Trump-linked lawyer John Eastman pushed Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania to recalculate the state's 2020 popular vote to “help provide some cover” to advance pro-Trump electors, according to newly released emails.
Eastman presented a plan to a Pennsylvania state lawmaker to toss tens of thousands of absentee ballots in the state that arrived after the statutory deadline and had signature verification violations in an attempt to put then-President Donald Trump in the lead in the state, the newly released emails revealed.
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“Having done that math, you’d be left with a significant Trump lead that would bolster the argument for the Legislature adopting a slate of Trump electors — perfectly within your authority to do anyway, but now bolstered by the untainted popular vote,” Eastman apparently wrote in an email to Pennsylvania Republican state Rep. Russ Diamond on Dec. 4, 2020. “That would help provide some cover.”
The exchange stemmed from a slew of emails from the University of Colorado, where Eastman served as a visiting professor while proposing the legal strategies, unearthed via a public records request from the Colorado Ethics Institute, Politico reported. The group turned them over to the House Select committee on the Jan. 6 riot last month, according to the outlet.
In the email to Diamond, Eastman argued that Republican legislatures could reference their concerns with the state's absentee ballot processes. The retabulation would be used to defend replacing then-candidate Joe Biden's electors with pro-Trump electors.
"I suspect they contained ample evidence of sufficient anomalies and illegal votes to have turned the election from Trump to Biden. If that is the case, you could add another section of factual findings based on the evidence presented at that hearing, and then adopt a resolution that has the Legislature simply affirming what appears to have been the result of the popular vote untainted by the illegal votes," he wrote in the Dec. 4, 2020, email.
Here's John Eastman straight-up saying PA should send Trump electors by not actually counting votes, but pro-rating them after excluding a bunch. pic.twitter.com/UVpJJQ9iLy— Aaron Blake (@AaronBlake) May 11, 2022
Diamond said the email exchange came while the two were bouncing ideas around but noted that not every idea was pursued.“Professor Eastman was but one of many individuals I interacted with in the aftermath of the 2020 general election,” Diamond told the Washington Examiner. “I believe that jealously guarding and preserving the legitimate authority of the Pennsylvania General Assembly should always remain a priority.”
His recommended retabulation technique prescribed the state to take absentee ballots received after the statutory deadline and use historical data to “discount each candidate's totals by a prorated amount based on the absentee percentage those candidates otherwise received,” the emails indicate.
For signature verification, he recommended taking the "difference between the 4% historical rejection rate and the .34% rejection rate done under the illegal procedures and similarly discount each candidate's totals by a prorated amount based on the absentee percentage those candidates otherwise received," according to the released communications.
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Eastman has been ensnared in a legal battle with the Jan. 6 committee over its subpoena request of his Chapman University emails, seeking to gain insights into his strategy to subvert the 2020 election. Eastman sued the committee to block the subpoena request. Last week, the committee dropped its bid to get its hands on nearly 14,000 pages worth of emails, leaving nearly 3,000 in the imminent legal crosshairs.
Biden won the Keystone State by over 80,000 votes.