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Feds drop bombshell: Iran is behind Proud Boys disinformation, anti-Trump Lincoln Project helped make it viral

Peter Hasson, DCNF

The Lincoln Project, an anti-Trump political group, appears to have helped an Iranian disinformation effort go viral.

Federal authorities concluded that Iran was behind a string of threatening emails targeting Democratic voters in swing states, The Washington Post reported Wednesday. The email senders claimed to be members of the Proud Boys, a fringe right-wing group.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Ratcliffe confirmed the Iranian efforts during a press conference Wednesday evening.

Ratcliffe told reporters that “we have already seen Iran sending spoofed emails designed to intimidate voters, incite social unrest, and damage President Trump. You may have seen some reporting on this in the last 24 hours or you may have even been one of the recipients of those emails.”

The Lincoln Project helped the Iranian misinformation go viral on social media, garnering more than 12,000 retweets by amplifying the false claim that the Proud Boys were trying to intimidate Democratic voters.

“The Proud Boys are attempting to scare voters away from the polls. This is punishable by up to a year in jail and a blatant attempt to prevent people from voting. Let’s find them and make them famous,” the Lincoln Project tweet said.

The political group, which was founded by anti-Trump Republican consultants, deleted the tweet Wednesday night.

Iran has previously been caught running anti-Trump influence campaigns. Iran used hundreds of fake Facebook and Twitter accounts to run an anti-Trump, pro-Bernie Sanders propaganda effort, the two companies announced in August 2018.

The Lincoln Project didn’t immediately return the Daily Caller News Foundation’s email seeking comment.

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Daily Caller News Foundation

Founded by Tucker Carlson, a 25-year veteran of print and broadcast media, and Neil Patel, former chief policy adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney, The Daily Caller News Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit providing original investigative reporting from a team of professional reporters that operates for the public benefit.

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