During the 2020 election, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg spent hundreds of millions of dollars to get potential Democratic voters. But this was not a traditional political spending. He financed a private and directed takeover of government electoral operations by nominally non-partisan, but demonstrably ideological, nonprofits.
Our team’s analysis shows that this money significantly increased Joe Biden’s voting margin in key states. In places like Georgia, when Biden won by 12,000 votes, and Arizona, where he won by 10,000, the spending probably put him on top.
This unprecedented fusion of public electoral offices with private resources and personnel is a serious threat to our republic and should be the focus of future electoral reform efforts.
The 2020 elections were not stolen; It was probably bought by one of the richest and most powerful men in the world who invested his money through loopholes.
The Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL) and the Center for Electoral Research and Innovation (CEIR) passed a staggering $ 419.5 million of Zuckerberg’s money to local government election offices, and it arrived with conditions. Each CTCL and CEIR grant spelled out in great detail the conditions under which the grant money would be used.
It’s not about Democrats spending more than Republicans. Private funding of the electoral administration was virtually unknown in the American political system prior to the 2020 elections.
The large CTCL and CEIR funds have nothing to do with traditional campaign finance, lobbying, or other expenses related to increasingly expensive modern elections. It had to do with funding the infiltration of election offices at the city and county level by left activists and using those offices as a platform to implement preferred administrative practices, voting methods, and data-sharing agreements, as well as to launch intensive scope. campaigns in areas where Democratic voters abound.
Funded by Mark Zuckerberg, the Center for Technology and Civic Life was supposed to provide voting assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. But his coordination with local governments greatly favored voting in Democratic areas, according to one analysis.
For example, CTCL / CEIR funded self-described “vote navigators” in Wisconsin to “help voters, potentially at their front doors, answer questions, assist in ballot curation.” . . and witness absentee voter signatures, “and a Stacey Abrams-affiliated temp agency called” Happy Faces “counting votes amid the chaos of Election Night in Fulton County, Georgia.
CTCL demanded the promotion of universal mail voting by suspending electoral laws, extending time limits that favored voting by mail rather than voting in person, greatly expanding opportunities to “curate ballots,” expensive mass mailings and other lavish “community outreach” programs that were run by private activists.
CTCL fueled the proliferation of unsupervised private mailboxes (which created significant chain-of-custody problems) and opportunities for novel forms of ‘ballot-by-mail’, enabled the filing of numerous questionable ballots after the elections, and created opportunities for illegal vote gathering.
CTCL greatly increased funding for temporary staff and poll workers, supporting the infiltration of paid Democratic Party activists into election offices, coordinated through a complex network of left-wing nonprofits, platforms of social networks and influencers in the elections in social networks.
The amount of additional money these groups invested in election offices in Democratic voting areas was truly staggering. To put it in perspective, federal and state matching funds for COVID-19-related election spending in 2020 totaled $ 479.5 million.
CTCL and CEIR money amounted to $ 419.5 million.
These two private nonprofit organizations were responsible for an 85 percent increase in total additional election funding, and that generosity was concentrated in a relatively small number of heavily Democratic municipalities.
Although CTCL and CEIR are licensed as nonpartisan 501 (c) (3) corporations, our research suggests that spending that occurred in 2020 was highly partisan in its distribution and effects.
Mark Zuckerberg spent nearly $ 420 million in the run-up to the election.
Of the 25 grants CTCL awarded to cities and counties in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia that were $ 1 million or more, 23 went to areas that Biden won in 2020. One of the Two counties won by Donald Trump, Brown County, Wisconsin, received about $ 1.1 million, less than 1.2 percent of the $ 87.5 million that CTCL provided to these top 25 recipients.
But even in Brown County, Wisconsin, where the largely Democratic Green Bay is located, funding disparities are glaring. The Wisconsin legislature provided approximately $ 7 per voter to the City of Green Bay to administer its 2020 elections. Rural Wisconsin counties received approximately $ 4 per voter.
CTCL funding increased Green Bay’s resources for Democratic voters to $ 47 per voter, while most rural areas still had the same $ 4 per voter. Similar funding disparities occurred near Detroit, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Flint, Michigan, Dallas, Houston, and other cities that received tens of millions of dollars in CTCL money.
Preliminary analysis shows that this partisan goal of CTCL funding was repeated in battle states across the country. Our first case study, however, examines the effect of CTCL spending on the 2020 elections in Texas.
The following figure shows the counties that received CTCL expenditures ranked by CTCL spending per capita in Texas. As can be easily seen, the counties with the highest levels of CTCL spending per capita were the Democratic counties.
It should be noted that Tarrant County, which contains Fort Worth, is listed as a Republican county but changed to Democrat in 2020. The ex-urban counties of DFW Denton and Collin, which are solidly Republican, are not included here because they did not receive funding from CTCL.
The financing and management of elections has always been a government function, not a private one, and for good reason. Private organizations are not subject to the rules for employees and public institutions: they are not required to hold public hearings, they cannot be monitored through open registry requests and other mechanisms of administrative and financial transparency, they are not subject to controls and normal counterweights to the government process and are not accountable to voters if the public disapproves of their actions.
The practical effect of these massive funding disparities for privately manipulated electoral offices was to create a “shadow” electoral system with a built-in structural bias that consistently favored Democratic voters over Republican voters. The massive influx of funds essentially created a high-powered, janitor-like effort to elicit the vote for Biden that took place within the electoral system, rather than attempting to influence him from the outside.
A voter sends a ballot to an official mailbox during early voting in October 2020.
We call this the injection of structural bias in the 2020 election, and our analysis shows that it likely generated enough additional votes for Biden to secure an Electoral College victory in 2020.
Our preliminary results in Georgia and Wisconsin suggest a similar impact on Biden’s voting margin from CTCL spending. And the spending in those states was probably large enough and targeted enough to have moved them into Biden’s column.
This research and analysis project will culminate in the creation of a counterfactual electoral map based on the combined results of our state-by-state analysis. It will reflect how the election results would have looked after the last legal ballot was counted if CTCL and CEIR did not spend their $ 419.5 million in 2020.
We have good reason to anticipate that the results of our work will show that the participation of CTCL and CEIR in the 2020 elections resulted in elections that, while free, were not fair. The 2020 elections weren’t stolen, they were probably bought with money poured through loopholes.
William Doyle, Ph.D., is a Principal Investigator at the Caesar Rodney Electoral Research Institute in Irving, Texas. He specializes in economic history and private financing of American elections. Previously, he was an associate professor and chair of the Department of Economics at the University of Dallas. Reprinted with permission from The Federalist.