The apparent rush among Republicans to publicly tie themselves to Trump’s insurrection-inspiring lies speaks volumes about the state of the party and the ongoing spread of pro-Trump misinformation on cable and social media. News outlets’ continued willingness to book election-deniers, and thus help keep Trump’s bogus and dangerous “fraud” narrative alive, has been a problem for months. Few have been more outspoken about it than The Daily Show’s Matt Negrin, who on Sunday continued to hold news platforms accountable for their role in propagating election-related disinformation:
This issue is about more than cable bickering: As Trump and his supporters continue to push the Big Lie today, newly-uncovered emails from the waning days of the Trump administration show how far it was willing to go to defy election results at the time.
Mark Meadows, Trump’s then-chief of staff, repeatedly urged Justice Department leadership to open investigations that would in some way subvert or even invalidate Trump’s loss to Joe Biden, the New York Times reported over the weekend. In a particularly egregious violation of well-established communications guidelines between the Justice Department and the White House, Meadows reached out to Jeffrey Rosen, then the acting attorney general, about looking into a slew of debunked pro-Trump conspiracy theories on election fraud, according to the Times. The paper reported that he “sought official validation for misinformation that was circulating rampantly among Mr. Trump’s supporters.” Rosen however, in the emails and according to people close to him, did not show any sign of bending to these demands, the Times noted.
The emails, revealed as part of a Senate Judiciary Committee probe into Justice Department officials’ potential role in trying to overturn Trump’s loss, reflect “the depths of the White House’s efforts to co-opt the department and influence the electoral vote certification,” Senator Richard Durbin, the chairman of the committee, said in a statement to CNN.
“This is a five-alarm fire for our democracy,” he said.
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