HomeThe LatestThere is a “creepy little cabal” behind Trump’s fascist attempt of stealing...

There is a “creepy little cabal” behind Trump’s fascist attempt of stealing an election

A conspiracy is forming that might be more than enough to force Jordan, Perry, and Gosar out of Congress for good. Of course, none of this will happen, but there is no good reason for it not to. We’ve all heard enough of it. The Department of Justice feels the same way. So does the special committee looking into this.

While many people have Christmas crushes on Liz Cheney, we should not forget that committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson is playing the game like a grandmaster. (And part of Thompson’s cunning is allowing Cheney to run the show the way she has.) 

Mark Meadows, Louie Gohmert, Jim Jordan and Paul Gosar via Gage Skidmore is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ and Jeffrey Clark via his government professional photo

The way he’s handled this so far reminds of how everyone found Sam Ervin when he summoned the Senate Watergate Committee. (Of course, Thompson does not have Ervin’s historical baggage.) He has been careful but tenacious in his search of witnesses, and he has shown to be an expert at getting useful material into the media. He’s got them on the run, and it’s obvious.

The congressmen, all members of the ultraconservative House Freedom Caucus, collaborated closely with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, whose crucial role in Mr. Trump’s attempts to undermine a democratic election is becoming clear as the congressional probe into Jan. 6 takes steam.

Liz Cheney via screenshot of YouTube video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=REyCXcoL9FM

The guys were not alone in their efforts — most Republican politicians, at least vocally, supported Trump’s phony charges of fraud — but this circle went well beyond words and into action. They barraged the Justice Department with shaky allegations of election irregularities. They put pressure on members of state legislatures to undertake audits that would call the election results into question. They planned to derail Biden’s victory celebrations on January 6.

There was Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio, the brash former wrestler who boosted his national profile by defending Trump on cable television; Representative Andy Biggs of Arizona, whose political ascension was bolstered by a $10 million sweepstakes win; and Representative Paul Gosar, an Arizona dentist who trafficked in conspiracy theories, spoke at a white nationalist rally, and posted an animated video depicting him killing Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Screenshot taken from Paul Gosar’s anime of him killing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

They were joined by Texas Representative Louie Gohmert, who was known for delivering fiery speeches to an empty House chamber and unsuccessfully sued Vice President Mike Pence over his refusal to interfere in election certification; and Alabama Representative Mo Brooks, a lawyer who rode the Tea Party wave to Congress and was later sued by a Democratic congressman for inciting the Jan. 6 riot. Perry, a former Army helicopter pilot who knows Jordan and Meadows well, served as a de facto sergeant. Many of the attempts to keep Trump in office were orchestrated by him, including a plot to replace the acting attorney general with a more pliable official. His coworkers refer to him as General Perry.

Congressman Bennie Thompson via AFGE is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Trump met with members of the Freedom Caucus on December 21 to discuss their intentions. There were Jordan, Gosar, Biggs, Brooks, and Meadows. “This sedition will be stopped,” Gosar said on Twitter. When asked about such gatherings, Gosar’s chief of staff said that the congressman and his colleagues “have and had every right to attend rallies and speeches.”

The House select committee has issued six further subpoenas to senior Trump campaign aides, as it continues to seek testimony and records from key witnesses in the wide-ranging investigation.

The committee is targeting prominent officials from former President Trump’s reelection campaign with this wave of subpoenas, alleging that they were complicit in spreading the idea that the presidential election was stolen.

Trump 2020 campaign manager William Stepien via screenshot from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZkPWh58JL9E

The subpoenas were issued to Trump 2020 campaign manager William Stepien, former senior campaign advisor Jason Miller, attorney who assisted Trump in crafting his claim John Eastman, retired United States Army lieutenant general Michael Flynn, former President Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign’s national executive assistant Angela McCallum, Trump loyalist Bernard Kerik. 

All of them were present at the Willard Hotel headquarters for planning the insurrection.

Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign’s national executive assistant Angela McCallum via screenshot from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F516tuJLIEQ

All six persons have been requested to provide papers to the committee by November 23, with depositions slated for the final week of November until mid-December.

“In the days before the January 6th attack, the former President’s closest allies and advisors drove a campaign of misinformation about the election and planned ways to stop the count of Electoral College votes,” Select Committee chairman Rep. Bennie Thompson said in a statement. “The Select Committee needs to know every detail about their efforts to overturn the election, including who they were talking to in the White House and in Congress, what connections they had with rallies that escalated into a riot, and who paid for it all.”

Trump loyalist Bernard Kerik via screenshot from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ki1pH9bzW9M&t=18s

Thompson added: “The Select Committee expects all witnesses to cooperate with our investigation as we work to get answers for the American people, recommend changes to our laws that will strengthen our democracy, and help ensure nothing like January 6th ever happens again.”

This is the committee’s first wave of subpoenas issued since the House urged the Department of Justice to file criminal contempt charges against Trump associate Steve Bannon for refusing to attend and testify in response to a legislative mandate.

Jason MIller via his Twitter profile

The Justice Department has not said whether prosecutors would seek an indictment against Bannon.

According to people familiar with the situation, former DOJ employee Jeffrey Clark stonewalled the committee on Friday, appearing before the panel pursuant to a subpoena but refusing to answer questions put to him.

John Eastman, Candidate for California Attorney General (2010) via Jeastman via Wikimedia
Commons, a freely licensed media file repository and in the public domain

In their subpoena letter to Stepien, the committee writes that his role as Trump’s former campaign manager makes him a critical player in understanding the Trump campaign’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election and promote the “Stop the Steal” narrative that rioters who stormed the US Capitol on January 6 echoed.

The committee cites an anonymous interview with a witness with firsthand knowledge to support its accusation that Stepien was heavily engaged in the messaging behind the campaign’s “Stop the Steal” initiative. In its subpoena letter to him, the committee also cites an internal campaign document from soon after the election that shows the Trump team was aware that the statements concerning the voting equipment firm, Dominion Voting Systems, were false.

Stop the Steal via Chad Davis is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

According to the committee, Kerik previously revealed that he paid for rooms and suites at Washington, DC hotels that “served as election-related command centers.” He also collaborated with Trump’s former attorney Rudy Giuliani “to investigate allegations of voter fraud and promote baseless litigation and ‘Stop the Steal’ efforts,” according to the committee’s findings on Monday.

According to a filing with the Federal Election Commission, Make America Great Again PAC, the successor organization to Trump’s presidential campaign, received two substantial reimbursements in February for “recount travel expenses.” The PAC paid Kerik’s firm $66,251.54 and Giuliani’s company $76,566.95, respectively.

“Trump” via Gage Skidmore is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Eastman sent an email accusing Pence of inciting the riot at the US Capitol on January 6 by refusing to block Congress’ certification of the 2020 election results while the riot was taking place. 

Eastman sent an email accusing Pence of inciting the riot at the US Capitol on January 6 by refusing to block Congress’ certification of the 2020 election results while the riot was taking place. 

Capitol January 6 Trump Riot Via Tyler Merbler is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Democrat from Maryland and a member of the committee, previously stated that the panel will inquire about Eastman’s participation in seeking to reverse the election results.

“We need to determine to what extent there was an organized effort against Vice President Pence and we believe that, you know, some of the actors’ names have become known, including John Eastman, who laid it out in a memo,” Raskin said last month.

Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-MD, via his Facebook page

The committee writes to McCallum that its investigation and public accounts have led the panel to believe that her role as Trump’s reelection campaign’s National Executive Assistant made her aware of and involved in the campaign’s efforts to spread false information about voter fraud in the presidential election.

The committee cites a “publicly available” voicemail recording in its possession that McCallum left for an unknown Michigan state representative, asking whether the Trump campaign could “count on” that representative while also telling the legislator that they had the ability to appoint an alternate slate of electors, despite the fact that the Michigan state Legislature never did so.

Rep. Bennie Thompson via his Facebook page

The committee is looking into Flynn, who served as Trump’s first national security adviser and has remained a staunch ally of the former President since his firing in 2017, because he allegedly attended a December 2020 Oval Office meeting “during which participants discussed seizing voting machines, declaring a national emergency, invoking certain national security emergency powers, and continuing to spread the false message that the November 2020 election had been tainted by widespread fraud.”

“The day before, Flynn gave an interview on Newsmax TV during which he talked about seizing voting machines, foreign influence in the election, and the purported precedent for deploying military troops and declaring martial law to ‘rerun’ the election,” the committee said Monday.

“Michael Flynn” by Gage Skidmore is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

The committee says in its subpoena letter to Miller that the former senior advisor exploited his position of power and prominence inside Trump’s campaign to promote falsehoods about election fraud. Miller’s participation in scheduling press conferences with Trump and Giuliani to suggest that the election was rigged is one of the reasons the committee is interested in him.

Miller was also present in a meeting on January 5 at the Willard Hotel in Washington, DC, which became known as a command center for Trump backers focused on how to reverse the November results and urge then-Vice President Pence not to declare the Electoral College results.

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