US Attorney General William Barr says the Justice Department has uncovered no evidence of serious voter fraud that would have changed the outcome of the recent presidential election.
Barr made the comments in an interview with the Associated Press.
US President Donald Trump continues to allege – without evidence, and as his lawyers lose case after case in the courts – that he was cheated. He refuses to concede to president-elect Joe Biden.
The attorney general, who is a member of Trump’s Cabinet, said in the interview that federal investigators have followed up on complaints, but they have not found evidence to back claims of widespread fraud.
“To date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have affected a different outcome in the election,” Barr said, according to the AP.
Barr was seen going into the White House shortly after the interview was published.
He also said that there are issues which should be handled through civil suits that certain people are trying to turn into matters of federal criminal prosecution – a possible criticism of some Trump supporters.
“There’s a growing tendency to use the criminal justice system as sort of a default fix-all, and people don’t like something, they want the Department of Justice to come in and ‘investigate,'” Barr said.
He also seemed to reject claims of “systemic fraud” through the tampering of voting machines, saying his office has not seen “anything” to substantiate the allegation.
He was apparently referring to allegations made by a former Trump lawyer, Sidney Powell, who also bizarrely claimed that deceased former Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez somehow directed a tampering scheme in this election. Chavez died in 2013.
Trump’s legal team issued a statement saying that “there hasn’t been any semblance of a Department of Justice investigation” and continued to insist they have evidence of fraud.
Democratic Party lawyers who are tracking the legal suits say Trump has lost about 40 cases so far and won just one.
Meanwhile, none of this has stopped Trump from continuing to fundraise, as part of an aggressive outreach to supporters who are being riled by allegations of fraud.
The New York Times cited a a person familiar with the matter as saying Trump raised 170 million dollars in November for his campaign and action committees.
The newspaper noted that the way the campaign has solicited donations means most of the cash raised since the middle of last month can be going to Save America, a new political action committee that can be used to fund Trump’s political activities.
A portion of each donation is directed to the Republican National Committee.
The emails to supporters are often bombastic, hyperbolic and full of false accusations, claiming voter fraud and suppression by the left, while saying the money will go to efforts to “defend” the election, even as the fine print indicates this is not always the case.
The donation system is often set up to entice people to end up making recurring donations.
The Washington Post put the amount of new donations since the election at about 150 million dollars.
The Post said that the influx of cash could be behind Trump’s baseless lawsuits trying to overturn the election results and refusing to concede to Joe Biden, as the effort is at the core of the fundraising.
The money raised in November appears to dwarf Trump’s fundraising per month in the final stretch of the campaign, when he seemed to be running short on cash.