Kelly Loeffler’s text messages—59 pages of them—reveal Jan. 6 plotting, political maneuvering

Kelly Loeffler’s text messages—59 pages of them—reveal Jan. 6 plotting, political maneuvering

It’s not often a lawmaker’s partner steps into the muck of politics to defend them. But Tricia Raffensperger, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s wife, didn’t hesitate to stand up to then-Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler and let her know what she thought of her.

Among a raft of 59 pages of text messages obtained by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC) and other outlets is one message from Tricia Raffensperger to Loeffler, who writes that she holds the senator directly responsible for the death threats to her family.

“Never did I think you were the kind of person to unleash such hate and fury on someone in political office of the same party,” Tricia Raffensperger wrote. “My family and I am being personally besieged by people threatening our lives because you didn’t have the decency or good manners to come and talk to my husband with any questions you may have had.”

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Tricia Raffensperger added:

“Instead you have put us in the eye of the storm. Unlike you my husband is an honorable man with integrity to do the right thing. We are law abiding people of faith. I hold you personally responsible for anything that happens to any of my family, from my husband , children and grandchildren. What kind of person are you that would purposely do this? I am so disappointed, I thought you were better than that… You do not deserve to be in elected office. You are not worthy of the high calling of that position.” 

Raffensperger and his family began receiving threats after Loeffler and then Sen. David Perdue signed a joint statement on Nov. 9 demanding that the secretary of state resign and decrying the Georgia 2020 presidential elections an “embarrassment,” The New York Times reported.  

Without a shred of evidence, the senators wrote in a statement, “We believe when there are failures, they need to be called out—even when it’s in your own party.”

“The Secretary of State has failed to deliver honest and transparent elections. He has failed the people of Georgia, and he should step down immediately.” Joint statement with @KLoeffler #GASen #gapol pic.twitter.com/rsxdOM2SC2

— David Perdue (@DavidPerdueGA) November 9, 2020

Tricia Raffensperger sent the text to Loeffler the same day.

The pages of texts provided to various outlets by a unanimous source reveal not just the spanking she got from Raffensperger’s wife but also the days and weeks starting in November 2020 and leading up to her eventual loss to Sen. Raphael Warnock in the Jan. 5, 2021, runoff election, and the insurrection on Jan. 6.

The messages show that Loeffler was being pulled into a twisted plot by former President Donald Trump and his advisors to overturn Biden’s win. The scheme included pressuring GOP Congressmen and women to refuse to certify Biden as president on Jan. 6 and to have groups of Trump electors in battleground states sign “unofficial electorate certificates” pretending that Trump had won. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has gone after the fake electors, and they may soon be indicted.

One text, per the AJC, is from one of the alleged Georgia fake electors, attorney Daryl Moody, who wrote to Loeffler asking her permission to cast his fake ballot.

“Since Biden was certified as the winner, I hadn’t planned to go,” Moody wrote.“Since I’m technically an officer on your leadership team, I wanted to make sure I’m making choices that reflect well on you. Please let me know if you have any input.”

Another few texts to Loeffler came from then-Congresswoman-elect Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green, sent on Dec. 2, 2020, asking Loeffler to meet in order to discuss “a plan we are developing on how to vote on the electoral college votes on Jan6th. I need a Senator,” Greene wrote. “And I think this is a major help for you to win on the 5th.” Weeks later, Greene asked Loeffler to meet at the White House. Loeffler declined but eventually wrote back to Greene, “everything is on table with regard to Jan 6.”

Another text shows that Georgia Rep. Jody Hice told Loeffler that he was planning to object to Biden’s certification on Jan. 6.

“Kelly, I wanted to give you the heads up that I will be contesting the electoral votes on January 6,” Hice texted. “Wanted to check with you about doing the same in the Senate. … I know you’ve had people ask, I was wondering if you have made a decision?”

On Jan. 4, the night before the runoff election against Warnock, Loeffler announced on Twitter that she would oppose Biden’s certification.

“On January 6th, I will vote to give President Trump and the American people the fair hearing they deserve and support the objection to the Electoral College certification process,” she wrote.

The next day Loeffler lost to Warnock.

On Jan. 6, as Loeffler prepared for her planned speech to object o Biden’s win, crowds were gathering at the U.S. Capitol, and she began to rethink her decision. Her campaign advisor, Malorie Thompson, urged her to take a different tack.

“This isn’t what we signed on to, we said we would debate and present evidence, not shoot our way through the capital,” Thompson texted to Loeffler. 

Loeffler ended up giving a speech that ultimately certified Biden.

When asked for comment about the newly obtained texts, Loeffler’s spokeswoman Caitlin O’Dea told the AJC in a statement that the texts were a “desperate attempt to distract voters 20 days from the election.”

Public Policy Polling’s Tom Jensen joins us on The Downballot to explain how his firm weights polls to reflect the likely electorate; why Democratic leads in most surveys this year should be treated as smaller than they appear because undecided voters lean heavily anti-Biden; and the surprisingly potent impact abortion has had on moving the needle with voters despite our deep polarization.

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