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'Say the Election Was Corrupt, (and) Leave the Rest to Me'

Newly released notes reveal Trump's pressure on the Justice Department
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2021 1:21 PM CDT
Trump's Plea to the AG: 'Just Say the Election Was Corrupt'
In this September 2020 file photo, then-Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen speaks at the Justice Department.   (Tasos Katopodis/Pool via AP)

(Newser) – Newly released notes reveal the personal pressure then-President Trump put on his Justice Department to overturn the election, reports the Washington Post. The notes were taken by Richard Donoghue, a top aide to acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, who was present for some of the phone calls Trump placed to Rosen in late 2020. Highlights:

  • Rosen told Trump the Justice Department "can't + won't snap its fingers + change the outcome of the election," according to Donoghue's notes, which also record Trump's reply: "Just say that the election was corrupt + leave the rest to me and the R. Congressmen."
  • Trump called Rosen regularly to push his claims of fraud. "We have an obligation to tell people that this was an illegal, corrupt election," he said, per CNN, adding that "people are angry."
  • But, according to the notes, Donoghue told the president that "much of the info you're getting is false," per the Times. Trump told the AG that "you guys may not be following the internet the way I do."

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  • The notes have been turned over to Congress, and the Post reports that Trump opted not to block that move because he doesn't see them as damaging. Democratic Rep. Carolyn Maloney, chairwoman of the Oversight and Reform Committee, disagrees. They "show that President 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."
(Read more President Trump stories.)

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