Software engineer Dennis Montgomery has made a living making silly claims that fail.
His company received millions from the CIA during the George W. Bush administration with the idea that he had a program that could find secret Al Qaeda transmissions – a promise that experts said was entirely fictitious. . Then he convinced the controversial Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio that he could find secret messages showing a judge complicity with law enforcement against Arpaio, a promise that once again fell short. not carried out.
Now, as Trump supporters scramble to prove the president really won, Montgomery has promoted the idea that the election was stolen by an infamous pair of CIA programs called Hammer and Scorecard.
So far, Montgomery and his supporters – a list that includes Ret. Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney and former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell, who made headlines, have produced no evidence that Hammer and Scorecard exist outside of Montgomery’s imagination. Montgomery’s claims were also easily refuted by government officials.
But there is one place where Montgomery succeeds: GiveSendGo, a hitherto little-known Christian crowdfunding site originally intended for missionaries. A GiveSendGo page bearing Montgomery’s name raised more than $ 27,000 for him, with a promise to take on the Deep State’s election meddling and stop a socialist takeover of America.
“Keep pressing Dennis!” wrote an anonymous donor who gave $ 5,000 to Montgomery last week.
The reason Montgomery turns to a Christian crowdfunding site to help fund his staunchly secular efforts to overthrow the election is simple. GiveSendGo is quickly becoming the go-to place for crowdfunding businesses that are way too extreme for more traditional platforms. Indeed, Montgomery is one of many self-proclaimed election fraud investigators who have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars from aggrieved Trump supporters at the site.
GiveSendGo launched in 2015 with a focus on Christian missionaries and other religious endeavors, site co-founder Jacob Wells told The Daily Beast. Prior to the site’s launch, the list featured fundraisers, including medical bills for sick children, for example, or the purchase of children’s books for the foster care system.
But the site exploded into the wider right this summer after GoFundMe – GiveSendGo’s much more well-known crowdfunding rival – banned fundraising for Kenosha, Wis., Murder suspect Kyle Rittenhouse. The Rittenhouse fundraiser moved to GiveSendGo, where it raised over $ 580,000.
Wells said the decision to host the Rittenhouse fundraiser “broke the floodgates” on GiveSendGo’s reputation as a fundraising venue launched on other sites.
“Our name was ousted as a result of this,” Wells said. “It wasn’t necessarily the intention. We felt we were doing what was right at the moment.
Things picked up after the election, when GoFundMe banned the efforts of former Trump campaign staff Matt Braynard to investigate alleged election irregularities and reimbursed donors after raising more than $ 200,000.
“The fundraiser attempted to disseminate misleading information about the election and was taken off the platform,” a GoFundMe spokesperson told The Daily Beast in a statement about Braynard’s fundraising. “All donors have been reimbursed.”
Braynard has moved to GiveSendGo, where he appears to have made the most money with one of the self-proclaimed election detectors. Braynard had raised over $ 674,000 at the site for his “Voter Integrity Project” before stopping accepting donations, promising that any remaining funds would be used for voter registration and a “Voter Integrity Project”. electoral fraud ”.
Right-wing blogger Jim Hoft, whose popular blog The Gateway Pundit often promotes hoaxes, is also building a six-figure war chest on GiveSendGo. A group calling themselves the “Justice League of America” has raised over $ 100,000 for Hoft at the time of writing, promising to send a film crew and reporters to Michigan to investigate the “irregularities and voter fraud ”.
Hoft and Braynard did not respond to requests for comment on their fundraisers or how they intend to spend the large sums they have raised. Montgomery could not be reached for comment.
Wells said his site did not take a share of the funds raised and instead was funded by separate donations. He said his company was trying to find out more about fundraising organizers as their pages are making more money in an attempt to avoid dishonest efforts, but he admitted fraud is “rampant” in the crowdfunding industry.
Even though Trump supporters are pumping money into campaign fraud efforts, it’s not clear that the donations translate into concrete victories for the president.
Braynard, for example, became a star of the right in the aftermath of the election with his supposed evidence of voting irregularities. He spent at least $ 150,000 of donor money on data that he says is critical to proof of election irregularities, according to a Braynard spreadsheet posted on GiveSendGo. But his claims did not last long in court.
A lawsuit that cited him was dismissed by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, with a judge writing that it was based solely “on the unsworn expert report of a former campaign employee.”
A Georgia legal case went even further, citing Harvard University government professor Stephen Ansolabehere’s review of Braynard’s data and claims.
Braynard’s inferences from data on which he had spent tens of thousands of dollars, the professor wrote, had “no scientific basis”, while his claims “fell short of scientific standards.”
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