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UNCOMFORTABLE: My Pillow guy’s insurrectionist friends accused of KKK Act violation

UNCOMFORTABLE: My Pillow guy’s insurrectionist friends accused of KKK Act violation

UNCOMFORTABLE: My Pillow guy's insurrectionist friends accused of KKK Act violation

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My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell has been linked to a Colorado group accused of going door-to-door to find evidence supporting Trump’s baseless claims of mass voter fraud in the 2020 election.

A lawsuit filed by civil and voting rights groups alleges that Shawn Smith – head of the U.S. Election Integrity Plan – is sending armed members to ask those in neighborhoods with large populations of color how they voted.

The group is not only questioning residents but taking pictures of their homes.

If true, these actions are a clear violation of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871.

The complaint says:

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“Defendants’ objectives are clear. By planning to, threatening to, and actually deploying armed agents to knock on doors throughout the state of Colorado, USEIP is engaged in voter intimidation. USEIP’s public-facing actions are a clear signal to Colorado voters – especially voters of color – that to vote in an upcoming election means facing interrogation by potentially armed and threatening USEIP agents at their doorstep thereafter.”

The suit is backed by the Colorado Chapter of the NAACP, the League of Women Voters, and Mi Familia Vota – a civic engagement group committed to uniting Latino communities and their allies by promoting voter registration, voting rights, and social and economic justice.

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Courtney Hostetler, Senior counsel for Free Speech for People – the group behind challenging the campaigns of Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) after their alleged acts of sedition against the U.S. government – said in a statement, “No one should have to be afraid to go to the polls or fear that doing so will mean being threatened in their homes.”

“The nefarious actions of the USEIP are a blatant form of voter intimidation used to target and with the intent to silence Colorado voters of color, which is in clear violation of the Voting Rights Act,” Hostetler continued.

The Colorado Springs-based Shawn Smith was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. A video published by Pro-Publica shows the election-denier positioned behind Trump supporters engaged in confrontations with Capitol law enforcement officers.

An ally of Steve Bannon, Smith has appeared on episodes of the former Trump strategist’s War Room podcast and on Mike Lindell’s sham Cyber Symposium alongside former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters and Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-CO) former campaign manager, Sherrona Bishop.

It was on Bannon’s War Room that Smith announced the founding of another election integrity group, Cause of America, that Lindell also financially supports, telling Bannon “Mike Lindell is kind of the angel investor.”

Peters was recently indicted on multiple felony counts of election tampering – including criminal impersonation, attempting to influence a public servant, and identity theft.

The County & Local Organizing Playbook used by USEIP instructs its members on how to recruit other members, interact with those in the communities they’re “auditing,” and compile a database with their information. Printing “badges” and making false claims of being with the county are a part of the playbook.

According to the complaint:

“Sometimes armed and donning badges to present an appearance of government officially, USEIP agents interrogate voters about their addresses, whether they participated in the 2020 election, and – if so – how they cast their vote. It is reported that multiple agents have claimed to be from ‘the county,’ and have, without any evidence, falsely accused the residents of casting fraudulent ballots.”

Working with the Colorado Republican Party on “election integrity,” is USEIP leader – and known member of the anti-government Three Percenter militia – Cory Anderson. Anderson’s wife Jacqueline is the first vice-chair of the Mesa County Republican Party.

In an April presentation featuring part-time math teacher — and 2020 election conspiracy theorist — Dr. Douglas Frank, Anderson said that he’s “leading a team of over 20 volunteers who are going door-to-door in Mesa County, looking for evidence of election fraud by asking voters if they indeed cast a vote last November,” The Colorado Times Recorder reports.

Frank has made baseless claims of discovering an algorithm that he asserts hacked into Colorado’s voting machines and that more people voted than were registered, telling The Times Recorder, “I’m saying that people printed ballots and mailed them in on behalf of people that were unlikely to have returned to ballot.”

The event was organized by Sherrona Bishop.

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold warned voters of the intimidation efforts of USEIP agents and urged residents to report such activity to the Justice Department or local law enforcement.

There have even been copycats in states like Utah and Arizona.

When the infamous Cyber Ninjas tried to send people door-to-door in Maricopa County, the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division sent a letter to the President of the Arizona Senate, Karen Fann, raising concerns about the Cyber Ninja’s efforts to “identify voter registrations” by using phone calls and physical canvassing.

“The Department of Justice enforces a number of federal statutes that prohibit intimidation of persons for voting or attempting to vote,” the letter read.

It should be noted that shortly after Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers’ televised Jan. 6 hearing testimony, Sen. Fann, along with Arizona State Senator Kelly Townsend, was subpoenaed by the Justice Department for records related to claims of election fraud and attempts to overturn the state’s results.

Fann was also present at a December 2020 meeting with Rudy Giuliani and Jenna Ellis.

It appears that Trump-supporting Republicans like My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell have resorted to the ways of the Klan and Jim Crow to suppress the vote, taking actions the DOJ says “can have a significant intimidating effect on qualified voters that can deter them from seeking to vote in the future.”

That appears to be the GOP’s nefarious plan, and it must be stopped.

Original reporting by Igor Derysh at Salon.

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