Freedom of Speech Effectively Dead in the US: Journalist Arrested for Trolling Hillary Voters in 2016

US Journalist Arrested for Trolling Hillary Voters in 2016. 1st Amendment Effectively Dead.

The official version, dressed up to make it sound like a crime, by Nicole Hong at the New York Times:

A man who was known as a far-right Twitter troll was arrested on Wednesday and charged with spreading disinformation online that tricked Democratic voters in 2016 into trying to cast their ballots by phone instead of going to the polls.

Federal prosecutors accused Douglass Mackey, 31, of coordinating with co-conspirators to spread memes on Twitter falsely claiming that Hillary Clinton’s supporters could vote by sending a text message to a specific phone number.

The co-conspirators were not named in the complaint, but one of them was Anthime Gionet, a far-right media personality known as “Baked Alaska,” who was arrested this month for participating in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, according to a person briefed on the investigation.

As a result of the misinformation campaign, prosecutors said, at least 4,900 unique phone numbers texted the number in a futile effort to cast votes for Mrs. Clinton.

Mr. Mackey was arrested on Wednesday morning in West Palm Beach, Fla., in what appeared to be the first criminal case in the country involving voter suppression through the spread of disinformation on Twitter. He could not immediately be reached for comment. …

In 2018, Mr. Mackey was revealed to be the operator of a Twitter account using the pseudonym Ricky Vaughn, which boosted former President Donald J. Trump while spreading anti-Semitic and white nationalist propaganda. …

Twitter shut down the account in 2016, one month before the election, for violating the company’s rules by “participating in targeted abuse.” At that time, the account had about 58,000 followers.

Mr. Mackey faces an unusual charge: conspiracy to violate rights, which makes it illegal for people to conspire to “oppress” or “intimidate” anyone from exercising a constitutional right, such as voting.

The charge carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

10 years in prison for posting anti-Hillary memes on Twitter? Well, compared to rape and murder, it’s serious … if you’re a Democrat politician.

These are two of his crimes:

10 years in jail hardly seems sufficient, really. (Heh, am I liable to go to prison for posting them?)

Tucker Carlson pushes back:

This must seem hilarious to the many thousands of Democrats who committed actual voter fraud in the 2020 election, but are fully protected by the swamp.

Michael Tracey:

Democrats have only controlled the government for a week and pro-Trump online trolls are already being indicted for criminal “conspiracies” involving the posting of memes on Twitter in 2016