Former President Donald Trump pressured two Republican canvassers in Michigan to keep from certifying the 2020 presidential election, recordings show.
In a November 2020 phone call, Mr. Trump told canvassers Monica Palmer and William Hartmann that they would look “terrible” if they signed the documents after they voted first in opposition and later in the meeting voted to certify the county’s election results, the recordings reviewed by The Detroit News show.
“We’ve got to fight for our country,” Mr. Trump said on the recordings. “We can’t let these people take our country away from us.”
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel was also on the call with the two canvassers, who were inside a vehicle. Ms. Palmer told The News that other people entered the car and could’ve heard and recorded the conversation.
“If you can go home tonight, do not sign it,” Mrs. McDaniel said on the phone, adding, “We will get you attorneys.”
“We’ll take care of that,” Mr. Trump said.
Mrs. McDaniel, a resident of Wayne County, said she stood by her push for an audit of the election results in Michigan.
“What I said publicly and repeatedly at the time, as referenced in my letter on Nov. 21, 2020, is that there was ample evidence that warranted an audit,” McDaniel said Thursday in a statement to The News.
The four-minute conversation was recorded in a vehicle within 30 minutes of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers meeting’s end on Nov. 17, 2020, records showed.
Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung told The News that the former president’s actions “were taken in furtherance of his duty as president of the United States to faithfully take care of the laws and ensure election integrity, including investigating the rigged and stolen 2020 presidential election.”
He added, “President Trump and the American people have the constitutional right to free and fair elections.”
This isn’t the first call of its kind. The president at the time also spoke with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger in January 2021, urging him to “find” more votes to prove he won in the state. In another call, he pressured Georgia House Speaker David Ralston to overturn what Mr. Trump called a rigged election.