Washington: Among the records that Donald Trump's lawyers tried to shield from Jan. 6 investigators are a draft executive order directing the nation's top military leader to seize voting machines, a report said Friday.
The explosive document released by the National Archives contains remarks that appear to have been scheduled for delivery a day after the Capitol riot. It's unclear who wrote the document, Politico said.
As per reports, the document highlights the extreme measures Trump may have been willing to take to cling to power against the will of voters who picked Joe Biden to be their next president.
Dated December 16 2020, the order sought to appoint a special counsel to bring charges on any fraud allegations that arose from the seizures. But it was never signed.
Citing conspiracy theories about Dominion voting machines, the order directs the nation's top military leader to "seize, collect, retain and analyze all machines, equipment, electronically stored information." The order called for a special counsel to bring charges based on the seized information and authorized the defence secretary to use the national guard.
Reporter Betsy Woodruff Swan, who broke the story, notes that the order may have been part of a plan to keep Trump in office after January 20, 2021.
It is among 750-plus records turned over to the House of Representatives select committee investigating the 2021 Capitol assault after the Supreme Court rejected Trump's appeal to block their release.
The draft executive order that emerged Friday focuses specifically on touchscreen ballot-marking devices made by Dominion that were used in Georgia, where a hand recount and machine recount affirmed Biden's win.
It repeats false allegations about Dominion being "owned or heavily controlled and influenced by foreign agents, countries, and interests" and alleges that its machines are deliberately designed to create "systemic fraud."
Powell and Giuliani are fighting billion-dollar defamation lawsuits from Dominion and Smartmatic, another voting machine company.