New leaked audio reveals inner workings of Trump's fake elector plot

Yesterday, CNN and the Detroit News published audio that revealed new details surrounding the fake elector scheme concocted by Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign following his electoral loss. The audio is of Kenneth Chesebro, one of Trump’s key legal representatives, who explained to investigators how as the presidential certification on Jan. 6 loomed, the former president’s inner circle frantically rushed to send election certificates from Michigan and Wisconsin signed by counterfeit electors. 

The audio was taken from testimony given by Chesebro, who was a key planner of the fake elector strategy, in Detroit following an investigation into his role in the plot. Chesebro and other members of Trump’s team, according to the statement, attempted to bring the certificates to then-Vice President Mike Pence before he certified the actual results and officially ended Trump’s term. 

At one point, it had been assumed that the certificates were lost in the mail. Eventually, Chesebro admitted, the task fell to a member of the Wisconsin GOP and a campaign employee, who hoped to bring the false electoral documents on a commercial flight to the Capitol — though not everyone was thrilled with the approach. 

“Freaking trump idiots want someone to fly original elector papers to the Senate president,” an operative working with the Wisconsin Republican Party said in an email acquired by the Jan. 6 House Committee. 

Chesebro then singled out Trump campaign lawyer Matt Morgan and staffer Mike Roman as the individuals most intimately involved with a plan to charter a private jet that would fly the phony certificates to the Capitol just before the clock struck midnight on Trump’s bureaucratic coup. He also maintained that Morgan and Roman “lied” about their contribution to the scheme and essentially threw him under the bus to the committee. 

"To have the three top campaign lawyers, in interviews with Congress, claim they pulled out of this… And I ran off and did it with [Rudy] Giuliani when in fact they were day-by-day coordinating the efforts… That's what really rankles," Chesebro said. "I was under suspicion because they lied to [the Jan. 6th Committee] about me."

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) was also mentioned as being a crucial ally in their efforts to overturn the election. "This [was] a high-level decision to get the Michigan and Wisconsin votes there," Chesebro told Michigan officials. "And they had to enlist, you know, a U.S. senator to try to expedite it, to get it to Pence in time."

It’s worth noting that Chesebro, who pleaded guilty to a count of felonious conspiracy in Georgia, authored — along with fellow Trump lawyer and far-right svengali John Eastman — the legal memo that served as the blueprint for Trump’s fraudulent elector maneuver. He also admitted to passing documents along that would have brought the bogus elector ballots to Pence. 

Chesebro’s theory was that since the president is not technically elected by voters, but by state electors, the Trump team could harass state legislators in key swing states to select electors which would hold Trump up as the actual winner of the 2020 election. Though the campaign did not expect this argument to hold up in front of the Supreme Court, Chesebro and other advisors believed it would buy them enough time to formulate a more plausible strategy and sow doubt about the election results.

Watch the full clip of Chesebro’s testimony below: 

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Jamie Larson