DOJ Investigation Into Republicans For Fake Elector Plot Requested

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Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wisc.) has requested a federal investigation by the Justice Department into a scheme in Wisconsin and other states to essentially falsify electoral votes on behalf of former President Donald Trump. Republicans in these states — where Joe Biden was victorious — undertook this move amid the frenzied, last-ditch rush to try and keep Trump in office even though he lost the election. The state Attorney Generals in Michigan and New Mexico have already formally requested an investigation by federal authorities into the matter, with Michigan state Attorney General Dana Nessel (D) noting that possible criminal acts inherent in the scheme include forgery of public records.

The exact form that the effort took in individual states varied, but the general idea was that Republicans met and signed off on a claim that they were, in fact, the legitimate members of the electoral college for their respective states. Documentation of these claims was then sent to federal authorities. At the federal level, a scheme put forward by conservative lawyer John Eastman — with the backing of the then-president himself — involved using these supposed alternate slates of electors as a basis to dismiss the electoral votes from certain states where Biden had won. The problem is, of course, that these claimed alternate electoral votes had no legal grounding — Republicans were simply pretending otherwise. Their justifications included the notion that undertaking these moves would help keep avenues open for challenges to the election outcome, but no legitimate evidence has ever emerged suggesting that the outcome could’ve been legitimately changed.

Notably, Pocan’s office shared that he plans to imminently introduce legislation that would specifically criminalize the act of falsifying electoral votes. This week, Pocan commented as follows:

‘When individuals lie and commit fraud about our elections and get away with it, it shatters the most basic levels of trust we have in our democracy. I urge Attorney General Garland to investigate these individuals in Wisconsin and any of the individuals in six other states who tried to connive their way into overthrowing an election by impersonating a member of the electoral college.’

In Wisconsin, it recently emerged that the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office had been in touch with the state Department of Justice in relation to their state’s arm of the fake elector scheme. Trump campaign officials and longtime ally to the ex-president Rudy Giuliani have been reported to have been involved in the leadership of the cross-state scheme to get these essentially faked electoral votes put together. In theory, such leadership could form at least part of the basis for a potential future recommendation to the Justice Department from the House riot investigation committee to charge Trump or others in his circle with the perpetration of a criminal conspiracy. The panel has been reported to have been considering issuing such a recommendation, although it would not be binding.