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Wall Street Journal: White House pressured Georgia federal prosecutor to resign

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The newspaper, citing people familiar with the matter, reported Saturday that a senior Justice Department official called U.S. prosecutor Byung J. Pak, appointed by Trump, at the request of the White House. The official told Pak he needed to resign because he was not investigating allegations of Trump’s taste, the newspaper reported.

The day before the Georgians went to the polls, Pak abruptly sent his resignation, citing “unforeseen circumstances” as the reason for his departure in a send an email to your classmates.
The revelation marks another Trump effort to try to pressure a Georgia government employee to overturn President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the state. CNN reported earlier Saturday that the president urged in December the chief investigator in the Georgia secretary of state’s office to seek dishonesty in the 2020 presidential election, telling the individual that the investigation was of national importance, according to a source with knowledge of the call.

As previously reported by CNN, there have been no credible allegations about any voting issues that would have affected the election, as claimed by dozens of judges, governors, election officials, the Electoral College, the Department of Justice, the Department of Security National, and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Barry Paschale, a public affairs officer for the southern district of Georgia, confirmed this on CNN on Saturday Bobby Christine he had been appointed acting U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia.

According to the newspaper, Christine, nominated by Trump, took on these roles in addition to her role in the southern district, rather than Pak office number 2 taking over as an actor, as is often the case.

Paschale declined to comment to CNN other than confirming Christine’s appointment.

Congress formally certified Biden’s victory earlier this week after a riot at the US Capitol. After the violent attack on the capitol, Trump he said in a video that “a new administration will be inaugurated on January 20.”

But in a phone call in early December, first reported by the Post, Trump had tried to convince Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp to let state lawmakers overturn Biden’s victory in the state.

And on a January 2nd phone call obtained by CNN i first reported by The Washington Post, Trump urged Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” votes to nullify election results.

In excerpts from this impressive one-hour phone call, Trump bragged to his fellow Republicans for refusing to falsely say he won the Georgia election and repeatedly made baseless allegations of election fraud.

Raffensperger rejected Trump’s claims that responded in part: “We believe we have accurate choices.”

A week before, Trump he had called the principal investigator of the Peach State election.
Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story, published Jan. 9, featured paraphrasing the president’s comments to the Georgia election researcher as direct quotes. The story was updated after the discovery of an audio recording of the call. Read more here.

CNN’s Jason Hoffman, Evan Perez, Devan Cole, Jason Morris and Chandelis Duster contributed to this report.

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