Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is in possession of evidence that exonerates former President Donald Trump and other Republicans of wrongdoing in their objections to the 2020 election results, according to a report from The Federalist.
In her broad indictment, Willis alleges that Trump, along with aides, advisors and lawyers, engaged in a “conspiracy” to manipulate votes and overturn the election results in Georgia. Among those named in Willis RICO case are David Schafer, one of the Peach State’s alternate electors in 2020, and Ray Smith, who served as one of Trump’s lawyers after the election.
Willis claims that Schafer and other electors ” “unlawfully falsely held themselves out” as Georgia’s “duly elected and qualified” presidential electors. She further accused them of attempting to “mislead” Georgia Secretary of State Braf Raffensperger and then-Vice President Mike Pence “into believing that they actually were such officers.”
A transcript of a crucial meeting between the electors obtained by The Federalist refutes the claims brought forward in Willis’ august 14 indictment, however.
At the start of the December 14, 2020 meeting, Schafer explained how he and his fellow electors were acting as “Republican nominees for Presidential Elector,” not as “duly elected and qualified” presidential electors. He also noted how the purpose behind the meeting was to reserve the vice president’s lawful attempts to object to the electoral count on January 6, 2021, not to impersonate public officers.
“[President Trump] has filed a contest to the certified returns. That contest — is pending [and has] not been decided or even heard by any judge with the authority to hear it,” Shafer said. “And so in order to preserve his rights, it’s important that the Republican nominees for Presidential Elector meet here today and cast their votes.”
Schafer and Trump has previously filed a lawsuit against Raffensperger’s office on December 4, 2020, alleging that thousands of votes had been improperly or illegally counted. The lawsuit was filed after a recount — which was criticized by the Trump legal team for lacking in transparency — found that President Biden edged out the state by 11,779 votes. Raffensperger then certified the election on December 7, while the lawsuit was still pending.
The lawsuit was still pending by the date of the December 14 meeting, which is when presidential electors were scheduled to meet. As a result, Schafer and his fellow Republican electors cast their votes for President Trump while the Democratic electors cast theirs for Joe Biden.
“And so the only way for us to have any judge consider the merits of our complaint, the thousands of people we allege voted unlawfully, is for us to have this meeting and permit the contest to continue?” Schafer asked Smith during the meeting, asking for clarification on the legal path to challenge the election.
“That’s correct,” Smith replied.
The challenge advanced by Trump’s legal team followed the confines of the law and had historical precedent.