Author Topic: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"  (Read 607 times)

translator

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I all "støyen" rundt valget og den aktuelle situasjonen bare et par dager før alle forventer at Biden innsettes som president, bringer document.no en sjeldent god analyse av valgfusket og hvordan det sannsynligvis førte til at feil kandidat "vant". Artikkelen er oversatt til norsk (utdrag):

Quote
Som en borger som også er statsviter, har jeg prøvd vise nødvendig aktsomhet i vurderingen av hva som skjedde ved det siste valget. Hvem vant hva, og på hvilket nivå, og hva betyr det? Og hva med anklagene om valgfusk? Folk spør meg stadig hva jeg mener, og jeg besluttet å skrive ned konklusjonene jeg har nådd til dags dato, samt på hvilket grunnlag. Fordi anklager om valgfusk har satt spørsmålstegn ved utfallet av presidentvalget, har jeg viet disse særskilt oppmerksomhet.

(...)

Først og fremst viser historien at en sittende president får flere stemmer enn ved første valg, blir gjenvalgt. President Trump fikk mange flere stemmer, ikke hundretusener flere, men mer enn 10 millioner flere (ikke medreget stemmene hans støttespillere mener han ble frastjålet). Trumps støtte blant latinamerikanere, en gruppe som ofte er blitt beskrevet som fiendtlig innstilt til ham, økte seg til 32 prosent, og enda mer blant latinamerikanske menn. Hans støtte blant svarte økte med 50 prosent.

Et annet viktig faktum: Visse amerikanske stater stemmer nesten alltid på vinneren. Florida og Ohio er øverst på denne listen, dels fordi de gjenspeiler den demografiske sammensetningen i hele USA. Hvis du legger til Iowa, kan du med stor sikkerhet forutsi at den som vinner disse de tre statene, også vil vinne presidentvalget. Trump ikke bare vant disse statene, han vant dem svært komfortabelt – i Ohio og Iowa med rundt åtte prosentpoeng, i Florida med over tre prosentpoeng. I 1960 var ikke utfallet i disse statene det samme som ved hele presidentvalget. Hvilket valg var det? Nixon mot Kennedy, altså valget som nesten helt sikkert ble stjålet for JFK i Illinois (Cook County) og Texas. Det var valget som skapte den anomalien at noen ble president uten å vinne Ohio. Etter 1960 ble det det igjen en regel at presidentvalget bare ikke kunne vinnes uten Ohio. Men i 2020 klarte Biden på en eller annen måte å vinne uten Ohio.

La meg gå litt mer i detalj. Det finnes et annet og enda mer overbevisende mål på hvem som vil vinne et presidentvalg. Denne størrelsen antyder at det var noe veldig rart, sågar uforklarlig, med utfallet av dette presidentvalget i vippestatene. Det finnes en rekke toneangivende fylker over hele USA som nesten alltid stemmer på den som vinner nasjonalt. Noen fylker stemte på vinneren ved hver eneste presidentvalg fra 1980 til 2016. I 2020 var det med få unntak omvendt. De stemte ikke på han som anses å ha vunnet, men på Donald Trump. Nitten fylker er blitt identifisert som spesielt velegnede for å spå utfallet i presidentvalget. De er nesten sikre på å stemme for vinneren. Det blir antatt at hvis en kandidat vinner 15–16 av disse 19 fylkene, vil han også vinne presidentvalget.

Så hvordan gikk valget i disse fylkene i 2020? Trump vant hele 18 av de 19! Det sier desto mer at han også forbedret sitt eget resultat i disse fylkene. Hvis kun ett fylke hadde stemt på vinneren av presidentvalget i veldig lang tid, ville ikke det i seg ha så stor prediktiv kraft, men det er slående når det skjer med flere slike fylker. Valencia County i New Mexico har gjenspeilet utfallet av hvert eneste presidentvalg siden 1952. Der vant Trump med ti prosentpoeng i 2020. Vigo County i Indiana har stemt på alle vinnere av presidentvalget unntatt to siden 1882. I 202 vant Trump dette fylket med femten prosentpoeng. Westmoreland County i Virginia bare to ganger siden 1928 unnlatt å stemme på vinneren av presidentvalget. Trump vant det fylket med seksten prosentpoeng. Dette er bare spesifikke illustrasjoner av en trend i de normalt avgjørende fylkene, som favoriserte Trump omtrent så ettertrykkelig og overveldende som det er mulig.

Gitt Trumps landsomfattende fremgang, er det ikke overraskende at republikanerne, i motsetning til medienes spådommer om «en blå bølge», faktisk fikk 13 mandater i Representantenes hus. Ikke en eneste sittende republikansk representant i Huset mistet plassen sin – ikke én!

(...)

Bidens enorme økonomiske fordel har utvilsomt hjulpet ham, men vi vet nå at han likevel kjempet i oppoverbakke. Han måtte overvinne en Trump-bølge. Det finnes noen viktige og veldig slående indikasjoner på hvordan Biden gjorde det. Et forbløffende eksempel på at han møtte sterk motstand er at han vant færre amerikanske fylker enn noen annen vinner av presidentvalget i moderne tid. Obama vant 873 fylker i 2008. Biden vant knapt 500 i 2020! (Trump vant rundt 2550 fylker.) Er dette rekord for en vinner? Bidens andel av stemmene i hver stat nådde ikke engang opp mot Hillary Clintons. Demokratene er vanligvis avhengige av at den svarte befolkningen stemmer 85–90 prosent i deres favør for å vinne presidentvalget. Biden var ikke spesielt nær den prosentandelen. Han fikk en mye lavere andel svarte stemmer enn Obama, men også en lavere prosent enn Hillary Clinton. Blant svarte menn nådde han ikke 80 prosent, og det er et bekymringsfullt lavt tall for Demokrater. Demokratenes andel av de latinamerikanske stemmene gikk også ned.

Man skulle kanskje tro at Biden måtte ha matchet eller overgått Hillary Clintons stemmeprosenter rundt om i landet for å vinne valget. Men i det store og hele skjedde det motsatte. Han gjorde det dårligere i de store byene, altså de Demokratiske festningene som er avgjørende å vinne presidentvalget og andre valg.

Når man tar alle disse mønstrene i betraktning, er det ett trekk ved presidentvalget som er spesielt bemerkelsesverdig og veldig vanskelig å forklare, og dette skaper alvorlig tvil om Bidens antatte valgseier. Det som reiser urovekkende spørsmål, er de paradoksale unntakene fra Bidens svake resultater nasjonalt. Av en eller annen grunn var det bare i noen få stater at stemmene til Biden gikk mot de nasjonale trendene som er beskrevet her. Og hvor fantes dette helt avvikende mønsteret? Jo, i vippestatene som Trump hadde vunnet i 2016. Det var statene som Biden nå bare måtte vinne for å bli president. I disse statene snudde Biden på en eller annen måte dramatisk den dårlige trenden han hadde i resten av landet! Som nevnt vant Biden bare ett av de 19 vippefylkene rundt omkring i USA, men han vant visstnok alle vippestatene! Hvordan kunne en slik bragd være mulig? Ved å gjøre det veldig mye bedre i de store byene i vippestatene enn i de store byene ellers i landet.

Den gamle, nesten passive kandidaten Biden, som ikke skapte noen synlig folkelig entusiasme – stikk motsatt Trump – fikk på en eller annen måte tallene han trengte i Philadelphia, Detroit, Atlanta, Milwaukee og andre byer i vippestatene, for dermed å «vinne» disse statene, i Georgia med svært liten margin. Valgdeltagelsen i disse demokratiske byene var historisk, og veldig høy sammenlignet med byer utenfor vippestatene. Det er blitt påstått at antallet avgitte stemmer i mange distrikter i tungt demokratiske fylker i Michigan oversteg antallet registrerte velgere. I Pennsylvania hevdes det at minst én lastebil med allerede utfylte stemmesedler skal ha blitt hentet fra New York. I den samme staten ble lover for hvordan man skal stemme og gjennomgå stemmesedlene ganske enkelt satt til side av lokale tjenestemenn. I tidligere år var en betydelig andel av poststemmene blitt kjent ugyldige på grunn av åpenbare feil. I år, da nye og delvis improviserte avstemningsprosedyrer hadde ført til et langt større antall poststemmer, mange av dem deponert i samlekasser, ble nesten ingen av dem ble ugyldiggjort i demokratiske skanser.

I de store statene Florida og Texas, hvor det er mange store byer, ble stemmetellingen fullført på valgkvelden. Det skjedde ikke i byer i vippestatene. Det ble tellingen plutselig stoppet på valgkvelden. Valgobservatører og de fleste andre ble sendt hjem. Videoopptak fanget da opp noe som skjedde i et valglokale ved et konferansesenter i sentrum av Atlanta, Georgia. Noen få valgmedarbeidere ble igjen, trakk ut kofferter med stemmesedler fra under et dekket bord, og matet dem inn i stemmeautomatene tidlig på morgenen uten at de lovpålagte valgobservatørene var tilstede. Et stort antall beedigede erklæringer vitner om at lokale tjenestemenn i byene åpenbart bryter valgloven, og aksepterer tvilsomme stemmer. Det kom også anklager om at stemmesedler ble satt inn i telleapparatene mer enn én gang. Blant de mange eksemplene på «tradisjonell» valgfusk og «uregelmessigheter» i byens politiske maskineri var stemmer fra døde mennesker, folk som ikke bodde på stedet, og folk uten statsborgerskap i USA. Mange stemmer ble avgitt av folket som ikke hadde registrert seg.

Etter at den offisielle stemmetellingen var suspendert, skjedde det endringer i tabellene som har forbløffet statistikere og dataeksperter. Disse ekspertene har ikke klart å forklare dem som noe annet enn et resultat av svindel. Problemet her var elektronisk opphopning av stemmer. Stemmene som ble registrert, viste et ensartet mønster i flere stater, for eksempel ved at de gav en bestemt prosentandel av stemmer til Biden og Trump. Noen summer av elektronisk registrerte stemmer var alle eller nesten alle for Biden.

Det skjedde også forskjellige «feil», forklart som «menneskelige feil», og noen av dem ble «korrigert» elektronisk. Folk som har kunnskaper om valgsvindel i andre land, har pekt på plutselig stans i stemmetellingen og «feil» som karakteristisk for datagenerert svindel. Tellemaskinene som brukes i vippestatene har vist seg å være ganske lette å manipulere, for eksempel ved å sette inn algoritmer for kontinuerlig skifte av stemmer fra en kandidat til en annen. Det er absolutt relevant at de samlede valgdataene i dette valget ble koblet til internett, til og med til servere i utlandet. At det finnes metoder for å manipulere valg gjennom elektronisk avstemming, er velkjent for eksperter, ikke minst på etterretningsfeltet.

Fordi jeg ikke har spesialkunnskap, vil jeg ikke ta stilling til det europeiske og amerikanske eksperter på statistikk og amerikanske valg har hevdet er helt usannsynlige elektroniske stemmemønstre i vippestatene. Det er mange tegn på manipulasjon, og de registrerte anomaliene i stemmene sies å være så skjærende at de er statistisk uforklarlige som noe annet et resultat av svindel. I Pennsylvania ble det rapportert at et stort parti på rundt 550.000 stemmer hadde vært 99,4 prosent for Biden, et tall som er hindises latterlig, selv om man skulle anta at det utelukkende bestod av stemmer fra demokratiske skanser. Det fantes lignende rapporter andre steder, som i Fulton County, Georgia.

Disse oppsiktsvekkende skjeve justeringene av stemmetallene skjedde etter at valgobservatørene hadde gått. Et annet eksempel på statistisk uforklarlige forandringer i tabellene er at en rekke bunker på nøyaktig like mange stemmer gikk til samme kandidat. Selv om Trump gjorde det veldig bra i resten av landet, og gjorde det bedre enn i 2016, var det ingen av disse anomaliene i stemmegivningen som gikk i hans favør. Eksperter som har sammenlignet Dominion-maskinene i vippestatene med maskiner av en annen type i andre stater, har hevdet at Dominion-maskinene i gjennomsnitt rutinemessig flyttet 2–3 prosent av stemmene fra Trump til Biden. Dataforskere og statistikere hevder at Trump-stemmer mange steder bare forsvant, eller bunker ble byttet fra Trump-kolonnen til Biden-kolonnen. I DeKalb County, Georgia, ble en bunke på over 12.000 stemmer byttet over til Biden.

Folk som har teknisk innsikt i disse tingene, har spekulert i at noen av de uregelmessighetene som er lettest å oppdage, skyldes at svindlere er blitt desperate etter å ha merket at enda flere stemte på Trump enn de hadde forventet. For å veie opp for dette, måtte de improvisere. De tok risiko, ble uforsiktige og kunne ikke lett skjule sporene etter det de gjorde.

Bildet som fremtrer, er altså ikke bare av lokale kjeltringer som ignorerer loven og manipulerer stemmesedler på gammelmåten, men av organisert manipulasjon på stor skala. Fenomenet gjør seg gjeldende ved forskjellige sider av avstemningen. En ting var hvordan stemmesystemet ble laget og kunne brukes, en annen hvordan stemmesedlene ble mottatt og talt opp, og atter en annen, sannsynligvis den viktigste, hvordan stemmene ble registrert digitalt. Det var den siste formen for avvik som ble avslørt. I alle deler av hele prosessen virket uregelmessighetene i samme retning: De snudde den nasjonale valgtrenden som favoriserte Trump.

Claes G. Ryn er professor i statsvitenskap og grunnlegger av det nye Center for the Study of Statesmanship ved The Catholic University of America.

https://www.document.no/2021/01/18/hvordan-presidentvalget-i-usa-kan-ha-blitt-stjalet/
« Last Edit: 18.01.2021, 19:03:02 by translator »
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ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #1 on: 18.01.2021, 20:02:18 »
Liten grunn til å si "kan ha blitt stjålet", men Document må vel være litt forsiktige.

Hege Lurås har en svært dystopisk  artikkel i dag:

Jeg hadde inntil nylig ikke trodd det skulle gå så langt i vårt kjære Vesten, men nå ruller den proto-fascistiske snøballen fort. Alle som ikke vil være passive tilretteleggere for den utviklingen bør snarest komme seg ned fra gjerdet. Dette handler ikke om å være for eller imot Trump, Parler eller Resett. Dette handler om friheten fra et totalitært tyranni.

https://resett.no/2021/01/17/kan-de-ta-ut-trump-kan-de-ta-ut-alle/

translator

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #2 on: 18.01.2021, 23:54:28 »
Liten grunn til å si "kan ha blitt stjålet", men Document må vel være litt forsiktige.

Det er direkte oversatt fra engelsk:

Claes Ryn: How The 2020 Election Could Have Been Stolen

https://morninganswerchicago.com/2021/01/06/claes-ryn-how-the-2020-election-could-have-been-stolen/
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ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #3 on: 19.01.2021, 09:22:31 »
Sorry, jeg mente å si at det er all grunn til å tro at valget er stjålet. Skulle ha uhevet "kan, :-)

Monkey Werx har, som mange andre, levd i tvil og usikkerhet i flere uker. Men nå går han ut med klar melding:

For det første avliver han historien om kinesiske tropper (250.000, no less) som skal være deployert langs USAs grenser, og kaller det desinformasjon. Jeg vil si at det er å overdrive, historien er så dum at den knapt nok kan kalles en spøk. Men det er fortsatt noen som henger fast ved den.

Mer relevant er det han skriver om FEMA, mange har undret seg over den store tilstedeværelsen fra dette organet, som om man forventet en naturkatastrofe i DC. Men etaten har altså utvidede fullmakter:

That brings us to FEMA and the Stafford Act. Now it is a bit of a read, but I will tell you that it puts a level of control within FEMA that many people do not know about. It is also important to understand that Trump signed an EO authorizing the Stafford Act and the declaration of a major disaster in March 2020 (very important). That authorization is still active.

In a nutshell, the Act gives FEMA the responsibility for coordinating government-wide efforts. The Federal Response Plan includes contributions from 28 federal agencies and non-governmental organizations. This also gives latitude to the “unity chain of command” spoken of by Pence in his speech to the troops on Jan 16, 2021.


Og som andre har nevnt, er troppene der for å holde noen ute eller for å holde noen inne? Demokratene har nå fratatt soldatene (eller iallfall en del av dem) fra Nasjonalgarden deres ammunisjon, hva er de redd for? En virtuell kule fra et virtuelt gevær som skal ødelegge en virtuell "inauguration"?

Makes sense why Pelosi wants to make the event virtual and why Joe has canceled all of his rehearsals! Clearly, he doesn’t want people getting an advanced look at his security detail and I imagine he isn’t feeling warm and fuzzy about all of this.

Sterkere kan det vel knapt nok sies:

Folks, what we are about to witness is the greatest military event since D-Day and Normandy Beach in WW2. NOTHING can stop what is coming. No doubt, blood will be shed. Please pray for our President, our Troops, confusion in the camp of the enemy, and for our Brothers and Sisters in Christ.

https://www.monkeywerxus.com/blog/the-sicilian-defense
« Last Edit: 19.01.2021, 09:27:17 by ConTrari1 »

translator

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #4 on: 19.01.2021, 11:05:58 »
Sorry, jeg mente å si at det er all grunn til å tro at valget er stjålet. Skulle ha uhevet "kan, :-)

DET skjønte jeg  :) og kan legge til for min egen del at jeg skjønte det var valgfusk og begynte å ane konturene av det allerede dagen etter valget da Biden i en smell hadde fått 138 339 stemmer i Michigan uten at Trump hadde fått noen, og det ble forklart med at noen hadde "tastet inn en null for mye".

Men for de her på forumet som har uttrykt skepsis til hvor mye valgfusket har hatt betydning for valget, bør denne artikkelen egentlig fjerne det meste av tvilen. Jeg har ennå til gode å se ett eneste SAKLIG argument imot at valget ble stjålet. Det er bare påstander og avvisninger uten begrunnelser eller begrunnelser som er helt bort i natta (slik som det ovennevnte eksemplet fra Michigan). Men les hele artikkelen slik den står på document.no, jeg tok ikke med det psykologiske aspektet ved at så mange ikke bryr seg om valgfusket fordi de er blitt indoktrinert til å hate Trump og alt (de tror) han står for:

Quote
Mange er rett og slett uvillige til å møte og akseptere at den Donald Trump de forakter så sterkt, faktisk hadde klart å få støtte fra det amerikanske folket igjen. Nei, nei, den muligheten kan ikke aksepteres! Påstander om valgfusk må være grunnløse «konspirasjonsteorier».

Jeg la også artikkelen i en egen tråd for å skille den litt ut fra den diskusjonen vi har i den andre tråden om hva som skjer i forbindelse med den planlagte presidentinnsettelsen. Det kan være greit å ha diskusjoner som gjelder gjennomføringen av selve valget her og beskrivelsene fra dag til dag et annet sted.

« Last Edit: 19.01.2021, 11:12:51 by translator »
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ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #5 on: 19.01.2021, 12:10:56 »
Men...de aller fleste innleggene på "Styres det mot en enda større konstitusjonell krise i USA?" handler jo nettopp om valgfusket? Da synes jeg det er mer naturlig å bruke denne tråden til Bidens innsettelse og det som måtte komme ut av det. Vi får da en taåd som følger de helt siste begivenhetene, og kan bruke "Styres det..." som referanse til bakgrunnen for  dagens situasjon.

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #6 on: 19.01.2021, 12:21:14 »
Sant nok, men det er aller meste vi har tatt opp rundt selve valggjennomføringen er behandlet i Ryns artikkel, og derfor kan det være greit å fortsette den diskusjonen her, slik at vi ikke får diskusjoner knyttet til selve valget og begivenhetene etter valget i samme tråd. Jeg mister iallfall oversikten av det.  :)
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ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #7 on: 19.01.2021, 12:36:16 »
Ja, ok. 270+ innlegg er mye å holde rede på. Her har vi en kommentar som virker å være noe av det mer edruelige jeg har sett på lenge, og som gir en klar og troverdig versjon av hva som skjedde i Italia, fra tidligere CIA Chief of Station Bradley Johnson. Han skyter bl. a. ned den dramatiske historien om raidet i Frankfurt og sier det er bare tøys, det var en inspeksjon av serverne på CIA kontoret der, utført av Justis dep., men ettersom serverne bare ble brukt til å formidle info, er det svært lite spor av aktivitet på dem. Se "speil" videoen, den originale er fjernet:

https://centipedenation.com/transmissions/2020-election-fraud-the-italian-connection-all-roads-lead-to-rome/

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #8 on: 20.01.2021, 18:37:45 »
Claes G. Ryn intervjuet av Swebbtv!

https://swebbtv.se/videos/watch/a5629808-af9f-4d04-a3d0-bac0d528cba4

(30 min, svensk tale)

Et interessant intervju hvor de også kommer inn på hendelsene i Washington 6. januar og konsekvensene av det.
« Last Edit: 20.01.2021, 19:00:47 by translator »
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translator

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #11 on: 06.02.2021, 15:29:11 »
Nå innrømmer også renommerte Time Magazine at USA-valget ble rigget. De kaller det noe annet, nemlig en "forsterkning" (enforcement) av demokratiet, men alle som kjenner historien ser at den bekrefter det vi allerede vet.

Jeg starter med å gjengi hele Time-artikkelen, som jeg klarte å kopiere før den ble blokkert av betalingsmuren hos Time:

Quote
POLITICS 2020 ELECTIONTHE SECRET HISTORY OF THE SHADOW CAMPAIGN THAT SAVED THE 2020 ELECTION
The Secret History of the Shadow Campaign That Saved the 2020 Election

Illustration by Ryan Olbrysh for TIME
BY MOLLY BALL
 FEBRUARY 4, 2021 5:40 AM EST
A weird thing happened right after the Nov. 3 election: nothing.

The nation was braced for chaos. Liberal groups had vowed to take to the streets, planning hundreds of protests across the country. Right-wing militias were girding for battle. In a poll before Election Day, 75% of Americans voiced concern about violence.

Instead, an eerie quiet descended. As President Trump refused to concede, the response was not mass action but crickets. When media organizations called the race for Joe Biden on Nov. 7, jubilation broke out instead, as people thronged cities across the U.S. to celebrate the democratic process that resulted in Trump’s ouster.

A second odd thing happened amid Trump’s attempts to reverse the result: corporate America turned on him. Hundreds of major business leaders, many of whom had backed Trump’s candidacy and supported his policies, called on him to concede. To the President, something felt amiss. “It was all very, very strange,” Trump said on Dec. 2. “Within days after the election, we witnessed an orchestrated effort to anoint the winner, even while many key states were still being counted.”

In a way, Trump was right.

There was a conspiracy unfolding behind the scenes, one that both curtailed the protests and coordinated the resistance from CEOs. Both surprises were the result of an informal alliance between left-wing activists and business titans. The pact was formalized in a terse, little-noticed joint statement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and AFL-CIO published on Election Day. Both sides would come to see it as a sort of implicit bargain–inspired by the summer’s massive, sometimes destructive racial-justice protests–in which the forces of labor came together with the forces of capital to keep the peace and oppose Trump’s assault on democracy.

The handshake between business and labor was just one component of a vast, cross-partisan campaign to protect the election–an extraordinary shadow effort dedicated not to winning the vote but to ensuring it would be free and fair, credible and uncorrupted. For more than a year, a loosely organized coalition of operatives scrambled to shore up America’s institutions as they came under simultaneous attack from a remorseless pandemic and an autocratically inclined President. Though much of this activity took place on the left, it was separate from the Biden campaign and crossed ideological lines, with crucial contributions by nonpartisan and conservative actors. The scenario the shadow campaigners were desperate to stop was not a Trump victory. It was an election so calamitous that no result could be discerned at all, a failure of the central act of democratic self-governance that has been a hallmark of America since its founding.

Their work touched every aspect of the election. They got states to change voting systems and laws and helped secure hundreds of millions in public and private funding. They fended off voter-suppression lawsuits, recruited armies of poll workers and got millions of people to vote by mail for the first time. They successfully pressured social media companies to take a harder line against disinformation and used data-driven strategies to fight viral smears. They executed national public-awareness campaigns that helped Americans understand how the vote count would unfold over days or weeks, preventing Trump’s conspiracy theories and false claims of victory from getting more traction. After Election Day, they monitored every pressure point to ensure that Trump could not overturn the result. “The untold story of the election is the thousands of people of both parties who accomplished the triumph of American democracy at its very foundation,” says Norm Eisen, a prominent lawyer and former Obama Administration official who recruited Republicans and Democrats to the board of the Voter Protection Program.

For Trump and his allies were running their own campaign to spoil the election. The President spent months insisting that mail ballots were a Democratic plot and the election would be “rigged.” His henchmen at the state level sought to block their use, while his lawyers brought dozens of spurious suits to make it more difficult to vote–an intensification of the GOP’s legacy of suppressive tactics. Before the election, Trump plotted to block a legitimate vote count. And he spent the months following Nov. 3 trying to steal the election he’d lost–with lawsuits and conspiracy theories, pressure on state and local officials, and finally summoning his army of supporters to the Jan. 6 rally that ended in deadly violence at the Capitol.

The democracy campaigners watched with alarm. “Every week, we felt like we were in a struggle to try to pull off this election without the country going through a real dangerous moment of unraveling,” says former GOP Representative Zach Wamp, a Trump supporter who helped coordinate a bipartisan election-protection council. “We can look back and say this thing went pretty well, but it was not at all clear in September and October that that was going to be the case.”

This is the inside story of the conspiracy to save the 2020 election, based on access to the group’s inner workings, never-before-seen documents and interviews with dozens of those involved from across the political spectrum. It is the story of an unprecedented, creative and determined campaign whose success also reveals how close the nation came to disaster. “Every attempt to interfere with the proper outcome of the election was defeated,” says Ian Bassin, co-founder of Protect Democracy, a nonpartisan rule-of-law advocacy group. “But it’s massively important for the country to understand that it didn’t happen accidentally. The system didn’t work magically. Democracy is not self-executing.”

That’s why the participants want the secret history of the 2020 election told, even though it sounds like a paranoid fever dream–a well-funded cabal of powerful people, ranging across industries and ideologies, working together behind the scenes to influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information. They were not rigging the election; they were fortifying it. And they believe the public needs to understand the system’s fragility in order to ensure that democracy in America endures.

THE ARCHITECT
Sometime in the fall of 2019, Mike Podhorzer became convinced the election was headed for disaster–and determined to protect it.

This was not his usual purview. For nearly a quarter-century, Podhorzer, senior adviser to the president of the AFL-CIO, the nation’s largest union federation, has marshaled the latest tactics and data to help its favored candidates win elections. Unassuming and professorial, he isn’t the sort of hair-gelled “political strategist” who shows up on cable news. Among Democratic insiders, he’s known as the wizard behind some of the biggest advances in political technology in recent decades. A group of liberal strategists he brought together in the early 2000s led to the creation of the Analyst Institute, a secretive firm that applies scientific methods to political campaigns. He was also involved in the founding of Catalist, the flagship progressive data company.

The endless chatter in Washington about “political strategy,” Podhorzer believes, has little to do with how change really gets made. “My basic take on politics is that it’s all pretty obvious if you don’t overthink it or swallow the prevailing frameworks whole,” he once wrote. “After that, just relentlessly identify your assumptions and challenge them.” Podhorzer applies that approach to everything: when he coached his now adult son’s Little League team in the D.C. suburbs, he trained the boys not to swing at most pitches–a tactic that infuriated both their and their opponents’ parents, but won the team a series of championships.

Trump’s election in 2016–credited in part to his unusual strength among the sort of blue collar white voters who once dominated the AFL-CIO–prompted Podhorzer to question his assumptions about voter behavior. He began circulating weekly number-crunching memos to a small circle of allies and hosting strategy sessions in D.C. But when he began to worry about the election itself, he didn’t want to seem paranoid. It was only after months of research that he introduced his concerns in his newsletter in October 2019. The usual tools of data, analytics and polling would not be sufficient in a situation where the President himself was trying to disrupt the election, he wrote. “Most of our planning takes us through Election Day,” he noted. “But, we are not prepared for the two most likely outcomes”–Trump losing and refusing to concede, and Trump winning the Electoral College (despite losing the popular vote) by corrupting the voting process in key states. “We desperately need to systematically ‘red-team’ this election so that we can anticipate and plan for the worst we know will be coming our way.”

It turned out Podhorzer wasn’t the only one thinking in these terms. He began to hear from others eager to join forces. The Fight Back Table, a coalition of “resistance” organizations, had begun scenario-planning around the potential for a contested election, gathering liberal activists at the local and national level into what they called the Democracy Defense Coalition. Voting-rights and civil rights organizations were raising alarms. A group of former elected officials was researching emergency powers they feared Trump might exploit. Protect Democracy was assembling a bipartisan election-crisis task force. “It turned out that once you said it out loud, people agreed,” Podhorzer says, “and it started building momentum.”

He spent months pondering scenarios and talking to experts. It wasn’t hard to find liberals who saw Trump as a dangerous dictator, but Podhorzer was careful to steer clear of hysteria. What he wanted to know was not how American democracy was dying but how it might be kept alive. The chief difference between the U.S. and countries that lost their grip on democracy, he concluded, was that America’s decentralized election system couldn’t be rigged in one fell swoop. That presented an opportunity to shore it up.

THE ALLIANCE
On March 3, Podhorzer drafted a three-page confidential memo titled “Threats to the 2020 Election.” “Trump has made it clear that this will not be a fair election, and that he will reject anything but his own re-election as ‘fake’ and rigged,” he wrote. “On Nov. 3, should the media report otherwise, he will use the right-wing information system to establish his narrative and incite his supporters to protest.” The memo laid out four categories of challenges: attacks on voters, attacks on election administration, attacks on Trump’s political opponents and “efforts to reverse the results of the election.”

Then COVID-19 erupted at the height of the primary-election season. Normal methods of voting were no longer safe for voters or the mostly elderly volunteers who normally staff polling places. But political disagreements, intensified by Trump’s crusade against mail voting, prevented some states from making it easier to vote absentee and for jurisdictions to count those votes in a timely manner. Chaos ensued. Ohio shut down in-person voting for its primary, leading to minuscule turnout. A poll-worker shortage in Milwaukee–where Wisconsin’s heavily Democratic Black population is concentrated–left just five open polling places, down from 182. In New York, vote counting took more than a month.

Suddenly, the potential for a November meltdown was obvious. In his apartment in the D.C. suburbs, Podhorzer began working from his laptop at his kitchen table, holding back-to-back Zoom meetings for hours a day with his network of contacts across the progressive universe: the labor movement; the institutional left, like Planned Parenthood and Greenpeace; resistance groups like Indivisible and MoveOn; progressive data geeks and strategists, representatives of donors and foundations, state-level grassroots organizers, racial-justice activists and others.

In April, Podhorzer began hosting a weekly 2½-hour Zoom. It was structured around a series of rapid-fire five-minute presentations on everything from which ads were working to messaging to legal strategy. The invitation-only gatherings soon attracted hundreds, creating a rare shared base of knowledge for the fractious progressive movement. “At the risk of talking trash about the left, there’s not a lot of good information sharing,” says Anat Shenker-Osorio, a close Podhorzer friend whose poll-tested messaging guidance shaped the group’s approach. “There’s a lot of not-invented-here syndrome, where people won’t consider a good idea if they didn’t come up with it.”

The meetings became the galactic center for a constellation of operatives across the left who shared overlapping goals but didn’t usually work in concert. The group had no name, no leaders and no hierarchy, but it kept the disparate actors in sync. “Pod played a critical behind-the-scenes role in keeping different pieces of the movement infrastructure in communication and aligned,” says Maurice Mitchell, national director of the Working Families Party. “You have the litigation space, the organizing space, the political people just focused on the W, and their strategies aren’t always aligned. He allowed this ecosystem to work together.”

Protecting the election would require an effort of unprecedented scale. As 2020 progressed, it stretched to Congress, Silicon Valley and the nation’s statehouses. It drew energy from the summer’s racial-justice protests, many of whose leaders were a key part of the liberal alliance. And eventually it reached across the aisle, into the world of Trump-skeptical Republicans appalled by his attacks on democracy.

SECURING THE VOTE
The first task was overhauling America’s balky election infrastructure–in the middle of a pandemic. For the thousands of local, mostly nonpartisan officials who administer elections, the most urgent need was money. They needed protective equipment like masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. They needed to pay for postcards letting people know they could vote absentee–or, in some states, to mail ballots to every voter. They needed additional staff and scanners to process ballots.

In March, activists appealed to Congress to steer COVID relief money to election administration. Led by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, more than 150 organizations signed a letter to every member of Congress seeking $2 billion in election funding. It was somewhat successful: the CARES Act, passed later that month, contained $400 million in grants to state election administrators. But the next tranche of relief funding didn’t add to that number. It wasn’t going to be enough.

Private philanthropy stepped into the breach. An assortment of foundations contributed tens of millions in election-administration funding. The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative chipped in $300 million. “It was a failure at the federal level that 2,500 local election officials were forced to apply for philanthropic grants to fill their needs,” says Amber McReynolds, a former Denver election official who heads the nonpartisan National Vote at Home Institute.

McReynolds’ two-year-old organization became a clearinghouse for a nation struggling to adapt. The institute gave secretaries of state from both parties technical advice on everything from which vendors to use to how to locate drop boxes. Local officials are the most trusted sources of election information, but few can afford a press secretary, so the institute distributed communications tool kits. In a presentation to Podhorzer’s group, McReynolds detailed the importance of absentee ballots for shortening lines at polling places and preventing an election crisis.

The institute’s work helped 37 states and D.C. bolster mail voting. But it wouldn’t be worth much if people didn’t take advantage. Part of the challenge was logistical: each state has different rules for when and how ballots should be requested and returned. The Voter Participation Center, which in a normal year would have deployed canvassers door-to-door to get out the vote, instead conducted focus groups in April and May to find out what would get people to vote by mail. In August and September, it sent ballot applications to 15 million people in key states, 4.6 million of whom returned them. In mailings and digital ads, the group urged people not to wait for Election Day. “All the work we have done for 17 years was built for this moment of bringing democracy to people’s doorsteps,” says Tom Lopach, the center’s CEO.

The effort had to overcome heightened skepticism in some communities. Many Black voters preferred to exercise their franchise in person or didn’t trust the mail. National civil rights groups worked with local organizations to get the word out that this was the best way to ensure one’s vote was counted. In Philadelphia, for example, advocates distributed “voting safety kits” containing masks, hand sanitizer and informational brochures. “We had to get the message out that this is safe, reliable, and you can trust it,” says Hannah Fried of All Voting Is Local.

At the same time, Democratic lawyers battled a historic tide of pre-election litigation. The pandemic intensified the parties’ usual tangling in the courts. But the lawyers noticed something else as well. “The litigation brought by the Trump campaign, of a piece with the broader campaign to sow doubt about mail voting, was making novel claims and using theories no court has ever accepted,” says Wendy Weiser, a voting-rights expert at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU. “They read more like lawsuits designed to send a message rather than achieve a legal outcome.”

In the end, nearly half the electorate cast ballots by mail in 2020, practically a revolution in how people vote. About a quarter voted early in person. Only a quarter of voters cast their ballots the traditional way: in person on Election Day.

THE DISINFORMATION DEFENSE
Bad actors spreading false information is nothing new. For decades, campaigns have grappled with everything from anonymous calls claiming the election has been rescheduled to fliers spreading nasty smears about candidates’ families. But Trump’s lies and conspiracy theories, the viral force of social media and the involvement of foreign meddlers made disinformation a broader, deeper threat to the 2020 vote.

Laura Quinn, a veteran progressive operative who co-founded Catalist, began studying this problem a few years ago. She piloted a nameless, secret project, which she has never before publicly discussed, that tracked disinformation online and tried to figure out how to combat it. One component was tracking dangerous lies that might otherwise spread unnoticed. Researchers then provided information to campaigners or the media to track down the sources and expose them.

The most important takeaway from Quinn’s research, however, was that engaging with toxic content only made it worse. “When you get attacked, the instinct is to push back, call it out, say, ‘This isn’t true,'” Quinn says. “But the more engagement something gets, the more the platforms boost it. The algorithm reads that as, ‘Oh, this is popular; people want more of it.'”

The solution, she concluded, was to pressure platforms to enforce their rules, both by removing content or accounts that spread disinformation and by more aggressively policing it in the first place. “The platforms have policies against certain types of malign behavior, but they haven’t been enforcing them,” she says.

Quinn’s research gave ammunition to advocates pushing social media platforms to take a harder line. In November 2019, Mark Zuckerberg invited nine civil rights leaders to dinner at his home, where they warned him about the danger of the election-related falsehoods that were already spreading unchecked. “It took pushing, urging, conversations, brainstorming, all of that to get to a place where we ended up with more rigorous rules and enforcement,” says Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, who attended the dinner and also met with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and others. (Gupta has been nominated for Associate Attorney General by President Biden.) “It was a struggle, but we got to the point where they understood the problem. Was it enough? Probably not. Was it later than we wanted? Yes. But it was really important, given the level of official disinformation, that they had those rules in place and were tagging things and taking them down.”

SPREADING THE WORD
Beyond battling bad information, there was a need to explain a rapidly changing election process. It was crucial for voters to understand that despite what Trump was saying, mail-in votes weren’t susceptible to fraud and that it would be normal if some states weren’t finished counting votes on election night.

Dick Gephardt, the Democratic former House leader turned high-powered lobbyist, spearheaded one coalition. “We wanted to get a really bipartisan group of former elected officials, Cabinet secretaries, military leaders and so on, aimed mainly at messaging to the public but also speaking to local officials–the secretaries of state, attorneys general, governors who would be in the eye of the storm–to let them know we wanted to help,” says Gephardt, who worked his contacts in the private sector to put $20 million behind the effort.

Wamp, the former GOP Congressman, worked through the nonpartisan reform group Issue One to rally Republicans. “We thought we should bring some bipartisan element of unity around what constitutes a free and fair election,” Wamp says. The 22 Democrats and 22 Republicans on the National Council on Election Integrity met on Zoom at least once a week. They ran ads in six states, made statements, wrote articles and alerted local officials to potential problems. “We had rabid Trump supporters who agreed to serve on the council based on the idea that this is honest,” Wamp says. This is going to be just as important, he told them, to convince the liberals when Trump wins. “Whichever way it cuts, we’re going to stick together.”

The Voting Rights Lab and IntoAction created state-specific memes and graphics, spread by email, text, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok, urging that every vote be counted. Together, they were viewed more than 1 billion times. Protect Democracy’s election task force issued reports and held media briefings with high-profile experts across the political spectrum, resulting in widespread coverage of potential election issues and fact-checking of Trump’s false claims. The organization’s tracking polls found the message was being heard: the percentage of the public that didn’t expect to know the winner on election night gradually rose until by late October, it was over 70%. A majority also believed that a prolonged count wasn’t a sign of problems. “We knew exactly what Trump was going to do: he was going to try to use the fact that Democrats voted by mail and Republicans voted in person to make it look like he was ahead, claim victory, say the mail-in votes were fraudulent and try to get them thrown out,” says Protect Democracy’s Bassin. Setting public expectations ahead of time helped undercut those lies.

The alliance took a common set of themes from the research Shenker-Osorio presented at Podhorzer’s Zooms. Studies have shown that when people don’t think their vote will count or fear casting it will be a hassle, they’re far less likely to participate. Throughout election season, members of Podhorzer’s group minimized incidents of voter intimidation and tamped down rising liberal hysteria about Trump’s expected refusal to concede. They didn’t want to amplify false claims by engaging them, or put people off voting by suggesting a rigged game. “When you say, ‘These claims of fraud are spurious,’ what people hear is ‘fraud,'” Shenker-Osorio says. “What we saw in our pre-election research was that anything that reaffirmed Trump’s power or cast him as an authoritarian diminished people’s desire to vote.”

Podhorzer, meanwhile, was warning everyone he knew that polls were underestimating Trump’s support. The data he shared with media organizations who would be calling the election was “tremendously useful” to understand what was happening as the votes rolled in, according to a member of a major network’s political unit who spoke with Podhorzer before Election Day. Most analysts had recognized there would be a “blue shift” in key battlegrounds– the surge of votes breaking toward Democrats, driven by tallies of mail-in ballots– but they hadn’t comprehended how much better Trump was likely to do on Election Day. “Being able to document how big the absentee wave would be and the variance by state was essential,” the analyst says.

PEOPLE POWER
The racial-justice uprising sparked by George Floyd’s killing in May was not primarily a political movement. The organizers who helped lead it wanted to harness its momentum for the election without allowing it to be co-opted by politicians. Many of those organizers were part of Podhorzer’s network, from the activists in battleground states who partnered with the Democracy Defense Coalition to organizations with leading roles in the Movement for Black Lives.

The best way to ensure people’s voices were heard, they decided, was to protect their ability to vote. “We started thinking about a program that would complement the traditional election-protection area but also didn’t rely on calling the police,” says Nelini Stamp, the Working Families Party’s national organizing director. They created a force of “election defenders” who, unlike traditional poll watchers, were trained in de-escalation techniques. During early voting and on Election Day, they surrounded lines of voters in urban areas with a “joy to the polls” effort that turned the act of casting a ballot into a street party. Black organizers also recruited thousands of poll workers to ensure polling places would stay open in their communities.

The summer uprising had shown that people power could have a massive impact. Activists began preparing to reprise the demonstrations if Trump tried to steal the election. “Americans plan widespread protests if Trump interferes with election,” Reuters reported in October, one of many such stories. More than 150 liberal groups, from the Women’s March to the Sierra Club to Color of Change, from Democrats.com to the Democratic Socialists of America, joined the “Protect the Results” coalition. The group’s now defunct website had a map listing 400 planned postelection demonstrations, to be activated via text message as soon as Nov. 4. To stop the coup they feared, the left was ready to flood the streets.

STRANGE BEDFELLOWS
About a week before Election Day, Podhorzer received an unexpected message: the U.S. Chamber of Commerce wanted to talk.

The AFL-CIO and the Chamber have a long history of antagonism. Though neither organization is explicitly partisan, the influential business lobby has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into Republican campaigns, just as the nation’s unions funnel hundreds of millions to Democrats. On one side is labor, on the other management, locked in an eternal struggle for power and resources.

But behind the scenes, the business community was engaged in its own anxious discussions about how the election and its aftermath might unfold. The summer’s racial-justice protests had sent a signal to business owners too: the potential for economy-disrupting civil disorder. “With tensions running high, there was a lot of concern about unrest around the election, or a breakdown in our normal way we handle contentious elections,” says Neil Bradley, the Chamber’s executive vice president and chief policy officer. These worries had led the Chamber to release a pre-election statement with the Business Roundtable, a Washington-based CEOs’ group, as well as associations of manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, calling for patience and confidence as votes were counted.

But Bradley wanted to send a broader, more bipartisan message. He reached out to Podhorzer, through an intermediary both men declined to name. Agreeing that their unlikely alliance would be powerful, they began to discuss a joint statement pledging their organizations’ shared commitment to a fair and peaceful election. They chose their words carefully and scheduled the statement’s release for maximum impact. As it was being finalized, Christian leaders signaled their interest in joining, further broadening its reach.

The statement was released on Election Day, under the names of Chamber CEO Thomas Donohue, AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka, and the heads of the National Association of Evangelicals and the National African American Clergy Network. “It is imperative that election officials be given the space and time to count every vote in accordance with applicable laws,” it stated. “We call on the media, the candidates and the American people to exercise patience with the process and trust in our system, even if it requires more time than usual.” The groups added, “Although we may not always agree on desired outcomes up and down the ballot, we are united in our call for the American democratic process to proceed without violence, intimidation or any other tactic that makes us weaker as a nation.”

SHOWING UP, STANDING DOWN
Election night began with many Democrats despairing. Trump was running ahead of pre-election polling, winning Florida, Ohio and Texas easily and keeping Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania too close to call. But Podhorzer was unperturbed when I spoke to him that night: the returns were exactly in line with his modeling. He had been warning for weeks that Trump voters’ turnout was surging. As the numbers dribbled out, he could tell that as long as all the votes were counted, Trump would lose.

The liberal alliance gathered for an 11 p.m. Zoom call. Hundreds joined; many were freaking out. “It was really important for me and the team in that moment to help ground people in what we had already known was true,” says Angela Peoples, director for the Democracy Defense Coalition. Podhorzer presented data to show the group that victory was in hand.

While he was talking, Fox News surprised everyone by calling Arizona for Biden. The public-awareness campaign had worked: TV anchors were bending over backward to counsel caution and frame the vote count accurately. The question then became what to do next.

The conversation that followed was a difficult one, led by the activists charged with the protest strategy. “We wanted to be mindful of when was the right time to call for moving masses of people into the street,” Peoples says. As much as they were eager to mount a show of strength, mobilizing immediately could backfire and put people at risk. Protests that devolved into violent clashes would give Trump a pretext to send in federal agents or troops as he had over the summer. And rather than elevate Trump’s complaints by continuing to fight him, the alliance wanted to send the message that the people had spoken.

So the word went out: stand down. Protect the Results announced that it would “not be activating the entire national mobilization network today, but remains ready to activate if necessary.” On Twitter, outraged progressives wondered what was going on. Why wasn’t anyone trying to stop Trump’s coup? Where were all the protests?

Podhorzer credits the activists for their restraint. “They had spent so much time getting ready to hit the streets on Wednesday. But they did it,” he says. “Wednesday through Friday, there was not a single Antifa vs. Proud Boys incident like everyone was expecting. And when that didn’t materialize, I don’t think the Trump campaign had a backup plan.”

Activists reoriented the Protect the Results protests toward a weekend of celebration. “Counter their disinfo with our confidence & get ready to celebrate,” read the messaging guidance Shenker-Osorio presented to the liberal alliance on Friday, Nov. 6. “Declare and fortify our win. Vibe: confident, forward-looking, unified–NOT passive, anxious.” The voters, not the candidates, would be the protagonists of the story.

The planned day of celebration happened to coincide with the election being called on Nov. 7. Activists dancing in the streets of Philadelphia blasted Beyoncé over an attempted Trump campaign press conference; the Trumpers’ next confab was scheduled for Four Seasons Total Landscaping outside the city center, which activists believe was not a coincidence. “The people of Philadelphia owned the streets of Philadelphia,” crows the Working Families Party’s Mitchell. “We made them look ridiculous by contrasting our joyous celebration of democracy with their clown show.”

The votes had been counted. Trump had lost. But the battle wasn’t over.

THE FIVE STEPS TO VICTORY
In Podhorzer’s presentations, winning the vote was only the first step to winning the election. After that came winning the count, winning the certification, winning the Electoral College and winning the transition–steps that are normally formalities but that he knew Trump would see as opportunities for disruption. Nowhere would that be more evident than in Michigan, where Trump’s pressure on local Republicans came perilously close to working–and where liberal and conservative pro-democracy forces joined to counter it.

It was around 10 p.m. on election night in Detroit when a flurry of texts lit up the phone of Art Reyes III. A busload of Republican election observers had arrived at the TCF Center, where votes were being tallied. They were crowding the vote-counting tables, refusing to wear masks, heckling the mostly Black workers. Reyes, a Flint native who leads We the People Michigan, was expecting this. For months, conservative groups had been sowing suspicion about urban vote fraud. “The language was, ‘They’re going to steal the election; there will be fraud in Detroit,’ long before any vote was cast,” Reyes says.

He made his way to the arena and sent word to his network. Within 45 minutes, dozens of reinforcements had arrived. As they entered the arena to provide a counterweight to the GOP observers inside, Reyes took down their cell-phone numbers and added them to a massive text chain. Racial-justice activists from Detroit Will Breathe worked alongside suburban women from Fems for Dems and local elected officials. Reyes left at 3 a.m., handing the text chain over to a disability activist.

As they mapped out the steps in the election-certification process, activists settled on a strategy of foregrounding the people’s right to decide, demanding their voices be heard and calling attention to the racial implications of disenfranchising Black Detroiters. They flooded the Wayne County canvassing board’s Nov. 17 certification meeting with on-message testimony; despite a Trump tweet, the Republican board members certified Detroit’s votes.

Election boards were one pressure point; another was GOP-controlled legislatures, who Trump believed could declare the election void and appoint their own electors. And so the President invited the GOP leaders of the Michigan legislature, House Speaker Lee Chatfield and Senate majority leader Mike Shirkey, to Washington on Nov. 20.

It was a perilous moment. If Chatfield and Shirkey agreed to do Trump’s bidding, Republicans in other states might be similarly bullied. “I was concerned things were going to get weird,” says Jeff Timmer, a former Michigan GOP executive director turned anti-Trump activist. Norm Eisen describes it as “the scariest moment” of the entire election.

The democracy defenders launched a full-court press. Protect Democracy’s local contacts researched the lawmakers’ personal and political motives. Issue One ran television ads in Lansing. The Chamber’s Bradley kept close tabs on the process. Wamp, the former Republican Congressman, called his former colleague Mike Rogers, who wrote an op-ed for the Detroit newspapers urging officials to honor the will of the voters. Three former Michigan governors–Republicans John Engler and Rick Snyder and Democrat Jennifer Granholm–jointly called for Michigan’s electoral votes to be cast free of pressure from the White House. Engler, a former head of the Business Roundtable, made phone calls to influential donors and fellow GOP elder statesmen who could press the lawmakers privately.

The pro-democracy forces were up against a Trumpified Michigan GOP controlled by allies of Ronna McDaniel, the Republican National Committee chair, and Betsy DeVos, the former Education Secretary and a member of a billionaire family of GOP donors. On a call with his team on Nov. 18, Bassin vented that his side’s pressure was no match for what Trump could offer. “Of course he’s going to try to offer them something,” Bassin recalls thinking. “Head of the Space Force! Ambassador to wherever! We can’t compete with that by offering carrots. We need a stick.”

If Trump were to offer something in exchange for a personal favor, that would likely constitute bribery, Bassin reasoned. He phoned Richard Primus, a law professor at the University of Michigan, to see if Primus agreed and would make the argument publicly. Primus said he thought the meeting itself was inappropriate, and got to work on an op-ed for Politico warning that the state attorney general–a Democrat–would have no choice but to investigate. When the piece posted on Nov. 19, the attorney general’s communications director tweeted it. Protect Democracy soon got word that the lawmakers planned to bring lawyers to the meeting with Trump the next day.

Reyes’ activists scanned flight schedules and flocked to the airports on both ends of Shirkey’s journey to D.C., to underscore that the lawmakers were being scrutinized. After the meeting, the pair announced they’d pressed the President to deliver COVID relief for their constituents and informed him they saw no role in the election process. Then they went for a drink at the Trump hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue. A street artist projected their images onto the outside of the building along with the words THE WORLD IS WATCHING.

That left one last step: the state canvassing board, made up of two Democrats and two Republicans. One Republican, a Trumper employed by the DeVos family’s political nonprofit, was not expected to vote for certification. The other Republican on the board was a little-known lawyer named Aaron Van Langevelde. He sent no signals about what he planned to do, leaving everyone on edge.

When the meeting began, Reyes’s activists flooded the livestream and filled Twitter with their hashtag, #alleyesonmi. A board accustomed to attendance in the single digits suddenly faced an audience of thousands. In hours of testimony, the activists emphasized their message of respecting voters’ wishes and affirming democracy rather than scolding the officials. Van Langevelde quickly signaled he would follow precedent. The vote was 3-0 to certify; the other Republican abstained.

After that, the dominoes fell. Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and the rest of the states certified their electors. Republican officials in Arizona and Georgia stood up to Trump’s bullying. And the Electoral College voted on schedule on Dec. 14.

HOW CLOSE WE CAME
There was one last milestone on Podhorzer’s mind: Jan. 6. On the day Congress would meet to tally the electoral count, Trump summoned his supporters to D.C. for a rally.

Much to their surprise, the thousands who answered his call were met by virtually no counterdemonstrators. To preserve safety and ensure they couldn’t be blamed for any mayhem, the activist left was “strenuously discouraging counter activity,” Podhorzer texted me the morning of Jan. 6, with a crossed-fingers emoji.

Trump addressed the crowd that afternoon, peddling the lie that lawmakers or Vice President Mike Pence could reject states’ electoral votes. He told them to go to the Capitol and “fight like hell.” Then he returned to the White House as they sacked the building. As lawmakers fled for their lives and his own supporters were shot and trampled, Trump praised the rioters as “very special.”

It was his final attack on democracy, and once again, it failed. By standing down, the democracy campaigners outfoxed their foes. “We won by the skin of our teeth, honestly, and that’s an important point for folks to sit with,” says the Democracy Defense Coalition’s Peoples. “There’s an impulse for some to say voters decided and democracy won. But it’s a mistake to think that this election cycle was a show of strength for democracy. It shows how vulnerable democracy is.”

The members of the alliance to protect the election have gone their separate ways. The Democracy Defense Coalition has been disbanded, though the Fight Back Table lives on. Protect Democracy and the good-government advocates have turned their attention to pressing reforms in Congress. Left-wing activists are pressuring the newly empowered Democrats to remember the voters who put them there, while civil rights groups are on guard against further attacks on voting. Business leaders denounced the Jan. 6 attack, and some say they will no longer donate to lawmakers who refused to certify Biden’s victory. Podhorzer and his allies are still holding their Zoom strategy sessions, gauging voters’ views and developing new messages. And Trump is in Florida, facing his second impeachment, deprived of the Twitter and Facebook accounts he used to push the nation to its breaking point.

As I was reporting this article in November and December, I heard different claims about who should get the credit for thwarting Trump’s plot. Liberals argued the role of bottom-up people power shouldn’t be overlooked, particularly the contributions of people of color and local grassroots activists. Others stressed the heroism of GOP officials like Van Langevelde and Georgia secretary of state Brad Raffensperger, who stood up to Trump at considerable cost. The truth is that neither likely could have succeeded without the other. “It’s astounding how close we came, how fragile all this really is,” says Timmer, the former Michigan GOP executive director. “It’s like when Wile E. Coyote runs off the cliff–if you don’t look down, you don’t fall. Our democracy only survives if we all believe and don’t look down.”

Democracy won in the end. The will of the people prevailed. But it’s crazy, in retrospect, that this is what it took to put on an election in the United States of America.

–With reporting by LESLIE DICKSTEIN, MARIAH ESPADA and SIMMONE SHAH

Correction appended, Feb. 5: The original version of this story misstated the name of Norm Eisen’s organization. It is the Voter Protection Program, not the Voter Protection Project. The original version of this story also misstated Jeff Timmer’s former position with the Michigan Republican Party. He was the executive director, not the chairman.

This appears in the February 15, 2021 issue of TIME.

https://time.com/5936036/secret-2020-election-campaign/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=editorial&utm_term=politics_2020-election&linkId=110721485

 
IPCC - They've told us what it's NOT. But NOT what it is.

ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #12 on: 07.02.2021, 21:45:16 »
Takk for at du legger ut dette, translator. Det som skjer i USA, er et nærmest surrealistisk skuespill. Document har en video av det famøse "angrepet" på Kongressen, som nå blir brukt for alt det ikke er verdt til å slå ned politisk motstand. Man viser hvordan alle de merkelige episodene minner mye om militære og sivile myndigheters dreiebok for katastrofe-øvelser, falskt blod inklusive. Virkelig morsom er snutten med mannen på utsiden som får en solid dose tåregass rett i ansiktet uten å bli blindet eller negativt påvirket.

https://www.document.no/2021/02/07/alt-som-ikke-stemmer-med-capitol-hill-opptoyene-pa-21-minutter/

Filmen går også enda en gang grundig gjennom skytingen av Babbitt. Det er svært uvanlig at politimannen som skjøt henne aldri er blitt navngitt, og at det ikke finnes noe info om hennes obduksjon. Eller begravelse?

Hele situasjonen omkring åstedet minner om dårlig amatørteater.

ConTrari1

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #13 on: 08.02.2021, 10:42:09 »
Nå innrømmer også renommerte Time Magazine at USA-valget ble rigget. De kaller det noe annet, nemlig en "forsterkning" (enforcement) av demokratiet, men alle som kjenner historien ser at den bekrefter det vi allerede vet.

Jeg starter med å gjengi hele Time-artikkelen, som jeg klarte å kopiere før den ble blokkert av betalingsmuren hos Time:

Quote
POLITICS 2020 ELECTIONTHE SECRET HISTORY OF THE SHADOW CAMPAIGN THAT SAVED THE 2020 ELECTION
The Secret History of the Shadow Campaign That Saved the 2020 Election


The nation was braced for chaos. Liberal groups had vowed to take to the streets, planning hundreds of protests across the country. Right-wing militias were girding for battle. In a poll before Election Day, 75% of Americans voiced concern about violence.

Instead, an eerie quiet descended. As President Trump refused to concede, the response was not mass action but crickets. When media organizations called the race for Joe Biden on Nov. 7, jubilation broke out instead, as people thronged cities across the U.S. to celebrate the democratic process that resulted in Trump’s ouster.
 

(Gir opp å rette nå, etter flere forsøk; det som står under, er min kommentar og skulle hatt hvit bakgrunn)

Dette er en bisarr historie. Den gir assosiasjoner til retroaktiv pansring, en forebyggende eksplosjon som reduserer effekten av innkommende beskytning. Venstresiden projiserer påstandene om valgjuks over på Trump-leiren. Har en følelse av at de forsøker å lage en dekkhistorie som de kan falle tilbake på dersom (eller når) valgjukset blir endelig avslørt for offentligheten.

"Pute-mannen" Mike Lindell har laget en 2 timer lang video som går grundig gjennom dokumentasjonen av valgjukset. For de som har tålmodighet er det verdt å få med seg.

https://www.brighteon.com/78931d4e-8d2d-4751-beb6-11bb394dc1f1

Et "pertinent" spørsmål som har dukket opp, er hvorfor Biden ennå ikke har fått besøk av noen statsledere. Det finnes da mange Trump-motstandere blant dem (som Erna Solberg)  som burde stå i kø for å møte sin "frelser".  Men Biden skal visstnok treffe den engelske dronningen senere i år. Vi får se om den reisen blir noe av, eller om Harris må steppe inn.
« Last Edit: 08.02.2021, 11:01:06 by ConTrari1 »

Telehiv

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Re: "Hvordan presidentvalget i USA kan ha blitt stjålet"
« Reply #14 on: 08.02.2021, 15:35:25 »
Men Biden skal visstnok treffe den engelske dronningen senere i år. Vi får se om den reisen blir noe av, eller om Harris må steppe inn.

Hvis Bidens senilitet utvikler seg, og dronning Elisabeth heller ikke blir noe yngre, kan jo det bli et haraball av rang, det!
Trump vil jo alltid lure i bakgrunnen, uansett....





 
« Last Edit: 08.02.2021, 15:37:49 by Telehiv »