Remember how President Trump’s “elite strike force” of election lawyers kept promising they were going to release a trove of information proving the election was rigged in Biden’s favor, in part by compromised voting machines? Well, it turns out there was no trove after all, and that the Trump campaign knew as early as mid-November that claims of impropriety against Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic software were complete and utter bullshit.
The revelation comes by way of court documents filed late last week, released Monday night, and reported on Tuesday by The New York Times. The documents, part of a defamation lawsuit brought against the campaign and said “elite strike force” by a former Dominion employee, contains emails in which Zach Parkinson, a deputy communications director for the Trump campaign, asked on November 13th for others on the campaign to “substantiate or debunk” several claims about Dominion. They did, returning a memo laying out that Dominion’s voting machines did not use Smartmatic software in the 2020 election; that Dominion does not have ties to liberal mega-donor George Soros or communists in Venezuela; and that Dominion leadership is not connected to antifa activists.
These claims were the basis for an out-of-control web of conspiracies theories propagated in part by pro-Trump lawyers Sydney Powell and Rudy Giuliani as they sought to sow doubt in the legitimacy of the election. The court documents also suggest, according to the Times, that the Trump campaign kept these findings quiet as the theories spread ahead of the January 6th insurrection and beyond.
“The Trump campaign continued to allow its agents to advance debunked conspiracy theories and defame [the former Dominion employee, Eric Coomer] apparently without providing them with their own research debunking those theories,” the motion read.
It’s unclear whether Powell or Giuliani knew about the memo debunking Dominion’s imagined ties to imagine election fraud, but Giuliani said in a deposition that at the time the report was prepared in mid-November, both of them were “active supervisors” in the Trump campaign’s attempt to contest the election results. Days after the report was prepared, they raised the prospect of Dominion’s involvement during a press conference at the Republican National Committee. You know the one. It was the time Giuliani’s hair started leaking.
Powell even claimed at the press conference that the company’s software was “created by Hugo Chavez.”
Once again: “elite strike force.”
Regardless of whether Powell or Giuliani had seen the Trump campaign’s report debunking Dominion’s involvement, the Trump campaign knew the company was not working in tandem with communist financiers and proceeded to let conspiracy theories to the contrary propagate throughout right-wing media and among networks of Trump’s supporters. Less than two months after the report was compiled, thousands of the latter would storm the Capitol and attempt to subvert the democratic process under the belief that the election was stolen.
Does Trump care? Of course not. The former president has continued to push the idea that the election was stolen. So too have Giuliani and Powell, this despite the dozens upon dozens of comically doomed lawsuits, the complete absence of anything resembling credible evidence, and, of course, the peskiest inconvenience of them all: the fact that President Biden won the election by over seven million votes.