Ballot Harvesting Scheme in Minnesota Linked to Ilhan Omar?

 In Politics

A ballot harvesting/ cash for ballots scheme in Minnesota revealed by Project Veritas has connections to Rep Ilhan Omar.

“Ballot harvesting is real and it has become a big business. Our investigation into this ballot harvesting ring demonstrates clearly how these unscrupulous operators exploit the elderly and immigrant communities—and have turned the sacred ballot box into a commodities trading desk…We are showing Americans what is really going on in one of our great cities—but, it’s not me saying—we have the operators on tape saying it all themselves.” James O’Keefe

One ballot harvester, Liban Mohamed, bragged that he collected 300 ballots to use for his brother Jamal Osman in his bid for city council. The harvesters get paid when the ballots are filled out.

“Numbers don’t lie. Numbers don’t lie. You can see my car is full. All these here are absentees’ ballots. Can’t you see? Look at all these, my car is full. All these are for Jamal Osman… We got 300 today for Jamal Osman only.” Liban Mohamed

A member of the Somali community, Omar Jamal, reached out to the O’Keefe organization because he believes the ballot harvesting scheme seriously weakens the Somali vote. And he has  a warning for Americans: pay attention to what is going on or you will lose everything.

Project Veritas wrote:

“I’m afraid it’s already too big to stop, you know, maybe it’s too late. Maybe it’s already too big to stop,” he said. “There’s a lot of people invested in this, you know, and they don’t care how they did it: ‘We win,’ and that’s it.”

Jamal, as part of his participation in the investigation, interviewed a Somali-American who functions as a ballot harvester his community. In the interview, the harvester described how he was paid to vote in the Aug. 11 special election and primary, along with a Project Veritas undercover journalist.

The harvester said Somali-American vote-buying operatives from the Omar machine came to his apartment building to oversee the voter filling out the paperwork.

Omar operatives request the ballots and fill them out for the voters, he said.

So for Omar and her political cronies, winning is everything. And the harvesters get paid for how many ballots they are able to snatch from the people. There is a harvesting “triangle” present in the district that Ilhan Omar represents:

“Our investigation found that among three locations inside Ward 6, a ballot harvesting triangle,  where the scheme operates: the Riverside Plaza apartments,  the senior citizen community at Horn Towers and the Minneapolis Elections and Voter Services office at 980 E. Hennepin Ave., which also functions as a voting location and ballot drop-off site.” Project Veritas

Taking advantage of refugees

There is a mix of voter intimidation and outright fraud involved in the scheme. They are taking advantage of people who do not come from this culture to understand that this isn’t the way elections are supposed to be run here, and often don’t have a grasp of the langauge enough to understand the process.  Some of the harvesters even tell the people not to go to the polls at all – because they’ll ‘take care of their ballot.’ Somalia is a hotbed of corruption…and apparently so is Omar’s 6th Ward. Omar’s campaign manager, Ali Isse Gainey, is suspected of being a key player in the ballot harvesting scheme.

“[Gainey], who’s working in Ilhan’s campaign is the one who is managing the voting place. They bring them. They line them. They put the open ballots in there and then they take them in and say, ‘Here,’ and the people mark [the ballots]…They’re accepting temporary addresses; they’re accepting all kind of shenanigans…They have perfected this system. This is what they do. They will tell you we are applying for your ballot. They take a picture of your social security and your driver’s license. They have a database. When the ballot comes, they track it, sometimes, they make fake emails. They track the ballot. Then, they come and pick up the ballot—unopened…No, and the ones that didn’t vote on ballots, the young people, and the women and stuff, they were paying cash, cash, cash. They were carrying bags of money. And when you vote and they mark you off, then you get in the van, they give you the cash.” Former campaign worker

This ballot harvesting scheme is a violation of both Federal and state law. The Minnesota AG has promised to investigate the allegations.

According to attorney for Project Veritas, Jered Ede,

The federal laws, 18 USC §597 and 52 U.S.C. §10307(c), are quite clear,” he said. “In the case of 18 USC §597, it is punishable by up to two years in prison and in the case of 52 USC §10307 it’s punishable by up to $10,000 in fines and up to five years in prison.”

The Minnesota statute, 211B.13(1) prohibits paying a person or receiving money to register to vote or to vote, he said. “This is a state felony punishable by more than one-year imprisonment.”

Beyond paying voters, there are also state and federal laws regarding intimidation of voters, he said.

“The federal laws 52 USC §20511, 18 USC §594 and 52 USC §10307(b) and the Minnesota statue 211B.07 law prohibit anyone from using undue influence threats intimidation or fraud to influence a person’s vote or to influence them to vote at all,” he said.

It’s also a violation of federal law for anyone who votes for others illegally:

“The punishment under 52 USC §10307(e) also goes up to five years’ incarceration and a $10,000 fine,” he said.

“In addition to those statutes, Minnesota has another statute, 211B.11(3), which makes it a misdemeanor to induce or persuade a voter to vote for or against a candidate, while transporting the voter to the polls,” he said. 

You can read more at this link.

For more information on ballot harvesting and what it can do to an election: go here.

Featured photo: Screenshot via Project Veritas


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