FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Santa Fe, NM – Today, Attorney General Raúl Torrez released a comprehensive report summarizing the criminal investigation into New Mexico’s fake elector scheme. Although prosecutors determined that New Mexico’s fake electors are not subject to prosecution under current law, the Attorney General has recommended two specific legislative proposals to the Governor and the Legislature to enhance the security of our electoral process and provide clear legal authority for prosecuting similar misconduct in the future.
The previous administration at the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office (NMAGO) referred New Mexico’s false certificate to federal authorities for investigation in January of 2022. In 2023, with no determination having been made in relation to the federal referral, incoming Attorney General Raúl Torrez ordered a comprehensive investigation into the unresolved question of whether any state crimes occurred in association with the formation, execution, and submission of the false certificate of electoral votes. Investigators reviewed thousands of pages of documents relating to the scheme in New Mexico and the parallel schemes in the six other states. NMAGO investigators also interviewed the five New Mexico fake electors and many other individuals connected to the false certificate.
The investigation revealed that Trump’s team and campaign provided the fake certificate, along with instructions for completing and submitting the document, to five electors designated by the Republican Party of New Mexico. However, unlike the documents the campaign sent to other states declaring the fake electors to be the actual electors of their states, the New Mexico document purported to certify electoral votes only if the signatories were later determined to be the legitimate electors for New Mexico.
“It is disgraceful that New Mexicans were enlisted in a plot to undermine democracy and thwart the peaceful and orderly transfer of power,” said AG Torrez. “However, like the fake electors in Pennsylvania, their misconduct is not subject to criminal prosecution under current state law. That’s why I am asking the Governor to give a message to the New Mexico Legislature to address the issue during the upcoming legislative session and amend the election code to give our prosecutors greater latitude to prosecute these types of cases in the future.”
In addition to providing a comprehensive overview of the investigation and legal analysis of the conduct of New Mexico’s fake electors, it also offers specific recommendations for legislative action including expanding the prohibition against falsified election documents to include certificates pertaining to presidential electors and creating a new law against falsely acting as a presidential elector.
The full report and letter to Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham are available below.