Trump's quest to overturn the election just took a dark turn

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Even some of his most loyal aides are growing worried about Trump's behavior over the past few days, according to new reports.

Donald Trump's quest to steal the election from President-elect Joe Biden took a dark and concerning turn over the weekend, when he invited some of the loudest voices calling for the election to be overturned — with some even arguing for military involvement.

Trump brought Sidney Powell and his recently pardoned former national security adviser Michael Flynn to the White House to discuss a plot to enlist the Department of Homeland Security into the effort to overturn the election results, the New York Times reported.

Flynn has been pushing Trump to invoke martial law to block Biden from assuming office, while Powell has filed multiple failed lawsuits seeking to throw the election to Trump.

Axios reported that the meeting was tense, with some Trump loyalists even raising concern about Trump's openness to steal an election he clearly lost.

"It's basically Sidney versus everybody," an unnamed White House source told Axios. "That is why voices were raised. There is literally not one motherfucker in the president’s entire orbit — his staunchest group of supporters and allies — who doesn't think that Sidney Powell should be on that first rocket to Mars."

According to the report, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and White House counsel Pat Cipollone pushed back on two of the ideas: installing Powell as a special counsel to investigate voter fraud and having DHS take voting machines as part of the probe. T

hat Meadows and Cipollone — who have been supportive of Trump's bad behavior, including his attempted extortion campaign against Ukraine that got Trump impeached — are raising concern about his behavior is notable.

Powell, for her part, has espoused some of the craziest conspiracy theories about the election, including an absurd and false assertion that long-dead Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez somehow was involved in a plot to rig voting machined against Trump. This is flatly untrue, as Chavez has been dead since March 5, 2013 — more than seven-and-a-half years before the 2020 election.

In fact, Powell's conspiracy theories were so wild that the Trump campaign tried to distance itself from her at the start of their ill-fated strategy to steal the election through use of the courts.

It's unclear whether Trump will act on any of the ideas discussed over the weekend.

But legal experts are raising concerns.

"A presidential appointment of Powell as special counsel likely would be illegal, and almost certainly would be dangerous," CNN legal analyst Elie Honig wrote in an op-ed. "If Trump, outgoing Attorney General Bill Barr or his successor actually follows through with this wild plan, the incoming Biden administration would be well-founded in putting a quick end to this improper abuse of power."

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.