Who are the billionaire bandits responsible for turning democracy in the United States into a joke? In a new documentary, dogged sleuth Greg Palast investigates the GOP's vote-purging and other dirty tricks that helped put Donald Trump in the White House. Click here to order The Best Democracy Money Can Buy on DVD by making a donation to Truthout today!
The following excerpt, written before the 2016 election, is taken from The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires and Bandits, the book upon which the documentary of the same name is based. Be sure to check out Greg Palast's subsequent reporting on the 2016 election for Truthout.
The Great White Hope Machine
Fact: there aren't enough white guys to elect Donald Trump.
Unless Trump's crew quietly builds a secret blacklist of millions of voters, especially voters of color, and systematically and quietly wipes out their voter registrations.
In fact, in 2016, the voter-erasing system has been built, and GOP operatives have already begun to put it into action. Its name: Interstate Crosscheck. Crosscheck, not the voters, may well choose our next President and determine who controls Congress.
The number of voters on the Crosscheck list? 7,264,422.
It's a list I'm not supposed to have -- and you're not supposed to see. You're not supposed to know the names of the millions of voters about to have their voting rights assassinated.
But I've got the list -- or at least three million of the names of those who are about to get the royal screwing. I've got their names and I've got their colors.
How I got them -- well that's my job. I'm an investigative reporter. Stay with me, and you'll get the full story.
But this is what you need to know: Crosscheck is the GOP's Great White Hope Machine, the approaching Death Star of voter suppression.
The Billionaire Behind Trump
Vote suppression doesn't come cheap.
Donald Trump may play a billionaire on television, but his campaign requires real boodle from real billionaires. So, in June 2016, Mr. Trump turned to a real billionaire to host a gathering of a gaggle of other billionaire vulgarians.
Trump's sugar daddy, the host of the billionaire's private bash, is the only man on the planet to pocket a salary of $5 billion in a single year. That's five billion. He's JP, the Foreclosure King. If you haven't heard of JP, Trump's billionaire backer, well, you're not supposed to.
Stay with me: JP will get his own chapter.
Trump: People "Voting Many, Many Times."
On January 5, 2016, Trump told a screeching crowd in New Hampshire,
"This voting system is out of control. There are people, in my opinion, voting many, many times."
Voting many, many times, Donald? You vote twice, you go to prison for five years. It's a federal crime, it's a felony.
But the accusation that there are sleeper cells of multiple voters could become crucial to saving the GOP from annihilation in November.
Here's why. When Ronald Reagan won in 1980, 88 percent of voters were white, and men cast most of the votes. Now, the non-white vote has more than doubled and the relative proportion of voters with penises has, well, shriveled.
In the face of this Great Shriveling, there is no way for the Republicans to keep control of the House nor the Senate, let alone the presidency.
Back in 2014, when Al Jazeera television asked me to investigate election trickery, I hadn't a clue how the GOP could bleach the voter rolls whiter than white.
Then, one night, while I was sitting in my shitty little investigations office on Second Avenue in New York, pretending to work, half listening to the pitter-patter of tiny minds on the Fox New channel, their commentator Dick Morris said something that grabbed my attention.
Now, I usually don't pay attention to a frothing freak like Dick Morris, but he was, after all, senior advisor to the president of the United States (until he got caught calling the West Wing while a hooker sucked on his toes -- no kidding). And crucially, Morris was one of the first politicos to advise his childhood friend, Donald Trump, on his run for president.
It was April 7, 2014. Morris, in his high-pitched, excited lisp, told Fox TV's Sean Hannity that Republican officials had uncovered solid evidence of massive voter fraud:
"We've talked about it ad nauseum, this proves it!! 35,500 people voted in North Carolina and voted in some other state!!"
Nationwide, Dick warned,
"You're talking about probably over a million people who voted twice in this election."
Truthout Progressive Pick
The irrepressible Greg Palast investigates and exposes the vote-suppression methods employed by the GOP and its cronies.
A million people voting two times? Really, Dick? An astonishing crime wave of one million Americans were willing to risk five years in the slammer just to vote a second time? But Morris said the evidence was solid as a rock. The massive double voting scheme, said Morris, was uncovered by a brilliant new anti-fraud tool: Interstate Crosscheck.
And, as Trump headed into the first presidential primary, he was channeling Morris, "There are people, in my opinion, voting many, many times."
Which people? Morris named the perps on his "Lunch ALERT!" broadcast. Democrats voting twice, said Morris, explained Obama's 2012 reelection. "Voter fraud is the indispensable element in Obama's Grand Plan" to keep Democrats in power forever. Not to worry, Interstate Crosscheck is hunting down these double-voting fiends.
This excerpt is the copyright (2016) of the Palast Investigative Fund. Not to be reposted without the permission of the publisher, Seven Stories Press.