Dane County Clerk receives subpoena in 2020 election investigation
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - County clerks across the country received subpoenas from a federal grand jury investigating efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, including Dane County Clerk Scott McDonell.
“I was surprised; the 2020 election just keeps on giving,” said McDonell. “We’ve got everything together, and we’ll send it over today (Tuesday).”
McDonell shared the subpoena he received. The document requests any form of communication to 19 people, along with any communication to, from, or involving former President Donald Trump’s campaign. The subpoena directs the clerk to send all pertinent documents to an FBI special agent.
“When you first read, it sounds like they’re compelling you to come to DC on Friday. But when we reached out to them, they were like, ‘No, just send us what you have, and then we’ll go over, and then we’ll call you,’” said McDonell.
Director of the Public Defender Project at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, John Gross, says the goal of the subpoenas is to find out if pressure was put on election officials back in 2020. Clerks in Arizona, Michigan, and Pennsylvania also received subpoenas.
“The type of communication urging clerks to find votes right or a secretary of state to find votes for Donald Trump, which is the case in Georgia,” said Gross. “The goal here is to see if there was a conspiracy to overturn the election and to defraud the United States and interfere with the peaceful transition of power.”
Gross says the process will likely take some time to work through the documents, anticipating the investigation keeps this “close to the vest.” Gross adds the investigation could view such pressure on clerks from a campaign member (if any evidence is found) as an attempt to defraud the United States, an attempt to interfere with governmental administration, or even a seditious conspiracy, the most severe charge.
There have been several investigations into the 2020 election, and no widespread voter fraud has been found in Wisconsin.
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