Wisconsin state assembly fires 2020 election investigator after Trump fallout
Former President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally where he endorsed Republican candidate Tim Michels in the governor’s race against candidate Rebecca Kleefisch, who is supported by former Vice President Mike Pence in Waukesha, Wisconsin on Aug. 5. File Photo by Alex Wroblewski/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 12 (UPI) — Robin Vos, the Republican speaker of Wisconsin’s state assembly, announced Friday that he had fired the man he had hired to investigate false claims of voter fraud in the state.

Vos was pressured last year into hiring Michael Gableman, a former justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, by former President Donald Trump and his allies to investigate claims of voter fraud during the 202o presidential election.

Wisconsin Republicans have since spent more than $1.1 million in the past 14 months investigating claims of voter fraud during the 2020 presidential election, according to The New York Times.

Trump and Gableman turned on Vos and endorsed his primary opponent Adam Steen last week after weeks of criticizing him on his social media site Truth Social for finding a way to overturn the election results.

“When the Office of Special Counsel was created in July of 2021, the goal was to use investigators to determine what happened during the 2020 election. Justice Gableman gave a report in November 2021, and his last report in March 2022,” Vos said in his statement Friday.

“The reports, along with the Legislative Audit Bureau, clearly showed concerns and problems with the 2020 election. That’s why the Legislature passed 19 bills and three constitutional amendments focusing on the issues identified by the Audit Bureau and the Special Counsel.”

Vos said that members of the Republican caucus have reached out to him in the past several days after narrowly defeating Steen in the primary election.

“It is beyond clear to me that we only have one choice in this matter, and that’s to close the Office of Special Counsel,” Vos said.

“For those like me who remain concerned about ensuring we have election integrity, we have a simple solution; to focus on our efforts to elect a Republican governor in November so we can pass the bills that were vetoed by Governor [Tony] Evers.”

Vos fired Gableman by letter and told WISN-TV that he had not spoken with the retired justice in recent weeks, who he said “did a good job last year” but “kind of got off the rails this year.”

The lawmaker said in an interview Wednesday with The Jay Webber Show, a conservative talk radio program, that he gave Gableman “very clear direction” for the investigation including that he could not be involved in politics or go to rallies and that he “broke that.”

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