New special counsel subpoena shows DOJ opening new front in Trump investigation: reporter

Jack Smith is "moving forward quickly and aggressively," NBC News reports

Published December 13, 2022 4:30PM (EST)

Brad Raffensperger and Donald Trump (Photo illustration by Salon/Getty Images)
Brad Raffensperger and Donald Trump (Photo illustration by Salon/Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on Raw Story


The recently appointed special counsel has issued a subpoena to Georgia's secretary of state for records related to Donald Trump's effort to overturn his election loss, signaling a new direction for the federal investigation.

Jack Smith, who was appointed to oversee Trump-related investigations for the Justice Department, asked Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger for documents related to Trump's request to state officials asking them to "find" exactly the number of votes he needed to undo President Joe Biden's victory in the state — and NBC News correspondent Ken Dilianian explained the significance of this latest development.

"This is a very important moment in this investigation," Dilanian told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "Until now, it hadn't been clear that the Justice Department was aggressively pursuing the conduct in Georgia, given the fact that there's a state investigate down there. That was always a mystery, though. If it was illegal in other states, or potentially illegal, Georgia was the best example, actually with the best evidence. They had the president of the United States on tape pressuring, trying to pressure Brad Raffensperger to find 11,780 votes, and if you remember from the famous conversation, Trump also tried to suggest that they knew the election was corrupt, and it was very risky not to act on that."

"This is the guy in charge of the Justice Department at the time," Dilanian continued. "He was almost hinting there was criminality if they didn't do his bidding. Jack Smith is still in the Netherlands, the special counsel, recovering from a bike accident where he hurt his leg, but his influence is being felt in this investigation. Andrew Weissmann, our NBC News legal analyst who is known as a very aggressive prosecutor, said early on that Jack Smith is a golden retriever puppy compared to Andrew Weissmann, and you're really seeing evidence of that, not only with this set of subpoenas to now a total of six states, but also with this secret battle going on in the grand jury where the DOJ is trying to hold in contempt the Trump team over Mar-a-Lago."

"He's moving forward quickly and aggressively, in terms of the subpoenas to the state, if you look at the subpoena, there's a list of people," Dilanian added. "Almost everyone we know of who was involved in the effort to overturn the election, Rudy Giuliani, Cleta Mitchell, John Eastman, Boris Epshteyn — the DOJ wants communications between those people and state and local election officials and they're vacuuming them up."

By Travis Gettys

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