The speaker of Wisconsin’s state Assembly, Robin Vos, said former President Donald Trump called this month and pushed him to try to overturn the results of the 20-month-old 2020 presidential election.
"He would like us to do something different in Wisconsin," Vos, a Republican, told Milwaukee's WISN in an interview that aired Tuesday.
Vos said Trump reached out to him "last week," after the Wisconsin Supreme Court issued a decision this month restricting the use of absentee ballot drop boxes in future elections. The ruling said a decision in 2020 by the Wisconsin Elections Commission expanding the use of drop boxes because of the pandemic was "unlawful," and their use should be restricted to the offices of election clerks going forward.
After the ruling Trump — who has repeatedly claimed without evidence that the boxes contributed to widespread voter fraud — took to social media to urge Vos to take action.
"The Wisconsin Supreme Court has just declared the 'Unlock' Boxes, or Ballot 'Stuffing' Boxes, to be ILLEGAL," he wrote in a July 9 post on Truth Social, his social media platform. "It’s now up to Robin Vos to do what everybody knows must be done. We need FAIR and HONEST Elections in our Country."
Vos, Trump continued, "has a decision to make! Does Wisconsin RECLAIM the Electors, turn over the Election to the actual winner (by a lot!), or sit back and do nothing as our Country continues to go to HELL?"
Vos told WISN that Trump also called him.
“He makes his case, which I respect ... I explained it’s not allowed under the Constitution. He has a different opinion," Vos said, adding that he also told Trump that the ruling “does not go back and say what happened in 2020 was illegal. It just says going forward it can’t happen.”
Trump's office did not respond to a request for comment on Vos' account of their alleged call.
The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot has explored efforts by Trump and his allies in the weeks after the election to pressure state legislatures into reversing results in key swing states that Joe Biden won, including Wisconsin. The committee is set to hold a prime-time hearing Thursday, focused on Trump's failure to act for hours as his supporters attacked the Capitol.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, meanwhile, is conducting a criminal investigation into efforts by Trump and others to pressure legislators in Georgia to overturn Biden's victory.
While Trump no longer has the power of the presidency behind him, he hinted in a post on Tuesday that Vos, who's running for re-election this year, could lose to a GOP challenger if he doesn't do what he wants. "I don’t know his opponent in the upcoming Primary, but feel certain he will do well if Speaker Vos doesn’t move with gusto. Robin, don’t let the voters of Wisconsin down!" Trump wrote on Truth Social.
Vos' challenger, Adam Steen, has tried to capitalize on Trump’s criticism of his opponent.
Asked about Trump's criticisms, Vos told WISN: “I think we all know Donald Trump is Donald Trump. There’s very little we can do to control or predict what he will do.”