January 6 panel set to show Donald Trump hatched phony electors scheme


Washington D.C
If Donald Trump was involved in the fake electors scheme, the former president may face a criminal investigation. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

At its fourth hearing on Tuesday, the House select committee investigating the January 6 attack on the Capitol is expected to demonstrate that Donald Trump and critical advisors orchestrated the conspiracy to submit bogus slates of electors as part of a campaign to restore him to the White House.

In the weeks and months following the 2020 election, the panel is anticipated to investigate Trump's efforts to pressure top officials in seven crucial swing states to reverse his loss to Joe Biden corruptly.

At the afternoon session, the select committee is anticipated to focus primarily on the phony elector's plan, which has played a significant role in its almost year-long probe into Trump's efforts to overturn election results at the state level.

The panel will demonstrate how Trump's illegal strategy to have his vice president, Mike Pence, refuse to certify Biden's win in critical states and grant him a second term was based on the potentially illegal phony electors scheme.

If the 2020 election cycle had been typical, when the electoral college assembled on December 14, 2020, and Democratic electors confirmed Biden's victory against Trump, that would have marked the conclusion of any post-election period turmoil.

In seven battleground states, however, after the authorized Democratic electors met in statehouses to formally choose Biden as president, illegitimate Republican electors came claiming they had come to select Trump instead.

The Trump voters were rejected. Nonetheless, they continued to sign fraudulent election certificates claiming they were "duly elected and qualified" electors confirming Trump's victory in their state's presidential election.

The plot to construct "rival" slates of electors was created so that Pence could claim the election was in dispute and refuse to certify Biden's victory at the congressional certification on January 6.

In addition, the select committee will demonstrate that the Trump White House partly made the fraudulent election certificates and that Trump and his closest advisors, including former chief of staff Mark Meadows, orchestrated the plan involving fake electors.

"We will present evidence of the president's involvement in this scheme," Adam Schiff, a member of the select committee heading the meeting alongside Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney, said on CNN on Sunday.

Trump's legal team members contend that this is a misleading portrayal of the scheme, stating that the so-called alternate slates were compiled and signed if states re-certified their election results for Trump. They needed to be forwarded to Congress immediately.

Given these facts, however, it is impossible to reconcile this explanation. John Eastman, a lawyer for Trump, revealed in a December 19, 2020 op-ed that the Trump slates were "dead on arrival" if they were not verified, yet he urged Pence to reject Biden's slates even though the Trump slates had not been validated.

Using bogus voters is significant since it may constitute a felony. The Department of Justice is investigating whether the Republicans who signed as Trump electors might be charged with forging voting paperwork, mail fraud, or conspiracy to defraud the United States.

If Trump was participating in the plan and the Department of Justice pursued a case, the former president of the United States may also face criminal liability. At least one federal grand jury in Washington is probing the plot and the participation of prominent Trump campaign attorneys, including Rudy Giuliani.

According to a committee aide who previewed the hearing in a conference call with reporters, the select committee will also pay careful attention to Trump's pressure campaign on top Republican state officials in the weeks after the election.

Trump's now-infamous January 2, 2021, phone chat with Georgia secretary of state Brad Raffensperger – who will testify live at the hearing – asked Raffensperger to "find" votes to help him win the election will also be examined by the panel.

During the meeting, Trump remarked, "I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have." The Washington Post and House investigators working on the select committee got a recording of the conversation.

Using the evidence of Arizona House speaker Russ Bowers, the select committee will reveal how Trump exerted pressure on other state authorities to investigate allegations of election fraud that his own White House and campaign lawyers knew were untrue.

In addition, the panel will hear from Shaye Moss, a Georgia election worker in Fulton County who Rudy Giuliani wrongly accused and others of smuggling ballots for Joe Biden in "suitcases" — a conspiracy refuted by election officials.

Publish : 2022-06-21 08:05:00

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