Politics Trump pushed DOJ to overturn 2020 election results, House committee says
What the House January 6 Committee could learn from Justice official who pushed election fraud theories
Former Justice Department official Jeffery Clark, appearing for an interview with the House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection on Friday, may hold several answers to core questions about Donald Trump and the January 6 insurrection. © Yuri Gripas/Pool/Getty Images Acting Assistant U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Clark speaks next to Deputy U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen at a news conference at the Justice Department on October 21, 2020 in Washington, DC.
- "Just say that the election was corrupt + leave the rest to me and the R. Congressmen," Trump instructed the DOJ officials, according to notes taken by then-Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue.
- The handwritten notes, released by the House Oversight Committee, were taken by Donoghue during a Dec. 27 phone call with Trump and then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen.
- Trump also suggested on the call that he was considering replacing the agency's leadership, the notes show.
Then-President Donald Trump pressured his new acting attorney general to overturn the 2020 vote, telling him "" according to notes of a phone call released Friday by a House committee.
Voting distrust likely to continue despite smooth election
ATLANTA (AP) — The first major election day following a year of relentless attacks on voting rights and election officials went off largely without a hitch. Unlike the 2020 presidential election, there were no claims of widespread fraud, ballots emerging mysteriously in the dark of night or compromised voting machines changing results. The relative calm was a relief to those who oversee elections, but will it matter to those who still believe last year's election was stolen from former President Donald Trump?Election experts say even a smooth election cycle this year is unlikely to curb the distrust that has built up over the last year within a segment of the public.
Trump also suggested that he was considering replacing the Justice Department's leadership, according to the notes taken by then-Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue, who was on the Dec. 27 call.
Donoghue's account of the call shows Trump "directly instructed our nation's top law enforcement agency to take steps to overturn a free and fair election in the final days of his presidency," House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., said in a press release.
The committee has already started scheduling witness interviews "to investigate the full extent of the former President's corruption," Maloney said.
Donoghue's notes do not specify which Republican lawmakers Trump was referring to about overturning Joe Biden's victory. But Trump at other points in the call mentioned GOP Reps. Jim Jordan of Ohio, Scott Perry of Pennsylvania and Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin.
January 6 committee issues 6 subpoenas to top Trump campaign associates
The House select committee investigating the deadly January 6 riot on Capitol Hill announced Monday it is issuing six additional subpoenas to top Trump campaign associates as it continues to seek testimony and documents from key witnesses in the sweeping probe. © Provided by CNN With this round of subpoenas, the committee is targeting top individuals from former President Trump's reelection campaign who the panel says were involved in promoting the lie that the presidential election was stolen.
Jordan spokesman Russell Dye told CNBC in a statement that the congressman "did not, has not, and would not pressure anyone at the Justice Department about the 2020 election," and that he "continues to agree with President Trump that it is perfectly appropriate to raise concerns about election integrity."
Johnson "had no conversations with President Trump about the DOJ questioning the election results," his spokeswoman Alexa Henning said.
The notes also show Rosen and Donoghue trying to inform Trump that his claims of widespread election fraud were not supported by evidence. Only four days before the call, Rosen became Trump's acting AG upon.
Video: Notes released by House committee show Trump pressured DOJ to declare election 'corrupt' (CNBC)
EXPLAINER: Who has the Jan. 6 panel subpoenaed — and why?
WASHINGTON (AP) — The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection has issued almost three dozen subpoenas as it aggressively seeks information about the origins of the attack and what former President Donald Trump did — or didn’t do — to stop it. The panel is exploring several paths simultaneously, demanding testimony from Trump’s inner circle about his actions that day as well as from outside advisers who organized the rally he spoke at the morning of Jan. 6 and allies who strategized about how to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory.
"Much of the info you're getting is false," the phone notes say Trump was told.
Later in the conversation, Trump claimed, "These people who saying that the election isn't corrupt are corrupt," according to the notes.
A spokeswoman for Trump did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment on the committee's release. A spokesman for Perry also didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Trump has never conceded defeat to Biden. After his loss, Trump aggressively spread a wide array of baseless conspiracy theories in support of the false claim that the election was rigged against him.
His lawyers and his allies filed dozens of lawsuits in key states, all aiming to reverse Biden's victory. None succeeded in flipping votes or changing the outcomes of a state's election.
Donoghue's notes are just the latest materials that House investigators have held up as evidence of Trump's efforts to lean on government institutions to challenge his electoral defeat.
Last month, Maloney's committee dumpedbetween DOJ officials and White House staff
Earlier this week, the DOJ told former Trump administration officials thatsurrounding Trump's election-reversal efforts in the final months of his one term in office.
Maloney's committee hasto Rosen and Donoghue, asking them to appear for transcribed interviews. The panel has also asked to interview former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, former Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, former Associate Deputy Attorney General Patrick Hovakimian, former U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia Byung Jin Pak and former acting U.S. Attorney for that district Bobby Christine.
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The debate over the attorney general’s reckoning with Trump’s legacy, explained.The former federal judge has promised to restore the independence of the Justice Department after years of Trump-related controversies. But a narrative has formed that Garland is too set on moving forward, and not focused enough on bringing wrongdoers associated with the Trump administration to justice.