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Trump at a rally in Georgia on Dec. 5. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

With his anger rising at Georgia officials, President Trump resisted going back to the Peach State after his first runoff rally on Dec. 5.

Behind the scenes: He told advisers he didn't think he needed to go back. Both candidates, Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, put in a huge behind-the-scenes effort to get him to go back. He plugged them during his Monday rally, but also ranted about the state's Republican officials and election machinery.

Between the lines: Trump was fixated on his own grievances and on increasingly untethered scenarios for how he might overturn the election.

  • It took great effort to get him to focus on any other subject or to convince him that anything beyond his own election factored into his self-interest.
  • Sen. Lindsey Graham warned him that his "legacy" was on the line and that Democrats would undo all of his accomplishments, including tax cuts.

Go deeper: Republicans privately furious after Trump's post-election implosion blows Senate majority

Go deeper

Off the Rails

A premeditated lie lit the fire

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

"Jared, you call the Murdochs! Jason, you call Sammon and Hemmer!”

President Trump was almost shouting. He directed his son-in-law and his senior strategist from his private quarters at the White House late on election night. He barked out the names of top Fox News executives and talent he expected to answer to him.

Off the Rails

Barbarians at the Oval

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump plunked down in an armchair in the White House residence, still dressed from his golf game — navy fleece, black pants, white MAGA cap. It was Saturday, Nov. 7. The networks had just called the election for Joe Biden.

Off the Rails

The siege

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

On Jan. 6, White House deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger entered the West Wing in the mid-afternoon, shortly after his colleagues' phones had lit up with an emergency curfew alert from D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser.

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