In 2016 Douglas Mackey, known as Ricky Vaughn on social media, made a joke on Twitter encouraging people to vote by text. Shockingly his innocent attempt at humor during a contentious election year has brought a stunning result. Mackey was arrested in the leftist-controlled Eastern District of New York for election interference following his post.
The Department of Justice alleged that Mackey’s meme constituted election interference but was unable to provide any evidence that someone was deceived by the meme and lost their vote by texting instead of voting in person. Mackey argued that Clinton supporters posted similar memes encouraging Trump supporters to vote by text without having any consequence for their actions.
On Friday, the US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York tweeted that “The verdict is in Douglass Mackey has been found guilty.”
Robby Starbuck retweeted the verdict saying, “This is a travesty. He made a meme. Our justice system is absolutely unraveling. The Democrats turned it into a political weapon.”
This is a travesty. He made a meme. Our justice system is absolutely unraveling. The Democrats turned it into a political weapon.
— Robby Starbuck (@robbystarbuck) March 31, 2023
One Twitter user posted a tweet from Kristina Wong, who also encouraged voters to skip the lines and vote via text. Only Wong’s encouragement was directed at Trump voters rather than Clinton voters. So far, absolutely nothing has happened to Kristina Wong. She has not been arrested or indicted. Mr. Wickwire retweeted a copy of Wong’s tweet telling Trump voters their text votes would be “legit.” He noted,
“That rule only applies to the right. This lady has yet to be arrested for the same thing. When can we expect the charges? The law in this country is a literal joke right now.”
That rule only applies to the right. This lady has yet to be arrested for the exact same thing. When can we expect charges? The law in this country is a literal joke right now…. pic.twitter.com/lLB41Tg7Aj
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— Mr.Wickwire🚀 (@MrWickwire) March 31, 2023
Vaughn’s lawyer Andrew Frisch told a federal jury that Mackey was not attempting to trick Clinton voters when he posted the memes; he was simply attempting to have one of his posts go viral.
Frisch went on describing Mackey’s media content pointing out that it certainly did not point towards a conspiracy to harm the integrity of the election,
“It means what it says — he was posting stuff, A lot of it was online trash-talking. Juvenile, sure, and some of it was vulgar.”
“Whatever your reaction when you hear his views … whether he was a great thinker or a neanderthal caveman, you will see that none of it is proof of a criminal conspiracy.”
Frisch also contended that the media coverage drove people to respond to Mackeys’ memes, saying people began texting the number after hearing about it on the news. He noted that two people also texted “Hillary for prison” to the number.
Assistant US Attorney Turner Buford argued that Mackey was intent on making the memes he posted on November 1, days before the election, appear real. Buford said,
“This wasn’t about changing votes. This was about vaporizing votes, making them disappear.
The number was real and set up to receive incoming messages,” he continued. “The release of these fake campaign ads was timed to flood the internet before Election Day.”
Frisch responded, saying the memes messaging was “ludicrous to anyone with a basic knowledge of how presidential elections work.”