These are the sources your President Elect is getting his information from

So, this is your President Elect on the week after Thanksgiving: a guy who thinks nothing of inventing lies out of whole cloth to suit his needs.

I mean, that isn’t much different than the campaign he ran, so it shouldn’t come as any surprise. But still, it’s one thing to see that in a campaigner, another thing entirely to see it in your President Elect.

What am I talking about?

Trump’s claim this morning that “millions” of illegal immigrants voted in California, New Hampshire, and Virginia, without any substantiation whatsoever.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Reasons for a Recount

So, let’s review: at last count, Trump is behind by more than 2.2 million votes in the popular vote. That is a truly astonishing number, and derogates from the legitimacy of his win.

The three surprise states in which Trump got an electoral victory, and which turned the tide in his favor on election night, are Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

A number of computer scientists and data experts suggested that some of the results in those three states appear to be statistically anomalous, and suggested that there should be a recount.

Hillary Clinton did not initiate any recounts, but the Green Party’s Jill Stein did. She raised the $6 million or so that would be required to fund a recount from a lot of individual donors, including, it must be said, from me. Hillary Clinton’s camp has belatedly signed on to those initiatives, but is not promoting them. Clinton has already conceded the election.

Trump and his minions are, unsurprisingly, beside themselves. These extraordinary hypocrites – the same ones who were out there for weeks before the election claiming that if Trump didn’t win that was proof that the elections would be rigged – are now calling us hypocrites for wanting to ensure that these swing states weren’t infiltrated by some Russian hackers, or that the counts were not otherwise illegitimate in some way. You know that if Trump had lost the election and several of the states were unusual that he would have been the first one calling for recounts in those states. I know it, you know it, and he does as well.

It’s already been demonstrated that the Republicans engaged in a targeted program of voter suppression, especially in states like North Carolina, Virginia and Ohio, which efforts were made possible by the Supreme Court’s 2013 case of Shelby County v. Holder.

Trump is so desperate because it’s already deeply embarrassing that he’s losing the popular vote by such an enormous amount. At last count, there were 127,106,449 votes cast in the election; 64,658,130 of those were for Clinton and 62,448,319 for Trump. This means Clinton holds a popular advantage of 2,209,811, which equals to 1.73% of all the votes cast.

That, as they say, is “not nothing.”

Anatomy of a Lie

The theory that “3 million illegal aliens” voted in the United States Presidential Election has been thoroughly debunked by Snopes, as well as Politifact, among others.

The source for this completely false allegation is one Greg Phillips, [1] the self-identified founder of VoteFraud.org.[2] Phillips sent out a number of tweets, of which this one was typical:

Completed analysis of database of 180 million voter registrations. Number of non-citizen votes exceeds 3 million. Consulting legal team. — Gregg Phillips (@JumpVote) November 11, 2016

These tweets were picked up by sites such as the highly partisan InfoWars.com, the site for right wing nut job Alex Jones, whose specialty is conspiracy theories such as that the assassination of school children at the Sandy Hook Elementary School was a government plot to curb gun rights.[3]

These are the people that your President Elect is getting his information from.


[1] According to his LinkedIn Profile, Phillips is also the Chairman of the Board, Time for a Hero; Chairman of AutoGov Inc.; Executive Deputy Commissioner of the TX Health and Human Services Commission; Senior Manager at Deloitte Consulting; Executive Director of the Mississippi Republican Party; Executive Director of the Mississippi Department of Human Services; Finance Director of Fordice for Governor; Finance Director of the Alabama Republican Party; Managing Director of the Winning Our Future Super PAC; and the Managing Director of JumpVote.

[2] According to Politifact, there is no report from VoteFraud.org to that effect. Phillips apparently told PolitiFact that he is “not affiliated with that website.” The information comes from tweets made by Phillips on Nov. 11 and Nov. 13. Phillips would not provide any additional information to PolitiFact. He said he “has chosen not to release more information because he is still working on analyzing the data and verifying its accuracy.” Phillips would also not say what the data is or where it came from or what methodology he used.

[3] Other websites also have touted this report, including Milo, TheNewAmerican and FreedomDaily.

About a1skeptic

A disturbed citizen and skeptic. I should stop reading the newspaper. Or watching TV. I should turn off NPR and disconnect from the Internet. We’d all be better off.
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