Two officials in Madison, Wisconsin, have been subpoenaed to turn over communications and other records relating to the 2020 presidential election and report to the office of former state Supreme Court justice Michael Gableman for questioning in February.
Gableman was hired by state Republicans last summer to investigate the 2020 election over unproven claims that President Joe Biden “stole” the state and the larger election from former President Donald Trump.
The subpoenas for Madison information director Sarah Edgerton and finance director David Schmiedicke, issued last week, were made public Monday by Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway. Schmiedicke is reportedly incorrectly referred to in his subpoena as “Dan.”
Rhodes-Conway issued a statement along with the subpoenas saying the investigation is a waste of taxpayer funds and time but did not publicly state whether Edgerton and Schmiedicke would cooperate with the orders.
Edgerton is supposed to turn over city communications and records relating to the election January 13 and 19, and be questioned at Gableman’s office on February 14. Schmiedicke is supposed to give election records relating to any and all private grants the city used to pay for the operation of the election on January 19.
Gableman has issued subpoenas for mayors of the five largest cities in the state and Wisconsin Elections Commission Administrator Meagan Wolfe to be questioned at his office, a demand to which none of the officials have yet complied with.
Asked whether they would comply, Deputy Mayor Katie Crawley, who handles media inquiries for Rhodes-Conway’s administration, told The Associated Press only that the city’s attorney was reviewing the subpoenas.
Part of Gableman’s investigation is focused on whether Madison and other Democratic-leaning cities in Wisconsin improperly accepted nearly $9 million from the Facebook-funded Center for Tech and Civil Life to help administer the election.
Gableman has filed a lawsuit in Waukesha County seeking to force Rhodes-Conway and Green Bay Mayor Eric Genrich to appear or put them in jail. That case is still pending.
The state Department of Justice, led by Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul, has filed a lawsuit seeking to quash the Wolfe subpoena.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos hired Gableman last summer to review the election after former President Donald Trump said Wisconsin Republicans weren’t doing enough to investigate his allegations that President Joe Biden somehow stole Wisconsin from him. The review is expected to cost taxpayers at least $686,000.
An Associated Press review of presidential results in six key battleground states, including Wisconsin, found fewer than 475 cases of potential fraud, a number that would have made no difference in the election’s outcome.
Election officials have referred 31 cases of potential fraud to Wisconsin prosecutors in 12 of the state’s 72 counties, representing about 0.15 percent of Biden’s margin of victory in the state, the AP review found. State auditors also found no evidence of widespread fraud in the election.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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