Former Attorney General Bill Barr told the House Jan. 6 committee that then-President Donald Trump claimed there was major fraud underway “right out of the box on election night … before there was actually any potential of looking at evidence,” according to a previously unseen video clip from his closed-door interview with the panel played during today’s hearing.
Barr’s testimony adds to the committee’s argument that Trump was already laying the groundwork for his unfounded claim that the election was stolen before it was conceivable that anyone had a chance to examine whether any evidence of widespread voter fraud existed.
“It seemed to be based on the dynamic that, at the end of the evening, a lot of Democratic votes came in which changed the vote counts in certain states, and that seemed to be the basis for this broad claim that there was major fraud,” Barr says in the video.
“And I didn’t think much of that, because people had been talking for weeks and everyone understood for weeks that that was going to be what happened on election night,” Barr adds.
Earlier in the hearing, Rep. Zoe Lofgren linked Trump’s pushing of unfounded fraud claims to fundraising efforts, after Election Day 2020, saying, “The big lie was also a big rip-off.”