Trump And Allies Tried To Stop Ballot Counting In AZ

The New York Times reports:

President Donald J. Trump twice sought to talk on the phone with the Republican leader of Arizona’s most populous county last winter as the Trump campaign and its allies tried unsuccessfully to reverse Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s narrow victory in the state’s presidential contest, according to the Republican official and records obtained by The Arizona Republic.

But the leader, Clint Hickman, then the chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, said in an interview on Friday that he let the calls — made in late December and early January — go to voice mail and did not return them. “I told people, ‘Please don’t have the president call me,’” he said.

At the time, Mr. Hickman was being pressed by the state Republican Party chairwoman and Mr. Trump’s lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani to investigate claims of fraud in the county’s election, which Mr. Biden had won by about 45,000 votes.

USA Today reports:

While Hickman and others on the county’s board sought to instill confidence in their ballot count, state GOP chair Kelli Ward pressed them to further question it. When her efforts failed, Ward declared them “unAmerican.”Text messages and voicemails revealed multipronged attempts by Ward to halt Trump’s impending loss in Arizona.

She tried to get the supervisors “to stop the counting,” delay certifying the results and to look into whether voting software added votes for Democrats. Her attempts continued as Trump’s legal challenges fell short across the country. After Hickman pressed for specifics, Ward responded, “We need you to stop the counting.”