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Trump to return to Georgia to support GOP Senate candidates

December 20, 2020 GMT
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President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally for Senate Republican candidates, Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., and Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., at Valdosta Regional Airport, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020, in Valdosta, Ga. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally for Senate Republican candidates, Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., and Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., at Valdosta Regional Airport, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020, in Valdosta, Ga. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

ATLANTA (AP) — President Donald Trump says he’s planning another visit to Georgia to stump for the two Republican candidates in the state’s Senate runoffs.

Trump announced on Twitter late Saturday that he would return on Jan. 4, the night before than Jan. 5 election, to ask the state’s voters to support U.S. Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler. They face Democratic challengers Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock in a pair of elections that will determine which party controls the U.S. Senate.

In his tweet, Trump continued to express anger at Gov. Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger over his loss in Georgia to Democrat Joe Biden in November. Biden won by more than 11,000 votes, a series of recounts confirmed. Trump, though, has refused to accept the results, alleging without evidence a conspiracy to throw the election to Biden.

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“As badly as we were treated in Georgia by the ‘Republican’ Governor and ’Republican Secretary of State, we must have a massive victory for two great people, @KLoeffler & @sendavidperdue, on January 5th. I will be having a big Rally for them on Monday night, January 4th. WIN!” Trump tweeted.

It will be Trump’s second appearance for the candidates, after an earlier rally in Valdosta. Both Perdue and Loeffler have avoided explicit public acknowledgement of Biden’s win while attacking Raffensperger. The rally will also come two days before Congress meets to count votes from the Electoral College, with some Republicans urging members of Congress to challenge Biden’s victory. Republicans in Georgia, for example, sent an alternate slate of electors to Congress, saying they were preserving their options in case Trump won a court contest challenging Georgia’s results.

Because Democrats control the House of Representatives and an increasing number of Senate Republicans say Biden won, it’s unlikely any challenge would succeed.

More than 1.3 million people have already cast mail-in ballots or voted early in-person in the upcoming contests.