President Trump discussed on Friday whether to make Sidney Powell, who, as a lawyer for his campaign team, launched a series of conspiracy theories about a Venezuelan plot to rig voting machines in the United States, a special counsel investigating electoral fraud, according to two people briefed on the discussion.
It was not clear whether Mr. Trump will go ahead with such a plan.
Most of his advisers opposed the idea, said two of those briefed on the discussion, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, who has sought in recent days to get the ministry to Homeland Security is joining the campaign to overthrow that of Mr. Trump. loss in elections.
Mr Giuliani joined the discussion by phone, while Ms Powell was at the White House for a meeting that got loud at times, according to one of those briefed on what happened. Other administration officials entered and left the meeting, two of those briefed said, and White House attorney Pat A. Cipollone rejected the ideas proposed.
Ms Powell has accused other Trump advisers of quitting, according to those briefed.
But the idea that Mr. Trump would try to install Ms. Powell in a position to investigate the outcome sent shock waves through the president’s circle. She has repeatedly claimed that there was widespread fraud, but several lawsuits she brought for electoral fraud were dismissed out of court.
Mr Trump has been in contact with Ms Powell in recent days, despite the fact that last month’s campaign sought to distance itself from her as it broadcast wacky and baseless claims about the Dominion Voting Systems machines, which were used in some states in one way or another. be connected to a Venezuelan plot to control the elections.
National officials have asked Ms Powell to withdraw her allegations.
Since the election, Mr. Trump had pushed outgoing Attorney General William P. Barr to appoint a special advocate to investigate electoral fraud, as well as one to investigate Hunter Biden, President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr . son. Mr. Barr, the people informed on the matter, was unwilling to do what Mr. Trump wanted.
Mr Trump and Mr Giuliani have called for data as evidence of widespread electoral fraud, a claim Mr Barr publicly rejected weeks ago.
Part of Friday night’s White House meeting was a discussion of an executive order to take control of the voting machines for review, according to one of those briefed.
Mr. Giuliani separately lobbied the Homeland Security Department to seize possession of voting machines as part of a push to overturn the election results, three people close to said. the discussion. Mr. Giuliani was told that the ministry did not have the authority to do such a thing.