The House Jan. 6 Select Committee today subpoenaed former Wisconsin GOP Chair Andrew Hitt and De Pere Ald. Kelly Ruh seeking information on their roles as Republicans electors falsely cast their votes for Donald Trump even though Joe Biden won the state.
In a letter from Select Committee Chair U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., the committee is requiring Hitt and Ruh to produce documents from around Dec. 14, 2020, relating to their alleged role as purported electors to cast ballots in favor of Trump and then-Vice President Mike Pence. The committee also sent similar subpoenas to Republican officials in Arizona, Georgia, New Mexico, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Nevada.
The committee alleges the move to cast Wisconsin’s 10 electoral college votes for Trump and Pence was an attempt to undermine the state’s certification that Biden won the election.
“The existence of these purported alternate-elector votes was used as a justification to delay or block the certification of the election during the Joint Session of Congress on January 6, 2021,” the letter states.
Hitt told WisPolitics.com he will absolutely “cooperate with the committee’s request to provide information.”
“As I said in the past, the Wisconsin Electors were simply following the guidance of Wisconsin legal counsel to preserve the ongoing Wisconsin legal strategy,” he said. “There was no intent beyond that and I’m happy to participate in this process to clarify any confusion that may exist.”
Ruh did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
While the official slate of Wisconsin electors met in the guv’s conference room Dec. 14, 2020, to cast the state’s votes for Biden, the GOP electors met in another room of the state Capitol that day. They signed documents that were filed with the federal government in what Republicans said was a legal strategy in case Trump won lawsuits filed seeking to overturn the state’s election results.
That action has resulted in complaints filed with the state Elections Commission and Milwaukee County DA. Dems have also urged AG Josh Kaul to launch his own probe, contending the Republicans committed fraud.
U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee, and Pocan have both written U.S. AG Merrick Garland asking DOJ to investigate the 10 Wisconsin Republicans involved in submitting “alternative” electoral votes for Donald Trump in the 2020 election.
U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Madison, in a tweet praised the committee for pursuing the issue.
“I’m glad the @January6thCmte is taking the issue of fraudulent electors seriously and I look forward to the DOJ continuing its investigation,” he wrote. “This should have never happened and should never happen again.”
Moore responded to the news in a tweet reading, “No one is above the law.”
Liberal group Law Forward filed a complaint in February with the Wisconsin Elections Commission regarding what they called the “fraudulent” electors.
See the letter to Ruh.
See the letter to Hitt.
See coverage of Moore and Pocan’s letters in Thursday’s PM Update.