Allies of former President Donald Trump have breached eight voting systems in five states in search of evidence to back up their debunked election fraud conspiracy theories, Reuters reports.
Reuters documented eight known attempts to gain unauthorized access to voting systems in five states since Trump’s election loss.
Every breach involved Republican officials or party activists who pushed debunked conspiracy theories that voting machines were set up to rig the election.
At least five of the cases are being investigated by federal or local law enforcement.
There have already been three arrests and one conviction.
Four of the breaches forced election officials to decertify or replace voting equipment over security fears.
Two of the breaches happened in Colorado.
Elbert County Clerk Dallas Schroeder, a Republican, was recorded on video trying to copy a voting system hard drive while in contact with an election conspiracy theorist.
Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters was indicted on 10 criminal counts after she allegedly allowed unauthorized access to the country’s voting system.
In North Carolina, a Republican county official threatened to get an election official fired unless she allowed him to access voting equipment.
In Michigan, an election clerk was relieved of her duties after she was found with a missing component from a vote-tabulator. In another Michigan case, an election conspiracist was arrested after impersonating a government official to gain access to voting equipment.
Additional breaches were reported in Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Mike Lindell links:
Some of the breaches were linked to efforts by MyPillow founder Mike Lindell, an ardent conspiracy theorist.
Lindell told Reuters he spent $30 million and hired up to 70 people to investigate his debunked claims.
“We’ve got to get rid of the machines! We need to melt them down and use them for prison bars and put everyone in prison that was involved with them,” Lindell said.
Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold accused the conspiracy theorists of a voter suppression campaign.
“These threats are being fueled by extreme elected officials and political insiders who are spreading the Big Lie,” she said, “to further suppress the vote, destabilize American elections, and undermine voter confidence,” she said in a statement.