Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows—who helped then-President Donald Trump peddle election conspiracies and played a key role in the attempt to convince Vice President Mike Pence to delay certification of the 2020 election—is under investigation for potentially committing voter fraud.
Meadows, a former North Carolina congressman who became Trump’s top aide in March 2020, registered to vote in September 2020 at someone else’s mobile home, in Macon County, North Carolina, and voted in the November election by mail, the New Yorker reported earlier this month. But the owner of the home at the time told the magazine that Meadows had “never spent a night in there.”
After the New Yorker published its story, Ashley Hornsby Welch, the district attorney for the area covering Macon County, sent a letter to the state Department of Justice (SBI) Monday asking it to investigate because the case involves “potential crimes committed by a government official,” and due to a conflict of interest, as Meadows had endorsed her and donated to her campaign.
A spokesperson for North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein told VICE News Friday that Stein’s office had accepted Welch’s request to investigate. “We have asked the [State Bureau of Investigation] to investigate, and at the conclusion of the investigation, we’ll review their findings,” spokesperson Nazneen Ahmed told VICE News.
Both Welch’s letter and the state Justice Department’s request for SBI to investigate were first reported by Raleigh-based station WRAL.
Meadows has not responded publicly to questions about whether he actually lived at the address where he voted. An email to the publisher of Meadows’ recently-published memoir bounced back as undeliverable.
But while serving as Trump’s chief of staff, Meadows was heavily involved in pushing the conspiracy theory that the election, won by now-President Joe Biden, had been stolen from Trump due to widespread voter fraud. Meadows, for example, was a participant on the now-infamous call where Trump attempted to pressure Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find 11,780 votes.” Meadows himself urged Raffensperger to help the Trump campaign “in the spirit of cooperation and compromise.”
In his memoir, published last year, Meadows baselessly claims that all of Trump’s voters believe the election was stolen. “There are more than 70 million of these people, all of whom believe they were cheated out of another four years of President Trump,” Meadows wrote.
The investigation in North Carolina may not be Meadows’ only legal worry. In December, after he had stopped cooperating with the House committee investigating the Capitol riot—having already handed the committee thousands of pages of documents—the House of Representatives voted to refer Meadows for prosecution by the U.S. Department of Justice for criminal contempt of Congress.
The DOJ has so far not taken action on the criminal contempt referral against Meadows.
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