UNITED STATES – Brad Raffensperger, Georgia’s Republican top election official, on Monday, said the White House pushed him to take Saturday’s call from President Donald Trump.
Trump has been accused of pressuring the state to overturn his November presidential election defeat.
In a recording published by U.S. media outlets, the President told Raffensperger, Georgia Secretary of State, to “find” enough votes in his favour.
In a chat with ABC’s Good Morning America, the official said: “I never believed it was appropriate to speak to the president but he pushed out, I guess he had his staff push us.”
The Secretary disclosed that he and his office’s general counsel rejected Trump’s assertions of electoral fraud in the hour-long conversation.
“We took the call, and we had a conversation. He did most of the talking; we did most of the listening. But I do want to make my points that the data that he has is just plain wrong.
“He had hundreds and hundreds of people he said that were dead that voted. We found two. That’s an example of just his bad data”, Raffensperger said.
Trump has maintained President-elect Joe Biden did not win, insisting the poll was rigged.
The Democrat won the Electoral College by 306-232 and made history as the first presidential challenger to win more than 80 million popular votes.
David Worley, a Democrat on Georgia’s election board, urged Raffensperger to investigate whether the president had violated state law.
“To say that I am troubled by President Trump’s attempt to manipulate the votes of Georgians would be an understatement”, Worley wrote in a letter seen by Reuters.
Kevin McCarthy, House of Representatives Republican Leader defended Trump’s call.
“The president’s always been concerned about the integrity of the election, and the president believes that there are things that happened in Georgia that he wants to see accountability for”, he told Fox News.