Raffensperger, a Republican, refused to commit election fraud despite intense pressure from Trump to do so after Trump narrowly lost Georgia in the 2020 election.
The full extent of that pressure campaign became clear in early January, following the release of a phone call between Trump and Raffensperger after the then-president made misleading comments about their conversation.
In it, Trump instructed Raffensperger to “find” him enough votes to overturn the results of the election.
“All I want to do is this: I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have because we won the state,” Trump said. “And flipping the state is a great testament to our country because, you know, this is — it’s a testament that they can admit to a mistake or whatever you want to call it.”
Georgia prosecutors have opened a criminal investigation into the former president’s efforts. Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis urged patience last month, telling The Associated Press the investigation is still in its early stages.
Raffensperger repeatedly rebuffed Trump’s false claims on the call and in public after, thereby earning the former president’s enmity.
Hice is a Trump loyalist who, despite having no evidence, nevertheless amplified Trump’s claims of widespread election fraud, even as judges across the country tossed every single case.
Shortly after Hice announced his primary challenge Monday, Trump praised the lawmaker for being “a staunch ally of the America First agenda.”
“Unlike the current Georgia Secretary of State, Jody leads out front with integrity,” he said. “I have 100% confidence in Jody to fight for Free, Fair, and Secure Elections in Georgia, in line with our beloved U.S. Constitution.”