Former President Donald Trump ordered his lawyer Rudy Giuliani to ask if he could seize voting machines, according to a report.
The New York Times reported Trump directed Giuliani to ask the Department of Homeland Security if he could legally seize voting machines in key swing states, citing three sources familiar with the issue.
According to the outlet, Giuliani called the department’s acting deputy secretary. The official told Giuliani he did not have the authority to “audit or impound the machines.”
The Times noted Trump directed Giuliani to make the request after rejecting the idea of having the Pentagon take the voting machines.
It also came shortly after Trump suggested using the Department of Justice to seize the machines during a meeting with then-Attorney General William Barr, as the Times reported.
CNN reported Monday that advisers for Trump drafted two versions of an executive order to take the machines. One directed the Department of Defense to seize the machines while the other directed the Department of Homeland Security to do the same.
The outlet noted the idea was “the brainchild of retired Col. Phil Waldron and retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national security adviser,” citing sources.
The draft Pentagon order has been given to the House select committee investigating the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), who sits on the committee, told CNN, “It’s an extraordinary document, and we have a lot of questions about it.”
She added, “We’ve got no evidence at this point that there were steps taken in the Department of Defense to implement that memo but … it’s a lawless document and really breathtaking in its approach.”