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A prominent electoral map on the website of Everylegalvote.com, a self-described fraud-buster, conveyed an alternate reality on Monday.
Despite the latest election results showing Joseph R. Biden Jr. winning a decisive 306 votes in the Electoral College compared with 232 for President Trump, the site’s map showed Mr. Trump as the winner of the election.
Mr. Trump had received 232 votes compared with 214 for Mr. Biden, according to the site’s map, which was flecked with orange to connote states where it claimed that voter fraud had been detected. Click on a tab saying “without voter fraud,” and Mr. Trump’s vote suddenly leapt to 318 against Mr. Biden’s 220.
As President Trump refuses to concede the election, a lot of internet traffic is being directed to this slickly produced website channeling the president’s mix of falsehoods, conspiracy theories and baseless accusations of voter fraud.
The website has promoted the false narrative that mail-in ballots were used to steal the election from Mr. Trump. It has posited that thousands of dead people voted in Michigan when they did not. It has also posted content from a source with links to QAnon, the elaborate conspiracy movement that falsely claims the existence of a Satan-worshipping pedophile cabal run by senior Democrats, who are plotting against Mr. Trump. QAnon believers had predicted that Mr. Trump would easily win the election.
“They are attempting to install Joe Biden as president without due process of law and order,” the site says, citing the media, “certain elected officials” and people in positions of power, both in the United States and in other countries.
A review of Everylegalvote.com shows an attempt to delegitimize the election under a veneer of empiricism by drawing on murky and debunked theories. The site did not respond to a request for comment.
Everylegalvote.com lists its sponsors and financial backers as a coalition of right-wing groups including Allied Security Operations Group, the Economic War Room, and Liberty Center for God and Country.
An office manager at Allied Security Operations Group, who declined to give her name, said by phone that the group was a private Dallas-based cybersecurity firm. She said the issue of voter fraud was an area of specialty of the company’s chief financial officer, Russell Ramsland, a businessman who ran for Congress in Texas as a Republican in 2016 and was defeated in the primary. According to Mr. Ramsland’s LinkedIn profile, he has an M.B.A. from Harvard.
The Economic War Room listed on Everylegalvote.com’s website appears to refer to the “Economic War Room With Kevin Freeman,” a weekly television financial news show. Mr. Freeman was not immediately available for comment.
Mr. Freeman is described on Economic War Room’s website as “one of the world’s leading experts on the issues of economic warfare and financial terrorism.” He is also listed as a senior fellow at the Center for Security Policy, a Washington-based think tank that has been designated as a hate group with anti-Muslim ideology by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Last year, Mar-a-Lago, President Trump’s private club in Palm Beach, Fla., came under criticism after agreeing to host an event by the group.
In a broadcast in the days after the election, which was posted on Economic War Room’s website, Mr. Freeman called the election “one of the most contested elections in history.” “The left is out for blood and total victory,” he said.
He predicted a violent insurrection by the “far left” and said it wanted to tear down God and family and install a nanny state. As evidence, he cited attempts in states like California to curtail family gatherings during Thanksgiving and make people wear masks in between bites of turkey.
Liberty Center for God and Country, the site’s other backer, said it aimed to “promote and protect our God-given, unalienable Constitutional rights and liberties” and to “support legal efforts that protect these liberties.” It recently posted on its website a request by President Trump for every registered voter to send him a handwritten letter, demanding “a full election audit of all 50 states.” The group was not immediately available for comment.
Everylegalvote.com has not shied away from promoting misinformation from dubious sources.
After President Trump made baseless claims that Dominion Voting Systems, which makes software that local governments use to help run their elections, had software glitches that changed voting tallies in key states, the site posted a Twitter thread on the software maker by Ron Watkins, who has been part of QAnon’s inner circle.
In his thread, Mr. Watkins posited that local information technology “guys” could have hacked into the system to alter election results.
A group of federal, state and local election officials have said “there is no evidence” any voting systems were compromised.
Source: The NY Times
Keyword: A website funded by right-wing groups gains followers with debunked voting fraud claims.