In a phone call in late 2020, President Donald Trump tried to pressure Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) to overturn the state’s presidential election results, saying that if enough fraudulent votes could be found it would overcome Trump’s narrow loss in Arizona, according to three people familiar with the call.
Trump also repeatedly asked Vice President Mike Pence to call Ducey and prod him to find the evidence to substantiate Trump’s claims of fraud, according to two of these people. Pence called Ducey several times to discuss the election, they said, though he did not follow Trump’s directions to pressure the governor.
The extent of Trump’s efforts to cajole Ducey into helping him stay in power have not before been reported, even as other efforts by Trump’s lawyer and allies to pressure Arizona officials have been made public. Ducey told reporters in December 2020 that he and Trump had spoken, but he declined to disclose the contents of the call then or in the more than two years since. Although he disagreed with Trump about the outcome of the election, Ducey has sought to avoid a public battle with Trump.
Ducey described the “pressure” he was under after Trump’s loss to a prominent Republican donor over a meal in Arizona earlier this year, according to the donor, who like others interviewed for this story spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations. The account was confirmed by others aware of the call. Ducey told the donor he was surprised that special counsel Jack Smith’s team had not inquired about his phone calls with Trump and Pence as part of the Justice Department’s investigation into the former president’s attempt to overturn the 2020 election, the donor said.
Ducey did not record the call, people familiar with the matter said.
Now out of public office, the former governor declined through a spokesman to answer specific questions about his interactions with Trump and his administration.
“This is neither new nor is it news to anyone following this issue the last two years,” spokesman Daniel Scarpinato said in a statement. “Governor Ducey defended the results of Arizona’s 2020 election, he certified the election, and he made it clear that the certification provided a trigger for credible complaints backed by evidence to be brought forward. None were ever brought forward. The Governor stands by his action to certify the election and considers the issue to be in the rear view mirror.”
A spokesman for Trump declined to respond to questions about the call with Ducey and instead falsely declared in a statement that “the 2020 Presidential election was rigged and stolen.” The spokesman said Trump should be credited for “doing the right thing — working to make sure that all the fraud was investigated and dealt with.”
Saturday, July 1, 2023
With Supreme Court silly season over, we're taking a bit of a break here to recharge.
Anything good comes along I'll write it up, but we'll be on limited posts for the first week of July.
Meanwhile, go watch Nimona on Netflix. I haven't seen an animated film ooze this much style since Soul.