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Trump allies resist testifying as Georgia election probe expands

Rudy Giuliani's lawyer asked for a last-minute delay to his scheduled Tuesday appearance before an Atlanta grand jury. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis' office refused to change the date. The dispute prompted a judge to delay Giuliani’s Tuesday testimony and schedule a hearing with lawyers for each side. It marked the latest sign of tension between prosecutors and potential witnesses in Willis’ burgeoning criminal probe of alleged election interference by former president Donald Trump and his allies. On Wednesday, a federal judge will consider the claim of Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) that he should not be compelled to testify to the same grand jury about his calls to Georgia secretary of state after the 2020 election. The case covers some of the matters reviewed by the House select committee

The inquiry has been sprawling but intensely focused on whether Trump and his allies violated Georgia laws. One Georgia Republican who appeared before the grand jury said prosecutors were seeking to learn about interactions between lawyers for Trump and state-level Republicans on the ground. Prosecutors are attempting to fend off requests to toss their subpoenas or delay testimony. A Wednesday hearing before U.S. District Judge Leigh Martin May will focus on Graham’s contention that he should not be required to testify about his outreach to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in the days after the 2020 election. It is not clear whether Graham will succeed; a judge recently rejected similar arguments from Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.), a Trump ally who echoed false claims of widespread election fraud.

Lawyers for 11 of the 16 would-be Georgia Trump electors have argued that their clients abided by the law. They also complained in court filings about Willis sending letters identifying the purported Trump electors as “targets” of her criminal inquiry. Willis is examining whether these local Trump supporters were part of a scheme designed by Trump’s team.