In December 2020, after then-Attorney General publicly rejected President Donald Trump’s claims that the election was fraudulent, his administration drafted a memo calling for anyone who disagreed with Trump’s claims.
This comes after a new report released by the US House Committee investigating January 6, 2021, Capitol riots, which took the deposition of Trump White House Counsel Pat Cipollone.
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In Cipollone’s deposition, which was released Friday, investigators highlighted a statement drafted by the White House administration in December 2020, a month after Trump lost the presidential election. The statement ended with, “Anybody that thinks there wasn’t massive fraud in the 2020 election should be fired.”
The draft statement, which was never released, came weeks after former Attorney General Bill Barr refuted Trump’s unfounded claims of fraud. Barr publicly said that there was no evidence of voter fraud “that could have affected a different outcome in the election.”
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Trump’s unfounded and provocative claims about his election defeat have been cited by many of those involved in the attack on the US Capitol in January 2021 while lawmakers gathered to count the Electoral College votes certifying President Joe Biden’s win.
The Capitol riots lead to the death of at least five people, including a Capitol police officer. It resulted in the bi-partisan committee investigation, which took the deposition of dozens of former Trump officials.
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In June, former acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen stated that when he took charge after Barr resigned, he faced pressure to unveil evidence that Biden and Democrats had stolen the 2020 presidential election.
“Between Dec. 23 and Jan. 3, the president either called me or met with me virtually every day, with one or two exceptions. The common element of all of [these meetings] was the president expressing his dissatisfaction that the Justice Department had not done enough to investigate election fraud,” Rosen testified.
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Rosen added that the Justice Department rejected all of Trump’s requests for them to declare fraud, “because we did not think that they were appropriate based on the facts and the law as we understood them.”
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Richard Donoghue, the acting deputy attorney general at the time of the insurrection, stated that he took notes during the contentious period of time preceding the January 6 attack. In one of them, he wrote that Trump told him, “Just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican congressmen.”