Trump plan to declare election victory ‘premeditated,’ committee says
Even before ballots were fully counted in the Nov. 3, 2020, election, former President Trump allegedly conspired with key influential conservative activists, possibly as early as July, to claim victory and declare that the election was stolen.
The House Select Committee detailed new information showing that Trump’s plans to declare victory were “premeditated” and that he worked with Tom Fitton, Stephen K. Bannon, Roger Stone and others to deny the election results. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose) laid out some of the allegations in her opening remarks.
“This Big Lie, President Trump’s effort to convince Americans that he had won the 2020 election began before the election results even came in,” Lofgren said. “It was intentional, it was premeditated, it was not based on election results or any evidence of actual fraud affecting the results, or any actual problems with voting machines. It was a plan concocted in advance.”
According to an interview with former Trump campaign advisor Brad Parscale, the former president started planning to deny the election results as early as July, Lofgren said.
Trump’s work with Fitton included a speech to be given on election night in which he would declare victory.
“The Fitton memo specifically indicates a plan that only the votes counted by the election day deadline — there is no election day deadline — would matter,” Zofgren said. “Everyone knew that ballot counting would continue lawfully past election day.”
Bannon also knew of Trump’s plan.
“What Trump is going to do is declare victory…, but that doesn’t mean he is the winner. He’s just going to say he is the winner,” Bannon said in an Oct. 31, 2020, recording aired by the Select Committee.
Bannon added that Trump planned to say the election was stolen on election night, even if he was behind in votes. “If Biden is winning, Trump is going to do some crazy s—.”
Bannon refused to testify and is awaiting sentencing for contempt of Congress charges. Stone invoked his 5th Amendment right and declined to directly answer committee questions.
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