It didn’t take long after the 2020 election for legacy media to conjure up a new smear to use against conservatives. For two years, leftists have employed the malicious term “election denier” to silence any American with legitimate concerns about the integrity of U.S. elections.
Alarmed at the grossly mismanaged election in Maricopa County, Arizona, last fall? According to the media, you’re an “election denier.” Worried about the real voter suppression that took place in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, and Harris County, Texas? You guessed it, “election denier.”
But in the lead-up to and following the 2022 midterms, media began incorporating this smear into their next phony narrative, which is that these so-called Republican “election deniers” are constantly threatening and harassing election workers throughout the country. Prior to the Nov. 8 election, for example, left-wing outlets ran hit piece after hit piece warning that Republicans were secretly plotting to disrupt local precincts on Election Day.
And while their doomsday predictions (unsurprisingly) never came true, that hasn’t stopped Democrats from attempting to convince the public there’s a widespread conspiracy of Trump supporters threatening local election officials. Within the past several weeks, NBC News and The New York Times have run exposés highlighting election officials in Virginia and Texas, respectively, who recently resigned amid confrontations with fellow Republican officials.
When it comes to the Times’ reporting, however, the article’s headline distorts the reasoning behind the Texas official’s resignation. While the headline reads, “After Threats and Clashes With Republicans, Another Texas Election Official Quits,” the article tacitly admits that Heider Garcia, the elections director for Tarrant County, resigned due to the county’s “creation of an election integrity task force” — not because of the alleged threats against him.
Other outlets to publish similar articles in recent weeks include The Hill and USA Today.
The Facts Tell a Different Story
While there are certainly cases of threats being made against election workers, the relentless narrative pushed by the corporate press that it’s a widespread problem is not true. But you don’t have to take The Federalist’s word for it. President Joe Biden’s own Department of Justice (DOJ) has all but admitted so.
Back in July 2021, the DOJ launched a task force designed to address this alleged “rise in threats against election workers, administrators, officials, and others associated with the electoral process.” According to an agency press release, the task force would “receive and assess allegations and reports of threats against election workers” and work with U.S. attorneys’ offices and the FBI “to investigate and prosecute these offenses where appropriate.” As part of the initiative, the DOJ also launched an election worker hotline, where individuals can report “suspected threats or acts of violence against election workers” to the agency for review and potential investigation.
Predictably, the DOJ did not include any data to justify its claim that there was a “rise in threats against election workers.”
On Aug. 3, the Democrat-controlled Senate held a hearing, titled “Protecting Our Democracy’s Frontline Workers,” in which Judiciary Committee members heard testimony from various federal, state, and local election officials about their experiences working in recent elections. Testifying in the hearing’s first panel was Kenneth A. Polite Jr., the assistant attorney general for the criminal division of the Department of Justice.
In his opening statement, Polite Jr. claimed the DOJ’s Election Threats Task Force had reviewed and assessed roughly 1,000 allegedly “threatening and harassing” communications directed toward election officials, including one incident of physical violence against an election worker. Two days prior, however, the DOJ issued a press release revealing that only about 11 percent of those 1,000 contacts “met the threshold for a federal criminal investigation” and that the “remaining reported contacts did not provide a predication” for such an inquiry.
“In investigations where the source of a reported contact was identified, in 50% of the matters the source contacted the victim on multiple occasions,” the press release reads. “These investigations accordingly encompassed multiple contacts. The number of individual investigations is less than 5% of the total number of reported contacts.”
The DOJ also claimed the task force had charged five individuals at the time, a number Polite Jr. confirmed during his Aug. 3 Senate testimony.
So, to recap: In a country of roughly 331 million people, the DOJ — in the span of a year — received roughly 1,000 calls alleging threats toward election workers, in which only about 11 percent of cases warranted a federal investigation. On top of that, only five individuals had been charged with any type of crime as of the DOJ’s August 2022 press release.
So why are legacy media continuing to push the lie that election workers everywhere are under constant attack, despite publicly available data showing otherwise? And why are Democrats in states such as Nevada and New Mexico advancing legislation based upon this lie, even when there are federal statutes prohibiting the harassment of election workers?
For Democrats, the strategy is two-fold. The first reason is to further the narrative perpetuated by Biden that “MAGA Republicans” represent an existential threat to democracy and Democrats are the party of virtue, “voting rights,” and normalcy. The left hopes that by painting their political opponents as extremists, they’ll be able to sway moderates and independents to their side, even as their political allies use the justice system to target former presidents, chemically castrate children, and collude with Big Tech to censor dissenting voices online.
The second reason is to discourage conservatives with legitimate concerns about election integrity from partaking in completely legal forms of electoral oversight. Ahead of the 2022 midterms, for instance, the Republican National Committee recruited more than 70,000 new poll watchers and workers ahead of Election Day to “help deliver the election transparency that voters deserve.” And of course, Democrats went ballistic, parroting the same “threat to democracy” talking point.
Unlike Democrats, Republicans actually welcome transparency in the electoral process. The attempt by legacy media and leftist politicos to spin a false narrative about conservatives threatening election workers on a grand scale is an attempt to avoid accountability at the ballot box and cast their political opponents as enemies of democracy. It’s a strategy steeped in falsehoods and smears, which for Democrats is nothing new.