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What to Know About the Georgia Grand Jury’s Report on Trump and the 2020 Election

3 minute read

A grand jury in Georgia investigating alleged election interference by Donald Trump and his allies concluded that some witnesses may have lied under oath. The grand jury’s report, portions of which were released by a Georgia judge on Thursday, recommended that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis indict individuals “where the evidence is compelling.”

Here’s what to know

The grand jury was empaneled as part of District Attorney of Fulton County’s investigation into possible criminal interference in the 2020 general election in Georgia. High-profile Republicans that have appeared before the Fulton County grand jury in Atlanta include Rudy Giuliani, Republican Senator Lindsay Graham of South Carolina, and Georgia Governor Brian Kemp.

The limited release of the report indicates that the grand jury likely has recommended charges to Willis, who is leading the investigation. It will be up to Willis to decide what, if any, charges are brought, and when. Willis said in a court hearing in January that decisions on bringing charges were “imminent.”

Based on court filings, the investigation is looking at alleged efforts by Trump and his allies like Giuliani to pressure Georgia officials to change the vote tallies in his favor. In a recording of a January 2021 phone call from Trump to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, Trump is heard telling Raffensperger to “find” votes that would reverse Biden’s win in the state. Trump lost the state by 11,779 votes.

Willis has also looked into harassment of election workers, false claims of election fraud and efforts by Trump allies to create a slate of fake electors with the intention that those be counted by Congress to overturn Biden’s win.

The grand jury found “no widespread fraud” in the election

After hearing testimony from poll workers, investigators, technical experts and state employees, the grand jury found “by a unanimous vote that no widespread fraud took place in the Georgia 2020 presidential election that could result in overturning the election,” according to the portion of the report released Thursday by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney.

The grand jury “believes perjury may have been committed”

After seven months of hearing testimony, the grand jury expressed concerns that some of the witnesses may have lied under oath and recommended that indictments be sought for crimes with compelling evidence. “A majority of the Grand Jury believes that perjury may have been committed by one or more witnesses testifying before it. The Grand Jury recommends that the District Attorney seek appropriate indictments for such crimes where the evidence is compelling,” the grand jury wrote.

The introduction and conclusion of the grand jury report that McBurney ordered be made public did not identify any specific witnesses that may have perjured themselves. Those individuals are named in sections of the report that remain sealed. The sealed sections include “a roster of who should (or should not) be indicted, and for what, in relation to the conduct (and aftermath) of the 2020 general election in Georgia,” McBurney said in his Feb. 13 order to release part of the report. McBurney decided that the grand jury’s recommendations of who should be prosecuted should be “for the district attorney’s eyes only—for now” in order to preserve “fundamental fairness” for “potential future defendants,” McBurney wrote.

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