CNN is reporting the existence of another state-level investigation into efforts after the 2020 presidential election to assemble ostensible slates of electoral college votes for former President Donald Trump in over half a dozen states that were won by Joe Biden. This time, the investigation — in which Trump-connected lawyer Kenneth Chesebro is cooperating — is in Wisconsin.
The existence of the Wisconsin probe makes the state the sixth where legal action in the form of such an investigation — or actual charges — has been confirmed. Criminal charges for involved individuals, including Chesebro himself, have been filed in Georgia, Michigan, and most recently Nevada, and the fake electors scheme also figures into the federal criminal case against Trump himself on allegations of attempted election subversion. (In that case, Trump has most recently been seeking a hold on the proceedings as he pursues arguments that he holds wide-ranging presidential immunity covering his time in office.)
CNN didn’t have many details about the course of the Wisconsin probe so far. The recently announced Nevada charges for fake electors came after reported cooperation in the state from Chesebro, who helped originate and push the whole scheme. Implicated in the Nevada case are relatively high-profile Republican figures in the state, including the chairman of Nevada’s Republican Party, a man named Michael McDonald. Excuses from Trump’s circles for the electors scheme included the notion the largely misrepresentative documents were meant just as a back-up plan in the event that election-related litigation went the outgoing president’s way — though indications have pointed to intentions for using the sham electoral votes regardless of courtroom outcomes.
Besides, the general course of election-related litigation — with losses upon losses for Trump — was already clear when the sham electors across seven states met and assembled their unsupported claims to legitimacy. Only Pennsylvania has seen neither a documented investigation poised to produce potential charges or actual charges for their fake electors.