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Information present strain by Trump, allies on Arizona officers

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PHOENIX (AP) — Newly launched data present the highest Republicans in Arizona’s largest county dodged calls from Donald Trump and his allies within the aftermath of the 2020 election, because the then-president sought to stop the certification of Joe Biden’s victory in key battleground states.

The data — together with voicemails and textual content messages — make clear one other state the place Trump, his attorneys and others mounted a behind-the-scenes strain marketing campaign on Republican officers overseeing elections. Days earlier than Congress licensed Biden’s win on Jan. 6, Trump pressed Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to seek out sufficient votes to overturn Biden’s win there.

Trump tried to achieve Clint Hickman, then the chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, on Jan. 3, shortly earlier than midnight in Washington and hours after news broke of Trump’s name with Raffensperger.

“Howdy, sir. That is the White Home operator I used to be calling to let you already know that the president’s out there to take your name when you’re free,” the White Home operator mentioned in a voicemail. “If you happen to may please give us a name again, sir, that’d be nice. You could have night.”

Hickman informed The Arizona Republic, which first obtained the data from Maricopa County, that he didn’t return the telephone name. He mentioned he presumed Trump would attempt to strain him to vary election outcomes or talk about election conspiracies as he had carried out with Raffensperger.

“I’m not going to tape a president, so I’m not going to speak to a president. … I didn’t need to have a really tough name to my house on a Sunday night time,” Hickman informed the Republic.

Hickman and the remainder of the Board of Supervisors, which is managed 4-1 by Republicans, have aggressively defended the vote rely in Maricopa County, which incorporates Phoenix and 60% of Arizona’s voters. They’ve maintained the end result was not affected by fraud or irregularities.

State Senate Republicans used their subpoena energy to take management of all 2.1 million ballots and the machines that counted them. A agency led by a Trump supporter who has shared far-fetched conspiracy theories is overseeing an audit for the Senate GOP.

Probably the most aggressive strain got here from Arizona Republican Get together Chairwoman Kelli Ward, who tried to persuade Republicans on the board to query the election outcomes, even because the officers tried to instill confidence within the them. At one level, she texted Hickman, “We’d like you to cease the counting.”

She tried to persuade Hickman and Supervisors Steve Chucri and Invoice Gates to name Trump lawyer Sidney Powell, who filed lawsuits across the nation alleging the election conspiracies. The lawsuits have been all thrown out.

Early Nov. 20, when the board was scheduled to certify Maricopa County’s election outcomes, Ward texted Gates, “Can we discuss right now now that the lawsuit is over? There are such a lot of abnormalities that should be adjudicated. I do know the Republican board doesn’t need to be remembered because the entity who led the cost to certify a fraudulent election.”

After sending info alleging fraud — and shortly earlier than the board voted to simply accept the election outcomes — she texted him, “Seems like your fellow Repubs are dropping by the wayside. Very unhappy. And unAmerican.”

She texted Chucri, “Appears you’re taking part in for the improper group and folks will bear in mind. WRONG group.”

The data additionally embody voicemails from Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani attempting to achieve a number of of the GOP supervisors. Chucri met with Giuliani when he was in Phoenix to air Trump’s baseless fraud theories.

“If you happen to get an opportunity, would you please give me a name,” Giuliani mentioned in a message to Gates. “I’ve a couple of issues I’d prefer to visit you. Possibly we are able to get this factor fastened up. You already know, I actually assume it’s a disgrace that Republicans type of are each in this type of scenario. And I believe there could also be a pleasant approach to resolve this for everyone.”

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