Former President Donald Trump said Monday that former Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan should not testify before an Atlanta-based grand jury, as a potential fourth indictment looms over the GOP front-runner in the 2024 presidential contest.
Mr. Trump reacted to Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis’ decision to call Mr. Duncan before a grand jury on Tuesday to discuss Mr. Trump’s actions following his 2020 election loss in the state.
“I am reading reports that failed former Lt. Governor of Georgia, Jeff Duncan, will be testifying before the Fulton County Grand Jury,” Mr. Trump wrote on his Truth Social website. “He shouldn’t. I barely know him but he was, right from the beginning of this Witch Hunt, a nasty disaster for those looking into the Election Fraud that took place in Georgia.”
For months, a special grand jury in Fulton County had been gathering evidence about Mr. Trump and his associates’ actions following the 2020 election, including alleged efforts to pressure state officials to alter results, set up fake electors or potentially access voting machines in Coffee County.
New witnesses are expected to appear before a regular grand jury, which has the power to approve or reject charges. The panel could act in the coming days.
“I did just receive notification to appear on Tuesday morning at the Fulton County grand jury and I certainly will be there to do my part in recounting the facts,” Mr. Duncan told CNN over the weekend. “I have no expectations as to the questions, and I’ll certainly answer whatever questions are put in front of me.”
An independent journalist, George Chidi, also said he received a notice from Ms. Willis to appear before the grand jury.
Some online commentators viewed Mr. Trump’s posting on Truth Social as an attempt to dissuade witnesses from offering evidence against him. Already, a federal judge in Washington is crafting an order that will bar Mr. Trump from talking about some aspects of the case.
Criminal charges from the Fulton County grand jury would mark Mr. Trump’s fourth indictment as he runs for the Republican presidential nomination.
He also faces federal charges from special counsel Jack Smith over government documents stored at his Mar-a-Lago estate and his post-election actions.
A Georgia indictment would be notable because it would level state charges, meaning Mr. Trump could not pardon himself if he wins the White House in 2024. Security barricades have been set up around the county courthouse in Atlanta.
Mr. Trump also faces trial next year on New York state charges that accuse him of falsifying business records related to hush payments to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
Ms. Willis started investigating Mr. Trump in part due to a phone call he made to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in which he asked state officials to “find” the votes he needed to win the state.
Mr. Trump says he did nothing wrong and it was a “perfect call.”
The ex-president, writing on Truth Social, criticized Mr. Duncan for refusing to hold a special legislative session to reexamine the 2020 results. And he repeated his unproven claims the election was stolen from him and that rivals tampered with the results.
“They are the slime that should be prosecuted,” he wrote in all caps. “I made a perfect phone call of protest.”
Separately, a CNN report cited evidence of a potential connection between an unauthorized breach of election systems in Coffee County, Georgia, and Mr. Trump’s orbit.
The report, citing text messages, says Coffee County officials sent a written invitation to examine voting systems to Mr. Trump’s team. The messages suggest former New York City Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani — a Trump attorney — was involved in the scheme, though an attorney for Mr. Giuliani told CNN he had “nothing to do with this.”
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2023/aug/14/trump-says-ex-ga-official-should-not-testify-befor/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS Trump says ex-Ga. official should not testify before grand jury, repeats claims election was stolen