Georgia Supreme Court Rejects Trump Bid to Block State Election Investigation

July 18, 2023

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday unanimously rejected a bid by former President Trump to disqualify the Fulton County District Attorney’s investigation into alleged criminal meddling in the state’s 2020 Presidential election. 

Trump attorneys had filed a motion late Thursday seeking to suppress to a special purpose grand jury’s final report that recommends people be indicted.

Georgia’s nine Supreme Court justices agreed that the Trump legal team had failed to present “extraordinary circumstances” to warrant their intervention.

The state’s highest court said the normal course of action would be for Trump’s legal team to file a petition first before a Fulton Superior Court judge, whose decision could then be appealed.

Trump’s lawyers did file such a petition in Fulton Superior Court out of an abundance of caution on Friday, though no ruling so far has been issued in that case.

However, in its unsigned five-page order, the Georgia Supreme Court further stated that Trump “has not shown that he would be entitled to the relief he seeks,” nor has Trump “presented in his original petition either the facts or the law” necessary to warrant the disqualification of Fulton County D.A. Fani Willis. It would suggest that the state Supreme Court believes that even in the lower court Trump’s request won’t have standing.

A jury was selected in the case on July 11. Willis has signaled that she will ask one of two grand juries to hand up an indictment in the 2020 election probe.

Among her allegations Willis has reportedly homed in on phone calls made to Georgia officials by Trump and his allies; false statements made by Trump associates before Georgia legislative committees; and a panel of 16 Republicans who signed a certificate falsely stating they were the state’s “duly elected and qualified” electors. 

A memo to Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney by Willis in May suggests she’s looking at an August target date to potentially charge Trump. In it, she wrote that she plans to have 70% of her staff working remotely between July 31 and August 18, adding that those who will remain in the courthouse during that time will include leadership staff and “all armed investigators.”

Judge McBurney had released an earlier grand jury’s partial report in February, which found “that no widespread fraud took place in the Georgia 2020 presidential election that could result in overturning that election”—a rejection of arguments made by Trump and his supporters.

Read more exclusive news from Political IQ.

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