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Former acting deputy attorney general Richard Donoghue testified before the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 uprising that then-President Donald Trump pressured the Department of Justice to declare the 2020 presidential election corrupt, despite no evidence of fraud.

Video transcript

RICHARD DONOGHUE: The United States Department of Justice’s one and only client is the United States government. And the United States government does not have standing, as our internal teams have repeatedly told us. The OLC, led by Steve Engel, along with the Solicitor General’s Office researched and gave us thorough and clear opinions that we simply did not have standing. And we tried to explain that to the president many times.

ADAM KINZINGER: Let’s look at another one of your notes. You also noted that Mr. Rosen said to Mr. Trump, and I quote, “The DOJ can’t and won’t snap their fingers and change the outcome of the election. How did the chair respond to that, sir?

RICHARD DONOGHUE: He responded very quickly and said, basically, that’s not what I’m asking you to do. What I’m just asking you to do is say it was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican members of Congress.

ADAM KINZINGER: So let’s now put the notes where you quote the president while you’re talking about this. He said the president… the president said, “Just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican congressmen.” So Mr. Donoghue, that’s a direct quote from President Trump, isn’t it?

RICHARD DONOGHUE: This is an exact quote from the president. Yes.

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