Sen. Ron Johnson (Wis.), left, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, makes opening comments during a hearing titled “Unprecedented Migration at the U.S. Southern Border: The Year in Review,” in Washington, D.C., Nov. 13, 2019. U.S. Customs and Border Protection Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan was one of four witness testifying. CBP Photo by Glenn Fawcett, US CBP government work
Sen. Ron Johnson attended a meeting put together by conspiracy theorist, Donald Trump ally and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell on Jan. 4, 2021 to discuss ways to delay the certification of Joe Biden’s election victory, according to the Washington Post.
The meeting was held at the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C. and Johnson attended virtually, but two other Republican senators, Kevin Cramer, (R-N.D.), and Cynthia M. Lummis, (R-Wyo.), attended in person.
At the meeting, allies of the then-president alleged that foreign powers had stolen the election and advocated for using the power of the NSA and Department of Defense to comb through intercepted electronic communications to find fraud.
A Dec. 18 memo, obtained by the Post, that explains the plan to dig through American’s communication data was circulated to Johnson and other senators after the meeting.
The meeting came two days before the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol that followed a number of Republicans objecting to the certification of Biden’s win. Johnson, who had initially signaled that he’d vote against certification, voted to certify following the attack on the Capitol. Johnson has continued to spread conspiracy theories about the 2020 election in the year since the attack.
Johnson, who was at the time the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, had held a hearing on Dec. 18, 2020 to look into unfounded accusations of election fraud. A spokesperson for Johnson’s office told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel that this committee work was why he attended the meeting.
“The senator’s hearing was part of what should be ongoing congressional oversight meant to transparently address that problem,” the spokesperson said. “Following the hearing, he and his staff continued to gather information and consider allegations, that is why he joined the meeting.”
The emergence of the memo and knowledge of the Jan. 4 meeting is not Johnson’s only accusation of election fraud to be revealed this week. In a virtual town hall, Johnson accused Milwaukee of being a significant source of election fraud.
“Our concern is Milwaukee…. This is one of these big Democrat strongholds that just can’t seem to get their votes counted until they know exactly how many votes they need,” he said at the Wednesday town hall. “Whether anything’s happening or not, this just looks suspicious.”
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