Newly released text messages between Senator Mike Lee and former head of the white house of Staff Mark Meadows show Lee advised and helped former President Donald Trump’s attempts to overthrow results of elections 2020. Messages also show that Lee was in the know of legally dubious strategy have then Vice President Mike Pence throw out Electoral college votes much earlier than he claimed.
CNN released nearly 100 text messages from Lee and Texas Rep. Chip Roy to Meadows. in in aftermath of Trump’s defeat in the 2020 election. Texts are traceable how Lee has gone from ferocious advocate for Trump’s efforts warning White House that the scheme could backfire.
Lee’s efforts to help Trump began on November 7, the day Democrat Joe Biden was declared winner. He sent Meadows a text statement signed by the leaders of several prominent conservative groups calling on Trump to “exhaust all legal and constitutional remedies” in challenging results.
“Use it however you see fit,” Lee wrote. “And if it’s good for you for To you leak it, feel free to do it.”
Lee also insisted that Meadows help Attorney Sidney Powell access to Trump. Powell claimed that secret cabal including George Soros, the late Hugo Chavez, the CIA and thousands of election officials who conspired to steal votes from Trump in 2020.
“Sidney (sic) Powell says she needs in to see the President, but she is kept away from him. Apparently she has strategy to save life and put multiple states back in play. You can help get her in? Lee wrote to Meadows on November 7th.
Lee two days later again has reached out to Meadows on on behalf of of Powell.
Sydney said us in campaign advocate who not know not focused on this is hindered progress. I do not have way of confirmation or refutation of this on my own but I found to be straight forward,” Lee wrote.
Powell’s claims of a conspiracy led in she was sued for defamation by Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic. Powell facing multiple disciplinary actions, including dismissal, in several states for her actions after the 2020 elections.
November 19 Lee realizes his support of Powell may have been mistake after a catastrophic news conference, where she detailed strange claims about global communist conspiracy to rig elections against Trump.
“I’m concerned about Powell’s press conference,” Lee wrote. in in first in a series of text messages. “If Powell can’t back up all she said i’m kind of I doubt she can.
Above next three days, Lee reached out in Meadows several times asking for march orders.
“You are welcome give me something work with. I just need to know what am I should talk,” Lee wrote. on November 19th.
“Please tell me what I should talk, Lee asked. next day.
November 23 Lee first brings up lawyer John Eastman suggesting some wrongdoing in multiple states and an audit proposal.
“Eastman has some really interesting research on This. good news This (sic) is that Eastman offers an approach that, unlike what Sidney Powell (sic) suggested, could be learned very quickly,” Lee said.
Eastman was behind election disruption plan results having a handful of Biden-led states submit alternate lists of voters. Competing tablets will allow vice president reject results from these states throwing elections to the House of Representatives Hold Trump in White House.
Lee claimed that first learned of Eastman plan on January 2, when he received a copy of confidential note from the White House. He told authors Bob Woodward and Robert Costa that he was “surprised” by the plan and made “Telephone call after phone callto see if any states are willing to approve alternate electors, but found none.
In reality, did you know of gambit almost a month before he announced.
On December 8, Lee texted Meadows: “If you really small a handful of of state legislatures were to appoint alternate lists of delegates, maybe a plan,” Lee wrote.
“I work on How is that of yesterday,” Meadows replied.
Eastman invoked his Fifth Amendment rights when questioned by a House committee that investigated the case on January 6. attack on US Capitol. Eastman was asked about his communications. with Lee, but also admitted Fifth.
On December 16, Lee asked Meadows wanted any senators object to certification of electoral votes which was part of of Eastman plans throw out in results. But Lee seemed to be cooling down. on plan by implementing move may not be legal.
“Besides, if you want senators object, we need to hear from you on that ideally get some guidance on what arguments to give,” Lee wrote.
“I think we are already past the point where we can expect anyone will do it without some direction and a strong evidentiary argument,” Lee added.
next available got a message from Meadows on January 3, when he warned of efforts by Texas Senator Ted Cruz and others to object to the election results.
“I have serious concerns. with in way my friend Ted is doing it,” wrote Lee. “It won’t do any good of the president.”
But Lee was still hopeful that some states would certify alternative tablets. of voters who object results lot easier.
“All changes, of sure if swing states introduce competing tablets of voters in accordance with state law,” Lee said.
Lee warns Meadows that efforts to get Congress give in win Trump could backfire on the president.
“I know it just ends badly for president if we don’t have a constitution on our side. And if these states do not obey new shales of We do not make Trump Electors under state law,” Lee wrote.
next day, trump took a public shot Lee during a rally in Georgia after Lee announced he didn’t do support election protest results.
“Mike Lee is here, but I’m a little mad at him,” Trump said.
Lee was unhappy about being publicly called out president and poured out on Meadows.
“I spent 14 hours day for in last I’ve been trying to figure this out for a week. for his. For him to shoot me like that in such public setting up without even asking me about it is pretty daunting,” Lee said.
Lee explained that he called lawmakers in several states trying to create way defend Congress throwing out results in service of Trump. AT one text, Lee suggested he was trying to convince state legislators to create an excuse for Congress to act.
“We need something from the state legislatures to make it legal and have any hope of win. Even if they fail to assemble, it may be enough if the majority of They are ready sign statement indicating how they would vote’ Lee wrote.
After all, Lee join other Republicans in objection to results.
Tribune has reached out to Senator Lee office for comment.
Lee facing Republicans Becky Edwards and Ellie Isom in June primary as he seeks a third term in Congress.
In a statement to The Tribune, Edwards tore Lee for his participation in annulment scheme results.
“Sep. Mike Lee explored the possibility of abolishing legitimate democratic elections for party and political interests. The moment Lee became aware of gravity of Trump’s attempts to undermine the 2020 election, he should stop researching the legitimacy of such actions and stopped pressure on local legislators,” Edwards said. campaign said in text message.
“Lee is obligated to protect our Constitution and the democratic process, as he swore when took office. Instead, he allowed the situation to continue and made it possible for those who want to save themselves in power, no matter the consequences”, Edwards added.
Isom did not respond to search messages comment.
Independent candidate for the US Senate Evan McMullin also jumped on Lee’s text messages suggesting Lee was trying to hide his involvement in electoral scheme.
“Why did Senator Mike Lee advise false legal attempts to cancel the 2020 election? And why did he hide these plans in days leading up until January 6? McMullin said on Twitter by connecting it post to a fundraising appeal.
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Correction: 10:51 April 15: This article was updated with correct writing of Sydney Powell.