Biden DOJ hits two AZ state senators with subpoenas over alleged interactions with Trump attorneys

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued two more subpoenas in connection to its never-ending investigation into the events at the nation’s Capitol on January 6, 2021 — this time to Arizona state senators.

Seeking information related to communications state Senate President Karen Fann (R) and state Senator Kelly Townsend (R) may have had with attorneys representing former President Trump, the subpoenas were served last week, according to Arizona Senate Republicans spokesperson Kim Quintero.

“They’re requesting text messages and emails from a list of people, which I can’t disclose who those people are, because they told us not to speak with the media about this,” Quintero told The Washington Post.

Both Fann and Townsend are complying with their identical subpoenas, Quintero said, adding that tens of thousands of potentially relevant records have already been identified by staffers.

Townsend was a member of the Arizona House and chaired the elections committee prior to taking office as a state Senator in 2021.

“She was among the Republican legislators who pressed state legislative leaders to help appoint a slate of alternate electors from Arizona more favorable to Trump, despite his narrow loss,” the outlet reports. “Townsend also attended a Nov. 30, 2020, event in downtown Phoenix with Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani and other Trump allies where they falsely claimed widespread fraud had tainted the election.”

Townsend offered The Post a less ominous-sounding explanation of the alternate slate.

“As chair of the elections committee, we were trying to hold a committee and do investigations,” she said in a Friday interview with the paper. “Because it was in question, we wanted to have an alternate slate in case fraud was discovered and found.”

Fann, The Post notes, attended a meeting on Dec. 1, 2020, attended by attorneys Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis and other state legislators. The focus was the establishment of a formal legislative hearing into accusations of fraud in the 2020 elections.

“The hearings never took place,” WaPo reports, “but Fann, on behalf of the state Senate, launched a months-long review of 2.1 million ballots cast by voters in Arizona’s Maricopa County.”

Ultimately, notes The Post, the review determined that Joe Biden “won by a slightly larger margin than the official election results.”

Almost all of the 50,000 documents pulled in response to the subpoenas came from constituents, prompting the Senate staffers to ask the DOJ to narrow its request. Meanwhile, during an interview with NBC News, Quintero said that Fann and Townsend have “no reason” to believe they will be required to take the Jan. 6 stage in Washington, D.C.

According to the Yellow Sheet Report, the political tip sheet that first reported the news of the state Senators’ subpoenas, the lawmakers were in Phoenix at the Arizona Capitol when they were served. After failing to deliver the subpoena to Townsend’s home, she invited the federal agents to the statehouse where she was busy at work.

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Melissa Fine

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