In the month following Vice President Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election, former President Donald Trump had a lawyer encouraging his ideas of reversing the outcome.
The New York Times reported that on Christmas Day 2020, while Trump, then 76, was at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, conservative lawyer William J. Olson called and pitched several outlandish ideas to the president-elect. A report by the outlet stated that Olson had admitted his plans to interfere with the Justice Department and fire attorney general Jeffrey A. Rosen.
The media will call this martial law, Olson wrote in a memo obtained by the Times on December 28. He called it “fake news.”
“Preserving the election process,” according to the memo’s title, is a key part of Trump’s justification for his actions. “This is not just within your power, but it is your solemn duty,” said Olson.
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A comparison is being drawn between the current state of affairs in Washington and the Watergate scandal that rocked the Nixon administration in the 1960s. Nixon resigned in 1974 after being linked to the Watergate break-ins at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., as part of an effort to ensure his reelection.
A “deception that exceeded even Nixon’s imagination,” according to journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who broke the Watergate story, said Trump’s “diabolical” actions culminated in an essay published last month in The Washington Post.
President Trump and his inner circle of loyalists and aides worked together to “bombard the country with false assertions that 2020 was rigged and Trump had really won,” the political journalists said. On January 6, they decided to focus all their efforts on overturning last month’s results.
“We watched in utter dismay as Trump persistently claimed that he was really the winner,” Woodward and Bernstein continued. Trump’s then-Vice President Mike Pence was also under pressure when he was urged by Trump to “make him the victor on January 6,” according to the report.
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TWO THINGS ARE CONNECTED: Messages from Jan. 6, the day after the Capitol riot, were deleted by the inspector general, he said.
Olson’s memo was delivered just in time for the ongoing hearings on Jan. 6, making it all the more significant. During the riots, Trump assaulted a secret service agent, according to Cassidy Hutchinson, who recently testified as such.
Trump’s head of Secret Service, Robert Engel, told the former White House aide that Trump had expressed a desire to visit the Capitol, but his security was opposed to the idea.
In the end, Trump took matters into his own hands, she said under oath.
“He thought he could still go to the Capitol,” Hutchinson testified, quoting Deputy Chief of Staff Tony Ornato as saying after Trump’s speech in the presidential limousine.
“”We are not… it’s not secure,” [Engel] said, prompting a strong, angry reaction from the president. As Tony put it, “he was irate.” “she remarked on the subject.
“I’m the f—-ing president,” Trump yelled, “take me to the Capitol now,” Engel responded, “Sir, we have to go back to the West Wing,” according to Hutchinson.
After that, “the president reached up to grab at the steering wheel,” Hutchinson testified during a hearing on the events of January 6.
She claimed that Trump grabbed Engel’s “clavicle,” a gesture to her own throat, after she grabbed Trump’s arm to tell him not to take over the steering wheel.
Greg Jacob, a former adviser to Vice President Joe Biden, testified about the vice president and the Secret Service, CNN reported. After the Secret Service evacuated Pence from the Capitol, Jacob told the panel that the 63-year-old vice president refused to get into the vice presidential vehicle.
This is not a ride for me,” Vice President Pence reportedly told the driver’s agent, according to the Washington Post. “You guys are taking off if I get in that car.” It was crucial that he refused to get into the vice presidential limo because he could not certify the presidential election results, increasing the likelihood of a coup.
RELATED: Trump should be charged with inciting riots in the Capitol, say six out of ten Americans, according to new poll results.
Justice Department officials took the witness stand to detail Trump’s relentless pressure to find evidence of widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election during the fifth public hearing of the committee.
Richard Donoghue (acting deputy attorney general), Steven Engel (assistant attorney general for legal counsel), and Jeffrey Rosen (acting attorney general) sat down to testify before a Senate panel on Wednesday.
As soon as Rosen took office as attorney general in December of that year, he admitted that he was under constant pressure to find evidence that Vice President Joe Biden and the Democrats had rigged the election. Even before Barr’s public statement that the DOJ could not corroborate Trump’s election fraud claims, he had already lost favor with the president.
Rosen testified that between December 23 and January 3, the president called or met with him nearly every day, with only a few exceptions. As a common theme, the president expressed his displeasure with the Justice Department’s investigation of election fraud in all of these meetings.
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Justice Department officials rejected all of Trump’s requests to declare fraud “because we did not think they were appropriate based on the facts and law as we understood them,” according to Rosen.
At the House committee hearing, Donoghue echoed Rosen’s statement that Trump was preoccupied with verifying reports of voter fraud in key states.
To Rep. Adam Kinzinger’s question about whether or not the rumors were proven true, Donoghue responded simply: “No.”
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