‘It was not pressure’: Trump called a Michigan county official who now says she wants to rescind her vote to certify the election

President Donald Trump talks on the phone
President Donald Trump.
  • A GOP canvassing board member in Michigan told The Washington Post on Thursday that she received a call from President Donald Trump the night before she filed an affidavit to rescind her vote to certify the election results.
  • It's too late for the canvasser, Monica Palmer, to rescind her vote. The certified results have already been sent to Michigan's secretary of state.
  • Palmer initially refused to vote to certify the results, but she faced backlash and reversed course. She told The Post that she did not feel pressured by Trump to take back her vote.
  • "It was not pressure. It was genuine concern for my safety," Palmer told The Post.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A Republican canvassing board member in Wayne County, Michigan, who on Wednesday announced she wanted to rescind her vote to certify the election results told The Washington Post that President Donald Trump called her on Tuesday night.

"I did receive a call from President Trump, late Tuesday evening, after the meeting," Monica Palmer, one of two Republican canvassers on the board, told The Post on Thursday. "He was checking in to make sure I was safe after hearing the threats and doxing that had occurred."

She added: "His concern was about my safety and that was really touching. He is a really busy guy and to have his concern about my safety was appreciated."

Palmer said that she did not feel pressured by the president to move to rescind her vote and that they "really didn't discuss the details of the certification."

"It was not pressure. It was genuine concern for my safety," Palmer said.

The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.

It's too late for Palmer to take back her vote. The certified results have already been sent to the Michigan secretary of state, per the state's rules, and she moved to rescind a day after the deadline to certify had passed.

Though there's no evidence of widespread voter fraud in Michigan — or any state — Palmer initially refused to vote to certify the results along with her Republican colleague on the four-member board, William Hartmann. But the two GOP canvassers reversed course and voted to certify after facing backlash. Palmer told The Post that people accused her of being a racist who was attempting to disenfranchise Detroit voters.

"Last night was heartbreaking," Palmer said. "I sat in that chair for two hours listening to people attack me."

Palmer and Hartmann filed affidavits on Wednesday saying they wanted to take back their votes to certify the results. They accused Democrats of failing to deliver on a promise to audit the vote in Detroit, part of a compromise that seemed to lead the two GOP canvassers to agree to certify the vote on Tuesday.

Jonathan Kinloch, a Democrat and the board's vice chairman, disputed Palmer's claims. Kinloch told The Post that Palmer knew that the audit agreement "wasn't binding," adding, "We just voted yesterday." Kinloch said the board had not yet formally requested the audit from Michigan's secretary of state.

Trump has refused to concede to President-elect Joe Biden and has repeatedly pushed baseless claims that there was massive voter fraud. There's no evidence to support Trump's assertions.

The Trump campaign and Republican officials have pursued nearly two dozen legal challenges against the results in various states and have not won a single case. They have withdrawn or lost 15 cases, and six cases are pending.

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