New names of PA GOP legislators and staffers surface in Scott Perry’s plan to overturn the 2020 election

PA House Freedom Caucus

Congressman Scott Perry (R-York) speaking at a Pennsylvania House Freedom Caucus press conference in the Pennsylvania State Capitol on Dec. 12, 2022. (Photo: Sean Kitchen)

By Sean Kitchen

November 30, 2023

A federal court filing released on Wednesday reveals the lengths Pennsylvania Congressman Scott Perry went to overturn the 2020 election. Even though the document doesn’t contain a lot of communications, it reveals which Pennsylvania legislators Perry spoke to.

An unsealed federal court document offers insights to the lengths Congressman Scott Perry (R-York) went to try and overturn the 2020 election and how he communicated with Pennsylvania state legislators in the weeks and months leading up to the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol.

Politico broke the story late on Wednesday after a Washington DC Circuit Court of Appeals unsealed documents relating to Perry’s text messages that were obtained through a federal search warrant in August 2022.

The document, which contains snippets of the congressman’s communications, appeared to be inadvertently uploaded on the court’s public docket, according to the report, because it was taken down on Wednesday. Perry has been using his congressional privileges to prevent the release of his communications.

According to the court filing, Perry was in contact with State Reps. Mike Jones (R-York), Dawn Keefer (R-York), and Seth Grove (R-York) and State Sens. Cris Dush (R-Jefferson), Kristin Phillips-Hill (R-York) and Doug Mastriano (R-Franklin).

Perry texted former President Donald Trump’s Chief of Staff Mark Meadows instructing Meadows and “his folks” to contact Pennsylvania House Republican’s Chief Counsel Rod Corey about concerns of election fraud in the 2020 election.

On November 12, 2020, Perry texted Trump lawyer Alex Cannon about his “thoughts” of auditing the 2020 election. Then, a few days later, Perry was in contact with Julie Strauss Levin, a lawyer who is married to right-wing radio host Mark Levin, about obtaining whistleblower protections for an employee in the Pennsylvania Department of State.

Perry’s communications with the legislators mentioned above included plans to have a complete audit of the 2020 election and how to obtain, preserve and evaluate voting machine data, plans for the State Senate to request that former Gov. Tom Wolf and the Secretary of State to conduct an audit, and provide whistleblower protections for an IT analyst within the Pennsylvania Office of Administration who was willing to talk about voter fraud.

The Politico article highlighted conversations between Perry and former Department of Justice employee Robert Gasaway. According to the article, Perry was in contact with Gasaway between Dec. 30, 2020 and Jan. 5, 2021 over a plan to have former Vice President Mike Pence “admit testimony” prior to the counting of the electoral votes on Jan. 6, 2021. Perry agreed to “sell the idea” on a call with Trump, Pence and John Eastman, but met resistance from Pence’s Chief of Staff Marc Short.

Harrisburg City Councilmember Shamaine Daniels, who ran against Perry in 2022 and is one of several candidates vying for the Democratic nomination in 2024, released a statement on Thursday.

These revelations about Scott Perry’s role in the attempt to overturn the 2020 election are very disappointing, but they aren’t shocking,” Daniels said in a series of posts.

“I ran against Scott Perry before it was such a popular thing to do because I already knew what these revelations confirm – Scott Perry was a threat to our Democracy then, and he continues to be today. From the attempt to steal the Presidential election, to the current dysfunction in Congress, to the constant attempts to undermine our faith in our government’s fundamental ability to function we find the same culprit again and again, Freedom Caucus Chair Scott Perry,” she continued.

“Perry is the most dangerous member of Congress, and next year we will defeat him. We have to.”

Author

  • Sean Kitchen

    Sean Kitchen is the Keystone’s political correspondent, based in Harrisburg. Sean is originally from Philadelphia and spent five years working as a writer and researcher for Pennsylvania Spotlight.

CATEGORIES: NATIONAL POLITICS

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