How Right Wing Dark Money Played A Pivotal Role In Trump’s 2016 Wisconsin Win

A confidential report claims that secretive groups targeting independent voters helped tip the balance for Trump in 2016.

By Lisa Graves
The Progressive (3/2/20)

Two groups from outside of Wisconsin may have been responsible for President Donald Trump’s narrow win in the state in 2016, according to a recently obtained “confidential” report.

Between October 29 and November 7, 2016, sister groups Independent Women’s Voice and Independent Women’s Forum, two nonprofits based in Washington, D.C., launched a campaign to target registered independents and Republican-leaning women in Wisconsin. These efforts moved independent voters in the state by 16 percentage points toward Trump, says the report, which was prepared for both groups by Daron Shaw, a professor at the University of Texas, Austin.

The groups targeted approximately 1.54 million registered voters with multiple choice and ‘true or false’ quizzes, consisting of questions on the Affordable Care Act and the U.S. Supreme Court. The quizzes were delivered via digital outreach, postcards, and phone calls starting eleven days before the 2016 presidential election.

Heather Higgins, an heiress to the Vicks VapoRub fortune who has led the groups’ boards for years, summed up Shaw’s findings: Had the quiz messaging not occurred, “Trump would have received an estimated 215,840 fewer votes in Wisconsin, the state completely written off by all the political professionals.”

Her website for the group added that without the groups’ intervention, “both Trump and [Wisconsin Republican U.S. Senator Ron] Johnson would otherwise have lost Wisconsin by over 100,000 votes each.”

Trump won the popular vote in Wisconsin by less than 23,000 votes.

True North Research, a research organization I founded and lead, has just issued a report about the groups, whose election-season activities flew below the radar of most national and state media outlets. It documents the groups’ involvement in the 2016 election, as elucidated by Shaw’s report, which was obtained by True North last year. …

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  • Link To Report HERE.