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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Finding fake news -- 3 million fraudulent Hillary voters (part 1)

Media are a wreck. In this day of opinion everything and cherry-picked facts, people are searching for ways to find their own information. We need to know how to source our own news, as most outlets aren't doing a good enough job for the nation. This will be a series.

I'm starting with the 3 million fraudulent votes claim, as brought to me by a random twitter user.
I asked Lyle for citation, and he provided me with several links. We'll take them one by one.

This is a link from the Sgt. Report, which proclaims itself "The Corporate Propaganda Antidote." The piece is titled: "ANALYSIS: MORE THAN 3 MILLION ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS VOTED IN THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION… AND HILLARY STILL LOST"

Most liberals stop right here. Because we immediately see made-up news and don't want to waste any time on it. But I want to go all the way through this, from top to bottom, so bear with me.

The piece cites a Tweet from @jumpvote, Gregg Phillips, the founder of the app VoteStand.

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

It refers to VoteStand as a non-partisan group monitoring voter registrations. It continues by stating that illegal immigrants tend to vote Democrat (uncited). Then it refers vaguely to an interview given by Obama, just before the election, where he apparently told illegal immigrants that there would be no legal repercussions for voting, by saying "when you vote, you are a citizen yourself."

It then asks readers to get more information from The Daily Sheeple.

Let's start with VoteStand.

According to its own website, VoteStand is not a non-partisan group monitoring voter registrations. It is actually an app that allows users to report perceived voter fraud. As per the site: "The process is as easy as taking a picture and filling out specific identifying information about the incident."

It allows citizens using the app to report, via their own observations, voter registration fraud, dead people voting, felon vote fraud, absentee ballot vote fraud, voter intimidation/suppression, electronic voting fraud, voter impersonation, ballot stuffing (multiple voting), electioneering and misinformation.

It states that it "uses a high-level encryption inside the app, allowing information to get to the right people and make reporting voter fraud easier."

Nowhere on the site does it say who those people are, and what they do with the information, or how they investigate the claims.

That said, there is a group behind the app. True the Vote. It was founded in 2009.

It describes itself like this on its site: "As the nation’s largest nonpartisan, voters’ rights and election integrity organization, True the Vote exists to inspire and equip volunteers for involvement at every stage of America’s electoral process. We provide training, technology, and support to fellow citizens so that they can ensure election integrity in their own communities."

True the Vote founder, Catherine Engelbrecht, told ABC Nightline in an interview that the group was non-partisan, but admitted to heading a Tea Party group in Houston and to making a $5,000 donation to a Republican organization.

This is not "the skewed news media." If you watch the video on the link I provided, you will hear Engelbrecht say these things herself. That is a primary source.

So, the nonpartisan organization's founder is partisan. While the organization may perhaps be partisan (which could be proven through staff and volunteer listings which currently do not exist), there is a conflict of interest at the very top.

All of this leads us back to the question of how a small grassroots organization made of citizen volunteers, and an app to help them photograph people they assume are fraudulently voting, allow Gregg Phillips to state that they'd analyzed 180 million voter registrations and found 3 million fraudulent ones.

Let's start with Gregg Phillips. His @jumpvote Twitter account has this pinned at the top:

So, he's not non-partisan.

He didn't answer my request to clarify how he got his numbers, but did answer another user who asked him to show his evidence by saying this:

"I have been consistent from the outset. I will publish all methods, data and analysis to the public and the DOJ."

The thing is, he hasn't. And when you go with news before you present your findings in a publicly accessible or verifiable way, that is fake news. Others may say they trust him, but in that case, they are using a system of belief over a reliance on facts.

So, there is no verification from Gregg Phillips about that 3 million voter fraud number. Only a vague promise of some later, followed immediately by several professions of him being "just a regular guy."

Randi Kaye, an anchor for CNN's 360, asked Phillips for an interview to review his numbers and make his case to the public, presenting his proof. His reply was that she had already decided, and so he wouldn't go on the air.

So, he's not going to show his proof for these numbers. Now, he says it's because CNN has already decided. Fair enough. And yet, no one has any proof of this claim. Again, people can choose to believe him. But that's a belief without facts backing it up.

But who is Gregg Phillips?

In his Twitter profile, he says he's "Founder: @VoteStand, The Cause, Time for a Hero, Voters Trust & Winning Our Future PAC. Board Member."

The Cause seems to be a curated list of voting related news, everything from The Washington Post to Breitbart. From where I sit, it's not slanted, providing stories of all kinds about voting news from all types of publications.

It also has only one issue (August, 2016) and the forward to that issue is written by a John David Phillips.

Voters Trust is said to be a nonprofit organization, but no trace of it exists other than citations from Gregg and Engelbrecht in conservative news sites like The Blaze. This linked piece describes Phillips' role in the organization that cannot be found, but its intent is to highlight a bounty reward that True the Vote was hosting for someone who could find IRS or Obamacare fraud. That bounty went untaken.

A link to another interview with Phillips was provided and it led to The 405; The Talk Alternative, a talk radio show website, which states it is a "independent and growing talk outlet covering the broadest spectrum of politics as well as pop culture and sports, including written and visual media," but also appears to be linked to the Common Sense Conversations podcasts and radio, which is based out of California according to its mailing address. A phone number and email is listed for the creator, but no last name. She goes by Beth Ann. The show with Phillips in it is two hours long, called Sacks Radio. I listened to it for you.

Within that written piece on the 405 site, there was a link to Phillips' Voters Trust PAC, which is also listed on his Twitter profile, if you recall. The link led to a defunct website.

Infowars' Alex Jones linked Phillips to Vote Fraud, a website that stems from 1996 and looks like it. That page, however, is linked to an up-to-date site, Election Night Gatekeepers. There is no information about who runs this site, although it is a pro-Trump site, which quotes Stalin right up top. There is a call-in option for Thursday, for those inclined: "Dial-in Number: (712) 775-7035, Participant Access Code: 938190#." You can contact them at, Phone: 513-741-2095. Again, there is no transparency here. Who are we talking to and what are their qualifications?

Election Night Gatekeepers talks  in-depth about Watch the Vote. The first thing on Watch the Vote USA is a paragraph about how they forced the Iowa GOP to change the winner of that caucus in 2012 from Romney to Santorum. We have now reached the first part of this entire post that can be verified. I don't know if Watch the Vote USA had anything to do with it; but Santorum beat Romney by 34 votes two weeks after the state had been called for Romney by eight votes only. The New York Times has this cached.

There is no link that leads from Phillips to Election Night Gatekeepers aka Vote Watch.

Phillips also lists Winning our Future PAC in his Twitter. This is a super-PAC that supported Newt Gingrich in 2012. It's not been updated since, but the Public Integrity Project (Pulitzer Prize winner) shows top donors gave up to $7.5 million in funds; it had a Full Disclosure rating. That's a good thing. It means we can see all donations. It was created by former Gingrich aide, Becky Burkett.

None of this tells us anything about Gregg Phillips other than he's a staunch, active Tea Party Republican.

If you check his LinkedIn, you see he's the founder of AutoGov, and that years ago, in 1995, he was the Executive Director of Mississippi's Republican Party. In 1989, he was the Finance Director for the Alabama Republican Party. So he's not non-partisan. AutoGov is a company that analyzes data, and its star invention is CaseVue, a program that filters multiple patient data to determine whether that patient is eligible for Medicaid, ranking them as if they were getting a credit check.

CaseVue uses "applicant case information together with hundreds of additional bits of publicly and privately sourced data, then uses predictive analytics to assess the presence of risk, quickly defines the likelihood of eligibility – and delivers answers to desktops of caseworkers – all in real time."

It doesn't mention what the privately sourced data are nor how they are found.

AutoGov's other main innovation is GovBox. It looks to be the same program, tweaked for large government program eligibility--mainly social services. It was said to be used in Mississippi after the State extended Medicaid under the ACA to help hospitals there combat the expense of that program (ignoring that the state got a credit for that).

I said said to be because the press release does not name any hospitals in particular, nor does it state any start date for the programs they say are falling into place there. It's published on a site called Presumptive Eligibility, which is run by AutoGov, as another way to sell CaseVue. It was written by a Taylor Phillips.

Now, if you look carefully at GovBox, you will see that Gregg Phillips is looking for information on residents in states that might use it (I couldn't find any currently using it), specifically: Identity (Social Security Numbers), proof of residency, proof of citizenship, income, and assets.

So, it turns out Gregg Phillips is at least working on collecting data about residents of the U.S. for his day-job.

Since CaseVue is said to be in practice in at least four states already, the information on those patients has, at the very least, passed through Phillips' hands. I say said to be because I can find no news from any health related site or organization actually talking about CaseVue other than AutoGov itself.

Autogov has a Dallas, TX address on the site, and a Birmingham, AL address there. News briefs about the company refer to it as an Austin-based company.

Googling him brings up Give Time to a Hero, a failed crowdfunding attempt to buy a watch for every special op in America. This is touching and kind. He only raised $490 out of his $10,000 goal. He's found, much like everyone else, America gives money to conspiracy theories a lot more easily than they give to other people who do good service for our country.

So, that's Gregg Phillips. A guy collecting massive amounts of data through his private company, an outspoken advocate for the far right, and the self-appointed gatekeeper of voter fraud.

Nowhere do we see how he could have gotten the 180 million voter registration information he claims he has. Nowhere do we see how his app and watch groups found 3 million fraudulent voters.

Because it's not real. If you choose to believe it is real, you are believing, not relaying facts. I could not find any facts that backed up his claim, and I went about as deep as one could go.

Okay, let's just QUICKLY look at the rest of the piece he linked me.

"Illegals tend to vote Democrat" it said.

That would be true, as the Pew Research Center found that 31 percent of undocumented immigrants aligned with the Democratic party where as only 4 percent aligned with the Republican party.

So why isn't it true? Because undocumented immigrants don't vote. They're not allowed to by law, and as we just exhaustively went over, there is no evidence suggesting that undocumented immigrants vote.

How about when Obama told Gina Rodriguez illegal immigrants should vote?

I can see how this is being put across. Check out the interview.

Rodriguez wrongly referred to undocumented immigrants as citizens, then she framed the question around herself, a true citizen (in the conservative sense of the word.)

She asks: "If I vote, will immigration know where I live, will they come for my family and deport us?"

Obama is answering her personally. When he said, "when you vote, you are a citizen yourself, and there is not a situation where the voting rolls are transferred over and people start investigating," he is using the you are a citizen yourself as the disclaimer, as the clarification that he is talking about citizens who may have undocumented family members that they are afraid for.

I can absolutely see, however, how it could be taken as an if/then cause/effect statement when only part of the question and answer is given.

When a person hears, "when you vote, you are a citizen yourself" as the article quoted, that has an entirely different meaning than the full quote. However, I would also posture that those who do not like Obama would also hear the second meaning given the entire interview. But that's not what he said.


I spent hours looking for the proof of voter fraud given to me by this link by a random Twitter user. And it wasn't there.

As of right now, no proven voter fraud.

I'll be back with the rest of the links tomorrow or something.


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