John Eastman Is Defiant as Trump-Related Investigations Proliferate

Asked what he based such claims on, he cited a report issued last year by Michael J. Gableman, a former Wisconsin judge who was hired, and later fired, by the Republican speaker of the Wisconsin State Assembly, Robin Vos. The report endorsed a host of debunked claims. He also cited the deeply flawed documentary “2000 Mules,” directed by Dinesh D’Souza, a conservative activist who once pleaded guilty to felony campaign finance fraud. (He was later pardoned by Mr. Trump.)

In recent weeks, Mr. Eastman has continued to assert himself as a far-right stalwart, signing a letter endorsing dissident Republicans’ ultimately failed efforts to block Representative Kevin McCarthy of California from becoming speaker of the House. Among the other signatories to the letter was Virginia Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, for whom Mr. Eastman once clerked. In her own testimony to the Jan. 6 committee, Ms. Thomas referred to Mr. Eastman as “an active participant with the ‘Thomas clique’ clerks” who keep in touch.

Perhaps Mr. Eastman’s most immediate potential exposure comes in the criminal investigation into election interference in Fulton County, Ga., which encompasses most of Atlanta. One of Mr. Eastman’s lawyers said last year that his client was “probably a target” in the inquiry, but his lawyers said this month that he had received no notification that he is one.

Robert Sinners, the Trump campaign’s state director of Election Day operations in Georgia, testified to the Jan. 6 committee that he later felt “ashamed” at having taken part in the plan orchestrated by Mr. Eastman and Rudolph W. Giuliani, Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, to assemble bogus slates of Trump electors in Georgia and other states that Mr. Trump had lost.

“I don’t think Rudy Giuliani’s intent was ever about legal challenges,” he said. “It was clear to me that he was working with folks like John Eastman and wanted to put pressure on the vice president to accept these slates of electors just regardless, without any approval from a governor, without any approval from, you know, the voters or a court, or anything like that.”

Clark D. Cunningham, a professor at Georgia State University College of Law, said in an email that “if Sinner’s testimony, or similar testimony, is deemed credible, then John Eastman faces considerable risk of prosecution.”

“If Eastman was part of a conspiracy to trick Georgia citizens into signing false election documents, neither his role as an attorney nor a personal belief that election results were tainted by fraud could justify such criminal conduct,” he added.


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