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January 29, 2020 7:38 AM   Subscribe

Trump Allies are Handing Out Cash to Black Voters A 'Christmas Extravaganza,' in Cleveland, featured a $25,000 in cash giveaways (largely in increments of $300 to $500--a gift of $600 would trigger a W9 tax filing requirement). Another event, scheduled at HBCU Virginia Uniion University on Martin Luther King Day (the same day as the Virginia pro-gun rallies), was cancelled by the university. Organizers say they plan to roll out a tour schedule featuring more events soon.

Urban Revitalization Coalition cofounders Darrell Scott and Kareem Lanier were last seen calling rapper A$AP Rocky an 'ungrateful motherfucker.'
posted by box (31 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'm ok with this redistribution of wealth.

'Cause it ain't gonna change AA voting patterns one bit.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:41 AM on January 29 [33 favorites]


Handing out cash, liquor, food, etc. to would-be voters has a long history in US politics, but typically was A) done to entice people to the polls; B) backed up with organized muscle at the local level to make sure that they voted as they were supposed to.

I'm guessing those anonymous rich white donors think the targets of this are stupid and easily swayed, and this whole thing stinks of clueless, hasty desperation.
posted by ryanshepard at 7:44 AM on January 29 [47 favorites]


Step 3: Profit!!!
posted by Optamystic at 7:51 AM on January 29 [4 favorites]


I'm guessing those anonymous rich white donors think the targets of this are stupid and easily swayed, and this whole thing stinks of clueless, hasty desperation.

If this means that they are desperate and unconvinced they've got the fix in for November, then that's potentially good news. Maybe it's an attempt to explain away voter suppression and vote fixing later. "Yeah, ordinarily we wouldn't have expected the vote to go that way, but it was all about our cash handouts, don't look too closely at the voting machines and voter purges."
posted by jzb at 8:04 AM on January 29 [11 favorites]


How is this shit legal?
posted by valkane at 8:11 AM on January 29 [12 favorites]


Literally trying to buy votes! How AMAZING.
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:13 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Tucker Carlson accused Dems of giving out cigarettes (specifically, Newports, but how would he know) to GOTV in 2000. The right has been accusing the left of similar tactics since at least LBJ. If only they could process irony, or shame.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:14 AM on January 29 [16 favorites]




How is this shit legal?

I'd think it's as legal as when Yang did it. YMMV.
posted by parliboy at 8:16 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Because I'm a paranoid, deeply cynical little shit my mind jumped to the following:

For $25,000 they have a couple thousand names of probable democratic voters in a swing state that can be passed on to Your Favorite Disenfranchisement Initiative for targeted voter eligibility checks, address checks, etc.
posted by Slackermagee at 8:22 AM on January 29 [56 favorites]


I'm guessing those anonymous rich white donors think the targets of this are stupid and easily swayed, and this whole thing stinks of clueless, hasty desperation.

This is the same party that's convinced people only vote Democrat to get "free stuff", so this probably seems like a genius counterstrategy to them.
posted by the legendary esquilax at 8:34 AM on January 29 [15 favorites]


valkane: "How is this shit legal?"

The Federal Election Commission currently lacks a quorum, so they're not going to do anything. Unless this is breaking a state law, it's the wild west.
posted by adamrice at 9:00 AM on January 29 [10 favorites]


as when Yang did it

heck, it’s part of his platform!
posted by mwhybark at 9:05 AM on January 29 [1 favorite]


Not familiar with Yang at all, but the linked page mentions UBI. You guys just trying to stunt on UBI or did Yang try and pay voters to sway them?
posted by GoblinHoney at 9:07 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


The Romney/Obama link is about Obama promising to pass plans to help a demographic if elected, which is normal and fine. Giving cash out to promote a candidate is totally different and NOT fine. This stinks to high heaven and should be aggressively punished.
posted by freecellwizard at 9:15 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]




In a brighter timeline, I'd be LOLing at the idea that votes can be bought for this little. "Yeah, sure, he's a white supremacist whose cabinet is full of people who have openly vowed to destroy you and your family because of the color of your skin, but look! Here's $300 to vote for him anyway!"

In this timeline, I'm guessing the reality is much what Slackermagee said. $300 per person is peanuts compared to what a proper data analytics company would charge for the names of people who are (1) politically active enough to come to this kind of event (2) likely Dems (3) marginalized enough that no one will kick up a fuss when their names are mysteriously purged from the voter rolls.
posted by Mayor West at 9:16 AM on January 29 [9 favorites]


> I'm guessing those anonymous rich white donors think the targets of this are stupid and easily swayed...

13% of African-American men voted for Trump in 2016. Obviously black people can vote against their better interests just as readily as white people can, but handwaving their actions with "LOL stupids" is, seriously, not going to help get those votes back. Nobody who knows you're laughing at them will support your cause.
posted by at by at 9:18 AM on January 29 [6 favorites]


Another handy reminder that Trump is a Tammany Hall politician whose entire family fortune is based on 19th-century style graft.
posted by klangklangston at 9:19 AM on January 29 [8 favorites]


You'd be surprised how little it costs to buy a state legislator's vote these days, based on the corruption trials I've seen. Wouldn't be surprised if electoral votes were similarly cheap.
posted by postel's law at 9:31 AM on January 29 [3 favorites]


Nobody who knows you're laughing at them will support your cause.

Reaching the far greater number of people who have never voted due to apathy, government mistrust, or state-sponsored disenfranchisement is a lot more important and has greater long term value for democracy and a just society than trying to change the minds of people who have already chosen to vote for him against their own best interests.
posted by poffin boffin at 10:20 AM on January 29 [15 favorites]


Another handy reminder that Trump is a Tammany Hall politician whose entire family fortune is based on 19th-century style graft.

Tammany actually liked and helped immigrants.
posted by maxsparber at 10:54 AM on January 29 [14 favorites]


Anybody look to see if that James dick is lurking nearby? That Veritas fucker? If anything I could see them trying to use this to "out" liberals supposedly. Not sure how, if it's this blatant they're the ones doing it. Smells like one of their ops... Oh what if it's a left-wing version of it? Getting right-wingers to do this and then we can report on it.
posted by symbioid at 11:19 AM on January 29 [2 favorites]


Only in this case it's not a bullshit lie that was fabricated or spun.
posted by symbioid at 11:19 AM on January 29


How is this shit legal?

Isn't this just something like Citizens United, but spreading around the "free speech" the other way? It just doesn't seem like the US has a legal framework to deal honestly with payola, or its consequences, in either direction.
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 12:17 PM on January 29 [2 favorites]


I... do not think this is how reparations are supposed to work?
posted by danhon at 1:07 PM on January 29 [9 favorites]


Given how utterly apoplectic my red-state relatives get over the concept of their taxes going to "lazy entitled black people who just want a handout," I can only imagine how well the idea of their contributions to the Trump campaign going to those same people will go over.
posted by Naberius at 1:20 PM on January 29 [8 favorites]


You'd be surprised how little it costs to buy a state legislator's vote these days, based on the corruption trials I've seen.

I usually see amounts in the low five figures. So cheaper than a college education!
posted by PMdixon at 1:45 PM on January 29 [1 favorite]


If we're going with historical figures that were in Gangs of New York as Trump analogues, the obviously correct choice is Bill the Butcher, based on the real life William Poole. A corrupt nativist who inflamed anti- immigrant sentiment and surrounded himself with corrupt law enforcement figures and violent racist thugs. Tamminy Hall was incredibly corrupt but they at least did some good for their immigrant voters.
posted by Green Winnebago at 3:34 PM on January 29 [2 favorites]


Tucker Carlson knew the cigs were Newports, 'cause all white racists know black cats smoke menthols. It's a dog whistle
posted by shnarg at 3:55 PM on January 29 [5 favorites]


I can only imagine how well the idea of their contributions to the Trump campaign going to those same people will go over.

The article notes the funds are coming from anonymous donors funneled through an astroturf nonprofit no doubt created specifically for this project.
posted by ryanshepard at 6:47 AM on January 30


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