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Pro-Trump Radio Host's Rumor Blacks Bused to Alabama to Vote Slammed on Twitter

The 30 percent Black-voter turnout in Alabama’s special senate election resulting in Democratic candidate Doug Jones’ victory is unfathomable to some, like Republican candidate Roy Moore, who lost but refuses to concede, and pro-Donald Trump online radio host Bill Mitchell who has decided to spread rumors.


In a current environment where abouthalf of peopleage 49 and under say they get their news online, according to a 2016 Pew Research Center survey, rumors can be easily believed.Mitchell is using his platform to say that Blacks were brought from Mississippi to Alabama to vote in Tuesday’s election.

He tweeted the following to his more than 300,000 followers, and the tweet received more than 10,000 likes:

Mitchell’s YourVoice America is an alternative right-wing online radio show, which resides in “a new-media ecosystem” that “exists outside of traditional newspapers and cable news networks,” according toMedia Matters.

On the evening of the 2016 presidential election, Mitchell “claims to have received thankful direct messages from Trump’s two sons, Eric and Donald Jr., as well as campaign manager Kellyanne Conway, thanking him for his enthusiasm and analysis over Twitter. ‘I won’t tell you what they said, but it was very nice and appreciative,’ he said,” according toBuzzFeed.

Voter suppression efforts took place during Tuesday’s election. Civil rights organizations received hundreds of complaints of voter suppression, and “residents and reporters took to social media to report tactics used to intimidate minority voters or force them to cast provisional ballots,” according toMother Jones.Due to restrictive voter ID laws, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) had to intervene Tuesdayon behalf ofa Black man in Mobile prohibitedfrom voting. He had both a driver’s license and passport.

Despite voter suppression efforts, Blacks in Alabama supported Jones across the board: 98 percent of Black women, 93 percent of Black men, and as a whole, 96 percent of Blacks voted for him.

Twitter users are overwhelmingly slamming Mitchell’s rumor in clever ways.

Here are a few responses:

Grassroots Movements in Alabama

Mitchell knows about the power of grassroots movements in elections. On Nov. 8, 2016, he tweeted in support of Trump:

So the rumor he’s spreading is to bait his followers. Blacks in Alabama overwhelmingly came to the polls due to grassroots organizing.

Alabama State Rep. Laura Hall told DiversityInc that Blacks in her district were inspired by last month’s elections in Virginia and New Jersey, when Black voters helped Democrats win in special elections.

“I said, we ought to do that in Alabama and certainly there were other people thinking the same way,” Hall said. “That election night probably just increased the motivation for what had already started.”

The hashtag #WeVote was used to encourage people to get to the polls to vote for Jones.The Democratic Party, local chapters of the NAACP and voting rights organizations fought against structures in place that keep Black voters away from the polls by actions such as targeting awareness campaigns at people who might not have had proper identification.

According toThe Atlantic,the grassroots efforts used “immediately become a case study in how to do so in a region that has, since the Supreme Court’s 2013 Shelby County v. Holder decision curtailing the 1965 Voting Rights Act, become a bastion of new voter-suppression laws, including new voter-ID laws.”

Read more news @ DiversityInc.com

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