The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a long shot legal bid from former President Donald Trump to essentially shut down the Fulton County criminal probe into his attempts to overturn his 2020 election defeat in Georgia.
The court said in a five-page opinion that Trump hadn’t demonstrated the “extraordinary circumstances” that would require their intervention at this time. Trump had asked the Georgia justices to throw out the wide array of evidence collected so far in the Fulton County investigation and to block state prosecutors from ever using that material in any future criminal or civil proceedings.
“(Trump) has not shown that this case presents one of those extremely rare circumstances in which this Court’s original jurisdiction should be invoked, and therefore, the petition is dismissed,” the ruling said.
The decision was unanimous. Eight of the nine members of the Georgia Supreme Court were appointed by Republican governors.
Trump has other legal challenges related to the Fulton County criminal investigation that are still pending. He has denied wrongdoing and claims that the prosecutors are only investigating him because they want to undermine his 2024 presidential campaign.
Charging decisions are expected soon in the investigation, which is led by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. The probe has zeroed in on the attempts by Trump and his allies to pressure Georgia election officials, state lawmakers, the governor and related federal prosecutors into helping him overturn the results in Georgia, which he lost by less than 12,000 votes out of 5 million ballots cast.
Trump’s legal challenges also sought a court order blocking Willis, an elected Democrat, from participating in any further proceedings related to the criminal investigation. The Georgia Supreme Court said Monday that Trump’s petition to the high court “has not presented … either the facts or the law necessary to mandate Willis’s disqualification by this Court at this time on this record.”
Willis’ office declined to comment on the ruling. CNN has reached out to Trump’s lawyers for comment.
The investigation crossed a major milestone last week, with the swearing-in of a new grand jury that has the power to approve potential indictments. Willis has indicated that this could happen as soon as soon as next month. A special purpose grand jury in Fulton County previously heard evidence from 75 witnesses, including Trump White House officials, former Trump lawyers and advisers, Georgia officials and election experts.
State prosecutors are also scrutinizing Trump’s attempts to subvert the Electoral College with a slate of “fake electors” in Georgia, as well as efforts by some Trump allies to breach voting systems in the state while they fruitlessly tried to prove there was massive fraud.
CNN’s Jason Morris contributed to this report.