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How voters are being ‘duped’ by Trump’s election challenges

A lawsuit filed this week by the Texas attorney general asked the U.S. Supreme Court to delay certification of election results in four states won by President-elect Joe Biden. President Trump and 17 states, all with Republicans attorneys general, signed on to the case, which experts say has little chance of being heard by the justices. Judy Woodruff Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan to discuss.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    A lawsuit filed two days ago by the Texas attorney general asks the Supreme Court to delay certification of election results in four states, Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, all where president-elect Joe Biden won last month.

    President Trump and 17 states, all with Republican attorneys general, have signed onto the case, which experts say has little chance of being heard by the justices.

    The lieutenant governor of Georgia, Geoff Duncan, who is a member of the Republican Party, joins me now from Atlanta.

    Mr. Duncan, thank you very much for joining us.

    Despite what the critics are saying, is it possible that there's merit in this lawsuit and that the justices will take it up?

  • Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan, R-Ga.:

    Well, I have talked to our attorney general. And, certainly, he's looked at the case.

    And it really doesn't seem to have any merit at this point. We have gone through all the recounts, three, actually, to verify our results here in Georgia. And so, certainly, it does not look like there's any sort of standing here in the state of Georgia for that lawsuit.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, this suit is asking the Supreme Court not to allow Georgia and these other states to go ahead with what they call, what it says are unlawful election results, unless they are reviewed and ratified by the state legislature.

    Is that something that could happen?

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Well, certainly, that's not the intent of our elections here in Georgia. We put that, in my opinion, out to the will of the people. They have spoken.

    Unfortunately, the person I voted for doesn't — did not win. But that's what we have done. And we have been able to verify now three times that count, and, certainly, we're going to continue to stand behind that.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, Lieutenant Governor Duncan, now it's not only these attorneys general that we mentioned and President Trump who has joined it. There are now 106 Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives who have joined in a lawsuit.

    And they represent — we looked it up — roughly 75 million Americans, if you add up the population in all their districts. They are joining in, in a supportive brief, saying this is — they see unconstitutional irregularities around the election.

    That's a pretty powerful group of people who are saying what you did in Georgia doesn't hold up under the law.

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Yes, certainly, we have worked hard to put a legal, fair election on.

    And, as I mentioned several times, we have had several recounts to verify that. But I think there's going to be hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people, that wake up in the coming days and weeks that realize they have been duped. They have been duped by mountains of misinformation.

    A small group of folks have been willing to put out misinformation based on fractions or slivers of the facts or truth and spun it out there to large crowds and said, hey, look, we don't like the outcome of this election, so we're going to stir the pot.

    And it's just not — Judy, to be honest with you, it's not American. It's not democracy. This is not our finest moment, and my hope is that we quickly move past this.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    You used the word duped, and you said information that is not factual. President Trump is leading the charge behind this, isn't he?

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Well, I certainly have not been a fan of the misinformation that has flowed out of everywhere, including the president's Twitter account.

    We are working hard here. As I replied to one of his tweets the other day, I was proud of his four years of conservative leadership, but it's time to move on.

    And our mission ahead right now is twofold. One is to make sure that we get Senator Loeffler and Senator Perdue reelected, not just for us here in Georgia, but for Republicans all over the country.

    But, secondly, Judy, I'm worried about the brand, the GOP 2.0, where we go from here. My concern is, is that we need to focus looking ahead at to where our — the tone and quality of our voice is more important than the volume of our voice.

    I think that's really what American wants — what America wants Republicans to do going forward.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, I'm trying to understand how — when you say the president is and others supporting him are duping the American people, putting false information out there, that you're saying people are going to recognize shortly is not false — that these elections were sound, that they were legally conducted, how you can square that with supporting him.

    I'm trying to understand how this — I mean, is this an example he's setting that you would hope other presidents would follow?

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    No, certainly not. I'm concerned about the level of misinformation. I have been very vocal about this for weeks.

    But this is a separate fact from fiction as we move ahead. And, certainly, these are some — these are some tough times.

    I'm encouraged. I talked about hundreds of thousands of folks that are going to wake up and realize that they have been duped. I think that's already starting to happen.

    Some of the folks I have sent away to go research their facts or verify the five-second sound bite or the Facebook post that they saw are starting to come back saying, you know what, I did exactly what you said. I researched it, and it is false. It isn't real. Thanks for telling me to do that.

    I think that's happening all across America. My hope is that it happens even quicker than it is right now. Selfishly, I want Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue to win on January 5. And any of this misinformation — certainly, there's no algorithm, there's no playbook out there that says that this helps them win this reelection bid that's so important to our party.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Well, I guess I don't understand how you expect voters to believe the election process can be trusted when the president and 106 members of the House of Representatives and all these attorneys general from 17 states are saying there's something wrong with the system in your in your state of Georgia, Pennsylvania, and so on.

    I mean, how do you square — again, how do you square that?

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Well, for me, I think the lawsuit feels a lot like a solution in search of a problem.

    I'm proud of Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his team, proud of attorney general, Governor Kemp. We have all worked hard. And, certainly, all four of us have voted for President Trump. And, unfortunately, he didn't win. But that doesn't change our job descriptions, Judy. We have still got to go ahead and put on a legal, fair election. And that includes here on January 5.

    And I think it's important to recognize there's no perfect election going back to the beginning of time, but, certainly, we have not seen a single ounce of systemic or organized fraud. And that's important. And I'm proud of that, Judy. I'm proud, as a lieutenant governor in the state, even though the person I supported didn't win.

    I'm proud to be able to stand behind those election results.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    And just finally, I know you're saying you think people are going to turn around shortly in their opinion.

    But, right now, 70 percent of Republicans are telling pollsters, including in our poll that was done just a couple of days ago, that they think the election was fraudulent and that President Trump actually won reelection.

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Well, and I understand. I have seen those results.

    And, Judy, to be honest with you, more importantly than focusing on being reelected, I'm going to focus on doing the right thing. And, long term, I think that plays out well for us, just because I think that's what we were elected to do.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Georgia's Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan, we thank you very much for joining us.

  • Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan:

    Thank you.

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