Rudy Giuliani has filed an emergency plea to postpone a court-ordered appearance before a Georgia grand jury investigating former President Donald Trump’s actions after his defeat in the 2020 election.
Giuliani, a former New York City mayor and Trump’s personal attorney, was one of the president’s closest aides as he unsuccessfully fought to reverse the election in Georgia and other states.
In requesting the postponement, Giuliani cited two physicians who said that he is not certified for flight travel after an invasive treatment. Giuliani’s attorney, Robert Costello, told CBS News in July that Giuliani was hospitalized briefly earlier this summer for heart surgery, during which he got two stents. In a filing Monday, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis argued that her office had checked data indicating Giuliani booked tickets for late July flights to Rome and Zurich, Switzerland. Willis’ office also submitted a tweet allegedly showing Giuliani in New Hampshire on August 1 as an exhibit.
After failing to attend at a July 13 hearing in New York City when he would have had the option to fight his subpoena, Giuliani was ordered to appear before the special grand jury.
Instead, the judge presiding over the special grand jury, Robert McBurney, will hear Giuliani’s emergency application at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday.
In early July, Willis asked McBurney to provide a certificate finding that Giuliani is a significant witness in the inquiry. Certificates were also given to Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and other Trump supporters.
Because of his presence at a Georgia state Senate hearing in December 2020, Giuliani has been designated as a material witness. As Trump’s personal attorney, Giuliani made charges of voting fraud that were soon discredited, but he continued to make them publicly, according to the district attorney.
The D.A.’s complaint said, “There is evidence that the Witness’s participation and testimony at the hearing were part of a multi-state, coordinated scheme by the Trump Campaign to affect the outcome of the November 2020 election in Georgia and elsewhere.”
President Biden narrowly won Georgia in 2020, and Republican election authorities in the state have frequently said and sworn under oath that suspicions of significant voting fraud are unfounded.
According to a tape of a phone discussion between Trump and Raffensperger acquired by CBS News last year, Trump pressed Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and other officials to “find” enough votes for him to win. The president informed Raffensperger on the call on January 2, 2021: “This is all I want to accomplish. I simply need 11,780 votes, which is one more than we now have. Because we were victorious in the state.”
Willis, the district attorney, requested the appointment of the special grand jury in January. The probe involves the phone conversation between Trump and Raffensperger, who was summoned to appear in front of a grand jury in June. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp also gave the grand jury a sworn recorded statement.