In total, the president talked to at least 31 Republicans, encompassing mostly local and state officials from four critical battleground states he lost — Michigan, Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania. The contacts included at least 12 personal phone calls to 11 individuals, and at least four White House meetings with 20 Republican state lawmakers, party leaders and attorneys general, all people he hoped to win over to his side. Trump also spoke by phone about his efforts with numerous House Republicans and at least three current or incoming Senate Republicans…

Trump’s efforts to cling to power are unprecedented in American history. While political parties have fought over the results of presidential elections before, no incumbent president has ever made such expansive and individualized pleas to the officials who oversee certification of the election results. Trump even used his presidential perch to compel officials to talk with him, summoning state officials to the White House on a few-hours notice and insisting that his outreach was simply part of his presidential duties…

“There was always this feeling of supreme confidence that no matter how it looks it’s all going to work out for him, something will happen and it will all work out for him because it did once before,” said Scott Jennings, who worked in the George W. Bush White House and is close to Trump’s team. “I think that sort of magical confidence or magical thinking, persisted right through Election Day and right through this post-election.”