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Explosive Pennsylvania Testimony Explains How Leftist Money Infiltrated Election Offices In 2020


REPORTED BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | APRIL 08, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/04/08/explosive-pennsylvania-testimony-explains-how-leftist-money-infiltrated-election-offices-in-2020/

Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania

This evidence should be enough for the Pennsylvania legislature to recognize there is a real problem when private money and private actors collaborate with election officials.

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The Democrat governor’s office in Pennsylvania colluded with left-wing activists to secure millions of dollars in private money to run get-out-the-vote efforts in blue counties in the swing state in 2020, new, explosive testimony revealed. The Pennsylvania legislature heard this testimony, backed up by email evidence, on Tuesday during the first public hearing on two new bills seeking to block private grants.

Tuesday’s public hearing began with statements by the respective primary sponsors of the bills that seek to ban dark money from elections, with Sen. Lisa Baker speaking in support of Senate Bill 982 and Rep. Eric Nelson encouraging passage of House Bill 2044. Pennsylvania investigative journalist Todd Shepherd then testified at length on the results of his extensive probe into the insertion of private funds into the 2020 election.

With a series of PowerPoint slides, Shepherd revealed to lawmakers that beginning in July 2020, consultants working for leftist organizations coordinated with local election officials and Democrat Gov. Tom Wolf’s office to lobby five blue counties to apply for these private grants. While the grants originated with the nominally non-partisan Center for Tech and Civic Life—an organization that Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan’s private foundation later infused with some $350 million in cash—emails reveal that a main consultant involved in targeting select counties, Marc Solomon, worked for the Center for Secure and Modern Elections, or the CSME.

“What’s important to know about CSME is that it is not a 501(c)3, but rather it is a fiscally sponsored project of the New Venture Fund,” Shepherd told the Pennsylvania lawmakers. In turn, “the New Venture Fund is managed by Arabella Advisors,” Shepherd continued, noting that “the ‘parent’ group of Arabella, New Venture Fund — they are part of what the Atlantic Magazine identified as ‘The Massive Progressive Dark-Money Group You’ve Never Heard Of.’” In fact, in January, The New York Times called out the New Venture Fund in its article headlined, “Democrats Decried Dark Money. Then they Won with it in 2020,” Shepherd added.

The CSME was not the only left-wing organization involved in lobbying blue counties to obtain grants. The emails also indicate that The Voter Project played a prominent role in this targeted cash giveaway: Following the 2020 election, the lead strategist in Pennsylvania for The Voter Project would brag that The Voter Project “was instrumental in signing up over 3.2 million people to vote by mail and leading the soft-side effort to win the swing state in 2020.”

How the Left Opened This Battlefront

A July 2020 email exposes the beginning of these efforts, with The Voter Project’s Gwen Camp introducing Delaware County’s Christine Reuther to CSME’s Solomon, saying they had “both been hearing about the other’s operations” and “want[ed] to get everyone together to talk about the potential for an official partnership.” According to the testimony, Camp copied Jessica Walls-Lavelle, a special advisor to the chief of staff on election reform in Wolf’s office, on that email, along with The Voters Project lead Pennsylvania strategist Kevin Mack.

In August, other emails show the governor’s staffer, Walls-Lavelle, reaching out to additional blue counties. Solomon passed the good news to his Delaware County contact, Reuther, telling her, “We’ve invited Chester, Montco, and Bucks to apply! They’re on it!”

Another email from August shows Camp, a consultant for The Voters Project, contacting a representative in Lackawanna County, telling the recipient that Camp is working with Jessica Walls-Lavelle, who is “with the Governor’s Office.”

Activists Push for Ballot Trafficking Dropboxes

All five counties lobbied by the left-wing activists, with an assist from Wolf’s office, ended up breaking heavily for Joe Biden, which likely explains why, when Solomon saw in August 2020 that Montgomery County had applied for a $1.2 million grant, he exclaimed, “the third largest county in the state, Philly suburbs!” Solomon then asked his colleagues whether they should turn this “into more of a plan.”

In an email response, Solomon’s cohort noted that the application “raised polling place consolidation as a possibility.” “We should ask what resources they need to make that not happen,” the email continued, suggesting: “Could we push them to use more than 5 drop boxes with more money? Maybe pointing out that Delaware County is using 10 times as many?”

While the right-to-know requests revealed the targeted lobbying of blue counties, there were no emails showing any outreach to core Republican counties until after September 1, 2020. That proves significant, according to Shepherd’s testimony, because when the summer-time targeting of Democratic strongholds took place, the Zuckbucks cash infusion to the CTCL had not yet been announced. Without that cash, there may never have been a chance for the red counties to obtain any funds. (Shepherd also questioned where the earlier CTCL funding came from—something apparently still unknown.)

But even after the new funds came in, the Democrat counties still received a substantially higher cut of the $22.5 million in grants spread across 23 counties, as Shepherd illustrated with powerful graphics, testifying, “Philadelphia had $8.83 cents that could be spent on each ‘Joe Citizen’ registered to vote there, while in Luzerne or Erie County, those counties had about 75 cents to spend on ‘Joe Citizen’ registered voter in those counties.”

Equal Protection Problems

Far from being an outlier, Pennsylvania’s experience matches the growing evidence seen in other states that the Zuckbucks and other leftist money funded state-run get-out-the-vote efforts for Biden. What makes Pennsylvania different, however, is that the emails connect the grant process to government actors and show the state’s collaboration with left-wing political activists to lobby Democrat-only counties. This evidence raises constitutional concerns under the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

The Supreme Court made clear in Bush v. Gore that “the right to vote is protected in more than the initial allocation of the franchise.” The Equal Protection clause requires both that the right to vote be granted on equal terms, but also that the state “not, by later arbitrary and disparate treatment, value one person’s vote over that of any.” The emails highlighted in Tuesday’s hearing suggest that such “arbitrary and disparate treatment” occurred in 2020, with the governor’s office and select counties as willful participants.

Individuals representing the secretary of state’s office and Philadelphia County also testified at Tuesday’s hearing and attempted to downplay the disparity by stressing that large counties had different needs. Delaware County spent some $600,000 on “Bluecrest mail sorting equipment” one witness stressed, while an election official from Philadelphia county noted it expended huge sums of grant money to purchase modern machines to “open, sort, and tabulate” votes in that county.

But rather than support their “nothing to see here” response, Delaware and Philadelphia County’s purchase of the high-tech Bluecrest mail-sorting equipment highlights a second Equal Protection problem seen in the 2020 election.

As I reported shortly after the election, evidence shows that Philadelphia and other Democrat strongholds illegally engaged in pre-canvasing activities by inspecting mail-in ballots before election day. They did this by weighing the ballots on the Bluecrest sorting equipment to determine if the voter had enclosed the ballot in a “sleeve” as required by state law. Election workers in Philadelphia and other select counties then provided campaign workers the list of allegedly defective ballots—ones without a sleeve—allowing activists to contact the voters, telling them to cast a new vote.   

While the Bluecrest sorting equipment used in Philadelphia and Delaware County can detect which ballots are defective based on their thickness or weight, smaller counties without that sophisticated equipment could not conduct such pre-canvas inspections, which in any event violate the state’s election code.

Other Evidence of Vote Mismanagement

Referencing Delaware County’s expenditures proves ironic for a second reason: Whistleblower videos have exposed extensive evidence of systemic problems with the 2020 election in the large Pennsylvania county, including violations of election law and potentially corruption and fraud. Of course, mail-in voting itself is ripe for election fraud, and as the emails show Delaware County had 10 times the number of drop boxes planned over the even larger Montgomery County.

The whistleblower videos in Delaware County also captured election workers discussing the fact that some of the voting machines were missing V-drives, or the removable memory drive that records the vote tallies, and conversing on how to recreate the missing data, which a later video confirmed the county did. Yet, even with this video evidence, Delaware County council member Christine Reuther declared at a recent public meeting, “There were no missing drives. It’s been debunked. It’s been before the board of elections. It’s been addressed in court. There’s been testimony about it. There were no missing drives.”

Reuther is the same council member involved in the early lobbying for Delaware County to apply for private grants.

This evidence should be enough for the Pennsylvania legislature to recognize there is a real problem when private money and private actors collaborate with election officials, especially when they target select counties. But Tuesday’s hearing suggests Democrats don’t care, with one witness opposing the new legislation by framing the bills as part of “the big lie” that Trump won the election.

Without Democrats on board, the bill will be doomed even if it passes the legislature, as last year Wolf vetoed a similar ban on outside money. And we may now know why.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

How No-Excuse Absentee Voting Allows Special Interests To Manipulate Voters


REPORTED BY: WILLIAM DOYLE | FEBRUARY 15, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/02/15/how-no-excuse-absentee-voting-allows-special-interests-to-manipulate-voters/

ballots

Signs outside every physical polling place forbid electioneering. Each state has some form of restriction on political activities near polling locations when voting is taking place. These restrictions are usually on the display of signs, handing out campaign literature, attempting to influence voters, or soliciting votes within a predetermined distance (typically 50 to 200 feet) of a polling place. A list of the specific electioneering prohibitions adopted by each state can be found here.

Opposition to electioneering is the main reason election integrity advocates oppose allowing political activists to provide food and water to voters waiting in line at polling places. What has been portrayed as a measure to starve and dehydrate suffering voters is really a commonsense prohibition against electioneering. Allowing such practices would allow anybody with a few water bottles or a bag of sandwiches an opportunity to harangue, harass, or otherwise intimidate voters who are waiting in line to cast their ballots.

But nobody has yet come to terms with a new type of electioneering that goes hand in hand with universal absentee voting. We call it “remote electioneering” and define it as an attempt to influence or solicit votes among absentee voters between the time they receive their absentee ballot and the time they submit it to their election office. Obviously, the opportunities for what in normal circumstances would qualify as illegal electioneering multiply considerably with absentee voting, since there is no way of knowing the extent to which partisan activists attempt to influence the behavior of absentee voters.

CTCL’s Goal Was to Influence Absentee Voters

But we have a glimpse of the attitudes of Democrat election activists toward electioneering with absentee ballots through Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL) documents, which outline the actions that the major recipients of their Covid-19 Response Grant Program would have to fulfill as conditions of keeping their grant money. By the admission of the activist election officials in Wisconsin who were funded by CTCL in 2020, absentee ballot electioneering was one of their major goals. Grant recipients were required to “Encourage and Increase Absentee Voting (By Mail and Early, In-Person),” mainly through providing “assistance” in their completion and the installation of ballot drop boxes. They were also to “dramatically expand strategic voter education & outreach efforts, particularly to historically disenfranchised residents” in states such as Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which in 2020 were flooded with no-excuse absentee ballots for the first time ever.

We know that absentee ballot electioneering occurred in areas in these states where CTCL had a substantial presence because it was part and parcel of CTCL’s requirement that absentee voting be promoted, assisted, and increased. Ongoing contact between activist election officials and millions of new absentee voters was not only encouraged in areas that received big CTCL money, it was required.

Wisconsin Illustrates Extravagant Plans

The Wisconsin Safe Voting Plan, which served as the basic template for CTCL’s nationwide efforts during the 2020 election, provides documentation of their extravagant plans to use key election offices to electioneer the absentee vote that they were so intent on promoting.

Election officials in Wisconsin who were “on the street” had enough contact with voters to bemoan the fact that “countless [individuals]” in their municipalities attempted to submit cell phone “selfies” as valid photo ID. Explaining to them that this was not a valid form of photo ID and instructing them on how to properly submit valid ID reportedly “took considerable staff time and resources.”

If election officials had such knowledge, they must have had extensive contact with such low-information absentee voters while they were in the process of completing and submitting their ballots. If this were at the polling booth, it would qualify as illegal electioneering because election officials had “extensive contact” with in-person voters who were completing and submitting their ballots.

A great deal of concern was expressed about “Voters who, understandably, were completely confused about the timeline and rules for voting in the midst of a pandemic and required considerable public outreach and individual hand-holding to ensure their right to vote.” Figuratively “holding someone’s hand” as they cast a vote — whether absentee or in person — seems to be the very definition of electioneering.

The city of Green Bay planned to spend $45,000 to employ bilingual “voter navigators” to help residents properly upload valid photo ID, complete their ballots, comply with certification requirements, and offer witness signatures.  But it would be illegal for poll workers to help voters complete their ballots when voting in person. Why should it not be illegal for partisan activists to help people complete their absentee ballots?

The city of Racine wished to create a corps of “vote ambassadors.” Racine officials said they would recruit, train, and employ such paid ambassadors to set up at the city’s community centers to assist voters with all aspects of absentee ballot requests. But how do we know that the diplomatic efforts of such “ambassadors” would not be exercised exclusively on behalf of their own partisan interests when “assisting” in the completion of absentee ballots?

Violating Voting Booth’s Sanctity

The sanctity of the voting booth used to be considered one of the sacred traditions of American democracy, as it protects the right of individuals to determine who will represent them in government. But the kind of Democracy™ that involves the indiscriminate mass mailing of no-excuse absentee ballots is a top-down endeavor, where most of the power, initiative, and agency is on the side of Democrat politicians and leftist election activists rather than voters.

Their plan is to influence, cajole, and incentivize the least civically engaged, least informed, most apathetic individuals within their jurisdictions to fill out absentee ballots in a way that validates the consolidation of Democratic Party power. Absentee ballot electioneering is the key to a more modern way of “stuffing the ballot box” in an era where activists have convinced a significant number of people that their voting rights have been fatally compromised if they are not permitted to cast a ballot in whatever way is most effortless for them.

The fact that opportunities for electioneering are so few at the polling place, and so plentiful during the time that elapses between the receipt of absentee ballots and their submission, suggests another reason those who wish to find new ways to interfere in legitimate elections are the most strident advocates of universal mail-in voting. It also provides yet another reason why people who believe in free and fair elections should spare no effort to resolutely oppose no-excuse absentee voting in 2022.


William Doyle, Ph.D., is principal researcher at Caesar Rodney Election Research Institute in Irving, Texas. He specializes in economic history and the private funding of American elections. Previously, he was associate professor and chair in the Department of Economics at the University of Dallas. He can be contacted at doyle@rodneyinstitute.org.

ZuckBucks-Connected Private Organization Taught Election Officials To ‘Control the Narrative’ About Mail-In Voting


REPORTED BY: LOGAN WASHBURN | JANUARY 26, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/26/zuckbucks-connected-private-organization-taught-election-officials-to-control-the-narrative-about-mail-in-voting/

Wisconsin election volunteers

A left-leaning nonprofit instructed public officials how to “control the narrative” about mail-in ballots in the 2020 election. The National Vote at Home Institute (NVAHI) guided officials to sway public opinion in favor of mail-in voting with their 2020 Election Official Communications Toolkit.” The group shared this document with public officials in Wisconsin while working with the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) to influence the 2020 election.

CTCL used nearly half a billion dollars from Facebook tycoon Mark Zuckerberg to fund private action within government election offices. They spent most of the money in Democrat-saturated districts, which boosted Joe Biden’s narrow presidential win in 2020. As a partner for the “Zuckbucks” recipient, NVAHI gave public officials advice on how to “control the narrative” about mail-in ballots.

“Do not repeat myths as a way to refute them,” the document says. “Instead, control the narrative by presenting information that affirms the safety, security, and reliability of mail balloting.”

Mail-in voting is not only proven to be more susceptible to voter fraud and errors than in-person voting, it is well known to favor Democrats over Republicans. It essentially functions as a get-out-the-vote operation on behalf of Democrats, whose voters are less motivated to show up at the polls on election day. Republican voters far prefer to vote in person, accurately believing it is more secure.

The group also told election officials to push mail-in voting by placing articles in media outlets: “Reporters will likely already be writing up voter information guides as well as shaping their articles around how well or poorly the election is running. A proactive op-ed strategy is helpful here,” the document says.

NVAHI explained that officials should target free, popular local news publications: “For all these types of outlets, approach them about whether they would run an article on your behalf about the upcoming election,” the document says.

The organization recommended officials use public information strategies such as “playing up the security” of mail-in voting. NVAHI told election officials to dissuade concerns about mail-in ballots by claiming that they contain “over a dozen security features.”

“Voters may be reluctant to fill out a mail ballot because of concerns they’ve heard about stolen or lost ballots. Assuage those concerns without leaning into them,” the document says.

The guide also tells public officials to “instill a sense of urgency” about mail-in voting, recommending an appeal to popularity: “Voters may be unsure whether voting by mail is right for them. Social proof (showing how many people are taking up a behavior) is a powerful way of making mail-in ballots a compelling option.”

The document also recommended that government election offices use particular slogans for public information campaigns, such as “Voting by mail is easy and secure,” and “Let’s all vote safely. Choose to vote by mail.”

NVAHI partnered with the organization Ideas42 to create this toolkit. According to its website, the group is “a non-profit that uses insights from behavioral science to improve lives, build better systems and policies, and drive social change.” Ideas42 works with CTCL partner Center for Civic Design, along with several offices of government secretaries of state.

After CTCL gave a grant of $1.6 million to the Wisconsin city of Green Bay in 2020, NVAHI gained access to absentee ballots and influence over election preparations in the area. NVAHI Wisconsin State Lead Michael Spitzer-Rubenstein emailed the elections guide to former Green Bay City Clerk Kris Teske in August 2020.

When reaching out to Teske, Spitzer-Rubenstein described the toolkit as “a groundbreaking resource that uses behavioral science insights from our partners at Ideas42 to help you connect with communities and get voters the information they need.”

Spitzer-Rubenstein, who worked for Democrat political campaigns in the past, emailed Teske to ask if his group could “cure” absentee ballots. This means altering absentee ballots after they are filed to allegedly fix errors, rather than counting improperly marked ballots as invalid. When Teske turned down the offer, Spitzer-Rubenstein emailed former Green Bay Mayor’s Office Chief of Staff Celestine Jeffreys, who ordered Teske to open the city elections’ ballot-curing process to NVAHI, a private special interest group.

A 2021 audit of Wisconsin elections found the state had counted enough illegal ballots in 2020 to potentially switch its Electoral College votes from Biden to Donald Trump. Vote curing in the election could have contributed to the state counting illegal votes, the audit found.

Also in 2021, a judge ruled that the state’s 2020 use of ballot drop boxes and ballot harvesting, both of which are only possible with mail-in ballots, was illegal. The majority of mail-in ballots in Wisconsin were votes for Biden, who won the state by a margin of 0.63 percent, or approximately 20,600 votes.

Before election day, Green Bay elections officials gave Spitzer-Rubenstein four out of five keys to the room in which the absentee ballots were stored, former Brown County Clerk Sandy Juno told Wisconsin Spotlight.

After the election, Juno expressed concerns that the Central Count location was “tainted by the influence of a person working for an outside organization influencing the election,” according to Wisconsin Spotlight. Teske said she felt that third-party groups such as CTCL and NVAHI excluded the clerk’s office from the election process.

“As you know, I am very frustrated, along with the Clerk’s Office. I don’t know what to do anymore,” she emailed a colleague. “I don’t understand how people who don’t have knowledge of the process can tell us how to manage the election.”


Logan Washburn is studying politics and journalism at Hillsdale College. He is a correspondent for Campus Reform and an outreach assistant for the Freedom Foundation.

Democrats Are Using The Same 2020 Election Shenanigans To Overtake Virginia This Year


Reported By Hayden Ludwig | NOVEMBER 1, 2021

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2021/11/01/democrats-are-using-the-same-2020-election-shenanigans-to-overtake-virginia-this-year/

Virginia’s hotly contested gubernatorial race is just days away, and with Republican Glenn Youngkin and former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe tied in the polls, the professional left isn’t leaving anything to chance. A McAuliffe defeat is largely considered a bellwether for congressional Democrats in the 2022 midterms.

So how do Democrats plan to ensure a McAuliffe win and a subsequent retention of power in the state and U.S. Senate? By using the same tactic they used in the 2020 national contest: profligate mail-in voting and fake grassroots get-out-the-vote efforts funding by philanthropies and wealthy leftists, a strategy revealed through Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s gift to the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL).

And it’s a smart strategy. Joe Biden voters were twice as likely as Donald Trump voters to vote by mail in 2020, for example; and we know the effect of Zuckerberg’s millions on the 2020 election. The Capital Research Center specializes in exposing the activists behind these efforts. Here’s what we’ve discovered about the funding and activists behind them.

Getting Out the Vote for Democrats

Vote Forward is one of the get-out-the-vote (GOTV) groups swamping Virginians with a letter practically begging them to vote early. Here’s my copy:

Vote Forward is ostensibly nonpartisan—until you look at its original website from 2018, which reads “Flip the House Blue: Send letters to unlikely voters.” Elsewhere, the group admits it was founded to send “get-out-the-vote” mailers to “traditionally underrepresented communities,” code for Democrat-leaning constituencies.

The New York Times praised Vote Forward’s goal of boosting Democrat turnout just one week before the 2020 election. An old FAQ states that many of its campaigns “typically target low-propensity voters who we believe are likely to vote for Democrats when they do cast a ballot.”

In 2020, that target was 10 million voters. To make that happen, Vote Forward sued the U.S. Postal Service, accusing Postmaster General Louis DeJoy—a Trump nominee—of “undermin[ing] USPS’s ability to ensure the on-time delivery of mail ballots” in the 2020 election. The details of their settlement remain unclear, but USPS agreed to deliver mail-in ballots in time for Georgia’s January special election, the result of which ultimately handed Democrats control of the U.S. Senate.

Like many organizations that present themselves as more interested in voting than election outcomes, Vote Forward is part of the Left’s Voting Machine: A massive web of interconnected GOTV nonprofits commanding tens of millions of dollars, mostly gifted by ultra-wealthy institutions like the Ford, Gates, and Rockefeller Foundations.

We’ve traced more than $600,000 flowing to Vote Forward from the Hopewell Fund, part of a $731 million “dark money” network run by the consultancy Arabella Advisors in Washington, DC. After studying this network for years, it’s become clear to us that wherever Arabella is involved, one is sure to find the left’s top operatives as well.

For example, Vote Forward’s board includes Ezra Reese, a partner at Perkins Coie and its Marc Elias-led spin-off (the Elias Law Group) “focused on electing Democrats, supporting voting rights, and helping progressives make change”—a fact you won’t find advertised on the “nonpartisan” group’s website. Perkins Coie is the left’s law firm of choice. Elias was general counsel to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and a partisan operative whose past dealings include George Soros-funded efforts to abolish voter ID laws.

A Flood of Mail-In Ballots

In September, I reported on a new wave of 2 million applications for Virginians to register for absentee ballots in 2021. These applications weren’t sent out by state or local elections officials, but by politically active nonprofits: the Voter Participation Center and Center for Voter Information (collectively “the center”). An internal memo details the spots they planned to cover most aggressively, many of which parallel Biden’s performance in 2020.

The center explicitly targeted the “New American Majority,” another code for likely Democratic voters that they define as “young people, people of color and unmarried women.” That bloc contains 73 percent of all unregistered voters nationwide, which is why the left-wing strategists at the Democracy Alliance consider their turnout “central to progressive long-term success.”

The IRS requires all nonprofits be officially nonpartisan in order to be tax exempt. In the center’s case, nonpartisanship comes in the shape of a fig leaf—as liberal journalist Sasha Issenberg explains in his 2012 book, The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns: “Even though the group was officially nonpartisan, for tax purposes, there was no secret that the goal of all its efforts was to generate new votes for Democrats” (emphasis added).

The center sent out 15 million vote-by-mail applications in 2020 and registered 4.6 million new voters. Time credits the center’s partisan registration efforts as central to the “shadow campaign that saved the 2020 election” for Biden. No surprise that the center is heavily funded by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), AFL-CIOSierra ClubLeague of Conservation Voters, and Tides Foundation.

Will Zuck Bucks Continue?

We were among the first to report in-depth on how billionaire Zuckerberg and the little-known Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) spent $350 million to effectively privatize the 2020 election in battleground states, helping turnout for Biden in the name of COVID-19 “relief.”

Overnight, this little nonprofit’s revenues grew by more than 12,000 percent from $2.8 million thanks to Zuckerberg’s cash injection—fueling its “nonpartisan,” “charitable” façade to elections officials and helping Democrat turnout in precisely the spots Biden needed to win the presidency.

Across nine states, our data shows that CTCL’s grants consistently ignored Trump counties in favor of big, Democratic-leaning spots like Philadelphia, Maricopa County, and Houston—all essential to Biden’s victory. In Georgia, for instance, Biden counties were two-and-a-half times more likely to receive CTCL funding than Trump counties.

Virginia received close to $4 million in Zuck Bucks, more than one-third of which went to populous Fairfax County to support in-person early votingand “vote by mail.” Fairfax County was Biden’s biggest vote-haul in the state and is the linchpin to McAuliffe’s strategy.

Nearly $970,000 paid for “temporary staffing support” to bolster Fairfax County’s elections agency. That may sound innocuous, but as CTCL expert William Doyle recently wrote at this site, that funding “supported the infiltration of election offices by paid Democratic Party activists.”

[CTCL] funded self-described ‘vote navigators’ in Wisconsin to ‘assist voters, potentially at their front doors, to answer questions, assist in ballot curing … and witness absentee ballot signatures,’ and a temporary staffing agency affiliated with Stacey Abrams called ‘Happy Faces’ counting the votes amidst the election night chaos in Fulton County, Georgia.

Fairfax County applied for an extension to its CTCL grant in January, but ultimately returned its remaining $187,709 in April, spokesman Brian Worthy told me. To his knowledge, the county has not applied for another grant for the 2021 election. That’s a good start, but to save the integrity of our elections, Zuck Bucks need to be banned. No exceptions.

There’s no faster way to destroy what remaining trust Americans have in their elections than by giving them to the highest bidder. Private funding of elections would take us back to the worst of the 19th century robber barons, when rich political machines won elections by buying public officials and intimidating voters. It also presents opportunities for foreign interests to manipulate our politics and undermine American sovereignty.

It’s unknown how much CTCL money remains in Virginia or if the group has continued to make grants here. Neighboring Fairfax City reports $14,175 in CTCL funds leftover for the 2021 election.

CTCL has been surprisingly mum about the ongoing election considering how loudly it advertised open-ended grants to Georgia counties in January. It’s possible that the dozens of exposés, hundreds of critical news articles, flurry of state Zuck Buck bans, and an inquiry from furious congressional Republicans silenced the leftists running CTCL.

Or maybe not. A recent CTCL statement calls lawsuits against its grants program “frivolous” and its funding “equitable,” particularly in small counties with small elections budgets.

Today’s left has cynically embraced Zuck Bucks out of short-term thinking, believing like NPR that “private money from Facebook’s CEO saved the 2020 election.” That’s a losing hand. Americans can see that the same leftists who’ve now embraced plutocracy were just yesterday crying eat the rich and abolish billionaires.” Close to a dozen states have already banned Zuck Bucks and grassroots groups are leading a national movement to audit the 2020 election and save the country.

Leftists believed the country would overlook their desperate indiscretions, claiming—as CTCL does—that Zuckerberg’s unprecedented spending spree somehow made 2020 “the most secure election in U.S. history.” We’ll know even more in December, when CTCL releases its IRS Form 990 filing to the public. If coming revelations are anything like observers expect, that claim will age about as well as milk.

Hayden Ludwig is an investigative researcher for the Capital Research Center in Washington, DC.

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