My Front Page Magazine article from July 31, 2012:
Soros Election-Rigging Scheme Collapses
By Matthew Vadum
A George Soros-backed scheme that paved the way for Al Franken’s 2008 theft of a U.S. Senate seat has collapsed months ahead of the critical November elections.
Rumors of the death of the Secretary of State Project had been circulating for months. Michael Kieschnick, co-founder of the Secretary of State Project, confirmed that his group has shut down in an interview at the recent “Take Back the American Dream” conference in Washington, D.C.
Although the so-called 527 political committee “still exists” on paper, “2010 was terrible so we’ve switched our efforts,” said Michael Kieschnick wearing a tee shirt reading “ORGANIZER” in block capital letters. Section 527 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code allows the group to accept unlimited financial contributions.
The idea behind the Secretary of State Project was that in most states the secretary of state runs elections and that a relative pittance can help swing these little-watched state contests, allowing even small donors to play a big role in installing a powerful state official who can tilt the playing field in favor of Democrats.
The writing had been on the wall for the Secretary of State Project. The group’s website, secstateproject.org, is currently offline after vanishing from the Internet in July of last year. Its Facebook page, YouTube channel, and Twitter account hadn’t been updated since 2010. The group hadn’t endorsed any candidates for the 2012 election cycle and its most recent IRS filings show almost no financial activity since the 2010 election cycle.
The Secretary of State Project’s signature achievement was helping to elect the unethical Saul Alinsky-inspired community organizer Mark Ritchie. Ritchie is the radical, ACORN-loving Minnesota secretary of state who orchestrated Al Franken’s theft of incumbent Republican Norm Coleman’s U.S. Senate seat in the 2008 election cycle. Before that Ritchie was president of the Minneapolis-based Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. In 2000 he supported Ralph Nader’s candidacy for president.
Soros and progressives all across the fruited plain believe with a religious fervor that right-leaning secretaries of state helped the GOP supposedly steal the presidential elections in Florida in 2000 (Katherine Harris) and in Ohio in 2004 (Ken Blackwell).
The SoS Project endorsed secretary of state candidates who took the position that voter fraud is a myth; that voter suppression is widely and solely used by Republicans; that it’s a waste of time to remove obviously fraudulent names from voter rolls; and that legal requirements that voters show photo identification somehow discriminate against racial minorities.
Until two years ago the SoS Project was doing well. Before the 2010 cycle it took credit for electing 11 of the 18 left-wingers it endorsed since it began funding candidates in 2006.
Then in 2010 disaster struck for Democrats at both the national and state levels. Five out of the SoS Project’s seven official candidates went down to defeat. Only Ritchie and another progressive incumbent, California’s Debra Bowen, stayed afloat in the Republican electoral tsunami. The Secretary of State Project lost its luster and its funding dried up.
SoS Project co-founder Kieschnick is a member of the Soros-led Democracy Alliance, a donors’ collaborative established to help Democrats and build left-wing political infrastructure such as pressure groups, media outlets, leadership academies, and think tanks. Democracy Alliance members frequently opened their wallets to help secretary of state candidates endorsed by the Secretary of State Project.
Kieschnick is also president of CREDO Mobile, an activist-oriented phone company. He boasts that his activist network has 2.5 million activists and has given upwards of $70 million to left-wing groups since 1985.
Another SoS Project co-founder is James Rucker. The former MoveOn organizer also co-founded (with self-described “communist” Van Jones) Color of Change, a radical Afro-centrist group that organizes boycotts of conservative groups like the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and smears conservatives and anyone who opposes President Obama’s socialist juggernaut as racist.
Meanwhile, the SoS Project’s friends in leftist groups such as the ACORN-affiliated Project Vote are engaged in a massive assault on electoral integrity through the courts. Project Vote, which used to employ Barack Obama, and other radical organizations are pressuring state officials across America to drop voter fraud investigations.
Attorney General Eric Holder is doing everything in his power to ignore wrongdoing on the Left. Holder’s failure to pursue truncheon-wielding New Black Panther Party members who tried to intimidate Philadelphia voters in 2008 is just one example. Holder’s underlings are also opening elections to massive voter fraud. Even after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Indiana’s voter ID law the Department of Justice has blocked voter ID laws in Texas and South Carolina.
Perhaps the Left no longer needs the Secretary of State Project. After all, you and I as taxpayers are already subsidizing the Left’s crusade against honest elections.