Trump & DOJ

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When Representative Scott Perry joined his colleagues in a monthslong campaign to undermine the results of the presidential election, promoting “Stop the Steal” events and supporting an attempt to overturn millions of legally cast votes, he often took a back seat to higher-profile loyalists in President Donald J. Trump’s orbit.

But Mr. Perry, an outspoken Pennsylvania Republican, played a significant role in the crisis that played out at the top of the Justice Department this month, when Mr. Trump considered firing the acting attorney general and backed down only after top department officials threatened to resign en masse.

In his last weeks in office, former President Donald Trump considered moving to replace the acting attorney general with another official ready to pursue unsubstantiated claims of election fraud, and he pushed the Justice Department to ask the Supreme Court to invalidate President Biden’s victory, people familiar with the matter said.

Those efforts failed due to pushback from his own appointees in the Justice Department, who refused to file what they viewed as a legally baseless lawsuit in the Supreme Court. Later, other senior department officials threatened to resign en masse should Mr. Trump fire then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, according to several people familiar with the discussions.

Senior department officials, including Mr. Rosen, former Attorney General William Barr and former acting Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall refused to file the Supreme Court case, concluding that there was no basis to challenge the election outcome and that the federal government had no legal interest in whether Mr. Trump or Mr. Biden won the presidency, some of these people said. White House counsel Pat Cipollone and his deputy, Patrick Philbin, also opposed Mr. Trump’s idea, which was promoted by his outside attorneys, these people said.

In the final weeks of his presidency, former President Donald Trump attempted to overturn state election results in Georgia by pressuring officials to “find” votes for him. And according to a new report from the New York Times, Trump’s efforts extended beyond that: He also contemplated replacing the acting US attorney general with one more sympathetic to his efforts to force a change in the Georgia results.

The Times’s Katie Benner reports that Trump and Jeffrey Clark, a Department of Justice lawyer in charge of the civil division, devised a plan that would have seen the Department of Justice working to improperly keep Trump in office by replacing acting attorney general Jeffrey Rosen — who had refused to go along with Trump’s attempts to undermine election results — with Clark.

A rash of DOJ officials, briefed on the plan via conference call on January 3, threatened to resign if that occurred, according to the Times report. That threat, along with a contentious meeting with Rosen, Clark, and Trump in which each DOJ official made their case to the president, reportedly dissuaded Trump from replacing Rosen in the end.

Donald Trump planned to fire his Attorney General for refusing to overturn election results and replace him with one who would, according to a bombshell report.

Jeffrey Rosen, who was serving as acting Attorney General after Bill Barr resigned just before Christmas, would not agree to upend the presidential election result in Georgia, according to the New York Times. 

He also pushed Rosen to appoint special counsels, including one who would look into Dominion Voting Systems - an election machinery company, which Trump and his supporters accused, without any evidence, of switching votes from Trump to Joe Biden.

Trump worked with another Justice Department official, Jeffrey Clark, to try to overturn the Georgia vote. 

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