Former Trump aide Mark Meadows ordered to testify before Georgia grand jury

Former Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows must testify before a Georgia grand jury investigating Republican efforts to sway the state’s 2020 presidential election results, a South Carolina judge ruled Wednesday.

Fulton County District Attorney Fannie Willis (D) He said his investigation is looking into “multi-state, coordinated efforts to influence the November 2020 election results in Georgia and elsewhere.” Because Meadows does not live in Georgia, she could not subpoena him to testify, but she filed a motion in August to do so.

South Carolina Circuit Court Judge Edward Miller ruled Wednesday that Meadows must comply with a subpoena because his testimony is “material and necessary to the investigation and warrants that the State of Georgia will not cause him undue hardship.”

Jeff DeSantis, a spokesman for Willis, confirmed the verdict Wednesday. DeSantis said Meadows will not be called until after the midterm elections.

Meadows’ attorney said Wednesday there is a possibility of an appeal or additional legal action.

“There may be additional proceedings before the trial judge before any decision is made about the appeal,” Meadows’ attorney, George J. Terwilliger said.

Meadows, a four-term congressman from North Carolina before becoming Trump’s White House chief of staff, helped promote Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that widespread voter fraud gave Joe Biden the presidency. Meadows said he now lives in South Carolina Register to vote in 2020 using a North Carolina mobile home address.

in her Petition Seeking Meadows’ testimony, Willis noted that Meadows participated in a Jan. 2, 2021 phone call Trump made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) that would help him “find” the 11,780 votes needed to defeat Biden in the state.

‘I want to find 11,780 votes’: Trump presses Georgia secretary of state to recount votes in his favor in extraordinary hour call

On December 21, 2020, Willis wrote that Meadows, who attended the White House with Trump and others, was interested in testifying “to discuss allegations of voter fraud and certification of Electoral College votes from Georgia and other states.”

Willis also noted in the petition that on December 22, 2020, Meadows made a “surprise visit” to the Cobb County Civic Center in Marietta, Cobb County, where the Georgia Secretary of State and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation were conducting an audit. Sign absentee ballots.

There, Meadows “requested to observe the audit process privately, but was prevented from doing so because the audit was not open to the public,” Willis wrote.

Meadows sought to kill the Georgia subpoena, citing executive privilege, arguing that a Georgia special grand jury was conducting a civil trial and not a criminal proceeding that required her testimony. Willis said the investigation by the special jury focused on criminal activity.

Meadows’ South Carolina attorney James W. Bannister argued in court filings that the September deadline for his testimony originally requested had passed.

Another prominent Republican, Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (SC), in the Meadows judgment on Wednesday. appealed to the Supreme Court to block his request for testimony.

Graham argued that he was protected from testifying by constitutional protections afforded to lawmakers conducting official business.

Judge Clarence Thomas temporarily stayed the order for Graham to appear on Monday. The Summary Order It appears to be an attempt to maintain the status quo Graham’s petition to the Supreme Court Advances. Attorneys face a Thursday deadline to respond to Graham’s request, meaning the full court will consider the issue.

Last week, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit agreed Rejected Graham’s attempt To prevent subpoena from Willis. The lawmaker told the court that a sitting senator is protected from testifying in such hearings.

Despite opposition from Graham, Meadows and others, the Georgia grand jury heard testimony from key Trump advisers, including attorneys Rudy Giuliani and John Eastman. Testimony requests are pending from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) and former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Several Georgia Republican Party officials have testified. The list includes Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger (R) and his staff, Georgia Attorney General Christopher M. Carr (R), including state lawmakers and local election workers. Brian Kemp, the state’s Republican governor, filed a 121-page petition in August. The judge overseeing the trial agreed to delay the governor’s appearance until after the 2022 election. Kemp is seeking re-election.

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