A South Carolina judge ruled Wednesday that Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows must testify before a special grand jury in Georgia investigating possible interference in the 2020 presidential election.
At a hearing Wednesday morning, South Carolina Circuit Judge Edward Miller ruled that Meadows must comply with a petition seeking his testimony before the grand jury in Fulton County, Georgia, the clerk of court for Pickens County, South Carolina, told NBC News.
Meadows, who lives in South Carolina, has tried to avoid testifying before the grand jury probe into possible election interference by then-President Donald Trump and his allies. An attorney for Meadows did not immediately reply to messages seeking comment.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has sought Meadows' testimony, saying he was in communication with Trump, his campaign “and other known and unknown individuals involved in the multistate, coordinated efforts to influence the results of the November 2020 elections in Georgia and elsewhere.” Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney agreed to her request and ordered Meadows to appear last month.
A spokesperson for Willis said Meadows won’t appear before the grand jury until sometime after the midterm elections next month, as the investigation is in a “quiet period” around then.
Willis filed requests to compel testimony from Meadows and attorney Sidney Powell in August, saying their “anticipated testimony is essential in that it is likely to reveal additional sources of information regarding the subject of this investigation.”
In her petition, Willis said the grand jury’s investigation has found that Meadows “was involved in setting up” a call with Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on Jan. 2, 2021, in which Trump was heard saying he wanted Raffensperger to “find” the votes needed to overcome his loss in the state.
In addition, Meadows is alleged to have sent emails to Justice Department officials, including Jeffrey Rosen, then the acting attorney general, making various allegations about voter fraud in Georgia and calling on the agency to conduct investigations, Willis said.
A federal appeals court ruled last week that Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., also must testify before the Fulton County grand jury. Graham sought to quash a subpoena seeking details about phone calls he made to top election officials in Georgia as Trump baselessly complained that there had been widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.
Graham asked the Supreme Court to quash the subpoena after the appeals court ruled, prompting Justice Clarence Thomas to put a temporary hold on his testimony Monday while the court considers his request.