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Exclusive: RNC Launches New Year-Round Election Integrity Department Ahead Of 2024



GOP Debate

Author Tristan Justice profile




The Republican National Committee (RNC) is gearing up for next year’s presidential race with the launch of a new department dedicated solely to election integrity. The new internal infrastructure will bring on year-round staff operating new technology designed to facilitate recruitment and litigation, according to a 35-page report shared exclusively with The Federalist.

“The RNC built a historic election integrity program in 2022: we put 80,000 volunteers on the ground, secured key legal victories, and learned how we can grow even stronger in the future,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel told The Federalist. “As we prepare for 2024, the RNC will establish a full-time permanent Election Integrity Department that will combine our existing tools to build on our unprecedented progress.”

The report sent to RNC members Thursday details the party’s plans to transform the GOP’s election integrity efforts from pop-up operations into year-round initiatives that remain ongoing immediately after each election. Prior to 2021, the national Republican Party was restricted from engaging in electoral oversight, such as hiring poll watchers over a 1981 consent decree. That meant any initiatives designed to maintain integrity in American elections were patchwork efforts coordinated by independent campaigns with the support of the GOP congressional campaign committees. The decades-long order was lifted in 2018 after more than three decades, and the party officially resumed efforts on poll watching and voter fraud in the 2021-2022 election cycle.

“The need for the RNC to be the permanent and year-round home for the Republican [Election Integrity Operations] is glaringly obvious, and the party is fortunate that we now have that,” the report reads. “For the past two years, the RNC has worked tirelessly as a bridge among those groups with unprecedented cooperation.”

The RNC is now preparing to hire an army to the tune of “tens of thousands” of attorneys and poll watchers with an aggressive litigation strategy to ensure a free and fair election next year.

“Beginning with the successful 2021 operations in Virginia and New Jersey, the RNC established a multifaceted [Election Integrity Operations] program in partnership with the NRSC and NRCC that resulted in dozens of lawsuits,” wrote Ashley MacLeay and Art Wittich, who chaired the RNC committee behind the report.

The fallout from the 2020 election, wherein Democrats exploited lockdown-era protocols to radically expand unsupervised access to the ballot box, has led the GOP to prioritize election integrity as a pillar of the RNC’s 2024 campaign strategy.

Three years ago, Democrat operatives through Facebook’s Center for Tech and Civic Life took over the administration of elections and erected ballot boxes in liberal strongholds to gin up turnout. Mark Zuckerberg’s project gave more than $400 million to the effort, with only a small fraction of the “Zuckbucks” spent in areas won by President Donald Trump.

[READ: The 2020 Election Wasn’t Stolen, It Was Bought By Mark Zuckerberg]

Other efforts by Democrats to rig the 2020 contest included turning election day into election season, with voters able to cast ballots weeks before November, absent of the typical safeguards that protect against fraud. All happened while Big Tech conspired with the corporate press and even federal intelligence agencies to manipulate public opinion throughout the process.

While Republicans are limited with what they can do to confront the corporate collusion, the new RNC department marks an effort to master the mechanics of modern elections. The GOP is also planning to jump in the ballot harvesting game in states with loose restrictions. The party largely refrained from participating in the mass collection of ballots three years ago to the detriment of Republican candidates who faced Democrat opponents eager to exploit relaxed protocols.

Last fall, the RNC took a two-pronged approach to ballot harvesting: GOP attorneys fought to ban the practice in states such as Arizona, where attorneys were successful, while party workers took advantage of harvesting in states where efforts failed to rein in the rules.

[RELATED: Conservatives, Get Busy Ballot Harvesting Or Get Busy Losing]

“The RNC ballot harvested where the law allowed it in 2022, helping to secure key congressional wins that flipped the House,” McDaniel told The Federalist. “We will build on and expand those efforts in 2024 where legal while still holding Democrats accountable for bad laws that undermine election integrity.”

Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist and the author of Social Justice Redux, a conservative newsletter on culture, health, and wellness. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Sign up for Tristan’s email newsletter here.


Democrats’ Far-Reaching ‘Reforms’ Are the Real Threat to Election Security, Not Violent Conservatives



A California poll worker sanitizes a voting booth following its use at a Voter Assistance Center in Davis, CA during the 2020 General Election.

Author Hayden Ludwig profile



The left doesn’t hide its goal of running our elections in secret. After all, democracy today effectively means “rule by Democrats.” The first step in transforming a free republic into a dictatorship is to brand the party’s enemies a security threat to the regime. The objective is to establish a police state built on terror with the power to arrest its critics on the pretext of national security.

New legislation would do exactly that: empower Democrats to bar poll watchers, brand Trump voters domestic terrorists, and use the Justice Department to remake local law enforcement into tools of the security state.

Whether they succeed hinges on whether conservatives will stand against the left’s lies.

Potemkin Villages

In late April, Senate Democrats introduced the Election Worker Protection Act to direct Justice Department funds for “the identification and investigation of threats to election workers”; expand the definition of “voter intimidation” laws to include “the counting of ballots, canvassing, and certification of elections”; and encourage the removal of “poll observers who are interfering with … the administration of an election.”

These measures are designed to bar conservatives from overseeing and, when necessary, challenging election results — a fundamental element of fair and impartial elections — using “security” to mask the country’s transition to despotism.

Operatives know that the bill isn’t likely to pass the Republican-controlled House. So they’ve turned to a tried-and-true tactic: pressure campaigns designed to fool and browbeat lawmakers into believing there’s a wave of popular support for a measure ginned up by Activism Inc.

Take the bill’s endorsees.

  • There’s the American Federation of Teachers.
  • the anti-super PAC End Citizens United (itself a super PAC).
  • Issue One and Democracy 21, both fans of stifling free speech through campaign finance restrictions.
  • Voices for Progress, a front for the multibillion-dollar “dark money” Tides Nexus.
  • and the phony “faith” group NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, among others.
  • Fifteen secretaries of state — all Democrats — also back the bill.

Anatomy of a Campaign

But the lead driver is the Committee for Safe and Secure Elections (CSSE), an astroturf coalition created to bully Republican lawmakers into rolling over for activists seeking to gut our elections and even imprison those who fight back.

CSSE presents itself as a grassroots, “cross-partisan” effort by concerned citizens, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. CSSE is run by the Brennan Center, a front for election “reforms” ranging from felon voting, to banning free speech as “disinformation,” to using taxpayer funds to register new Democrats.

The committee claims one right-leaning supporter among dozens: the sometimes-libertarian R Street Institute, a think tank often employed as a gun-for-hire for the left’s election “reforms.” The rest of CSSE’s backers are gilded denizens of the swamp.

That list is topped by ex-Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar, who oversaw the commonwealth’s last-minute election law changes under cover of Covid-19. Lori Augino formerly led the National Vote at Home Institute, the group responsible for making vote-by-mail an article of faith among Democrats. Edgardo Cortes, a Brennan Center adviser, previously ran Virginia’s elections under Democrat Gov. Terry McAuliffe and was an activist for the left-wing Advancement Project.

The Elections Group is a consulting firm run by ex-Chicago election chief Noah Praetz and Jennifer Morrell, who previously advised eBay founder and Democratic mega-donor Pierre Omidyar’s philanthropy, Democracy Fund.

The Protect Democracy Project was created in 2017 by ex-Obama staffers to litigate the Trump administration into oblivion. Its counsel and CSSE representative, Orion Danjuma, is a former ACLU racial justice attorney.

States United was formed to counter Trump’s election lawsuits months before the 2020 election took place, battling state audits and issuing the first legal brief explaining why Mike Pence had no authority to reject electors. It’s a front for the Voter Protection Program, which fights voter ID laws and lobbies for automatic and same-day registration policies.

The Election Officials Legal Defense Network (EOLDN) also spreads the lie that officials are under assault by angry Republicans. EOLDN is a front for the Center for Election Innovation and Research (CEIR), which used $70 million from Mark Zuckerberg in 2020 to boost Democratic get-out-the-vote and voter registration drives.

PEN America supports free speech in classrooms — so long as “free” means promoting critical race theory and hypersexualized gender ideology. The Alliance for Securing Democracy is a front for the German Marshall Fund, an international left-wing funder, and is led by Obama and Clinton cronies including John Podesta.

Despite its name, the Bipartisan Policy Center was seeded by the left-wing Hewlett Foundation and is almost entirely led by Democrats. Similarly, the Committee of Seventy is a supposed conservative watchdog group that’s actually run by Never Trumper Al Schmidt and promotes the left’s redistricting policies.

Hypocrisy on Display

None of these groups operate in the mainstream conservative movement, nor are they actually “nonpartisan.” Yet the left is masterful in lending its political groups unfounded credibility thanks to its control of the media and government.

In March, for instance, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), a federal organ meant to help states administer their elections, hosted a glowing panel discussion on CSSE featuring “cross-partisan” panelists, each hailing from activist groups.

The EAC is overseen by two Democrats and two Republicans, one of whom (Ben Hovland) is a CSSE member. Hovland, a Democratic Trump appointee, blasted the president for challenging the 2020 results. He supported the $400 million “ZuckBucks” scandal that juiced voter turnout in Democrat-heavy districts with private funding from a partisan billionaire. (Twenty-four states have since banned the practice, and the House is weighing a similar measure). Hovland’s also appeared in policy events run by leftist advocacy organizations and in chummy interviews with the Center for American Progress.

Yet it was the EAC’s other Republican commissioner, Donald Palmer, who was recently castigated by the left for attending a confidential meeting of Republican secretaries of state on election policy. If the meeting had been run by Democrats, Palmer would be a hero, not a villain.

Policing the Police

CSSE produces advisory content for law enforcement to crack down on supposed threats to election workers. Its pocket guides for Georgia and Utah, for example, remind officers of state laws protecting administrators from harassment, yet the CSSE name and logo marked prominently on the documents remind one more of propaganda than helpful cheat sheets.

CSSE’s bizarre “training videos” are like the television show “24” for leftists. One video, darkly titled “What Election Violence Could Look Like,” sets up a scenario in which a bearded white man (the Proud Boy-esque Trump supporter) makes vaguely ominous comments to a female elections official (the victimized person of color), complete with finger guns in a slow-motion drive-by. Only a strong female cop, probably equipped with her standard-issue CSSE election law guide, can put an end to his reign of terror.

The whole scenario is absurd political theater meant to establish a smokescreen for passing unpopular and extreme measures that would further federalize our elections. And perhaps that’s the point. Democrats have long played upon imaginary fears to instill unity in the ranks before launching a major policy push.

It’s much easier to repress the opposition when they’re dehumanized. Will conservatives be next?

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

Reported By Hayden Ludwig | NOVEMBER 1, 2021


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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