Texas Groups Push “Election Integrity” Lies, Bigoted Platforms, and Far-right Conspiracies, Undermining Trust in Electoral System

Here GPAHE details organizations pushing the false “election integrity,” which more accurately would be defined as election denialism, agenda in Texas.  GPAHE also details, where applicable, their connections to bigoted and extremist groups, like the white supremacist Proud Boys and anti-LGBTQ organizations, and far-right conspiracy movements. These groups often work together with officials, supporters, and party factions. The Texas GOP has its own “election integrity” efforts, as does the state government, which are not detailed here. Matt Rinaldi, Republican Party of Texas Chairman said in June, “Texas Republicans rightly have no faith in the 2020 election results and we don’t care how many times the elites tell us we have to. The Texas Republican Party is raising record funds for election integrity, and we’ve made election integrity a top priority to ensure Texas never goes the way of Pennsylvania, Georgia, or Arizona. We refuse to let Democrats rig the elections in 2022 or 2024.” The party’s efforts include a voter helpline that connects with lawyers for those seeing anything suspicious at the polls, presentations on election integrity, election integrity war rooms, trainings of election workers, and recruitment of poll watchers. All of which could potentially create intimidating voting environments and chaos for vote counting, which might make it easier to bring false allegations of fraud.

Liberty Center for God and Country (LCGC)
Houston
https://libertycgc.com
https://www.facebook.com/libertycgc
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRhXrBaUtm_Y_t2ri_MOGNg

Founded by Dr. Steven Hotze in 2020, the Liberty Center for God and Country (LCGC) is a self-described Christian, patriot organization that has alleged massive vote fraud in elections. It was the culmination of months of work by Hotze, a talk-radio host who made a fortune on “hormone replacement” treatments and questionable natural supplements and who is a power broker in Texas GOP politics, to try and find voter fraud in Harris County. Before taking up voter fraud as his cause, Hotze spent years pushing anti-LGBTQ+ policies, having supported an Austin referendum in the 1980s to make it legal to discriminate against LGBTQ+ applicants in housing. He later led a slate of anti-LGBTQ+ Houston politicians who dubbed themselves the “Straight Slate.” According to a thorough report from The Daily Beast, Hotze is also an ardent promoter of conspiracy theories, pushing QAnon claims about tens of thousands of sealed indictments prepared for a mass arrest of top Democrats. In Facebook posts first reported by Media Matters, his Liberty Center claimed that the COVID-19 pandemic is part of a “global ritual” to “inject experimental nanobots and chemi-kills into our bodies to alter our DNA using Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to turn us into zombie-like, controlled masses and weapons of war.” In a June 2020 call to Governor Greg Abbott, he asked the governor to order that “rioters,” meaning racial justice protesters, be shot. “Kill ‘em,” he said. By 2020, Trump’s repeated claims about voter fraud had captured Hotze’s imagination. In the fall of 2020, Hotze warned his wife to prepare for a left-wing revolution. He then began hiring dozens of private investigators to prove his claims that Houston Democrats were committing voter fraud on a massive scale. The investigators tracked the movements of specific people in the city who Hotze suspected of committing crimes. In a blog post, Hotze wrote that his investigators were working 15-hour days and cost him $200,000 per week. “We’ve uncovered a massive voter election fraud scheme in Harris County,” Hotze said in an October 14, 2020 video that remains on YouTube without a flag for disinformation. “We have 20 investigators on the ground that will be working between now and Election Day.” In one of the more spectacular failures in the voter fraud world, Hotze’s plan fell apart five days later. On October 19 one of his private investigators, former Houston Police Department Captain Mark Aguirre, crashed his SUV into a box truck driven by air-conditioning repairman David Lopez. According to an account Lopez later gave to a local TV station, Aguirre feigned injury after the crash. And, as Lopez approached to help him, Aguirre allegedly pulled a gun, disengaged the safety, and aimed it at Lopez’ head. Aguirre was apparently convinced that Lopez’ truck was the result of a conspiracy to create illicit ballots in a scheme funded by nearly $10 million from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. When he approached Lopez, he allegedly ordered him to the ground at gunpoint as his associates drove away with the box truck. When police arrived, Aguirre laid out the bizarrely complicated tale and pleaded to their political sensibilities. “I just hope you’re a patriot,” Aguirre told the police officer interviewing him, according to a police report. Houston police found Lopez’s truck, which was filled, not with ballots, but with air-conditioning repair equipment. Apparently unperturbed by these events, the next day, Liberty Center for God and Country wired $211,400 to Aguirre’s bank account. Aguirre was ultimately arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and Lopez sued Hotze. After the 2020 presidential elections, he supported the claims that there was widespread voter fraud and electoral manipulation. Hotze, along with Texas Representative Steven Toth, attempted to have 127,000 votes rejected in Harris County for being cast by drive-thru voting. With LCGC, Hotze continues his quixotic quest to find alleged voter fraud in Texas.

Protect Texas Kids (PTK)
Dallas
https://protecttxkids.org
https://www.facebook.com/ProtectTXKids
https://www.instagram.com/protecttxkids/

Founded by Kelly Neidert, Protect Texas Kids (PTK) says it is “here to take a stand in protecting kids from the toxic, indoctrinating agenda of the left by exposing the truth behind the ongoing assault that has been ruthlessly waged against our children’s identities, core development, and traditional values.” From the start the group was connected to extremists, with Proud Boys members standing behind Neidert when she announced the formation of PTK this year. Its mission is “to protect Texas kids from the harmful agenda of the left – from CRT to gender modification procedures on minors. The left has declared war on traditional values and made our children the battleground. We will confront their harmful agenda and protect our children from the lasting damage inflicted by the radical left.” PTK runs a hotline for people to report classroom “propaganda” where they can send audio and video of what PTK finds offensive. Neidert formerly ran University of North Texas’ Young Conservatives of Texas chapter. Neidert has a history of promoting and organizing transphobic and anti-LGBTQ+ events and at one point garnered the support of former Proud Boys lawyer and neo-Nazi Jason Lee Van Dyke. Neidert earned a permanent suspension from Twitter in June for violating its policies by tweeting, “Let’s start rounding up people who participate in Pride events.” Neidert said she was driven by concerns about children, saying that “Pride Month is inherently sexual” and kids “have no business being around it.” She has said the LGBTQ+ community needs “mental help.” As local progressive activists and University of North Texas students have documented, anti-LGBTQ+ events and protests hosted by Neidert and her allies have drawn Proud Boys on multiple occasions. PTK has worked with other far-right extremist groups, including the anti-LGBTQ+ hate group Mass Resist. On June 12, Neidert and local far-right media activist Tayler Hansen — who is best known for filming inside the Capitol on January 6 when Ashli Babbitt was shot, but now films inside drag shows — showed up in Arlington to protest an adults-only drag queen brunch. In videos later shared on Twitter, a line of masked Proud Boys arrived at the protest, shaking hands with Neidert and her group before blocking counter-protesters on the sidewalk and threatening one with “citizen’s arrest” for being “a pedophile.” The event prompted Texas House Republican Representative Bryan Slaton to release a statement that he intends to file legislation in the state to ban minors from drag shows. Though predominantly involved in anti-LGBTQ+ politics, including accusing them of being “groomers,” Neidert has also flirted with election denialism. In November 2020, she tweeted that Trump won the election.

Tarrant County Citizens for Election Integrity
Fort Worth
https://tarrantelectionintegrity.com
https://www.facebook.com/TarrantElectionIntegrity
https://t.me/verifymyvotingfw

Tarrant County Citizens for Election Integrity (TCCEI) is a font of conspiracies about election fraud. Its Facebook page is filled with allegations of “federal takeovers of elections,” false claims that computers are used to overturn elections and alleges that election offices are covering up fraud across the country. Since 2020, the group has engaged in a statewide effort to further Trump’s lies about the 2020 election. They’ve sent voters hundreds of postcards requesting personal information, questioned residents at addresses pulled from voter rolls, and examined thousands of ballots for unspecified irregularities. So far, they’ve offered no evidence of mass fraud. In July 2022, TCCEI began reviewing by hand 300,000 ballots from that county. The group’s members are counting votes in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate, in which Senator John Cornyn won with 73 percent of the vote there. Because the review must be overseen by county election staff, Tarrant County taxpayers will be responsible for the extra resources needed to make sure the ballots are handled appropriately. Other Texas counties have received similar requests to review ballots. TCCEI has recently promoted the film, “Selection Code,” which argues that computer coders are manipulating the counting of votes without real evidence. The group has a video on its site accusing Tarrant County Election Administrator Heider Garcia of involvement with the firm Smartmatic in rigging votes in Venezuela during the Hugo Chavez regime. This Venezuela conspiracy has been spread by former Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell and alleges that these rigged voting machines were used in the U.S. These allegations have been proved false and Smartmatic is suing Fox News for repeating the conspiracy. The videos and the social media posts have led to threats against Garcia. In testimony submitted to a U.S. Senate committee, Garcia included pages of screenshots of hostile social media posts and recounted a night in November 2020, after the election, when he and his wife realized their address had been posted online. TCCEI has also met with several elected representatives and at least one sheriff, attempting to engage them in investigating electoral fraud. The group has videos on YouTube alleging various irregularities in voting and in the use of electronic voting machines. It features a video with Mesa County, Colorado, clerk Tina Peters called “Fixing Our Broken Election System.” Peters was indicted in March 2022 for election tampering and misconduct. Peters is accused of helping an unauthorized person make copies of sensitive voting-machine hard drives. Information from the machines and secure passwords were later shared with election conspiracy theorists online. Shortly after the data was leaked, Peters appeared at an event put on by MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, one of the leading promoters of the conspiracy theory that the 2020 election was rigged. She lost in a primary run this year for Colorado secretary of state.

Texas Eagle Forum
Dallas
https://www.texaseagleforum.com
https://www.facebook.com/TexasEagleForum/
https://twitter.com/texaseagleforum
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQM3IoTrt5_T8SE9opUs05Q?view_as=subscriber

Long listed as an extreme antigovernment group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Texas Eagle Forum (TEF) is a stalwart of far-right politics. It describes itself as grounded in “biblical principles” and advocates a swath of conservative positions, being particularly outspoken against abortion. TEF takes up a range of culture war issues common in right-wing conservative circles. It is against transgender healthcare for young people and what it calls “Biden’s Transgender Agenda,” “sex-ed camps,” and supports banning books that discuss LGBTQ+ issues, and dislikes public education. In recent years, TEF has added the issue of “election integrity” to its concerns. Beth Biesel, who has a history of defending confederate statues, serves as TEF’s election integrity chair. Biesel is notorious for refusing to wear a mask in 2020 while working the polls. Despite requests from county officials and her own party chairman, Biesel, who was serving as an election judge along with some poll workers at a Dallas voting location, refused to wear a mask inside the precinct. Biesel had already been removed as a poll worker for not wearing a mask during the primaries. In the summer of 2020, Biesel unsuccessfully sued Dallas County, trying to overturn its mask mandate. TEF’s work on elections and voting is detailed in a flier on its website titled “Texans for Election Integrity” that lays out a strategic plan called, “Defend the Alamo—a Four Pillar Strategy.” The document argues that “very little 2020 fraud was prosecuted” and that prosecutors are “in denial” about voter fraud, especially when computers are used to tally votes. It claims citizens who challenge the integrity of elections are wrongly called “terrorists” and that the federal government will engage in unlawful activities to manipulate Texas elections. The strategy calls for widespread audits, stronger voter ID laws, banning internet connections to voting machines, and severe criminal penalties, including “expulsion,” for non-residents who interfere with Texas elections. It suggests citizens monitor and document voting irregularities and collect evidence for prosecutions and that those concerned become election observers and poll workers. TEF is actively promoting this agenda with its supporters. For example, on Memorial Day weekend, TEF held an event on “voting integrity” for active-duty military and veterans near Fort Hood. It featured Allen West, who has worked with the militia group Oath Keepers, on many occasions.

Texas Election Network
Harris County
www.texaselectionnetwork.org

The Texas Election Network (TEN) is a shadowy group that allegedly sends out volunteers to minority communities to obtain voter information. The group’s website has almost no information other than a list of five objectives that include maintaining clean voter rolls and fraud-free absentee ballots. Paperwork filed with the Texas secretary of state’s office shows TEN was created in July 2021 by Melissa Conway, who currently serves as the Republican National Committee’s Texas state director for election integrity. She has been an inactive, unpaid member of Texas Election Network since starting her role at the RNC, according to an RNC spokesperson. Harris County Republican Party spokesperson Genevieve Carter said Texas Election Network is not affiliated with the local party but confirmed that Alan Vera — chair of the county GOP’s ballot security committee — is a TEN board member. In July, the Harris County Elections Office warned voters about TEN efforts to obtain private voter information. At least one county commissioner said a group approached residents living in Sunnyside, a majority Black and Latino community, to get their personal information. Sunnyside residents were warned of people impersonating election workers and going door-to-door to obtain private voter information. Two men, according to doorbell camera video footage recorded by a Sunnyside resident, wore badges identifying themselves as members of TEN. “The people canvassing residents are grass-roots volunteers for the nonprofit organization called Texas Election Network and they are wearing badges that clearly state the name of the organization with the nonprofit registration number on the back,” Alan Vera said in a statement, adding. “These volunteers are not employees of any political party. The nonprofit’s mission is to empower citizens to ensure and protect fair and transparent elections.” TEN has found itself in hot water due to the actions of its volunteers. An investigation has been launched looking for possible criminal violations.

Texas Proud Boys
Southeast Texas (Houston)
Central Texas (Dallas/Ft. Worth)
various Telegram accounts

It is unclear who leads the white supremacist and misogynistic Proud Boys in Texas, as the group has been much less hierarchical since many of its members were indicted for seditious conspiracy for their actions on January 6. Regardless, the group has engaged in several protests over the last year and appears to have chapters in the Houston and Dallas areas. The Official Southeast Texas Proud Boys’ Telegram channel, which has 1,193 subscribers, is filled with racist, anti-LGBTQ+ and other bigoted language, as well as the anti-woman posts that the group is known for. In recent months, the group has focused more on targeting the LGBTQ+ community, both online and on the streets, and they have filled their channels with homophobic language and descriptions of all queer people and their allies as “groomers.” But among all the hate, it is clear that the group has also become active in promoting lies about election fraud. In fact, since the 2020 election and the events of January 6, their Telegram channel has promoted the “Big Lie” through a multitude of posts suggesting widespread election fraud throughout the country, including in Texas. The channel celebrated the passage of Texas’ new more restrictive voter ID law, S.B. 1, and has advertised for far-right films that claim widespread election fraud, such as “Deep Rig.” As the 2022 primary season approached, this rhetoric increased along with an increase in anti-LGBTQ+ hate speech. This hate speech was followed by Proud Boys protesting against Pride events in June and working with other anti-LGBTQ+ hate groups, including Kelly Neidert’s Protect Texas Kids (PTK). This year, the Proud Boys protested counter-protesters at the May NRA convention in Houston, where Proud Boys wearing Bucky masks, based on an iconic Texas truck stop character, were spotted among the demonstrators outside the convention center. Also in May, Proud Boys were prominent at a city council meeting in Frisco, in which local leaders issued a proclamation designating June as Pride month. Proud Boys wearing Bucky masks openly mocked the proceedings and derided members of the LGBTQ+ community who were on hand, referring to them as “pedophiles.” Weeks earlier, the same masks were spotted during a violent confrontation between Proud Boys and student protesters at an anti-transgender event at the University of North Texas in Denton. This summer, the masks were again spotted among anti-gay activists in Frisco and outside a drag queen brunch in Arlington. Proud Boys were also on hand for the GOP’s state convention in May. There were a series of heated confrontations in which a group of far-right activists and social media personalities, led by self-described comedian Alex Stein, followed Representative Dan Crenshaw through the hallways of the convention hotel, chantingeyepatch McCain.” This ended in a violent scuffle between Stein and two Crenshaw staffers. Stein also targeted Senator Ted Cruz in similar fashion, with hecklers calling him a “coward” for fleeing to Mexico during Texas’ winter power failure, and a “globalist” for supporting Ukraine over Russia, while a different protester shouted that Crenshaw should be hanged. After the hecklers were ejected from the convention, some were photographed standing amid a group of men wearing the black and gold polo shirts preferred by Proud Boys.

Texas Public Policy Foundation
Austin
https://www.texaspolicy.com
https://twitter.com/TPPF
https://www.facebook.com/TexasPolicy
https://www.youtube.com/user/TexasPPF

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) says its mission is to “promote liberty, opportunity, and free enterprise in Texas and beyond.” TPPF pushes stronger border measures and has co-produced a documentary called “Cartel Country” that blames the Biden administration for a border crisis. TPPF advocates putting parents in charge of their children’s education, generally rails against public education, rejects pandemic health measures, is against transgender healthcare for young people, rejects carbon taxes. In 2021, the organization put out a now deleted tweet with an image labeled, “How to Identify Critical Race Theory in the Classroom.” Among the things identified were terms like “anti-racism,” programs that promote “equity, diversity, and inclusion,” movements like “Black lives matter;” and facts in American history including “colonialism” and “colonizer.” The foundation employs as a fellow Carol Swain, who wrote a fawning book about white nationalists and claims Islam is dangerous.  In 2021, Swain at a TPPF event, spoke of how Critical Race Theory “threatens” the nation. “[CRT] has Marxist roots,” she said. “It’s un-American. It’s using the grievances and sufferings of people to advance an agenda that has very little to do about them…I believe that the ultimate goal is to destroy America.” Since Trump started spouting election lies, TPPF has become involved in the issue, and it lists securing the “integrity of election results” as one of its prime issues. In January 2021, Texas Congressman Michael McCaul and TPPF announced the formation of the Election Protection Project, which they claim is “an effort to bolster ballot integrity in the Lone Star State and nationwide.” The project aims “to ensure proper identification is provided for in-person and mail-voting, strengthening vote-by-mail security, encouraging a better path of communication between state and county officials and ensuring maintenance of voter rolls.” During the effort’s launch, TPPF’s Vice President of National Initiatives, Chuck DeVore, said, “How can we ensure that we minimize the number of people on the lists who are either deceased or who moved out of state? How can we ensure that the people on the list should be on the list — in other words — that they’re citizens and that they’re eligible to vote?” DeVore pointed to an indictment of a Limestone County social worker who was charged with more than 130 felony counts of election fraud. That situation showed vulnerabilities in the election process, DeVore claimed. “It makes you wonder, ‘Well, okay, that’s the one that we caught, how frequently does this occur?’” DeVore said, rejecting repeated findings that the Texas vote was clean. TPPF’s website further outlines their “election integrity” goals. TPPF’s “Election Protection Project seeks to ensure that each and every citizen is afforded their rights and that public policy secures the reliability of our election system.” TPPF says it is “providing resources and material across the state to educate voters about election laws and how they can identify when, where, and how their ballot may be compromised.” The group also provides information about filing complaints with the secretary of state’s office “to determine if fraudulent activity may be occurring.”

True Texas Project
Tarrant County
https://truetexasproject.com
https://www.facebook.com/TrueTexasProject
https://twitter.com/TrueTXProject
https://www.youtube.com/c/TrueTexasProject
https://gab.com/truetexasproject

The True Texas Project (TTP), which is listed as an antigovernment organization by the Southern Poverty Law Center and formerly was known as the Northeast Tarrant Tea Party, is a major advocate for the “Big Lie,” the idea that elections have been stolen. TTP holds other far-right extremist positions. After a white supremacist shot several people at an El Paso Walmart in 2019, TTP leaders posted on social media, “You’re not going to demographically replace a once proud, strong people without getting blow-back.” TTP backed a slew of far-right candidates in Texas’ 2022 primaries, including Mark Middleton, a Dallas-area candidate charged with assaulting police during the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. Others they backed, including former gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines, boast open associations with white supremacist, anti-LGBTQ+, and anti-government movements. They also host far-right extremists. Houston-based anti-LGBTQ+ activist Tracy Shannon, who made waves with her crusade to quash Drag Queen Story Hour events across Texas in 2019, including at the Freed-Montrose Neighborhood Library in Houston, spoke at a February TTP event in Denton. Jacob Colglazier, a staffer for then-Texas gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines and an admitted member of the white nationalist “groyper” movement, headlined the same event. As to “election integrity,” on their website, TTP writes, “In 2020, the Democrats flagrantly stole multiple States that voted for Trump. Despite mountains of evidence of criminal activity, as seen in the movie 2000 Mules, investigations have ranged from insipid to non-existent in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin. So who is guarding election integrity in Texas?” TTP’s answer would be TTP. The group claims Democrats are trying to pull off a “coup” in Texas through Democratic district attorneys, “backed by George Soros, who will turn a blind eye to election fraud in their counties.” TTP then singles out four district attorneys they claim, with Soros’ help, will allow election fraud to occur without penalty. Their view is, “the fox is often guarding the hen house.” TTP regularly holds “Certified True Texan Classes” that are advertised as “Are you a Certified True Texan? Do you know what it means to be one? Join True Texas Project as we host four out of five of our Certified True Texan courses! Plus, we have a bonus training course on how to get involved in working elections.” A recent course in Webster featured “The Super Heroes of Election Integrity with distinguished guest speakers and a panel of local election workers.” TTP’s “Reclaiming America’s Narrative” classes feature Jonathon Dunne, an Irish American “who is passionate about the story of the United States of America and her founding. His presentation to us this time is about ‘A Time to Choose: Great Reset or a Great Awakening,’” referring to conspiracy theories popular on the far right. TTP believes “we are living in the times of authoritarian government controlling every aspect of our life and stripping people of their God-given rights – whether it is under the narrative of coronavirus, the Great Reset, the war in Ukraine, or the ultimate goal – a green new deal.” TTP isn’t welcome everywhere. The Webster Presbyterian Church, where Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin is a “ruling elder,” canceled  events  after a concerned local tipped off church leaders to TTP’s far-right and bigoted views.

True The Vote
Houston
https://www.truethevote.org
https://www.facebook.com/TrueTheVote
https://www.youtube.com/user/TrueTheVote
https://rumble.com/user/TruetheVote

Catherine Engelbrecht founded the Texas-based True the Vote (TTV) in 2008 and the organization has raised millions in donations by claiming it has discovered voter fraud. Though Texas-based and active in the state, TTV is also engaged in “election integrity” activities in other states, most recently holding events in Arizona prior to their primaries. TTV’s work was  featured in the widely debunked film,“2,000 Mules,” produced by conservative activist Dinesh D’Souza. TTV features a glowing piece from the far-right  Epoch Times on its website about their work in “2,000 Mules.” The story says TTV,has, for the past year and a half now, been investigating the illegal ballot harvesting that took place around the entire country during the 2020 election. And after painstakingly tracking 10 trillion cell phone pings, after looking at millions of minutes of surveillance footage, and after actually being able to speak with some of the whistleblowers who acted as ballot mules in 2020, they were able to conclude that around 5 million ballots were trafficked during the 2020 election, and very likely swung the results.” These claims are unsubstantiated, as is another of TTV’s claims, that they solved a young Atlanta girl’s murder. Authorities in Georgia arrested and secured indictments against two suspects in the murder of Secoriea Turner in August 2021. In response to NPR’s inquiries, TTV acknowledged it had contacted law enforcement more than two months after the arrests, meaning it played no role in those arrests or indictments. D’Souza himself has acknowledged that “2,000 Mules” does not show any person on camera going to multiple ballot drop boxes. Rather, the film primarily relies on TTV’s claims about its geo-tracking data, which D’Souza has argued is “more reliable than video footage.” In Georgia, Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger said his office had already examined one instance flagged by TTV, in which a man delivered multiple ballots to a drop box. Raffensberger said they found no wrongdoing: “We investigated, and the five ballots that he turned in were all for himself and his family members.” Englebrecht has a long history of claiming election fraud. Barack Obama’s election as president in 2008 concerned her enough that she got active in local Tea Party efforts, attending rallies and meetings. Along with her then-husband, Bryan Engelbrecht, she created a nonprofit called King Street Patriots, which trained volunteers to poll watch in mostly Black and Latino neighborhoods in Harris County. A judge later ruled in a lawsuit brought by the local Democratic party that King Street Patriots was actually an unregistered political action committee, leading the Engelbrechts to formally create TTV. Over the last two presidential election cycles, TTV has raised millions in donations with claims that it discovered election-altering voter fraud. According to The Texas Tribune, TTV has promised to release its evidence, but never has. The paper also reports that TTV engaged in a series of questionable transactions that sent more than one million dollars to its founder, a longtime board member romantically linked to the founder, and the group’s general counsel. Regardless of these disclosures, TTV has gained key allies across the conservative movement. Trump calls Engelbrecht out by name during rallies and held a private screening for “2,000 Mules” at his Mar-a-Lago resort. He also pointed to TTV’s claims as proof that he won the popular vote in 2016. Another close ally is Texas Attorney General Ken Paxon. He’s been a guest on Engelbrecht’s podcast, talking about voter fraud. He’s also helped her in other ways. Most recently, a state judge sided with Engelbrecht’s argument that it should be Paxton’s office — not a court — that should probe allegations made by a True the Vote donor who says he was swindled out of $2.5 million. But more than a year after the case was dismissed, Paxton’s office has been silent about whether it investigated the donor dispute. And it has refused to disclose financial documents and email communications to Reveal, which has been investigating TTV, and issued contradictory and inaccurate statements about the nonprofit. Engelbrecht is represented by conservative legal heavyweight James Bopp Jr., who helped dismantle abortion rights, crafted many of the arguments in the Citizens United case that demolished campaign finance regulations, and was part of the legal team that prevailed in Bush v. Gore. A review of thousands of pages of documents from state filings, tax returns, and court records, however, paints a picture of an organization that enriches Engelbrecht and her partner Gregg Phillips rather than actually rooting out any fraud. According to financial documents, TTV has given questionable loans to Engelbrecht and has a history of awarding contracts to companies run by Engelbrecht and Phillips. Within days of receiving $2.5 million from a donor to help stop the certification of the 2020 election, TTV distributed much of the money to a company owned by Phillips, Bopp’s law firm, and Engelbrecht herself. TTV had another embarrassing episode in August. According to the Daily Beast, Phillips was holding a gathering in Scottsdale called “The Pit,” where he vowed to finally release information about the “2,000 Mules” geolocation data TTV supposedly says proves vote fraud in front of a crowd of more than 100 conservative conspiracy theorists and influencers. But what was meant to be Phillips’s moment of triumph ended in disaster, as police ushered Phillips from his own afterparty for bringing a gun and warned him not to return. The big reveal also turned out to be a massive flop, with Phillips revealing nothing, rather directing his fans to a partially built website that appears to offer supporters a chance to pay money to see proof of election fraud.

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