FOX 2 (WJBK) - While president, Donald Trump told two Wayne County canvassers they would look "terrible" if they certified the 2020 presidential election, reported The Detroit News on Thursday.
The then president pressured Wayne County Board of Canvassers members Monica Palmer and William Hartmann over a phone call that took place on Nov. 17, 2020, according to audio recordings obtained and reviewed by The News.
Palmer and Hartmann came under fire the night they refused to certify the vote for the county.
During the board meeting that addressed the certification of the 2020 election, the two Republican members initially cast their votes against the certification. However, later in the meeting, they changed their stance and voted in favor of approving the results.
Then, Palmer and Hartmann walked out of the meeting and never returned, even though the meeting was not officially over. Trump called the canvassers within 30 minutes of the meeting ending, The News' report stated. Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel joined Trump, Palmer, and Hartmann on the phone call.
"Now we know what happened, why they did not come back," said Former Vice Chair of Wayne County Board of Canvassers Johnathan Kinlock. "They were told by the president of the United States of America, not to do their job and not to complete this certification. It's just amazing to think that the president would have actually called two canvassers in Wayne County, or in any state, to try to interfere with that process."
The following day, Palmer and Hartmann tried to rescind their votes for the certification of the Wayne County election results, but were unsuccessful.
In 2020, Palmer mentioned that she had received a call from Trump, but claimed it was only to thank her for her "service" and ask how she was doing.
"There was genuine concern for my safety with what he had heard and the threats that were coming in," she said at the time.
While there has been no proof that the 2020 election was stolen, many Trump supporters still claim that it was.
"I wrote four affidavits stating some of the things that I saw that I thought were suspicious. I stopped the vote count a couple of times, and made them enter my challenge into their poll book," said former poll challenger and founder of Auto Workers for Trump. "There were a lot of things going on. So for President Trump to encourage the canvassers not to certify, if they had questions about the validity of the Wayne County vote, I think it was the right thing to do, and I would have done the same thing had I been him."
FOX 2 Detroit reached out to Palmer but did recieve a response; Hartmann died in 2021.