A Trump-appointed assistant attorney general believed Chinese hackers used special thermometers to change votes from Donald Trump to Joe Biden in the 2020 election—and he wanted an intelligence briefing to prove it. “I would like to have your authorization to get a classified briefing tomorrow from ODNI led by DNI [John] Radcliffe [sic] on foreign election interference issues,” Jeffrey Clark wrote. “Hackers have evidence (in the public domain) that a Dominion machine accessed the Internet through a smart thermostat with a net connection trail leading back to China. ODNI may have additional classified evidence.” The email, first disclosed by the House Oversight Committee and published by ABC News, is part of a CNN look into the astonishing efforts made to overturn the election result by Clark, who served as assistant AG for the Justice Department’s Civil Division in Trump’s final days.
In the meeting between Ratcliffe, the director of National Intelligence, and Clark, Ratcliffe presented him with classified evidence that showed no foreign government had flipped votes. Clark, however, believed Ratcliffe was being kept in the dark to prevent Trump acolytes from politicizing supposed proof of voter fraud. Clark maintained he knew more than intel officials, citing contacts with Trump. Such contacts between department heads and the president are generally considered inappropriate.