Roger Stone, Donald Trump’s one-time lobbyist, former campaign adviser, and “ultimate” loyalist, will deploy 1,300 supporters to minority-heavy precincts to ask them how they voted, he told the Guardian on Thursday.
Stone, a “professional dirty trickster” who in 2008 created an anti-Hillary Clinton organization with the sexist acronym “Citizens United Not Timid,” is also a notorious conspiracy theorist who frequently collaborates with “9/11 Truther” Alex Jones of Infowars. He has warned, despite a lack of any evidence, that Clinton plans to steal the election with voter fraud.
Roger Stone/ Alex Jones convo appears to be source of Trump's accusation that clinton was on drugs at debate https://t.co/ViJM0hZNK0
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) October 15, 2016
According to the Guardian report, Stone plans to dispatch members of his Citizens for Trump to “600 different precincts in nine Democrat-leaning cities with large minority populations, a tactic branded highly irregular by experts, who suggested that organizers could potentially use the polling as a way to intimidate voters.”
These pro-Trump volunteers would conduct an “exit poll” of voters in Cleveland, Detroit, Philadelphia, Las Vegas, Milwaukee, Fort Lauderdale, Charlotte, Richmond, and Fayetteville, asking voters to reveal their (secret) ballot decisions after they voted. They idea is that if their answers do not match up with final results for those precincts, Stone would use that to buttress claims of a “rigged election.”
“To those who say that it would be un-American to challenge the election on the basis that it was rigged, I would argue it would be un-American to have evidence of that rigging and not challenge the election,” Stone explained.
Unlike real pollsters who are trained at exit polling, there is no reason to believe that Stone or his volunteers have any expertise in how to conduct a scientific poll. Moreover, even professionally done exit polls are often inaccurate. In 2004, exit polls suggested John Kerry would defeat George W. Bush and in 2000, exit polls showed Al Gore significantly ahead in Florida (where a number of his supporters were confused by their butterfly ballots and did not end up having their votes for him recorded).
The Republican National Committee, prohibited from intimidating minority voters with certain tactics by a decades-old, court-endorsed consent decree, asked its members this week to avoid participating in “ballot security” activities. But Stone, who is not officially connected to the party or the campaign, is not bound by that order.