ProPublica Already Did the Work of Monitoring Election Day and Found No Rigging

While others were enthralled with the horserace, this is what ProPublica did.

While most of the political media world spent Election Day watching its projections and everything else it thought to be true of this cycle implode, ProPublica and its network of 1,100 people who spent the day reporting on what was happening in polling locations across the country for its Electionland project.

If anyone knows what happened at the polls, it would be ProPublica, with its journalist partners chasing leads all across the country, and its New York-based command center, filled with experts and students, who worked throughout the day and night to determine the veracity of social media accounts of voting issues. ProPublica did the work.

And so, when Donald Trump tweeted a preposterous, baseless claim of voter fraud in the millions, enough to compensate and then some for the millions by which he is losing the popular vote, few were better equipped than ProPublica to shut down that already debunked claim.

Which they did, initially in this epic tweetstorm.

We don’t know what happened to 7.

Like, um, people voting for Trump.

But not undocumented immigrants.

That’s a tall order conspiracy theory. Like, the biggest ever.

But full of really dumb conspiracists.

The big sigh.

And later, in an article titled, simply “There’s No Evidence Our Election Was Rigged,” ProPublica expounded on its fact-based Twitter-thread with more facts, explaining how hard it would be to magically create this level of voter fraud without there being evidence that something was going on, long before Election Day.

David Becker, a voting expert who had participated in the project told ProPublica, “There would have been an unprecedented number of new registrants that would not have had matched social security or driver’s license numbers. There was no exceptional registration, there were no crazy long lines, there were no language difficulties, and there wasn’t an exceptionally high number of mail-in ballots.”

He wasn’t the only one:

Tammy Patrick, another Electionland expert and a fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center, said that no elections officials have raised flags related to tampering. Jurisdictions do regular audits to ensure that the number of sign-ins equals the number of votes being cast, and none of those audits have found problems. In fact, with the fervor raised in advance by the president-elect himself, Patrick said this election was the best monitored in her memory.

Trump’s claims were ridiculous and needed debunking, but they have also taken up a lot of prominent media space, in effect giving gravitas to a fiction, ensuring that many will receive it as fact, regardless of all proof to the contrary. On a similar note, thanks media publications who posted the contents of Trump’s tweet in a headline as if it were a statement of fact.