Former President Donald Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., sent the White House chief of staff Mark Meadows a text message two days after Election Day in 2020 that laid out strategies for declaring his father the winner regardless of the electoral outcome, people familiar with the exchange said on Friday.

The text was sent two days before Joe Biden was declared the election winner. 

“It’s very simple,” Don Jr. texted to Meadows on November 5. “We have multiple paths. We control them all.”

Trump Jr.’s lawyer, Alan S. Futerfas, said, “After the election, Don received numerous messages from supporters and others. Given the date, this message likely originated from someone else and was forwarded.”

Still, the text underscores the extraordinary lengths that the President’s allies and official aides were exploring right after Election Day to keep him in power if the voters throughout the country failed to do so.

According to the Don Jr. text, if all that failed, GOP lawmakers in Congress could vote to reinstall Trump as president on January 6.

“We have operational control Total leverage,” the message reads. “Moral High Ground POTUS must start 2nd term now.”

The text from Trump Jr. is revealing on several levels. It shows how those closest to the former President were already exchanging ideas for overturning the election months before the January 6 insurrection – and before all the votes were even counted. It would be two days before the major news outlets declared Biden, the winner on November 7.

The text also adds to a growing body of evidence of how Trump’s inner circle was actively engaged in discussing how to challenge the election results.

On March 28, Judge David Carter, a federal judge in California, said that Trump and conservative lawyer John Eastman launched an “unprecedented” campaign to overturn a democratic election, calling it “a coup in search of a legal theory.”

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