Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, recently donated $250 million to the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), a progressive election organization that has already funded Democrat stronghold districts with millions in preparation for November’s elections.
In the announcement on their website, the CTCL stated that they will “regrant” the donation “to local election jurisdictions across the country to help ensure that they have the staffing, training, and equipment necessary” for a safe election process this November in light of COVID-19 concerns.
While CTCL’s intentions appear pure at first glance (they state at the end of their announcement that any local election office is invited to apply for a grant), a deeper look into their history and associations indicates that they have a very partisan agenda.
The CTCL recently donated $16.3 million to six cities, all of which voted heavily for the Democrat ticket in the last presidential election. Philadelphia is receiving $10 million of those grants, with the remaining $6.3 million being distributed among Wisconsin’s five largest cities: Milwaukee, Madison, Green Bay, Kenosha, and Racine. Combined, these cities cast over 82% of their 1 million votes for Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Much of these donations are being specifically allocated toward
Influence Watch calls the CTCL an “election reform advocacy group” whose political ideology is “left-of-center.” Their founders have previously worked at New Organizing Institute, which was dedicated to training progressive groups and Democratic campaigns, and whose executive director led the data departments for both Obama presidential campaigns.
CTCL’s partners and funders include progressive groups such as the Skoll Foundation, the Democracy Fund, the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation, and Rock the Vote (which, might I remind our readers, released the progressive “Turn Out For What” video featuring Lil John and Lena Dunham for the 2014 midterm elections).
In response to CTCL’s efforts in Democrat stronghold districts in Wisconsin, Wisconsin Voters Alliance has filed an election complaint with the Wisconsin Election Commission.
From the press release, published to Got Freedom’s website:
“These grants are intentionally limited to these heavily Democratic areas for the purpose of boosting voter turnout there in a clear effort to sway the election statewide.”
The complaint argues that “cities have accepted the CTCL moneys without coordination with the state legislature to ensure statewide uniformity in inducing people to vote.” Additionally, the CTCL donations are “targeted to urban electors to the exclusion of surburban electors and rural electors.”
The complaint also raises concerns about Zuckerberg’s donation, arguing that if Zuckerberg’s $250 million is used in the same way as the $6.3 million the CTCL recently donated to Wisconsin cities, “these funds will dwarf city election funds, creating a dramatic disparity in voting opportunity and, as indicated by previous grants, the funds will allow city governments to create a partisan advantage”.
The complaint further argues that these efforts raise “alarms about the integrity of the November election and demonstrates a present danger in allowing private groups to influence elections”, pointing out that the donations were not made to election offices, but to city governments directly.
Got Freedom’s website published both the press release and the complaint to raise awareness of efforts to undermine election integrity this November.
Phill Kline, Director of the Amistad Project of the Thomas More Society, representing the Wisconsin Voters Alliance, said that these efforts to sway elections through the voting process are not new to American history:
“We’ve seen government playing favorites in elections before. Through much of last century, southern states made it difficult for blacks to vote and easy for white citizens to vote, promoting racism in the manner they orchestrated their elections. Government targeting a demographic to increase turnout is the opposite side of the same coin as targeting a demographic to suppress the vote.”
The complainants are requesting an expedited proceeding due to the emergency threat to the integrity of the general election this November.