Rudy Giuliani faced questioning before a special grand jury in Atlanta on Wednesday as the subject of an investigation into former President Donald Trump and others’ attempts to reverse Georgia’s 2020 presidential election loss.
The former New York mayor and Trump attorney remained inside a Fulton County courthouse after facing hours of questioning as part of a rapidly escalating investigation that has trapped several Trump supporters.
Giuliani’s questioning was conducted behind closed doors because grand jury procedures are confidential. Giuliani, who was flocked to press cameras as he stepped out of his limousine on the courtroom steps Wednesday morning, said he would not discuss his testimony.
“As I remember, grand juries are secret,” said Giuliani, who appeared in court with attorney Robert Costello. “They ask questions and we’ll see.”
Grand jury confidentiality rules prohibit those present during grand jury testimony from discussing it, but that prohibition does not apply to witnesses, including Giuliani. You are probably familiar with these rules.
It’s unclear how willing the former New York City mayor and Trump attorney will be to speak out now that his attorney has been informed he is under investigation.
An investigation by Fulton County District Attorney Fanny Willis has brought intense scrutiny into the desperate and ultimately unsuccessful efforts to overturn Democratic Party Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory. This is his one of several investigations into Trump’s behavior during his tenure as he lays the groundwork for his 2024 run for the White House again.
Willis launched an investigation after the January 2, 2021, surprise phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger was revealed. In a phone call, Trump suggested that Raffensperger could “find” the exact number of votes needed to overturn the election results in Georgia.
Mr Trump has denied wrongdoing. He described the phone as “perfect.”
Willis filed a petition last month asking seven Trump associates and advisers to testify. She also says she’s considering calling Trump himself to testify, and the former president has hired a team of attorneys in Atlanta that includes a high-profile criminal defense attorney.
Asking for Giuliani’s testimony, Willis said he was Trump’s personal attorney and the lead attorney for the 2020 campaign.
In her petition, she recalled how Giuliani and others attended a state Senate committee meeting in late 2020, presenting a video of Giuliani saying: Giuliani showed election officials creating “suitcases” of illegal ballots from unknown sources, out of sight of election vote watchers. exposed by Still, Giuliani continued to make public statements, and in ensuing legislative hearings she alleged widespread election fraud using the debunked video, Willis noted in her filing.
Two of the election officials pictured in the video, Ruby Freeman and Wandrea “Shaye” Moss, also met in person online after the video was released during a December 3 Georgia legislative hearing that Giuliani attended. said they faced relentless harassment. At another hearing a week later, Mr Giuliani said the women were seen “sneaking past USB ports as if they were heroin or cocaine vials”. They were actually handing out candy.
Willis said Giuliani’s appearance and testimony at the hearing was “part of the Trump campaign’s multi-state coordination plan to influence the outcome of the November 2020 Georgia election.” says.
Willis also wrote in a petition seeking testimony from attorney Kenneth Chesebro that he worked with Giuliani to coordinate and carry out a plan to turn Georgia Republicans into fake electors. 16 of them falsely claimed that Trump had won the 2020 presidential election, claiming that the state was “duly elected and I have signed a certificate declaring myself to be a “qualified” elector.
Giuliani’s lawyers tried to delay his appearance at the special grand jury, saying that Giuliani had heart stent surgery in early July and was unable to fly.
But Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney, who is overseeing the special grand jury, said at a hearing last week that Giuliani would need to be in Atlanta on Wednesday and would be on a bus, car, or train if necessary. He said that he could move with
When asked how he got there, Giuliani told reporters: “I will only answer one thing. I didn’t walk.”
Other Trump allies have also been caught in the investigation. South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsay Graham received a subpoena ordering her to appear to testify on August 23. A judge on Monday dismissed the claim, saying he must testify. Graham said he would appeal.
Willis has indicated interest in a call between Graham and Raffensberger about the results in Georgia in the weeks following the election.