Viewing the group as bumbling, however, minimizes the danger of what Mr. Trump and his allies attempted and downplays how deadly it was: As Representative Adam Schiff, a member of the committee, noted, the country survived Mr. Trump’s attempt to electoral undermining, which could have worked despite the legal and factual weaknesses in the fraud claims.
What if people with less fortitude than Mr. Bowers and others conceded? Think of Brad Raffensperger, the secretary of state in Georgia, who also testified on Tuesday about pressure from the Trump team. He described a direct phone call from a man who was then the incumbent president urging him to “find” 11,780 votes to change Georgia from Mr. Biden to Mr. Trump. What if, instead of dismissing Mr. Trump, Mr. Raffensperger stated that he felt there were enough questions about the vote count in Georgia’s Democratic counties to justify the nomination of new voters by the legislature, as Mr. Trump had insisted?
Had even one of these officials cooperated, the levees could have broken and claims could have increased state after state.
There is no doubt that Mr. Trump was trying to steal the election. Richard Donoghue, a top Justice Department official who served during the post-election period, testified Thursday that with extensive evidence he has rejected every silly theory of voter fraud put forward by Mr Trump and his allies, but it was allowed. to no avail. He testified that there were nothing but “isolated” cases of fraud, the same conclusion came to the former Attorney General, Bill Barr.
Mr Bowers testified that when he demanded evidence from Mr Giuliani, Mr Giuliani said he had theories but no proof. The president seems to have known it too. According to Mr. Donoghue’s handwritten notes of his conversation with Mr. Trump, when confronted with the lack of evidence of fraud, the former president said, “Tell me the election was corrupt” and “leave the rest to me” and the Republican congressmen. The president even talked about that the federal government is confiscating voting machines, perhaps in an attempt to run the election again.
The longer Mr. Garland waits to press charges against Mr. Trump, the harder it will be, especially if Mr. Trump has already declared himself president and can say that the prosecution is politically motivated to help Democrats win in 2024. The fact that federal Investigators have conducted a search of evidence at Mr. Clark’s home, showing that the department is working closer to the former president.