Former President Donald Trump is expected to challenge several midterm congressional elections in November, particularly elections that don’t declare a winner on election night, multiple sources told Rolling Stone. The report comes amid growing speculation that the former president is planning another run for the White House in 2024.
Former senior Trump administration official Michael Caputo described a briefing with Trump, during which the former president said he “was concerned that 2020 is going to happen again in 2022.” Trump maintains that he is the “rightful winner” of the 2020 presidential election.
“Our team encouraged him to be concerned … [Furthermore], I’m advising Republicans to recruit and train election observers and a team of attorneys to oversee historically problematic precincts,” Caputo said.
Trump has held a series of meetings with allies to discuss ways in which they could challenge the midterm elections, according to four people familiar with the conversations, Rolling Stone reported.
The meetings reportedly involved pro-Trump groups, attorneys, GOP activists, and MAGA supporters.
Trump has reportedly focused most of his concerns on the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race, where the GOP’s Mehmet Oz is taking on Democrat John Fetterman. Trump is prepared to wage a legal battle in Pennsylvania if the vote count is close on or after November’s Election Night.
Two people familiar with the situation said Trump has repeatedly asked what national and state Republicans are doing to stop Democrats from “steal[ing] it in Philadelphia [like] they did last time.”
“It’s important to prepare for legal fights that will inevitably arise,” said Hogan Gidley, vice chair for the Center for Election Integrity at the America First Policy Institute. “The effort that the Center for Election Integrity is focused on started at the beginning of this year…We’ve been seeding efforts across the country in important states…[because] having people on the ground locally is key to these efforts — because if you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.”
While Trump and his allies have been slammed as “election deniers” for questioning the outcome of the 2020 presidential election, Democrats have similarly denied election results for decades.
In 2017, two-time failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said she wouldn’t rule out questioning the 2016 presidential election, according to NPR. Clinton lost her 2016 race for the White House to Donald Trump.
In 2002, Clinton said former President George W. Bush was “selected,” not elected, Newsweek reported at the time.
During an interview on NBC News, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) said she “believe[s]” Russian interference changed the outcome of the 2016 election.
Speaking on Trump’s presidency, Rep Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) said the “legitimacy is in question,” according to CNN.
Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA), who refused to attend Trump’s inauguration, said there is “a cloud of illegitimacy” over Trump’s presidency.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), a member of the House Jan. 6 committee investigating the storming of the U.S. Capitol, challenged certification of the 2016 election results and accused Republicans of engaging in “deliberate voter suppression … in numerous swing states.”
“I would love to challenge the Electoral College vote because our election was badly tainted by everything from cyber-sabotage by Vladimir Putin, to deliberate voter suppression by Republicans in numerous swing states,” Raskin said in a statement to the Baltimore Sun.