Last updated on January 7, 2021
From The Huffington Post:
Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler, one day before her closely watched Georgia Senate runoff, announced Monday she’s joining the coalition of GOP senators objecting to this week’s tally of the Electoral College results in Congress.“The American people deserve a platform in Congress, permitted under the Constitution, to have election issues presented so that they can be addressed,” Loeffler said in a statement. “That’s why, on January 6th, I will vote to give President Trump & the American people the fair hearing they deserve & support the objection to the Electoral College certification process.”
There are now just over a dozen GOP senators who’ve said they plan to contest the certification process on Wednesday, even though every state has already certified its election results and members of the Electoral College have formally cast votes to cement President-elect Joe Biden’s win. President Donald Trump has refused to concede the election, pushing baseless claims of voter fraud and conspiracy as support from the Republican Party dwindles.
Rev. Raphael Warnock (D. GA) wasted no time going after Loeffler on this:
The question here is this cowardly and fucking horrific move on Loeffler’s end to join Team Coup come too little too late? Or will it be enough to help her win? For someone who has been attaching herself to Trump, she was slow to join Trump’s call for $2,000 direct payments. This was from December 23rd:
Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) said Wednesday she'd consider supporting legislation on direct payments of $2,000 if it shifted money from “wasteful spending” toward that purpose.
“I'll certainly look at supporting it if it repurposes wasteful spending toward that,” she said at a campaign event.
Loeffler's comments come after President Trump on Tuesday criticized the coronavirus relief bill and government funding package that Congress passed Monday. The president urged lawmakers to increase the direct payments in the measure from $600 to $2,000.
GOP Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, who are locked in tight runoff races in Georgia, said on Tuesday that they would support President Donald Trump's push to increase direct stimulus payments to $2,000 per person from $600.
During an appearance on the Fox News morning program “Fox & Friends,” Loeffler expressed unwavering support for Trump and said she would back the president's proposal.
“The president has fought for our country from day one,” she said. “He continues to fight for every single American. I've stood by the president 100% of the time. I'm proud to do that. And I've said absolutely we need to get relief to Americans now, and I will support that.”
Ossoff and Warnock have made this a big campaign issue. Ossoff spoke with Atlanta rapper Rasheeda in Rolling Stone about this today:
As Ossoff reiterated, if he and Warnock prevail, the Democrats would effectively control the Senate with 50 votes and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris serving as the tiebreaker. That would make it all the easier for President-elect Joe Biden to enact an agenda that could include sweeping reforms and improvements in numerous areas.
“The last year has really brought home that it is truly a matter of life and death,” Ossoff said. “The tangible, human stakes, the real-life consequences when we are led by fools, and when we are led by people who are more concerned with their own enrichment than they are with the financial well-being of the families that pay their salary.”
He continued: “We can get direct financial relief to people fast, and I know that this incoming administration wants to do it. But if we don’t win these Senate races, they’re gonna block help for the people because they’re not going to want to relieve suffering. If the Republicans hold the Senate, they’re gonna block it just because it’s in their political interest to block it.”
President-elect Joe Biden said electing Democrats Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock in Tuesday's runoff elections would end the gridlock in Washington and allow a Democrat-controlled Senate to provide $2,000 stimulus checks to Americans.“If you send Jon and the Reverend to Washington, those $2,000 checks will go out the door, restoring hope and decency and honor for so many people who are struggling right now,” Biden said, making his closing argument for the Democrats at a campaign event in Atlanta on Monday.“And if you send (Republican Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler) back to Washington, those checks will never get there,” Biden said. “It's just that simple. The power is literally in your hands.”Biden's declaration come just days after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, rejected a bill that would have increased direct stimulus payments from $600 to $2,000.
So the question again is is it too little too late for Loeffler? It’s clear this move was meant to distract people from this:
President Trump urged fellow Republican Brad Raffensperger, the Georgia secretary of state, to “find” enough votes to overturn his defeat in an extraordinary one-hour phone call Saturday that legal scholars described as a flagrant abuse of power and a potential criminal act.The Washington Post obtained a recording of the conversation in which Trump alternately berated Raffensperger, tried to flatter him, begged him to act and threatened him with vague criminal consequences if the secretary of state refused to pursue his false claims, at one point warning that Raffensperger was taking “a big risk.”Throughout the call, Raffensperger and his office’s general counsel rejected Trump’s assertions, explaining that the president is relying on debunked conspiracy theories and that President-elect Joe Biden’s 11,779-vote victory in Georgia was fair and accurate.
Sen. David Perdue tore into Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on Monday for recording a phone call with President Donald Trump over the weekend, calling it “disgusting” to do so.
“I guess I was raised differently,” Perdue, a Republican, said on Fox News. “To have a statewide elected official, regardless of party, tape without disclosing a conversation — private conversation — with the president of the United States, and then leaking it to the press is disgusting.”Perdue also downplayed the significance of the hourlong call, in which Trump implored the secretary of state to “find” enough votes to overturn president-elect Joe Biden’s victory in Georgia, setting off alarm bells with legal experts and lawmakers.
“I didn't hear anything in that tape that the president hasn't already said for weeks now since the November election,” he said.
The president may have opened himself to legal exposure by potentially violating federal and state statutes against soliciting of election fraud. Raffensperger on Monday said the Fulton County, Georgia, district attorney may investigate the president’s actions but sidestepped whether he believed Trump’s conduct to be lawful.
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger demanded former Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) apologize to his wife on Monday after she received death threats following the senator’s call for the secretary's resignation in November.
Raffensperger called for an apology after Fox News host Martha MacCallum asked him to respond to Perdue calling it “disgusting” to have a conversation with President Trump recorded, which The Washington Post released Sunday.
“Sen. Perdue still owes my wife an apology for all the death threats she got after he asked for my resignation,” he told Fox News's “Your World.” “And I have not heard one peep from that man since.”
Then again, Perdue is a crooked and awful person. The Guardian had a new piece that continues to show how corrupt he really is:
David Perdue, the Georgia Republican facing a Senate runoff election on Tuesday, has twice bought a significant number of shares in a US bank shortly after meeting with financial policy makers, raising more questions about his prolific stock trading while in office.
In one case, in May 2015, Perdue bought between $15,000 and $50,000 worth of shares in Regions Financial Corporation two days after a 10-minute phone call with then treasury secretary Jack Lew.
Perdue bought additional shares in the bank two years later, on 18 May 2017, two days after a half-hour meeting with then Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen.
It is not clear in either case if Perdue discussed relevant financial regulation or other market-sensitive issues with Lew or Yellen or whether the discussions influenced his decision to buy the stock.
At the time of the call with Lew, members of the Senate banking committee, on which Perdue sits, were engaged in close talks over a potential trade deal.
But the purchase of more Regions stock in the wake of Perdue’s meeting with Yellen – who will be nominated to serve as treasury secretary by Joe Biden once the president-elect takes office – is possibly significant, because it came about two months before Yellen publicly discussed her support for raising the $50bn asset threshold for systemically important institutions, a change that meant Regions bank could see an easing of important financial regulations.
Tomorrow we will see how things go. Georgia Democrats have been crushing it in the early vote but they are still urging the base to come out big on Election Day:
Democrats in Georgia raced on Sunday to make their final voter turnout push in the state’s pivotal Senate runoff elections, targeting Black voters in regions far from Atlanta but equally important to Georgia’s emerging Democratic coalition.
Rallying supporters in the Savannah area, the two Democratic candidates made clear that their task in Tuesday’s races remains daunting in a state where Republican power remains strong, despite President Trump’s narrow loss in the November general election. While Democratic officials have been heartened by strong numbers in the early voting period among traditionally left-leaning voters — particularly Black voters who made up a greater share of the electorate than in the presidential election — they said the party would still be reliant on robust in-person voter turnout.
In several states in November, including Florida and Texas, Democrats recorded big leads through early voting and absentee ballots, only to have them erased on Election Day.
Democratic Georgia Senate candidate the Rev. Raphael Warnock urged voters to turn out in large numbers in the state's runoff election on Tuesday, warning that a slim margin could allow Republicans more room to contest the results.
“We need to win by a comfortable margin because, you know, funny things go on,” Warnock told a crowd at a drive-in rally in Riverdale, Ga., on Monday.
The Democrat slammed President Trump for pressuring Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) to “find” votes that would overturn his election loss to President-elect Joe Biden in the Peach State.
Democrats’ hopes of winning the Senate have been substantially buoyed by strong Black turnout so far, in contrast to the general election, where Black turnout increases trailed those of white voters. Historically, Black voter turnout has dipped in Georgia runoff elections.“It’s a new year, it’s a new moment,” Warnock told a crowd of hundreds who gathered in a downpour to see him speak at New Life Ministries in this city near Georgia’s border with Florida on Saturday night. “The rest of the country did not see Georgia coming on Nov. 3. Welcome to the new Georgia. Welcome to the blue Georgia.”Warnock has spent weeks visiting Black churches throughout the state, especially in the state’s smaller cities, often drawing substantial crowds. Ossoff embarked on a seven-day bus tour last month designed to visit smaller rural Black communities. It’s had an impact.“It’s been the rural and suburban counties that have really been leading the way in increasing Black turnout,” said Tom Bonier, CEO of the Democratic data firm TargetSmart, noting higher turnout both in rural counties in the state’s so-called Black Belt and in cities like Columbus, Augusta and Macon.In particular, Democrats have targeted Savannah. Harris campaigned there with Warnock and Ossoff on Sunday, and Warnock, a native of the city, has released a television ad highlighting his roots.“He’s a son of Savannah, and he’ll always remember where he’s from,” a narrator says in the 30-second ad.Bonier said the runoff has also seen a surge of new Black voters. Of the over 102,000 people who cast ballots in the runoff after not doing so in the general election, 40% were Black. (A typical Georgia electorate is roughly one-third Black.)“It’s not just that they are a larger share of the early vote than they were in the general, it’s that there’s a lot of African American voters who didn’t vote in the general who are being drawn out in this race,” Bonier said.
Warnock also took a dig at Loeffler’s negative messaging against him, saying that the freshman senator has called him “everything but a child of God.”
“But that’s alright,” Warnock told the energetic crowd.
“My mother down in Savannah, Georgia, she said it's not what they call you, it's what you answer by, and in a few days she can call me Senator Raphael Warnock.”
“If you've already voted, your job is not done,” Warnock, who is the pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church — where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. preached — said at the rally.
“Your job is not done until you call everybody in your circle, everybody you know until you call your family members and your friends. And you tell them to vote.”
“Tell them that the preacher said a vote is a kind of prayer for the kind of world we want to live in, and our prayers are stronger when we pray together,” the reverend continued. “Are you ready to win this election?”
If you’re voting in person tomorrow, click here to find your polling place or drop off location.
You can also click below to get involved with GOTV efforts with Ossoff, Warnock and these Georgia organizations:
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