The Georgia Election Workers Trump Slandered are the Foundation of American Democracy

They are the backbone of America’s democracy, and now, because Donald Trump threw the full power of the presidency behind his vicious intimidation of election workers and officials, they are afraid to even say their names in public.

Reluctantly, Wandrea “Shaye” Moss and her mother Ruby Freeman on Tuesday joined a pantheon of heroes who have defended the country’s core right to vote after relating the terrifying price they paid, simply for doing their duty to ensure free and fair elections in Georgia. In harrowing testimony to the latest House select committee hearing into January 6, 2021, insurrection, the election workers poignantly explained how their lives were upended by Trump and Rudy Giuliani’s ludicrous claims that they were election fraud hustlers.

“There is nowhere I feel safe. Nowhere. Do you know how it feels to have the President of the United States target you?” Freeman said in previously recorded video testimony.

Moss, appearing nervous and distressed, told the committee in person that Trump’s targeting of her and the often racist threats that followed turned her life upside down. “I don’t want anyone knowing my name. … It’s affected my life in a major way, in every way — all because of lies,” she said, noting how she once delighted in helping others vote, a right once denied to Black Americans like her grandmother, and which is still being imperiled by Trump and his henchmen.

Given the harassment and threats they had already faced, Moss and Freeman’s willingness to expose themselves to a national television audience was an act of extraordinary bravery. The mother and daughter pair testified after Republican officials and election administrators who helped save the country’s democracy from Trump’s coup attempt in 2020 revealed the extent of his bullying and pressure. Rusty Bowers, the GOP speaker of the Arizona state House, said that what Giuliani and Trump asked him to do, without any evidence of election fraud, would be contrary to the oaths he swore to the Constitution and the rule of law.

“It is foreign to my very being, I will not do it,” Bowers said.

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