Eleven Republicans who sought to falsely certify Donald Trump as the winner of the 2020 presidential election in Georgia asked a judge on Tuesday to disqualify the Atlanta-area prosecutor who is probing the effort by Trump and his allies to overturn the state's election result.
The judge presiding over the special grand jury, Robert McBurney of the Superior Court of Fulton County, previously denied the group's request. McBurney did, however, agree last month to disqualify Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis (D) from investigating one of the sham electors, Republican state Sen. Burt Jones.
In their court filing Tuesday, the group asked the judge to reconsider his ruling against them, arguing they are each "inextricably intertwined" with Jones.
"Indeed, because Senator Jones has been removed from this investigation, there is arguably an even greater likelihood that the officers of his campaign partners, his running mates, his financial supporters, and his key political allies could be treated even more harshly," they wrote.
The controversy over Willis's fitness to prosecute the case arose after she hosted and headlined a mid-June fundraiser for Charlie Bailey, a Democratic candidate vying against Jones for lieutenant governor of Georgia. Her role in the political event prompted Jones and the 11 other phony electors to file a court motion to disqualify Willis, claiming she had a conflict of interest.
The judge's ruling last month disqualifying Willis from investigating Jones represented a significant unforced error by Willis and a stunning rebuke to the prosecutor, who is charged with handling one the nation's most sensitive and high-profile criminal investigations, one which poses a serious legal threat to Trump as the former president eyes a 2024 bid for the White House.
Georgia has figured prominently into investigations of Trump's effort to overturn his defeat by President Biden. In the weeks after the election, a telephone recording shows, Trump told Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) to "find" the number of votes required to overturn Biden's margin of victory, which Raffensperger refused to do.
The grand jury issued subpoenas in recent weeks to several high-profile figures, including Trump allies Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, as well as conservative lawyers John Eastman, Jenna Ellis and Cleta Mitchell. Willis's office recently informed 12 of the 16 Republicans who served as fake Trump electors that they could face criminal charges.
The grand jury was expected to hear testimony from Giuliani on Wednesday.
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