Georgia election official shoots down Trump's election conspiracy theories
Posted January 4, 2021 5:42 p.m. EST
CNN — A top Georgia election official said Monday that "everybody's vote did count" in the state's November elections as he shot down a list of voter fraud conspiracy theories President Donald Trump aired in a call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger this weekend.
"The reason I'm having to stand here today is because there are people in positions of authority and respect who have said their votes didn't count, and it's not true," said Gabriel Sterling, the voting systems implementation manager for the Georgia Secretary of State's office, during a news conference.
In audio first reported by The Washington Post and obtained by CNN, Trump is heard pressuring Raffensperger, who is also a Republican, to "find" votes to overturn the election in Georgia, which he lost to President-elect Joe Biden. Raffensperger rebuffed Trump's demand.
In excerpts of the stunning one-hour phone call Saturday, Trump lambasted his fellow Republican for refusing to falsely say that he won the election in Georgia and repeatedly touted baseless claims of election fraud.
"The people of Georgia are angry, the people of the country are angry. And there's nothing wrong with saying that, you know, um, that you've recalculated," Trump said in one part of the call. Raffensperger responded, "Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, the data you have is wrong."
Sterling said Monday that the President's baseless voter fraud claims are "all easily, provably false" and lamented the way his election conspiracy theories could undermine Georgia residents' faith in the state's election system ahead of Tuesday's critical Senate runoff.
"If you're a Georgia voter, if you want your values reflected by your election officials, I strongly beg and encourage you, go vote tomorrow. Do not let anybody discourage you. Do not self-suppress your own vote. Do not make a self-fulfilling prophecy out of doing this. Don't let anybody steal your vote that way," Sterling said.
"And that's what's happening. If you self-suppress, you are taking away your important voice from this election."
Georgia recertified its presidential election results in December following three counts of ballots that yielded no evidence of the wide spread voter fraud Trump and his allies have claimed.
"At the end of the day, we want to make sure people understand their votes count," Sterling said Monday. "Every person, every voice matters."
This is a breaking story and will be updated.