Details emerge on some of the grift behind Trump’s months-long preelection voter fraud claims

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Aguirre started a GoFundMe campaign in September 2020, launched the day after he signed an affidavit in a lawsuit brought by Texas Republican activist Steven Hotze declaring he had knowledge of a vast Houston Democrats voter fraud scheme. “We are private investigators in the State of Texas who have uncovered an illegal ballot harvesting operation in Harris County,” Aguirre said on his new fundraising site. “Our team is spearheaded by Mark A. Aguirre retired Captain of the Houston Police Department Lic.#C14256. We have collected evidence from 2018 displaying the massive absentee mail in voting fraud. We are currently in the process of collecting more evidence and information that will directly impact the upcoming 2020 election.”

The “we” included Aguirre and Hotze, who had formed the LCGC in August 2020, supposedly to provide spiritual support to Trump. The group launched its web presence by calling for Trump to declare a period of three days “for national repentance, fasting, and prayer.” Hotze is a long-standing anti-LGBT activist in Texas Republican politics who went full-on conspiracy theory in the months before the election. “The Socialist Democrats know that Harris County, where Houston is located, is ground zero for the upcoming general election in Texas and nationwide,” he wrote in a Facebook post that was shared by the LCGC. His LCGC raised about $70,000 in the fall of 2020.

Some of that money seems to have been poured into creating a post-election website called Every Legal Vote, which manufactured “evidence” of Trump’s supposed win. Daily Beast uncovered its now-deleted “about us” page, where it claimed “Our Founding Sponsors: The Economic WarRoom, Allied Security Operations Group, Liberty Center for God and Country are building a coalition concerned with protecting our sacred elections from tampering and fraud.”

The Allied Security Operations Group (ASOG) is financially tied to LCGC as proved by a fundraiser it ran on an election denial website this year. “ASOG urgently needs your help to continue their vitally important research,” the group pleaded, but asked donors to write the checks they were sending in to LCGC, saying ASOG “will get them to LCGC and insure your donation receipt.” You might remember ASOG for its founder, Russell Ramsland Jr., who filed an affidavit in a Lin Wood lawsuit claiming fraud in Michigan using data from towns in Minnesota.

That mistake kept ASOG from being chosen to conduct the election “audit” for Maricopa County, Arizona. However, The Daily Beast reports, “Texts from officials involved in the Maricopa County audit reveal that ASOG was also working with Phil Waldron, a retired Army colonel credited with distributing a now-infamous PowerPoint presentation on how lawmakers could invalidate the 2020 election and install Trump as president.”

LCGC is a registered nonprofit, giving it all the dark cover it needs to exploit—and generate—election denial through Every Legal Vote and any other grift machine. It’s just all one big, interconnected, conspiracy theory-loving bunch of crooks.

Which is one more reason why it is essential that Senate Democrats restore and protect our elections by ending the filibuster to pass the Freedom to Vote and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement acts. These bills would go a long way toward protecting the integrity of our elections and grift-proofing them.





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