Pillow salesman Mike Lindell has spent the last few years chasing imaginary election fraud, pursuing that one elusive lawsuit that he still believes will take him before the Supreme Court, and restore Donald Trump to the White House, and now one county is inviting him — and his funding — to save their elections.
Ironically, it’s Lindell’s exact flavor of conspiracy theory that got Shasta County, California’s elections into difficulty to begin with.
County Board of Supervisors Board Chair Patrick Jones, apparently enmeshed in those same conspiracy theories, led the board into severing their contract with Dominion Voting Systems.
However, an election with all paper ballots and hand-counting runs afoul of standards for disability access, and the board sought an answer.
Jones says that Lindell can provide that answer, in the form of funding, which will help cover any lawsuits the county faces.
Dominion responded to Shasta’s decision to end their contract with the company, citing this as one more piece of evidence of the harm done to the company by conspiracy theorists.
In fact, the company is currently pursuing multiple defamation lawsuits — including against Lindell — for the damages. From NPR:
“One supervisor who voted with Jones, Kevin Crye, believes he’s found the solution to possible accessibility lawsuits. He says he solicited outside funding from the prominent election fraud conspiracy theorist Mike Lindell.”
Aside from the difficulties this move will cause with carrying out elections, accessibility, and potential lawsuits, the decision also came with another price, according to the LA Times.
The county will have to pay to have the machines removed.
At the Board meeting to discuss the matter, there was also debate about what the “optics” would be of having Lindell, and his political agenda, involved in the election process.
At least two board members raised concerns, but conservative members argued that it was okay, since they’d also accepted support from Mark Zuckerberg’s philanthropic program.
Lindell has fought to get out of the lawsuit from Dominion without success, and he has continued to spout opinions of, and unfounded allegations about, the company on right-wing media programs.