Cue violin music — the familiar theme of ‘The Godfather’— “All I need for you to do is find 11,780 votes for me,” Don Vito Corleone, in the opening scene of The Godfather, IV.

Correction — this is the closing line in the opening scene of Fall of The Don, and the Don is U.S. President Donald J. Trump, making several all but veiled threats against Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, while asking him to illegally change the certified results of the Georgia Presidential Election of Nov. 3, 2020, ahead of Tuesday’s runoff elections.

Sadly this was not a script, nor a movie scene involving a Mafia don...this was an un-hinged, soon-to-be former President of the United States repeating a series of rumors, innuendo, and untruths most recently residing on the Dark Web or being espoused by Q-Anon supporters. The President’s Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows, a former member of Congress who should know better, organized a teleconference between the White House, the President’s campaign and his lawyers (both personal and campaign). Representing Georgia was Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, his chief deputy, Jordan Fuchs, and legal counsel for the agency. The call was both incredible and incomprehensible, and as someone who feels that in politics I have seen it all, I found the content of this call more shocking than the President’s “Access Hollywood” tape demonstrating his sincere and empathetic support for women.

President Trump was not ever ahead by 500,000 votes in Georgia. At peak, roughly 10:30 p.m. on election night, he led Georgia by roughly 350,000 votes, as the rural and out-state vote (fewer in number) always come in first. As metro votes were tallied, his lead continually shrank and eventually evaporated under a flood of Biden absentee ballots

It was the Trump Administration that suggested the use of drop boxes for absentee ballots, over the U.S. Postal Service.

There was not a poll worker in Fulton County who hand scanned the same 18,000 votes three times. That would not be possible, the scanners would reject the repeat QR codes

Even if this President or even the U.S. Supreme Court changed the results of the Georgia contest, that would not change the outcome of the U.S. Electoral College

The GBI signature audit of 15,000 absentee ballot signatures, with envelopes selected at random from 150,000 votes in Cobb County, found an accuracy rate of the ballot signature verification of 99.99 percent. The director of the GBI is a well-respected former district attorney in Cobb County, and a lifelong Republican

Dominion Voting Systems has not removed voting machines from any county, nor the ‘insides’ of any machine, and they no longer own that equipment (ballot totals are not retained on the individual voting machines, which were back in use Tuesday, January 5 for Runoff elections). Ballots have not been shredded and by Georgia law must be maintained for seven years, as well as the absentee envelopes those ballots arrived in.

Today, the new Congress will convene as one Chamber, with Vice-President Mike Pence tabulating and Congress certifying the results of the Electoral College. Though this normal exercise is procedural and paid little attention, President Trump and his supporters in Congress will make one more Hail Mary pass to change the elector slates in four or five battleground states, including Georgia. The last time an attempt was made to change the Electoral College results by organized congressional objection was in 1877, and that attempt was also unsuccessful.

There is also little question that the Democratic Party and candidates for U.S. Senate have out-raised their Republican incumbent opponents, the edge among early and Advance and Absentee ballot voters is occurring in decidedly Democratic counties and suburbs of metro Atlanta. And yes, thanks to this President and his rants and unsubstantiated claims, GOP civil war is also underway across the state, GOP voters are disheartened and so far not showing up at the polls.

And while the President may have an ample legal war chest for championing his claims now approaching $300-million, he has been mostly keeping his powder dry, and this latest effort to block Electoral College certification will similarly come up short, as likely three more GOP races become casualties next week due largely to what is left of the Bizarro World that is the mind of President Donald J. Trump.

All he needs is 11,780 votes. C’mon folks, let’s all just chip in for Donny’s Kids.

Bill Crane is a senior communications strategist who began his career in broadcasting and has worked at the state capitol and in Washington in both political parties. Contact him at bill.csicrane@gmail.com.

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