Russian intelligence is amplifying Donald Trump’s lies about absentee ballots

President Donald Trump Departs White House for Pennsylvania Rally

The nightmare scenario is this: Russia successfully hacks the 2020 election and gets it to the point where the electoral college is down to the wire, just a few thousand votes in a couple of swing states. Donald Trump then declares victory, says that absentee ballots should be thrown out. The Biden-Harris campaign challenges the Trump campaign and it heads to the Supreme Court for Biden v. Trump, where Justice Barbie McHatesAbortion casts the deciding vote to legitimize Trump’s stolen election. Now, do I think that’s what will happen? Eh. But 2020 is the worst, so who knows. The devil works hard but Putin works harder. This story disturbed me:

Four years ago, when Russian intelligence agencies engaged in a systematic attempt to influence the American presidential election, the disinformation they fed American voters required some real imagination at the troll farms producing the ads. There was the exaggerated Texas secession movement, a famous ad in which Satan arm-wrestles Jesus while declaring, “If I win, Clinton wins,” and an effort to recruit protesters and counterprotesters to the same, invented rally over the rapid spread of Islamic influence in the United States.

This year, their task is much easier. They are largely amplifying misleading statements from President Trump, mostly about the dangers of mail-in ballots. In interviews, a range of officials and private analysts said that Mr. Trump was feeding many of the disinformation campaigns they were struggling to halt. And rather than travel the back roads of America searching for divisive issues — as three Russians from the Internet Research Agency did in 2016 — they are staying home, grabbing screenshots of Mr. Trump’s Twitter posts, or quoting his misleading statements and then amplifying those messages.

That campaign is at the heart of the disinformation efforts that the F.B.I. director, Christopher A. Wray, warned Congress last week was meant “to both sow divisiveness and discord” and “to denigrate” former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic nominee. Mr. Trump chastised him for his comments on Twitter.

The F.B.I. and the Department of Homeland Security on Tuesday again warned of the risk of interference in the election, this time by foreigners aiming to exploit the time it will take to sort through mail-in ballots. During that time, the agencies said, hackers could amplify “disinformation that includes reports of voter suppression, cyberattacks targeting election infrastructure, voter or ballot fraud and other problems intended to convince the public of the elections’ illegitimacy.”

[From The NY Times]

I received my requested mail-in ballot this week, but I think I’m going to pass on it and just make a plan to vote in person. I hope everyone starts making their plans right now – so many states do early voting now, and so many states are doing widespread mail-in ballots. Start to make your plans now.

I’d also like to point out that the Times sort of abdicates their own responsibility in amplifying some of the Russian interference sh-t in 2016. Yes, Russian troll farms spread crazy conspiracies, but the biggest thing Russia did was hack the DNC and then release those caches of emails to Wikileaks on Trump’s time table. The emails were widely disseminated by the mainstream media too. I 100% believe that we’re not even seeing Russia’s big play in the 2020 election. I think Putin has an October Surprise.

Also: Trump made some comments yesterday.

President Donald Trump Departs White House for Pennsylvania Rally

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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33 Responses to “Russian intelligence is amplifying Donald Trump’s lies about absentee ballots”

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  1. Perry says:

    USA was the power house of the world. How can a country like Russia, outsmart and out play the states? No one can figure out how to stop Russia? If thats the case, the usa was never a world leader.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      Because they bought and paid for the Republican party and Trump.

      Of course Dump and GOP will challenge the election results – they are now banking on the supreme court handing them the election, regardless of how much help they get from Russia. They are itching to burn the constitution.

      • Merricat says:

        We live in dangerous times. This regime is indecent, greedy, vicious, short-sighted, and not very bright. That is in part why (large sums of) inherited money is stupid and wrong.

      • Betsy says:

        This. Russia could never have done it if the GOP weren’t all traitors.

  2. Seraphina says:

    The devil works hard, but Putin works harder is just GOLD. Thank you.

    God help us in this upcoming election.

  3. atorontogal says:

    I’ve never been more frightened in my life about the outcome of an American election. Sitting next door and watching what has become of the US, gives me anxiety like I’ve never had before. The Good Ole Party and trump have decimated any semblance of respect the world had for the US – now we all watch in horror to what is happening there.

    • Chelle says:

      Imagine the anxiety we sane Americans are feeling too. I’ve never had a pit in my stomach for so long and it gets worse every day. I’m ashamed at the mockery our government has become and afraid of what will happen if we get Drumpf another four years. The US as it has been will cease to exist and the constitution will be completely destroyed, full stop.

  4. Diana says:

    This is the most depressing post about this election I’ve read so far. I am also going to vote in person!

    • Also Ali says:

      Trump is claiming paper ballots are unsafe when we KNOW the electronic voting systems can be hacked.

      I cannot believe how easily he’s gotten people to abandon mail in voting.

      I think he’s going to win the election.

      • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

        Let’s never forget the trademarks for voting machines that were given to Nazi-Daughter-Wife, all hackable (you could bet the house on that one!).

        Interesting that even all the way back then, she ALSO applied for (and got!) trademarks for coffins and body bags.

        Kaiser, your statement: “….it heads to the Supreme Court for Biden v. Trump, where Justice Barbie McHatesAbortion casts the deciding vote to legitimize Trump’s stolen election. Now, do I think that’s what will happen? Eh. But 2020 is the worst, so who knows.” I am SO afraid…this year just keeps getting worse and worse. It’s at the point where I’m afraid to look at my phone every morning to see what new bombshell will be flung out.

      • kelsey says:

        The only way he wins is by cheating – either voter suppression or hacking. Which is why he is so desperate for the SC seat to be filled.

        I have a sick feeling this election will be decided by the SC ala 2000 (which gave Bush the Presidency).

  5. Agirlandherdog says:

    Yesterday, I got a flyer from the GOP with trump’s face all over it, instructing me how to request my absentee ballot. Which is pretty ironic given trump’s frothing at the mouth for months over vote by mail…

    • Bella DuPont says:

      Re the flyer, look on the bright side, your dog now has the perfect surface to do a big, stinky doo-doo.

    • Truthiness says:

      That sounds like they have a plan for your ballot…and it may never be counted, with everything Louis DeJoy is doing on the inside.

  6. grabbyhands says:

    That scenario is exactly how they’re planning on it rolling out, which is why no one has the luxury of sitting on their ass this time, droning on about protest votes or not voting because of making false equivalencies about the candidates. I mean, no one had it in 2016 either, but now all those people can make up for helping to usher in our current nightmare.

    If the vote isn’t decisively in Biden’s favor, we’re done. Even if it is, 45 isn’t going to concede on election night. He’ll drag it out right to the bitter end and he will burn everything in his path on the way there.

    • kelsey says:

      That’s why he’s desperate to fill the SC seat. He is going to contest this election even if he loses by 10 million votes. He’s done nothing but claim that the election is “rigged”, mail-in voting is “rigged”, etc. He is going to do everything possible to get any mailed ballots tossed, especially if most of the mail-ins are for Biden.

      There is no way this will be over with by election night. I see a civil war breaking out with Trump, the GOP, and their cult followers refusing to concede and take this to the SC ala the 2000 election.

      He knows he is going to prison if he isn’t President anymore which is why he is so desperate to stay in power.

  7. Nonartistic Diane says:

    I’m on the permanent early voting list in my state. Best believe I will be returning it early, the day after I get it, and tracking it.

    • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

      Grateful that CA is sending ALL registered voters a mail in ballot, beginning Oct. 5. You can *still* go vote in person, but you have the option. We’ll be filling ours in on the 5th, and on the 6th my sister will be dropping them off (along with hers) at a registered voting/polling place. And yes, we have the ability to track them, too…and are encouraged to do so!

      • KellyRyan says:

        We’re either dropping ballots off at our polling place or we have several volunteers who will drive them to Election Headquarters, 120 miles round trip.

    • Bernie says:

      I just mailed in my absentee ballot today!! For Pennsylvania, too! Gotta swing that state.

  8. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Wanna be really depressed? Watch some of the most recently posted rallies and read comments. I’d say it’d piss you you off, but if you’re like me, you’re beyond that rudimental emotion. These rallies are growing in size. The things they’re saying are alarming. I honestly can’t believe what I’m seeing. I can’t make sense of it. I don’t understand how anyone could think this way. And I don’t understand how anyone could know where America has been, the things this country has gone through, the fights for liberties and equalities (do any of those females have jobs?)….why are there Americans wanting hate? Discord? Insults? Superiority? It’s unfathomable families are being raised who cling to cultural damnation and fight against unlike freedoms.

  9. Marietta58 says:

    On a positive note, Bloomberg paid $17 million so Floridian felons could register to vote. 31,000 debts paid by Bloomberg. Now 31,000 people who couldn’t register before now can. Here’s hoping that will help Biden. Because it was the republicans that took it away from them in the first place, courtesy of Ron De Santo… douche.

    • kelsey says:

      I’m glad this happened and these people can now vote like they should have been able to do previously. Floridians overwhelmingly voted in favor of waiving the fees of former felons but it was overturned by the courts.

      And one of the judges on the 11th circuit appeals court who ruled to overturned that vote is on Trump’s short list for the Supreme Court Seat – Barbara Lagoa. So it seems she would have no problem overturning the will of the people if Trump takes this election to the Supreme Court if he loses it.

  10. Bella DuPont says:

    Hmmm…’s clear a lot of people have issues with the Dem leadership being called weak. (A great article was also posted on this site a few days ago, going into the details.)

    Leaving that to the side for the moment, I still think it’s crucial to fight, and fight hard, even when there is little hope of a win. At the moment, the most severe threats I’ve seen so far from Dem leadership is Pelosi saying that the voters will see the hypocrisy of the Repubs and punish them electorally for it. Amy Klobuchar insisted that it was Justice Ginsburg’s last wish that the seat not be filled by this president. Did either of them actually believe this type of (decent) defence would persuade even the softest republicans? Clearly not.

    At the same time, the impeachment option was ruled out, as well as packing the courts. So effectively, no fight.

    Repeating this behaviour of trying to maintain civility and decency in the face of pure sociopathy is what got the Dems to this place. When a psychopath knows you are constrained by your own ethics, empathy and sense of decency, it allows them really unleash to the limits of their imagination, since they know there will be nothing significant coming back in response. They deal with other psychos with far more respect.

    Specific example, the 2018 elections and the confirmation of Kavanaugh. It seemed clear even from the start that he would be confirmed, regardless of the pushback from the dem party. Thankfully, they didn’t hold back put up a full, all encompassing fight. Even though they lost, they forced the republicans and especially Trump into more and more deranged, sexist positions. It put the republican routine sexism and Trumps depravity on full display and brought the blue wave of votes in the house.

    If you’re going to take damage, force them to take some major damage as well. And no, accusations of hypocrisy don’t mean fuck all in Washington. It is already baked into the equation that Politicians are known hypocrites. And we also need to stop worrying that fighting will rile up their base. News flash, their base is permanently riled up. Every time they see a black or brown face walking down the street, or when they hear a foreign language, they can’t wait to go to the voting booth.

    I don’t believe taking needless loss after needless loss is what inspires the democratic base to vote. Instead, lets try to rile up our own base by fighting for the cause. Win or lose, they really start to get a sense of why it’s so important to vote.

    • Also Ali says:

      “When a psychopath knows you are constrained by your own ethics, empathy and sense of decency, it allows them really unleash to the limits of their imagination, since they know there will be nothing “

      This 100 percent. You cannot shame the shameless.

  11. pottymouth pup says:


    “I received my requested mail-in ballot this week, but I think I’m going to pass on it and just make a plan to vote in person.”

    check with your state about the process for voting in person if you’ve already been sent & received your mail in ballot. In some states, you may be able to bring all the voting materials you received when you received your ballot to give to them so you can vote in person but its possible that you would be stuck with only getting a provisional ballot (especially if you don’t bring all the materials you got when you received your ballot in the mail)

    • Dara says:

      I was about to say the same thing. Please check the rules ahead of time!! Not sure how it works in every state, but back when WA state did in-person voting everyone that had requested an absentee ballot had an asterisk next to their name on the voting roll at the polling station. If they showed up to vote in person, they were given a provisional ballot instead. Those provisional ballots are set aside and only counted if a) the election is close enough the provisionals could swing the election and b) it is determined the person did not also mail in their ballot.

  12. Also Ali says:

    The is an article in the Atlantic about if (but I think when) trump doesn’t concede.

    “The 2020 presidential election will be the first in 40 years to take place without a federal judge requiring the Republican National Committee to seek approval in advance for any “ballot security” operations at the polls. In 2018, a federal judge allowed the consent decree to expire, ruling that the plaintiffs had no proof of recent violations by Republicans.

    This year, with a judge no longer watching, the Republicans are recruiting 50,000 volunteers in 15 contested states to monitor polling places and challenge voters they deem suspicious-looking. Trump called in to Fox News on August 20 to tell Sean Hannity, “We’re going to have sheriffs and we’re going to have law enforcement and we’re going to have, hopefully, U.S. attorneys” to keep close watch on the polls. For the first time in decades, according to Clark, Republicans are free to combat voter fraud in “places that are run by Democrats.”

    And we wonder why he’s scaring off mail in voting?

    He is not going to concede. Bet on it.

  13. Rise and Shine says:

    Always knew that Trump Kushners had ties with Russia for their shady business purposes but now it is abundantly clear that those ties have been, and are, so much more profoundly deep, nefarious, serious, terrifying and affecting to our country, and our world than ever should be. This has to stop. And yes, everyone. please vote. However you do it, just start checking on how you are going to do it right now, and DO IT. PLEASE. Urge others to do the same as soon as possible. I know that not everyone is thrilled with every little thing about Biden, etc. but that is our choice now and we must choose Biden/Harris and vote blue all the way through. The alternative is far worse. Now is the time. I truly don’t believe we would survive another four years under Trump Kushners, and even if we do they will be in forever, and that would be the end of the USA as we know it. Thank you, Kaiser, as always.

  14. The Recluse says:

    It’s worse than that. According to the Atlantic, Trump is plotting to overturn the popular vote and steal the election via Electors in swing state battleground states run by republicans.
    Brace yourselves.
    We may have to hit the streets.

  15. February-Pisces says:

    It’s centrist white people who’ll be the deciding factor in this election. I’m hoping those people know better. The excuses last time such as ‘he’s a businessman’ have gone out of the window now, anyone who supports trump is in favour of racism, hatred, bigotry, violence and corruption. It’s worrying how many people you think are cool, but secretly support his views. Unfortunately some people just wanna watch the whole world burn.