Stein calls on Senate Committee to retract election interference report by cybersecurity firm caught interfering in US election

For Immediate Release Dec. 24, 2018 10AM
Jill Stein for President 2016 campaign

Responding to a media frenzy around allegations that Russians supported her campaign with a small number of documented social media posts, former Green Party Presidential nominee Jill Stein pointed out that the report from the New Knowledge cybersecurity firm was effectively invalidated by revelations of the firm’s own election meddling. The New York Times reported that New Knowledge “orchestrated an elaborate false flag operation” creating an impression of Russian interference in the 2017 US Senate election in Alabama. Stein added, “It’s all the more damning that the firm’s election meddling was sponsored by partisan Democratic funders.” Facebook has just suspended the account of the CEO of New Knowledge for his involvement in the secret scheme.

Stein stated, “A report on election interference, issued by a partisan firm directly implicated in election interference, is simply not credible and should be rejected out of hand. In addition, the report is misleading, biased through selective use of facts, and misrepresents the nature of internet communications. The use of this tainted report by uncritical corporate media outlets to smear Green political opposition and peace advocacy speaks volumes about the dangerous new McCarthyism that is threatening our democracy and pushing us towards greater militarism that is already bankrupting us at home and wrecking havoc abroad.”  

“The firm New Knowledge played a leading part in a scheme that, according to the NY Times, ‘orchestrated an elaborate false flag operation that planted the idea that the [Roy] Moore campaign was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet.’ The firm’s plan also involved ‘a scheme to link the Moore campaign to thousands of Russian accounts that suddenly began following the Republican candidate on Twitter’.”

“The involvement of New Knowledge in a false flag operation to create the appearance of widespread Russian election interference via social media casts serious doubt on commentary the firm makes about Russian interference. In fact, New Knowledge should be investigated to determine the actual extent of its election interference and whether it has committed criminal fraud in doing so. In the meantime, the findings of the report are invalidated by the involvement of the firm in unethical and partisan social media deception. Failure to reject the report threatens to taint the legitimacy of the committee’s work.”

“The frequently repeated argument that social media postings by the Russian Internet Research Agency gave substantial benefit to our campaign is indefensible. Only a handful of such posts have actually been produced, though the report describes them in vague, expansive terms. The tiny number of identified posts virtually disappear in the actual social media scale of trillions of posts over the period of the 2016 election.”

“Exit polls also clearly demonstrated that a large majority of Green voters would not have voted if we weren’t on the ballot, and that Green votes were not ‘taken’ from Clinton, as the smear narrative implies. Those who claim that Hillary Clinton was entitled to every Green vote are not just arrogantly claiming voters they never had; they are attacking our basic right as Americans to vote for what we want in free and competitive elections.”

“Our 2016 campaign continues to support the investigation of real interference in the election – whether by foreign governments, political operatives, voter suppression, quid pro quo deals or other forms of corruption. We continue to urge immediate safeguards for our elections – like ensuring the right to vote, protecting privacy on the internet, and transitioning to paper ballots and post-election audits – as mandated by the settlement of our Pennsylvania recount lawsuit last month.”

“At the same time, we caution in the strongest possible terms against use of the Russia investigations for political repression and warmongering – as is evident in the ongoing smear against our campaign, Green voters, and the Green Party.”


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