Trump ‘coup memo’ author asked for pardon and lobbied Pence to overturn election after the riot

‘Get a great f**king criminal defence lawyer, you’re going to need it,’ said White House lawyer Eric Herschmann to John Eastman

Related video: Judge tells Jan 6 committee he would ‘laid across the road’ to prevent overturning election

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The lawyer pushing the theory that then-Vice President Mike Pence had the power to singlehandedly overturn the election on January 6 asked for a presidential pardon from Donald Trump and continued to urge Mr Pence to reject the election results even after the attack on the Capitol, according to testimony to the House Select Committee investigating the riot.

The conservative attorney John Eastman requested a pardon after pushing the plan to change the outcome of the 2020 election despite being aware that the strategy was illegal.

He pushed Mr Pence and his staff to adopt the plan, but told chief counsel to Pence, Greg Jacob, that the plan was against the law and would lose “nine to nothing” in front of the Supreme Court.

Dr Eastman emailed Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to say that he should be “on the pardon list, if that is still in the works”.

Even after the attack on the Capitol, Dr Eastman sent an email to Pence staffers asking that they consider “one more relatively minor violation” of the law. Mr Pence said it was “rubber room stuff”.

Former White House lawyer Eric Herschmann told the committee in prerecorded testimony that a day after the riot, Dr Eastman “started to ask me about something dealing with Georgia and preserving something potentially for appeal, and I said to him ‘are you out of your f**king mind?’”.

“I said ‘I only want to hear two words coming out of your mouth from now on: orderly transition.’ I said ‘I don’t want to hear any other f**king words coming out of your mouth no matter what, other than orderly transition,’” he added. “Eventually he said ‘orderly transition.’ I said ‘good John. Now I’m going to give you the best free legal advice you’re ever getting in your life: get a great f**king criminal defence lawyer, you’re going to need it.’ And then I hung up on him.”

Mr Jacob emailed Dr Eastman during the riot, “thanks to your bulls**t, we are now under siege”.

“The ‘siege’ is because YOU and your boss did not do what was necessary to allow this to be aired in a public way so the American people can see for themselves what happened,” Dr Eastman responded.

Notably, Dr Eastman pleaded the fifth amendment countless times while speaking to the committee, which was highlighted in a clip shared during the hearing by panel member Rep Pete Aguilar.

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