Emails obtained by Congress show Trump and his team urging prosecutors to act on allegations of voter fraud and conspiracy theories.
Documents obtained from the US Department of Justice detail efforts by then-President Donald Trump, his chief of staff and other allies to pressure the department to challenge the results of the 2020 presidential election, a U.S. House of Representatives panel said on Tuesday.
The House Oversight and Reform Committee, which called for the recordings Justice Department, described a series of overtures by Trump, his former chief of staff Mark Meadows and an outside private attorney urging the department to follow through on the former Republican president’s false election claims.
For weeks after the November election, Trump and those who speak for him falsely claimed his loss was due to widespread electoral fraud across the United States. His campaign and other supporters filed dozens of lawsuits challenging the results – all were dismissed or defeated, and no fraud was found. Trump continues to claim that the election was “rigged.”
In an email obtained by the committee, dated December 14, 2020 – the day the United States The electoral college gathered across the United States to certify Democrat Joe Biden wins – “President Trump’s White House aide sent an email with the subject line ‘From POTUS’ to then Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen,” the committee said in a statement Press.
The email attaches documents on alleged electoral fraud in Antrim County, Michigan, including ‘talking points’ which claimed’ a cover-up is occurring regarding the voting machines in Michigan “and” Michigan cannot certify for Biden, “” the committee said. continued.
Other documents obtained by the committee showed that two minutes after the documents were sent, then Assistant Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue sent the same documents to US attorneys in Michigan.
And 40 minutes later, Trump tweeted that then-Attorney General Barr would step down to be replaced temporarily by Rosen and that Donoghue would be promoted to acting Deputy Attorney General, according to documents obtained by the committee. .
Put pressure on the new leaders of the Ministry of Justice
In their new roles, Rosen and Donoghue became key targets for Trump and his team, as over the following weeks they were called to meetings with the former president and were invited by Meadows and others to investigate. on unsubstantiated allegations of electoral fraud and conspiracy theories.
Among the theories the Trump team wanted the Justice Department to review was a translated document of “an individual in Italy” who claimed to have “firsthand knowledge” of a conspiracy involving the military and the CIA in which the US election data was changed in Italy. . The person claimed that the data confirmed that Trump was “clearly the winner” of the election and that conservative sources in the Italian Secret Service had confirmed the data.
This document was forwarded from Meadows to Rosen on December 30, 2020 and two days later, on January 1, Meadows sent Rosen a YouTube link referring to the conspiracy theory in Italy.
Rosen forwarded the email to Donoghue, who replied, “Sheer madness,” according to the documents.
The documents come as U.S. lawmakers continue to investigate the January 6 deadly attack on the United States Capitol by pro-Trump supporters seeking to thwart the certificate of Biden’s victory.
“These documents show that President Trump attempted to bribe our nation’s main law enforcement agency in a brazen attempt to overturn an election he lost,” said President Carolyn Maloney.
Their release comes ahead of the committee hearing on Tuesday with FBI Director Christopher Wray, who testified before another House panel earlier this month, and General Charles Flynn, brother of the former security adviser. national Michael Flynn, who also advanced Trump’s electoral conspiracy theories.
Trump’s representatives could not immediately be reached for comment.