Mark Meadows
Mark MeadowsReuters

The prosecutor investigating whether former US President Donald Trump and others illegally tried to influence the 2020 election in the state of Georgia is seeking to compel testimony from more allies of the former president, including former chief of staff Mark Meadows and lawyer Sidney Powell, The Associated Press reported on Thursday.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis filed petitions seeking to have Meadows and Powell, as well as James “Phil” Waldron, who met with Meadows, and former Trump campaign adviser Boris Epshteyn, testify before a special grand jury in Atlanta next month, the report said.

Because they do not live in Georgia, Willis has to use a process that involves getting judges in the states where they live to order them to appear. The petitions she filed Thursday are essentially precursors to subpoenas.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney, who’s overseeing the special grand jury, signed off on the petitions, certifying that each person whose testimony is sought is a “necessary and material” witness for the investigation.

George Terwilliger, a lawyer for Meadows, declined to comment Thursday. Epshteyn didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Powell and Waldron could not immediately be reached.

Prosecutors in Atlanta had earlier told lawyers for Rudy Giuliani that he's a target of their criminal investigation into possible illegal attempts to interfere in the 2020 general election in Georgia.

In the petition seeking Meadows’ testimony, Willis wrote that Meadows attended a Dec. 21, 2020, meeting at the White House with Trump and others “to discuss allegations of voter fraud and certification of electoral college votes from Georgia and other states.”

The next day, Willis wrote, Meadows made a “surprise visit” to Cobb County, just outside Atlanta, where an audit of signatures on absentee ballot envelopes was being conducted. He asked to observe the audit but wasn’t allowed to because it wasn’t open to the public, the petition says.

Meadows was previously subpoenaed by the House select committee probing the January 6, 2021 Capitol riots.

The US House of Representatives later voted to hold Meadows in contempt of Congress after he refused to comply with the subpoena.

Willis' investigation was spurred by a phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in January of 2021.

In that recording, published by the Washington Post,Trump was heard pressuring Raffensperger to “recalculate” the vote count in his state, because, as he says, “I just want to find 11,780 votes.”

During the phone call, Trump tells Raffensperger that, “There’s no way I lost Georgia. There’s no way! We won by hundreds of thousands of votes,” to which Raffensperger responds, “Well, Mr. President, the challenge that you have is, that the data you have is wrong.”

"There's nothing wrong with saying, you know, that you've recalculated," Trump continues. "You should want to have an accurate election - and you're a Republican."