Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D., Hawaii) cited an investigation by Project Veritas into the campaign of Representative Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) in a call to outlaw ballot harvesting.
Gabbard embarked on a long-shot campaign for president earlier this year, and dropped out of the primaries in March after winning just two delegates. On September 18 Gabbard introduced legislation to ban ballot harvesting, in which third parties are authorized to gather ballots from voters to submit in an election.
“Banning ballot harvesting is not a partisan issue. It’s been used and abused in states like North Carolina and California and is ripe for fraud,” Gabbard wrote on Twitter at the time.
Following Gabbard’s proposal, conservative activist group Project Veritas released an investigation into Omar’s campaign. The group’s founder, James O’Keefe, filmed several undercover videos that purport to show campaign workers engaging in electoral fraud. The alleged scheme involves a cash-for-ballots operation in which workers illegally gather and fill out absentee ballots from mostly elderly Somali immigrants.
The investigation has not been independently confirmed, however Gabbard cited the undercover videos in support of her legislation.
Project Veritas offers further evidence of the need to ban ballot harvesting. It's not a partisan issue. It's been abused to help both R & D candidates, including in North Carolina & California. Please help by telling your congressional rep to pass our bipartisan bill HR8285. https://t.co/AJequVVrzc
— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) September 29, 2020
“Project Veritas offers further evidence of the need to ban ballot harvesting,” Gabbard wrote on Monday, reiterating that the practice occurs among both Democrats and Republicans.
President Trump also cited Project Veritas’s investigation on Monday and called for a probe into Omar’s campaign.
“This is totally illegal,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Hope that the U.S. Attorney in Minnesota has this, and other of her many misdeeds, under serious review??? If not, why not??? We will win Minnesota because of [Omar], and law enforcement.”
Project Veritas has come under criticism in the past over inaccurate reporting, including a failed attempt to expose left-wing bias at the Washington Post.