Ginni Thomas corresponded with John Eastman, sources say in the January 6 House inquiry

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The House committee investigating the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021 obtained email correspondence between Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and attorney John Eastman, who played a key role in efforts to pressure Vice President Mike Pence to block certification of Joe Biden’s victory, according to three people involved in the committee’s investigation.

The emails show that Thomas’ efforts to overturn the election were bigger than previously thought, two of the people said. The three declined to provide details and spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive issues.

Committee members and staff are now discussing whether to spend time in their public hearings exploring Ginni Thomas’ role in the attempt to overturn the 2020 election result, the three people said. The Washington Post previously reported that the committee did not request an interview with Thomas and objected to his further cooperation with its investigation.

Both people said the emails were among the documents obtained by the committee and reviewed recently. Last week, a federal judge ordered Eastman to turn over more than 100 documents to the committee. Eastman had attempted to block the release of these and other documents, arguing that they were privileged communications and therefore should be protected.

Thomas also sent messages to President Donald Trump’s White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Arizona lawmakers urging them to help overturn the election, The Post previously reported.

While Thomas has maintained that she and her husband operate in separate professional avenues, her activities as a conservative political activist have long set her apart from other wives of Supreme Court justices. Any new revelations about Thomas’ actions after the 2020 presidential election are likely to further escalate questions about whether Clarence Thomas should recuse himself from election-related matters and try to overthrow him.

In January, the Supreme Court denied a request by Trump to block disclosure of his White House records to the House committee investigating Jan. 6. Clarence Thomas was the only dissenting judge, siding with Trump.

Ginni Thomas did not immediately respond to requests for comment, nor did Eastman or his attorney. A spokeswoman for the Supreme Court did not respond to questions from Clarence Thomas.

A spokesperson for the Jan. 6 committee declined to comment.

Eastman, who once clerked for Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court, outlined scenarios for denying Biden the presidency in legal memos and during a January 4 Oval Office meeting with Trump and Pence, The Post and d ‘other media have already reported. Eastman said Trump was his client at the time.

Earlier this year, U.S. District Judge David O. Carter ordered Eastman to release numerous documents to the committee, denying claims of privilege Eastman had asserted. In April and May, Eastman submitted more than 1,000 documents to the committee.

In a 26-page decision last week, Carter addressed 599 other documents that Eastman sought to protect. Carter ruled that more than 400 of those documents were protected by attorney-client or other privilege and should not be disclosed.

But he ordered that the rest, including correspondence with state lawmakers and documents related to alleged voter fraud and the plan to disrupt the joint session of Congress on January 6, be turned over to the committee last week and the beginning of this week.

Carter described some of the documents in more detail than others.

He ordered Eastman to turn over documents relating to three December 2020 meetings of a group Eastman described as ‘civic-minded citizens from a conservative perspective’, including messages from a person who Carter described as the “high-level leader” of the group inviting Eastman to speak at a meeting on Dec. 8, 2020. The agenda for the meeting says Eastman discussed “state legislative actions that may reverse the media election for Joe Biden”.

“The Select Committee has a substantial interest in these three meetings because the presentations furthered a critical goal of the Jan. 6 plan: to have contested states certify alternative voter lists for President Trump,” Carter wrote. .

It is not known what the group is or who its high-level leader is.

Carter also ordered the release of part of a Dec. 22 email written by an attorney he did not identify. The attorney encouraged Trump’s legal team not to pursue litigation that could “frustrate the Jan. 6 strategy” by noting that Pence does not have the ability to interfere in the electoral vote count. “Lawyers are free not to file a complaint; they are not free to evade judicial review to nullify a democratic election,” Carter wrote.

And the judge ordered the publication of several communications that shared news or tweets.

In the weeks following the 2020 election, Ginni Thomas repeatedly pressed Meadows to overturn the result, according to text messages obtained by The Post and CBS News. After Jan. 6, she told Meadows in a text that she was “disgusted” by Pence, who refused to help block certification of Biden’s Electoral College victory. She wrote: “We are living in what feels like the end of America.”

During that same post-election period, Thomas also pressed Republican lawmakers in Arizona to help keep Trump in power by overturning Biden’s popular-vote victory and to “choose” their own voters, reported The Post, based on material obtained via an audience. request for records. Thomas sent the emails through FreeRoots, an online platform designed to make it easy to send pre-written messages to multiple elected officials.

In a Nov. 9 email, just days after media organizations called for a race in Arizona and nationwide for Biden, Thomas sent identical emails to 27 House and Senate lawmakers. of Arizona urging them to “stay strong in the face of political and media pressure”. .” The email claimed that the responsibility for choosing voters — which belongs to voters under Arizona state law — was “yours and yours alone,” and asserted that the legislature had the “ power to fight fraud” and “to ensure that a clean slate of voters are chosen.

In a follow-up email to one of the recipients, State Representative Shawnna Bolick, Thomas described the email as “part of our campaign to help states feel the eyes of the America”.

Bolick (R), who provided Thomas with links she could use to report any fraud she may have experienced in Arizona, previously told the Post that she received tens of thousands of emails after the election and that she had responded to Thomas the same way she had responded to everyone else.

On Dec. 13, the day before presidential voters were due to vote and seal Biden’s victory, Thomas emailed 21 of those lawmakers and two others. “Before you choose your state’s voters … think about what will happen to the nation we all love if you don’t rise up and lead,” the email said. It linked to a video of a man urging swing state lawmakers to “fix things” and “not give in to cowardice.”

The next day, Democratic voters in Arizona voted for Biden. Republican voters met separately and signed a document declaring themselves to be the “duly elected and qualified voters” of the state. More than a dozen Arizona lawmakers have signed a letter to Congress demanding that the state’s electoral votes go to Trump or ‘be completely nullified until a full forensic audit can be completed’ .


Washington

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