FBI Subpoenas Records of Arizona Republican Senate Speaker | Fremont Tribune – Government and Politics

By BOB CHRISTIE and JONATHAN J. COOPER – Associated Press

PHOENIX (AP) — FBI agents investigating events surrounding former President Donald Trump’s efforts to reverse his 2020 election defeat have subpoenaed Arizona Senate Speaker Karen Fann, who orchestrated a discredited examination of the election.

A second Republican senator who aggressively promoted the lie Trump lost to fraud, Kelly Townsend, also received a subpoena last week, Senate spokeswoman Kin Quintero confirmed.

The FBI’s actions are part of a flurry of recent Justice Department activity as it seeks information from people involved in efforts to discredit the 2020 election results. It is separate from the investigation. of Congress on the Capitol insurrection.

Fann said Friday that virtually all of his email and text communications are already public. It’s because of tape requests and lawsuits by media groups and American Oversight, a watchdog group that has been searching for tapes related to the Senate’s “audit” of election results in the county on most populous state.

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“I’m pretty sure everything they ask for is already available,” Fann said in an interview on Friday. “I said to him, ‘You know what, I’ve been FOIA-ed almost every week for 18 months. And so I don’t think there’s anything left out there that everybody hasn’t seen yet. .

FOIA stands for Freedom of Information Request.

Fann said an FBI agent called her last week to ask about her contact with more than a dozen people, but she told him he would have to put the request in writing.

The subpoena was served on June 22 and accepted by a Senate attorney, Fann said. It was the next day Republican House Speaker Rusty Bowers testified before the congressional committee investigating the attack on the Capitol over Trump’s efforts to get him to replace Arizona voters committed to Joe Biden.

Fann declined to identify the people on the subpoena or provide further details, saying the subpoena ordered him not to discuss its contents.

The same day Fann was served, federal agents searched the home of a former senior Justice Department official, Jeffrey Clark, known for defending Trump’s false election fraud allegations. Party leaders in Nevada and Georgia, states that have opted for President Joe Biden and where Trump allies have created lists of “surrogate voters” intended to overturn the vote, also received subpoenas. And Republicans in two other states – Michigan and Pennsylvania – revealed they had been questioned by the FBI.

Arizona Republicans also submitted a list of fake voters, and the January 6 committee requested information from state Republican Party chairwoman Kelli Ward and State Rep. Mark Finchem, who is seeking GOP nomination for Secretary of State, Arizona’s top election official.

Fann said she would cooperate fully and believes the Justice Department is trying to get information from anyone connected to Trump’s efforts, no matter how innocuous. She has always said the Senate audit was not part of any effort to nullify the election, just a way to determine whether questions about the election raised by Republicans were justified.

“So everyone,” she said. “And the mere fact that I am the President of the Senate and our Senate caucus ordered the audit to answer questions from our constituents, therefore, I am part of the mix at this point because I dared to ask for an audit for see if our laws were respected or not.

Fann hired inexperienced consultants to conduct what she called a “forensic audit” of the 2020 election in Maricopa County, which includes the Phoenix area. The review was conducted by Trump supporters who promoted his false voter fraud narrative and produced a report that supported President Joe Biden’s victory in the county but raised discredited allegations of wrongdoing.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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