Thursday 3 December 2020 - 04:26

Trump Responds to Georgia Official's Death Threats Plea with More Rhetoric

Story Code : 901347
Trump Responds to Georgia Official
Gabriel Sterling, the voting implementation manager with the Georgia secretary of state's office, referenced death threats and other such intimidation—suggesting Trump was "inspiring people to commit potential acts of violence", Newsweek reported.

"It has to stop," Sterling said, having urged the president and Senator to condemn these words and actions.

"This is elections, this is backbone of democracy. And all of you who have not said a damn word are complicit in this," he added.

Trump shared a clip of Sterling's comments, in which he returned to his narrative of election fraud in Georgia by targeting the state's governor, Brian Kemp, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

"Rigged Election," he wrote.

"Show signatures and envelopes. Expose the massive voter fraud in Georgia. What is Secretary of State and @BrianKempGA afraid of. They know what we'll find!!!" he added.

Sterling specifically referenced death threats made to a contractor for Dominion Voting Systems who was working in Gwinnett County, while he also referred to "sexualized threats" sent to Raffensperger's wife. Raffensperger has previously referred to receiving death threats following the election.

Sterling also mentioned Trump campaign attorney Joe diGenova's comments in which he announced the former director of Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) should be "taken out at dawn and shot."

CNN's Jake Tapper branded Trump's comments "un-American".

"Grotesque, dangerous, undemocratic, un-American. Called out by a GOP official in Georgia for not condemning calls for violence against election officials, the president responds with the deranged conspiracy theories that are feeding the threats," he tweeted, sharing the president's comments.

Aside from Trump's retweet of Sterling's comments, his campaign's communications director, Tim Murtaugh, said it "fully" condemned "threats or violence".

"The campaign is focused on ensuring that all legal votes are counted and all illegal votes are not. No one should engage in threats or violence, and if that has happened, we condemn that fully," he added, in a statement reported by NPR following Sterling's comments.

Trump has increasingly made derisive comments about Kemp and Raffensperger, recently suggesting Kemp "call off the election" in a tweet targeting him. He has also urged Kemp to get involved in the recount process and "overrule" Raffensperger, a suggestion the governor's office refuted.

Georgia's initial count showed Biden having received more votes than Trump, as did a hand recount. Another recount is ongoing.