Rachel Maddow did that history thing she does last night, and taught us a lot about a story that came out a couple days ago about the criminal investigation into Donald Trump's attempted election stealing in Georgia, stemming from his "I WOULD LIKE YOU TO DO US A FAVOR THOUGH, PLEASE FIND 11,780 VOTES" phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, as well as other related election-stealing attempts. It sounds like that investigation, led by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, might have just gotten a lot more serious for Donald Trump, because of the word "racketeering."

First we'll tell you the big news, then we'll briefly tell you the backstory Maddow told about the big news, so you can see why it is big news. Then we'll tell you to just go watch your Rachel, because we aren't trying to write an epistle here.

The big news is that Willis has added to her team a guy who is world famous for being The Expert on state racketeering cases, which seems to suggest any upcoming Georgia indictment of Trump might be quite a bit more serious than we knew:


Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has enlisted the help of Atlanta lawyer John Floyd, who wrote a national guide on prosecuting state racketeering cases. Floyd was hired recently to "provide help as needed" on matters involving racketeering, including the Trump investigation and other cases, said the source, who has direct knowledge of the situation. [...]

Willis has said that her office would examine potential charges including "solicitation of election fraud, the making of false statements to state and local governmental bodies, conspiracy, racketeering" among other possible violations.

Every time Willis has talked about this investigation, it seems, she's said the word "racketeering," along with all those other crime words. And some people have been like "HENNNGGGH?" Her hiring of Floyd suggests she may have brought in the big guns to help her make just that case.

As Reuters explains, "racketeering" means something a bit more broad under Georgia state law, compared to what we usually think when we think "RICO":

If she pursues racketeering charges, Willis will need to prove a pattern of corruption by Trump, alone or with his allies, aimed at overturning the election results to stay in power. While racketeering is typically pursued by prosecutors in cases involving such crimes as murder, kidnapping, and bribery, the Georgia statute defines racketeering more broadly to include false statements made to state officials.

"Pattern of corruption by Trump, alone or with his allies, aimed at overturning the election results to stay in power." As evidence, DA Willis would like to direct your attention to every single thing Donald Trump did in the lead-up to the election, introducing a Big Lie that any election he lost was stolen, and then after he lost, expanding the Big Lie, along with his minions, trying to get the election results overturned in every swing state he lost. His lawyers even did press conferences at landscape companies! And filed one million bogus cases for judges to laugh at! Oh yeah, and he incited a domestic terrorist attack aimed at stopping Congress from certifying Joe Biden's win.

And so many other things! We'd type them all out, but we've repressed all memories of what happened between November 2 and January 20.

"Criminal enterprise," indeed!

Reuters spoke to a Georgia law expert for some Georgia lawsplaining:

"It's not a stretch to see where she's taking this," said Cathy Cox, the dean of Mercer University's law school in Macon, Georgia and a former Georgia secretary of state. "If Donald Trump engaged in two or more acts that involve false statements - that were made knowingly and willfully in an attempt to falsify material fact, like the election results - then you can piece together a violation of the racketeering act."

Racketeering, a felony in Georgia, can carry stiff penalties including up to 20 years in prison and a hefty fine. "There are not a lot of people who avoid serving prison time on a racketeering offense," said Cox.

Up to 20 years.

We're confident DA Willis and her buddy John Floyd are making a real good list of all of everything Trump and every one of his clowns did. Hell, just their direct acts against Georgia elections officials are immense. Hey, remember that time Lindsey Graham called Secretary of State Raffensperger to ask him to do him a favor though? All the other times Trump pressured Raffensperger and other elections officials, and even Republican Governor Brian Kemp? Remember how Trump pushed out the US attorney in Atlanta, because that guy wasn't doing enough to fuck that election fraud chicken for Trump?

"Pattern of corruption," indeed!

Reuters casually notes that Willis has a lot of experience prosecuting racketeering cases:

It's an area of law where Willis has extensive experience - including a high-profile Atlanta case where she won racketeering convictions of 11 public educators for a scheme to cheat on standardized tests.

As Maddow reminded us last night, that was the famous Georgia cheating scandal, where 11 Atlanta teachers were convicted of "racketeering and other crimes in a standardized test-cheating scandal believed to be the worst of a wave of test cheating in nearly 40 states and Washington DC." Basically it was a HUGE conspiracy scheme to falsify standardized test scores, led by the now-deceased Atlanta school system superintendent, under pressure from No Child Left Behind and Barack Obama's Race to the Top program, to make it look like suddenly out of nowhere Atlanta schools were just achieving miraculous gains in test scores. If you'd like to refresh yourself on that scandal, please hit the link we provided, but like we said, 11 Atlanta teachers were convicted of racketeering in the cheating scheme.

The punchline is that Fani Willis was the ADA on that case. She has done this before, and she's thrown people in prison for it.

And then there's Floyd:

In 2014, when Willis was an assistant district attorney in Atlanta, Floyd was brought in as a special prosecutor for the racketeering case that grew out of the schools cheating scandal.

"It was very much a team effort," Floyd said of working with Willis.

So that guy, who is the expert on state racketeering laws, helped now-DA Willis out with that big case. As Maddow noted last night, he literally wrote the book on state racketeering laws.

He also was the prosecutor on a big important case from 20 years ago involving racketeering, where the corrupt DeKalb County sheriff lost his race to be re-elected, and so he had the guy who beat him murdered.

And that is the part where we tell you to watch your Rachel, because she told the whole story at the beginning of the show last night! In summary and in conclusion, Donald Trump may just be fuuuuuuuuuucked.

[Reuters]

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Evan Hurst

Evan Hurst is the managing editor of Wonkette, which means he is the boss of you, unless you are Rebecca, who is boss of him. His dog Lula is judging you right now.

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