Justice Department investigating fake 2020 Trump elector certificates
The purported certificates were sent to the National Archives and had signatures from individuals purporting to be Trump electors in at least seven states that President Joe Biden won.
“Our prosecutors are looking at those, and I can’t say anything more on ongoing investigations,” Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco told CNN on Tuesday. "But more broadly, the attorney general has been clear, we are going to follow the facts and the law wherever they lead to address conduct of any kind and at any level that is part of an assault on our democracy."
Two weeks ago, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced she had turned over information to federal prosecutors from a yearlong investigation she conducted into 16 Republicans whose signatures were placed on fake 2020 electoral certificates in her state. New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas also announced that week that he referred the fake certificates to federal prosecutors.
The documents, which were first published last March by government watchdog American Oversight , purported to be electoral certificates from Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The fake documents had no impact on the outcome of the 2020 election. The real electoral certificates from those states can be found on the National Archives website .
Some of the documents were signed by top Republican Party officials in those states. The documents that American Oversight obtained for New Mexico and Pennsylvania contained a note arguing that the certificates were made in case it was later determined that Trump was the winner in those states.
The fake certificates were sent at a time when Trump was contesting the results of the election. The former president and his allies engaged in litigation claiming there was widespread fraud and irregularities, though the election lawsuits were roundly rejected by the courts. Trump was also pressing former Vice President Mike Pence to stall the Jan. 6 certification and send electoral votes back to several battleground states where GOP-led legislatures could try to overturn the results. But in those turbulent hours, when the Capitol riot disrupted the proceedings, the vice president did not go through with the plan.
Rep. Jamie Raskin, a member of the House select committee investigating Jan. 6, told reporters last week that the committee is interested in investigating the fake certificates, the New York Times reported. He said he was particularly interested in the preparation of the certificates.
Trump and his allies are also facing scrutiny in Fulton County, Georgia, for their actions in the aftermath of the 2020 election. The county's district attorney, Fani Willis, received court approval Monday for a special grand jury to assist in her investigation into whether Trump or his allies broke state laws in their efforts to overturn the Peach State's 2020 election results.