Trump cultists are threatening to kill election officials nationwide over the Big Lie, and because their Orange God-Emperor will never be declared Maximum Leader, we are going to see a mass casualty terrorist event slash political assassination, and soon.
Late on the night of April 24, the wife of Georgia’s top election official got a chilling text message: “You and your family will be killed very slowly.”
A week earlier, Tricia Raffensperger, wife of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, had received another anonymous text: “We plan for the death of you and your family every day.”
That followed an April 5 text warning. A family member, the texter told her, was “going to have a very unfortunate incident.”
Those messages, which have not been previously reported, illustrate the continuing barrage of threats and intimidation against election officials and their families months after former U.S. President Donald Trump’s November election defeat. While reports of threats against Georgia officials emerged in the heated weeks after the voting, Reuters interviews with more than a dozen election workers and top officials – and a review of disturbing texts, voicemails and emails that they and their families received – reveal the previously hidden breadth and severity of the menacing tactics.
Trump’s relentless false claims that the vote was “rigged” against him sparked a campaign to terrorize election officials nationwide – from senior officials such as Raffensperger to the lowest-level local election workers. The intimidation has been particularly severe in Georgia, where Raffensperger and other Republican election officials refuted Trump’s stolen-election claims. The ongoing harassment could have far-reaching implications for future elections by making the already difficult task of recruiting staff and poll workers much harder, election officials say.
In an exclusive interview, Tricia Raffensperger spoke publicly for the first time about the threats of violence to her family and shared the menacing text messages with Reuters.
The Raffenspergers – Tricia, 65, and Brad, 66 – began receiving death threats almost immediately after Trump’s surprise loss in Georgia, long a Republican bastion. Tricia Raffensperger started taking precautions. She canceled regular weekly visits in her home with two grandchildren, ages 3 and 5 – the children of her eldest son, Brenton, who died from a drug overdose in 2018.
“I couldn’t have them come to my house anymore,” she said. “You don’t know if these people are actually going to act on this stuff.”
In late November, the family went into hiding for nearly a week after intruders broke into the home of the Raffenspergers’ widowed daughter-in-law, an incident the family believed was intended to intimidate them. That evening, people who identified themselves to police as Oath Keepers – a far-right militia group that has supported Trump’s bid to overturn the election – were found outside the Raffenspergers’ home, according to Tricia Raffensperger and two sources with direct knowledge of the family’s ordeal. Neither incident has been previously reported.
“Brad and I didn’t feel like we could protect ourselves,” she said, explaining the decision to flee their home.
Brad Raffensperger told Reuters in a statement that “vitriol and threats are an unfortunate, but expected, part of public service. But my family should be left alone.”
Trump’s baseless voter-fraud accusations have had dark consequences for U.S. election leaders and workers, especially in contested states such as Georgia, Arizona and Michigan. Some have faced protests at their homes or been followed in their cars. Many have received death threats.
Some, like Raffensperger, are senior officials who publicly refused to bow to Trump’s demands to alter the election outcome. In Georgia, people went into hiding in at least three cases, including the Raffenspergers. Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, told Reuters she continues to receive death threats. Michigan’s Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson – a Democrat who faced armed protesters outside her home in December – is also still getting threats, her spokesperson said, declining to elaborate.
There's really no doubt that an attempt will be made (or several attempts) will be made on the lives of US election officials nationwide, but rather, when, and how successful they will be. I would hope that state and federal law enforcement are investigating right now to prevent a tragedy from happening. I expect that like the plot to kidnap and murder Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer last year, we'll get wind of these plots being stopped soon.
It's better of course than the alternative, that the plots were carried out.
The bigger problem is that Trump's Big lie is going to get people hurt or even killed soon, and when it happens, Trump needs to be held responsible.