this point with the massive legal filings Dominion has made in which it exposed how Fox News knowingly made false statements regarding the 2020 presidential election. Those filings, each hundreds of pages, also detail internal Fox News communications and bombshell conversations between the company’s top personalities, executives, and even Chairman Rupert Murdoch.
Image of Rupert Murdoch via Shutterstock
Trump Trial Could Go Well Into the 2024 Election – Or Possibly Even Past It: Former Prosecutor
Donald Trump, and all of America, could spend the next 18 months – or longer – engrossed in Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s trial of the ex-president, and that could bring the trial close to Election Day.
That’s according to a former prosecutor in the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, Charles Coleman, who is now a civil rights attorney and MSNBC legal analyst.
Asked by MSNBC’s Chris Jansing, “How long typically might a case like this take?” Coleman offered a two-tiered answer.
“A case like this is usually going to take a year or a year and a half,” Coleman said.
That could be through September of 2024.
READ MORE: ‘Lighting the Match’: Marjorie Taylor Greene Blasted for Off the Rails Rant Defending Trump
“Wow,” a surprised Jansing replied. “So it’s going right up into the campaign.”
“Absolutely,” agreed Coleman. “But it’s important to understand I said a case ‘like this.’ This particular case, I expect may take longer because I am anticipating a number of different legal maneuvers by Donald Trump’s defense team.”
That theoretically means into October of 2024, or longer.
“I do see motions to dismiss at a number of different terms, more likely than not to the point that the judge probably will ultimately end up admonishing them and telling them stop filing motions to dismiss. I think that that’s going to happen,” Coleman explained.
“I’ve said before, and I’ll say again, I do believe that we are going to see an attempt to try to change the venue, in this case outside of somewhere in the five boroughs. All of that is going to extend the time deeper and deeper into election season.”
READ MORE: Manhattan DA Unleashes on Jim Jordan With Stern Warning: You May Not ‘Interfere’ With Trump Prosecution
Reuters agrees, reporting Friday morning, “any potential trial is still at minimum more than a year away, legal experts said, raising the possibility that the former U.S. president could face a jury in a Manhattan courtroom during or even after the 2024 presidential campaign, as he seeks a return to the White House.”
And because “Trump’s case is far from typical,” Reuters notes, his trial could extend “past Election Day in November 2024.”
Manhattan DA Unleashes on Jim Jordan With Stern Warning: You May Not ‘Interfere’ With Trump Prosecution
After a Manhattan grand jury indicted Donald Trump late Thursday afternoon on reportedly 34 felony charges, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg took one more step to preserve the rule of law: Friday morning, via his General Counsel, he sent the top three Republican House Chairmen attempting to interfere in his office’s investigation and prosecution of Donald Trump a stern warning.
The letter, addressed to House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan, Oversight Chairman James Comer, and Administration Chairman Bryan Steil spans six-pages. Its letterhead does not say District Attorney’s Office, but “District Attorney,” and has Bragg’s name in the upper corner, although it is signed by Bragg’s General Counsel, Leslie B. Dubeck. Politico has published the full letter.
It clearly states Bragg is drawing a red line: “What neither Mr. Trump nor Congress may do is interfere with the ordinary course of proceedings in New York State.”
The letter also accuses the trio of “an improper and dangerous usurpation” and “attempted interference with an ongoing state criminal investigation.” And it warns them against “unlawful political interference.”
READ MORE: ‘You Can’t Stand on Fifth Avenue and Just Shoot Somebody’: Donald Trump Indicted – Legal Experts Respond
“The Committees’ attempted interference with an ongoing state criminal investigation and now prosecution–is an unprecedented and illegitimate incursion on New York’s sovereign interests,” the letter reads. “Moreover, your examination of the facts of a single criminal investigation, for the supposed purpose of determining whether any charges against Mr. Trump are warranted, is an improper and dangerous usurpation of the executive and judicial functions.”
In a section titled, “The Committees Lack Jurisdiction to Oversee a State Criminal Prosecution,” the letter points to reports that the Trump team has been working in coordination with House Republicans.
“Even worse, based on your reportedly close collaboration with Mr. Trump in attacking this Office and the grand jury process, it appears you are acting more like criminal defense counsel trying to gather evidence for a client than a legislative body seeking to achieve a legitimate legislative objective.”
Bragg’s general counsel also uses the letter as a warning to all House Republicans that their actions, behaviors, and words are on the record.
READ MORE: Manhattan District Attorney’s Office Says It Is Coordinating With Trump to ‘Surrender’
He holds up U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) as an example, suggesting to others they should moderate their rhetoric.
After dismissing Jordan’s threat in a previous letter to withhold federal funds from Bragg’s office – noting the Manhattan District Attorney’s office has “has helped the Federal Government secure more than one billion dollars in asset forfeiture funds in the past 15 years” – Bragg serves up another warning.
He notes that “some committee members have explicitly stated an intent to interfere with the state proceeding. For example, responding to Trump’s statement that he would be arrested, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene stated that ‘Republicans in Congress MUST subpoena these communists and END this! We have the power to do it and we also have the power to DEFUND their salaries and departments!’ … and that Republicans who ‘do nothing to stop’ the prosecution ‘will be exposed to the people and will be remembered, scorned, and punished by the base.'”
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM2 days ago
Favoring Right Wing Christians, Texas Judge Voids ACA’s Mandate That Insurance Cover Full Cost of HIV Drugs Including PrEP
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM1 day ago
‘Lighting the Match’: Marjorie Taylor Greene Blasted for Off the Rails Rant Defending Trump
- BREAKING NEWS2 days ago
Trump Indictment Is a Massive 34 Counts: CNN
- News1 day ago
Manhattan DA Unleashes on Jim Jordan With Stern Warning: You May Not ‘Interfere’ With Trump Prosecution
- RIGHT WING EXTREMISM2 days ago
‘Dystopian Future’: Democrat Calls Out GOP Lawmakers for Voting to Completely Defund Missouri’s 399 Public Libraries
- News2 days ago
New Poll Sends Trump Damning Message About 2024 if He’s Criminally Indicted
- 'INDICTED FOR HIS BEHAVIOR'2 days ago
‘You Can’t Stand on Fifth Avenue and Just Shoot Somebody’: Donald Trump Indicted – Legal Experts Respond
- GOP ATTACKING SENIORS2 days ago
Watch: McCarthy, Trying to Cut Federal Spending on Critical Social Safety Net Programs, Mocks President Biden’s Age