President Donald Trump was in Georgia last night, ostensibly to rally support for Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler ahead of the crucial Senate runoff elections on Tuesday. Instead, he used the opportunity to insist, incorrectly, that he actually won the presidential election and wouldn’t be leaving the White House on January 20.
Trump rallied with Loeffler in Whitfield County in northwest Georgia on Monday, a county he won in the presidential election two months ago by 41 points despite losing the state. Loeffler and Perdue are facing runoffs against Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, respectively; if the Democrats win, they’ll have narrow control of the Senate with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as a tiebreaker.
But you’d barely know that there was an election in Georgia happening from watching the rally, as Trump chose to focus instead on his own failed attempts to win the White House and subvert the will of voters.
“I hope Mike Pence comes through for us,” Trump said, referring to his vice president’s role in certifying the election results Wednesday, which will be objected to by reportedly over 100 House members and 13 Republican senators, including Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley. “Of course, if he doesn’t come through, I won’t like him as much.”
Trump also singled out Utah Sen. Mike Lee, who was at the rally, after Lee reportedly sent a letter to GOP colleagues saying that “with respect to presidential elections, there is no authority for Congress to make value judgments in the abstract regarding any state’s election laws or the manner in which they have been implemented."
"Mike Lee is here too, but I'm a little angry at him today,” Trump told the crowd. “I’m a little angry at you today, but that’s alright.”
Trump continued to insist that there was “no way we lost Georgia,” despite the fact that he lost the state by more than 11,000 votes and was caught this past weekend begging Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” exactly the number of votes that would put him over the top.
“There’s no way we lost Georgia, there’s no way. That was a rigged election,” Trump said Monday. “You know, I’ve had two elections, I’ve won both of them. It’s amazing.”
Trump also indicated he wasn’t planning on departing the White House in two weeks, when Biden takes office. “They’re not going to take this White House,” he added. “We’re going to fight like hell, I’ll tell you right now.”
While Trump often came back to Perdue and Loeffler, as that was the actual reason he was in Georgia, the president was so checked out that he didn’t seem to know that Perdue wasn’t in attendance. “We’re going to defeat the Democrat extremists and deliver a thundering victory to David Perdue, and — where’s David? David, David, David! We love our David.”
Perdue is currently quarantining after being exposed to COVID-19, and was thus not in attendance.
But if you were under the impression that Trump would go away after he officially leaves the White House, guess again. Trump told the crowd that he’d be back in Georgia again before long, vowing to take revenge on Georgia’s Republican governor, Brian Kemp, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger when they’re both up for re-election in 2022.
“I’m going to be here in a year and a half,” Trump said, “and I’m going to be campaigning against your governor and your crazy Secretary of State.”