White House lawyers prevailed following surprise Trump meeting with Flynn, Powell on Dec. 18

Analysis by WorldTribune Staff, February 2, 2021

The thousands of National Guard troops apparently serving as their personal security force and the newly-constructed wall around the Capitol (while construction on the necessary wall was canceled) are among multiple indications that leftists  and their enablers in the Swamp remain a nervous bunch in the wake of the dubious 2020 election.

Meanwhile there is reportedly a lot of information out there about what happened before-during-and-after Nov. 3, 2020, much of it in the hands of supporters of the man tens of millions of American believe was actually re-elected on that day, some still in government and some not. Official Washington, D.C. has made it clear it does not want to acknowledge or investigate that information. Powerful forces here and abroad are similarly obsessive about controlling the flow of that information.

Other clues:

• House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democrats wanted the National Guard to protect them, but also distrusted them and asked that they be vetted. (They are still arriving in D.C., Tucker Carlson reported last night).

• Sidney Powell has suggested in interviews that POTUS was surrounded by the wrong people.

• An epic White House showdown with Mike Flynn and Powell vs. Mark Meadows, lawyers and Rudy Giuliani took place on Dec. 18 according to multiple reports that sought to frame the meeting without shedding light on what happened.

• Mike Lindell’s paid a subsequent visit to the White House on Jan. 15 (see here).

Patrick Byrne was at the Dec. 18 White House meeting and provided details in a Feb. 1 report. Byrne is not a Trump partisan but has focused on the cybersecurity dimensions of the Nov. 3, 2020 election. A former White House official and Sidney Powell have vouched for the accuracy of Byrne’s report.

“I wish to emphasize that at no point in the evening or in any segment of the discussion was there mention of martial law, or Insurrection Act, or anything of the sort. All claims to the contrary are lies, propagated (I would imagine) by Pat Cipollone, who (according to multiple sources) regularly leaks to Maggie Haberman of the NYT. Even cursory review of Haberman’s writings on the White House, which never fail to give stroke to Cipollone, would support that claim,” Byrne noted.

Byrne writes about the meeting with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office on Dec. 18:

Apparently he knew about me, as I thought my be the case. He said something quietly, civil and kind. I said, “Thank you Mr. President…” He cocked his head quizzically and said something softly about knowing that I had not voted for him, and had said a number of critical things of him. I let him know the truth, that I had said some harsh things before the 2016 election, but while he was President my estimation of him had grown, and that in any case none of it was relevant, that I was there because I was confident the election had been hacked. I told him, “We think there is a much shorter route through all of this than your team is pursuing,” I closed saying, “But Sir, entrepreneur to entrepreneur, I feel I must mention something. As you may know, I have been swimming around the outside of your administration for a couple months now, and I must tell you, I do not think you are being well-served by many people in the White House. I can bring in young staffers who will tell you that some of your senior leadership don’t want you to win. They want you to concede.”

Related: CEO Patrick Byrne goes public with claim about Barack Obama and the 2016 and 2020 elections, December 25, 2020

The President raised his eyebrows at my frankness. Then, like a man who knew the answer, he asked quietly, “Why?”

“I’m not sure,” I said, “but I hear people are getting signals that if they’re good boys and get you out the door, there will be jobs waiting for them. But if they don’t, they won’t be getting offers from the right law firms, they won’t be getting invitations from the right country clubs, they won’t be getting invited to the socialite parties on Manhattan…” Trump grimaced, and we moved on.

Sidney and Mike began walking the President through things from our perspective. In brief: there was a quick way to resolve this national crisis because he had power to act in ways he was not understanding. Under an Executive Order that he had signed in 2018, and another Executive Order that President Obama had signed in 2015, he could “find” that there was adequate evidence of foreign interference with the election, and while doing so would give him authority to do a number of big things, all he had to do was one small thing: direct a federal force (we suggested US Marshall Service + National Guard) to go to the six counties in question (the Problematic 6), and re-count (on livestream TV) the paper ballots that were held as fail-safe back-up. It would only take a few days. Even more conclusive would be if they imaged the hard-drives and those images could be examined forensically (which would make the project last no more than a week, as we had already cracked the Antrim County machines and knew precisely what to do going forward). In either case, if there was no mischief found, then President Trump would concede the election. But if (as we suspected) evidence of hundreds of thousands of improper votes was found in each of the six counties in question, then he would have a wide variety of options. He might have those six states re-counted. Or he might have 50 states recounted on livestream TV by federal forces, and America would finally have its answer to, “How much election fraud does our nation suffer?” Or he might skip that and have the National Guard re-run the elections in those six states. We pointed out that, it being December 18, if he signed the paperwork we had brought with us, we could have the first stage (recounting the Problematic 6 counties) finished before Christmas. And even if the result was hinky enough it demanded a rerun of the election in those states, it could be done before January 20, so that the January 20 Constitutional deadline would not be disrupted. The more time that he let slide by, the more compressed things would become. If he waited to see what the January 6 outcome was, however, and then decided to follow a plan such as ours, it would engender accusations of “sore-loserism”, so he had to act quickly. The alternative was an election that 47% of Americans doubted, which would not go down peacefully.

Byrne went on to say that he had recommended to the president that he appoint Powell his “Special Counsel” on “election matters” and make Flynn his “Field Marshall over the whole effort.”

“If you do I put your chances at around 50-75%. You should see how he well he has this planned, it would run like clockwork…” Byrne said he told Trump.

“The President shook me off, saying, ‘No no, it’s got to be Rudy,’ ” Byrne notes.

Byrne continued:

After some time (20-30 minutes), three lawyers appeared together. They did not introduce themselves, and stood huddling in the back of the Oval Office, listening. In addition, Mark Meadows and someone else joined us by speaker phone. Eventually the lawyers in the back began muttering things to make their displeasure and disagreement evident. Finally President Trump said something indicating this was new to him, wondering why no one had shown him this route through the impasse. I said again, “Sir, again, CEO to CEO, you are not being served well by those around you in the White House. I’ve gotten to know staffers in your White House, and they tell me they are being told that leadership here is telling them to get you to concede.”

Trump started to say something to Mike and Sidney, but he stopped himself and turned back towards me. “Who?” He asked angrily, “Who wants me to concede?”

I was taken aback by his anger, because I thought what I was telling him was common knowledge. I thought it was generally understood that about half the White House was in on the program of getting him to concede, for that was the estimate I was repeatedly told. “Sir, I am surprised you’re surprised…. In your White House leadership is telling junior staff this everywhere. I am told that this fellow Pat Cipollone [indicating the lawyers behind me as I spoke, not knowing which was Cipollone] has been telling people since November 4, ‘Just help us get the President to concede.’ And for the last couple of weeks, Mark Meadows has been telling staff, ‘Help get the President into transition mode.’”

Trump turned to White House General Counsel Pat Cipollone, who began sputtering. “Mr. President, you know how hard I work, you know how many hours I have been putting in…” Both of which were mealy-mouthed, and neither of which was a direct denial, as was obvious to everyone in the room. Trump faced him, his face darkening in anger.

“Sir,” I continued, “in 30 minutes I can have a number of staffers from within your White House here to tell you that those are quotes from Pat Cipollone and Mark Meadows. This guy is lying to you through his teeth. They want you to lose.”

Trump turned, knowing I was correct. He indicated one of the other lawyers, said, “Did you know that this is his last day? He has a job starting Monday at a law firm up the street, getting paid 10 times what I can pay him here.” He continued wistfully, “Pat, can you imagine what I could have gotten done here, if I had not been fighting my own people?”

Cipollone and the other two lawyers scurried out the back door of the Oval Office. I heard them stay out in the ante room, caucusing. Meanwhile, the President, Sidney, Mike, Alyssa, and myself continued for a while walking through more of the details, reviewing some of what we had said earlier. At some point Allyssa, that quiet but razor-sharp female lawyer assisting Sidney, took over for a few points, and concisely explained aspects of the executive order, always clarifying with great precision whatever needed to be clarified.

After 10 minutes the three lawyers walked back into the room and stood, this time not in the back, but abreast and to the left of we four visitors: Alyssa, myself, Mike, and Sidney, sitting in chairs in a half-moon in front of the Resolute desk. Mike continued taking operational questions that arose, while Sidney and Alyssa handled the legal questions that arose. The three male lawyers edged closer to the front, and then as though as some hidden signal, they all started being bitches.

First was some comment about it not being right to use the National Guard. “The optics are terrible, Mr. President,” said one. “It would have to be the DHS.” I liked the National Guard idea because we needed to reestablish trust of the American people in the electoral process, and the US institution with the most trust is the one where people dress in military uniforms. Yet the National Guard is local, they are all around us, our colleagues at work, our “Citizen Soldiers”. But perhaps in a sign of flexibility, Flynn and Sidney allowed as how one could use the DHS instead of the National Guard.

“The press would tear your apart,” predicted Pat Cipollone at one turn in the conversation. Sidney said what Mike and I were both thinking: The press is going to tear him apart? Really? What are they doing now?

At some point Cipollone objected, “Never in American history has there been this kind of a challenge to an election!” Flynn responded, “Never in American history has there been a situation like this, with counting being shut down for hours, foreigners connecting to our equipment, …..” and so on.

“He does not have the authority to do this!” Cipollone thundered eventually. Sidney rejoined, “Of course he does,” citing EO 13848 (and something else signed by Obama). “Without question he has the authority.” Alyssa whipped out EO 13848 again and showed the relevant language that we had just covered. Trump looked at Cipollone with an expression that said, You never even brought this to my attention, Pat. He said to Cipolloner, “You know Pat, at least they want to fight for me. You don’t even fight for me. You just tell me everything I can’t do.”

Byrne’s team raised a legal point, saying the president “clearly had enough grounds to find that those Problematic 6 counties had enough peculiarities in their election, that under his powers under those EO’s, he was sending in federal teams to recount the ballots in those six counties. It was a defensible, reasonable action to take.”

Byrne said that Flynn sprung to his feet and asked of the three lawyers: “Let’s get something clear. What do you think happened on November 3? Do you think it was a fair election? There was nothing unusual about it in your eyes?”

Byrne noted: “The three lawyers looked down, stuck their toes in the dirt, glanced at each other out of the corners of their eyes, and would not give an answer.”

Byrne said that Trump “looked directly at me and said gently, ‘You know Pat, all my life I’ve had the best lawyers. People call me from all over the world, ‘What lawyer should I use on this? What lawyer should I use on that?’ But here…. You know, the other side breaks every rule in the book, but me….? All I have are lawyers who tell me ‘You can’t do this, you can’t do that…’ Do you see what I have been working with for four years? Can you imagine what I could have gotten done……’ He broke off, then turned to Cipollone, asked ‘Where’s my Durham report? Where’s ….’ and started rattling off his legal disappointments.”

After departing from the White House, Byrne said he, Powell and Flynn confided in each other: “You know, for me this is not really about Trump. But we cannot let a rigged election stand. If we do, it could mean civil war, and even a Chinese take-over of our country. All we need to do is follow this plan, expose what happened in those six counties by checking the ballots. If there is nothing amiss, then Trump gets in his helicopter and leaves, and there’s no civil war. But if we find chicanery, it will give an opportunity to blow this scheme up for the whole nation. Who knows how much fraud there is going to turn out to be in U.S. elections? I think ‘a lot,’ what do you think?”

The next day, Bryne said Powell had called Meadows and said, “Well now that I’m White House Special Counsel, I am going to need an office over there.”

Meadows told her, “Yeah we’re looking into that, we don’t have anything immediately but we are going to soon…”

“Then I will need a White House ID, so I can come and go,” replied Sidney.

“Yeah well we are working on that too, there might be a problem with that, we’ll see what it is going to take, …” said Meadows.

A few days later, Byrne noted, “we learned that Sidney’s ‘White House Special Counsel’ position was not going to happen. The plan we had discussed so extensively in the White House, the one that got an answer before Christmas (and depending upon the evidence found, either permitted a peaceful transition of power, or justified more extensive federal involvement that would get to the bottom of what the intent of the People truly was), that plan…. had been called off. Instead, Rudy was going to continue his slog through the courts and the hotel-room hearings in the states.”

Powell said in an interview, conducted on video in a 7th-floor suite at the Trump International Hotel in D.C., that she had no contact with Trump after the Dec. 18 meeting.

“I’ve been blocked from speaking to or communicating with the president since I left the Oval Office,” she said, “by apparently everyone around him.”


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