Lindsey Graham ordered to appear before a Georgia grand jury investigating the 2020 election

Lindsey Graham ordered to appear before a Georgia grand jury investigating the 2020 election

A federal appeals court on Thursday denied Sen. Lindsey Graham’s request to block a Fulton County, Georgia grand jury subpoena investigative efforts to cancel the 2020 election.

The decision means Graham must testify before the panel.

Graham was fighting the subpoena having served over the summer.

In his appeal to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, Graham argued that his actions surrounding the 2020 election were protected by the Constitution’s Speech and Debate Clause, which gives members of Congress legal protections while performing their duties.

However, in its ruling Thursday, the court found that the specific activity Fulton County District Attorney Fannie Willis wants to question Graham about would not violate that clause.

These include matters related to “communications and coordination with the Trump campaign regarding its post-election efforts in Georgia, public statements regarding the 2020 election, and efforts to ‘appease’ or ‘instigate’ Georgia election officials,” according to the ruling. .

“Sen. Graham has failed to show that this approach would violate his rights under the Speech and Debate Clause,” the ruling said.

PHOTO: Senator Lindsey Graham at a press conference in the US Capitol, September 29, 2022.

Sen. Lindsey Graham attends a press conference at the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 29, 2022.

Alex Wong/Getty Images, FILE

A lower court has already slightly limited the scope of questions prosecutors can ask Graham during his appearance.

A representative for Graham did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

Willis is investigating whether former President Donald Trump and his Republican allies broke the law when they pressured Georgia officials to try to change the election results in Trump’s favor. The probe was partially launched by a Trump’s phone call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger imploring him to “find 11,780 votes,” the exact number Trump needed to win Georgia.

Trump, who has condemned the investigation, has repeatedly defended his phone call to Raffensperger, calling it “perfect.”

A special grand jury does not have the ability to return an indictment, but can only make recommendations regarding prosecution.

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