On January 2, 2021, former President Donald Trump asked Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” the votes needed to win the state in the 2020 election.
Now, the infamous phone call helped spark a criminal investigation launched next month by Fulton County District Attorney Fannie Willis looking into efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 election results.
Here’s a look at how the investigation — one of several investigations involving the former president — has unfolded so far.
November 3, 2020
Voters head to the polls in the 2020 general election.
November 7, 2020
Multiple media organizations, including ABC News, are calling the election for Joe Biden based on projected vote counts, as several states, including Georgia, are still undecided.
November 10, 2020
Trump’s campaign is demanding a recount in Georgia, where Biden leads by about 14,000 of the nearly 5 million votes cast in the presidential race.
November 11, 2020
Raffensperger, a Republican, announced that because of the narrow margin of votes between Biden and Trump, the planned state audit would trigger “a full hand count in every county” of the presidential race.
November 19, 2020
The results of the Georgia-wide audit, which requires counties to hand-count every vote cast in the presidential race, reaffirmed Biden as the winner — by a margin of 12,284 votes. This is the first time since 1992 that a Democrat will win the state.
November 20, 2020
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Raffensperger certify the general election results, making it official that Biden won the state’s 16 electoral votes.
November 24, 2020
Georgia’s 159 counties are beginning to count votes cast in the presidential race for the third time after the Trump campaign requested a recount.
December 6, 2020
Raffensperger defended the integrity of the general election, telling ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos during an interview on “This Week” that his office has yet to find evidence of “systemic fraud” that would have changed the outcome.
December 7, 2020
Raffensperger and Kemp are re-certifying the state’s election results after a recount requested by Trump reaffirms that Biden won the state. The audit found that Biden won by a margin of 11,779 votes.
December 22, 2020
Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff at the time, visited Cobb County, Georgia, to oversee a signature-matching audit.
December 23, 2020
Amid the Cobb County signature-matching audit, Trump called a chief investigator in Raffensperger’s office to discuss the audit, telling the investigator they would be praised for finding errors in the vote count, according to a person familiar with the matter. the conversation.
January 2, 2021
In an hour-long phone call obtained by ABC News, Trump called Raffensperger and falsely claimed there was “no way” he had lost and asked the secretary to “find 11,780 votes” — the exact number Trump needed to win Georgia .
“The people of Georgia are angry. People in the country are angry and there’s nothing wrong with saying that, you know, you miscalculated,” Trump said during the call. “All I want to do is this: I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have…Guys, I need 11,000 votes, give me a break.”
Meadows was also heard speaking during the call.
Raffensperger disputed the president’s claims, saying the figures Trump cited for tens of thousands of illegal votes “are wrong.”
February 10, 2021
Fulton County District Attorney Fannie Willis notified Kemp that her office has opened an investigation into efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the results of the 2020 election, according to a letter obtained by ABC News.
The letter urges government officials to preserve all documents potentially related to the 2020 general election, “with particular care to isolate and preserve those that may be evidence of attempts to influence the actions of persons administering them,” which includes Trump’s phone call with Raffensperger.
January 20, 2022
According to a letter obtained by ABC News, Willis is seeking to empanel a special grand jury in her investigation. In the letter to Fulton County Chief Judge Christopher Brasher Willis wrote that the move was necessary because “a significant number of witnesses and potential witnesses have refused to cooperate with the investigation without a subpoena requiring their testimony.”
May 2, 2022
Twenty-six jurors have been selected for a special grand jury in the Willis investigation.
The special grand jury has no ability to return an indictment and can only make recommendations regarding prosecution. If charges are recommended, then Willis will decide whether or not to pursue them.
July 19, 2022
New court documents reveal 16 people identified as “fraudulent voters” were notified they were targets of the Fulton County District Attorney’s criminal investigation, new court documents reveal.
August 15, 2022
Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, has been told he is considered a “target” of the Fulton County district attorney’s investigation, according to sources familiar with the matter.
November 1, 2022
The US Supreme Court rejects Senator Lindsey Graham’s attempt to block a subpoena to testify before a special grand jury. Graham, after the 2020 election, called Georgia election officials to discuss the election.
November 8, 2022
Voters head to the polls in Georgia for a primary election in which Raffensperger is up for re-election as secretary of state. Trump is endorsing Congresswoman Jody Heiss in the primary.
November 18, 2022
A hand count of random ballots confirmed Raffensperger won re-election, state election officials announced.
January 9, 2023
A new filing shows the special grand jury has finished its work and delivered its final report after months of testimony behind closed doors.
Jurors heard testimony from some of Trump’s closest allies and supporters, including lawyers Rudy Giuliani and John Eastman and Senator Graham.
January 24, 2023
Willis says during the hearing that decisions on whether to bring charges in the case are “pending.”
February 13, 2023
Fulton County Circuit Judge Robert McBurney ruled that portions of the special grand jury’s report could be released in the coming days, although most of the report will remain sealed. Willis insisted that the report remain sealed, saying it was important to “take into account the protection of the rights of future defendants.”
February 16, 2023
Excerpts from the special grand jury report are being released, revealing that the jury recommended prosecutors seek indictments against witnesses they believe may have lied during their testimony.
“The majority of the grand jury believed that the perjury may have been committed by one or more of the witnesses testifying before it,” the grand jury wrote in the report. “The grand jury recommends that the district attorney seek appropriate charges for such crimes when the evidence is compelling.”
Excerpts from the report do not list names of those the grand jury members believe may have committed perjury, nor do they offer any justification for their allegations of perjury.
There were also no details released on whether the grand jury recommended changes for anyone connected to the attempts to overturn the election. The excerpts do not identify any of the 75 witnesses interviewed and do not mention Trump by name.
After their release, a Trump spokesman said the excerpts “have nothing to do with the president because President Trump has done absolutely nothing wrong.”
“The president engaged in two perfect phone calls about the integrity of the election in Georgia, which he has the right to do — in fact, as president, it was President Trump’s constitutional duty to ensure the safety, security and integrity of the election,” the spokesman said.
February 21, 2023
In a series of print and television interviews, Emily Kors, the foreman of the special grand jury, revealed that jurors had recommended indictments for several individuals without naming any of them — and hinted that the former president was among them.
“You wouldn’t be shocked,” Kors told The New York Times about whether her panel had recommended charges against Trump. “It’s not rocket science.”
March 20, 2023
Trump’s lawyers have filed a motion to dismiss the special grand jury report and remove the district attorney’s office leading the investigation.
March 27, 2023
McBurney gives Willis’ office until May 1 to respond to Trump’s request to overturn the special grand jury report.