Although the New York Times downplayed the influence the scheme had on the election, many others aren’t so sure, and feel that this action should be investigated.
The operatives were funded by liberal billionaire Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, independently of Jones’s campaign. But they created more than a thousand Russian-language accounts that followed Moore’s Twitter account overnight, The New York Times reported Wednesday evening.
“We orchestrated an elaborate ‘false flag’ operation that planted the idea that the Moore campaign was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet,” the operatives recounted in an internal report.
The report states explicitly that it “experimented with many of the tactics now understood to have influenced the 2016 elections.”
The Times wrote, “The project’s operators created a Facebook page on which they posed as conservative Alabamians, using it to try to divide Republicans and even to endorse a write-in candidate to draw votes from Mr. Moore.”
“Some will do whatever it takes to win,” said Dan Bayens, a Kentucky-based Republican consultant. “You’ve got Russia, which showed folks how to do it, you’ve got consultants willing to engage in this type of behavior and political leaders who apparently find it futile to stop it.”
“Joe Trippi, a seasoned Democratic operative who served as a top adviser to the Jones campaign, said he had noticed the Russian bot swarm suddenly following Mr. Moore on Twitter.”
Mr. Trippi said he was disturbed by the stealth operation, “I think the big danger is somebody in this cycle uses the dark arts of bots and social networks and it works,” he said. “Then we’re in real trouble.”
“The money passed through American Engagement Technologies, run by Mikey Dickerson, the founding director of the United States Digital Service, which was created during the Obama administration to try to upgrade the federal government’s use of technology.”
“Sara K. Hudson, a former Justice Department fellow now with Investing in Us, a tech finance company partly funded by Mr. Hoffman, worked on the project, along with Mr. Morgan.”
Mr. Morgan reached out at the time to Renée DiResta, who said she disagreed with the tactics, “I know there were people who believed the Democrats needed to fight fire with fire.”
But added Morgan simply asked her for suggestions, “My understanding was that they were going to investigate to what extent they could grow audiences for Facebook pages using sensational news,” she said.
The report states the Facebook page agreed to “boost” a write-in candidate’s campaign and stayed in regular touch with him, and was “treated as an advisor and the go-to media contact for the write-in candidate.’’
The report did not state whether the project purchased the Russian bot Twitter accounts that suddenly began to follow Mr. Moore, but takes credit for “radicalizing Democrats with a Russian bot scandal.”
So, democrats are apparently bragging about using tactics they’ve descried in the public, behind the scenes. Such behavior is sickening, many people agree, and point to the unscrupulous activity that liberals have no compunction about engaging in, regardless of whether it will ‘have an impact,’ or not.