Sunday, October 26, 2008

McCain supporters making fraudulent contributions

The A-list wingers at The Corner and their cohorts in Right Blogstantinople have been busy trying to gin up a fundraising controversy in their latest ploy to smear Obama, with an eye to cast doubt on an Obama victory. I see the WaPo finally picked up on the theme and is asking if campaigns funded by the people instead of big money interests isn't really a threat to democracy.

Leaving aside that we're talking about 1% of Obama's fundraising here at best, hardly a massive problem, the WaPo is asking the wrong question. The Corner's minions have embarked on a huge effort to deliberately make fraudulent contributions to Obama's campaign in order to 'prove' the fraud exists. This is illegal. The perps are making public confessions, boasting of their criminality. So why aren't they being arrested?

Update: Thanks to the commenter who complained in comments, Mark Kleiman confirms the fraudulent contributors are breaking two different laws.

[More posts daily at The Newshoggers and The Detroit News.]

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20 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why has obama taken the security options and address verifications off his fund raising websites?

that doesn't bother you?

obama could rape your mother with a power tool in on your thanksgiving table and you would eagerly ask to towel him off when he's done.

2:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Bilby said...

I don't know where you get the "1% of Obama's fundraising" from, but don't you think you're missing a very important point here?

The Obama campaign is deliberately disabling AVS (Address Verification System), which is basic for online credit card transactions to prevent fraud.

You've probably read the Mark Kleiman post about this. He also ignores the fact that someone with the Obama campaign has deliberately rigged the system (which is functioning on the McCain website) so that it will accept fraudulent donations.

Something tells me if someone had discovered the McCain donation apparatus was fixed in this way you wouldn't be only wondering why the people who discovered it aren't being arrested.

2:30:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Two separate issues. IF there is PROVEN fraud in the fundraising, I'll be the first to demand an investigation.

That doesn't change the fact that deliberately making fraudulent contributions in order to "prove" it exists is illegal. It stinks of desperation, not any highminded concern for the integrity of the system.

And the 1% figure came from the article which also mentioned that McCain has similar questionable contributions. I recall a fundraiser Cindy did in London a couple of months ago that was questionable on legal terms and how about that pitch to the Russian embassy from McCain for money that was reported the other day? So why aren't you guys "investigating" that? Geesh.

2:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Bilby said...

IF there is PROVEN fraud in the fundraising, I'll be the first to demand an investigation.

Naturally you don't think there's anything suspicious about deliberately disabling the AVS.

That doesn't change the fact that deliberately making fraudulent contributions in order to "prove" it exists is illegal.

To prove what? To prove that the Obama campaign deliberately set up their system to accept fraudulent donations? Yes, that IS what it proves.

And the 1% figure came from the article which also mentioned that McCain has similar questionable contributions.

Libby, I don't buy it. The McCain campaign has their apparatus set up specifically to reject donations like these.

I agree that campaign finance fraud should be rooted out and dealt with, but you say that while looking the other way and instead crying for the heads of the whistleblowers. You should be ashamed.

2:48:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Well, I'll ignore the mother raper comment, but as to the address verification bit - are you sure, or did you get this from some blog? Maybe one of those that has been perpetrating an endless litany of hoaxes?

I know I would prefer to give anonymously since my name goes on public record and where I live, that has consequences. More fun to insist it's all coming from Waziristan though, isn't it? All in all you really have nothing much at least not enough to warrant your strutting around with chest puffed out and twirling your baton like some drum majorette at the gay pride parade.

Considering that this seems to be your singular focus in a galaxy of election fraud attempts, it's certainly odd that you pretend to be concerned only for fraud and not just that Obama might win, whether he rapes your grandma or not.

It's more likely that you subscribe to one of the Obama as foreigner hoaxes and are trying to put some lipstick on it, but I'm just guessing. I certainly remember similar shake and bake quick cooking hysteria about the same thing during the last two elections and of course the shoe fit the Right foot much better.

Anyway, I'm sure it's easier to propose mysterious interference than to admit that you're on the losing side because your candidates not only have nothing to offer, but in at least one instance is fucking batshit nuts.

3:00:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

All you've "proved" is that the system has a bug, not that it's being done deliberately and you "proved" it using an illegal method. When cops do it it's called entrapment.

Not to mention, I'm not following it closely but has anyone actually had their credit card charged for this yet? I haven't noticed any confirmations of the fraudulent transactions being accepted by the credit card company. Big difference between a screen that says thank you for your donation and a bill from the company.

Frankly, if the credit card company allows the charge to go through I would be worried about the safety of my account.

And the McCain campaign's problems aren't with small donations, it's with accepting large ones possibly illegally. I don't know what happened about the dicey fundraiser in London, I don't think that question is resolved but how DO you explain them sending a fundraising letter to the Russian embassy?

We're talking millions of transactions. Of course there's going to be glitches. That doesn't change the fact that deliberately making a fradulent one, no matter what your reason, IS ILLEGAL.

I would be spreading the word to your folks to rescind the donations voluntarily before that counter-meme takes hold. I understand it was a widespread effort. If it was big enough, the authorities will take notice.

3:07:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Libby,

Well after searching, I can't find any evidence of anything other than some blowhards blowing hard.

As long as I was at the site I gave Obama some more money. The response was instantaneous and I'm wondering if it's possible that the site says thank you but the card is not processed if the info doesn't match the number, but as I'm not a Republican in desperation, I'm not going to commit fraud with the same abandon these alleged "reporters" did.

As you know, I come from a state that took nearly 100,000 people off the voter rolls last time around and used State troopers to intimidate black voters and apparently is still playing the same game. When I hear genuine dismay from these white knights of righteousness perhaps I'll credit their speculations about credit cards.

3:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Bilby said...

All you've "proved" is that the system has a bug, not that it's being done deliberately..

Again, the AVS has to be deliberately disabled.

Not to mention, I'm not following it closely but has anyone actually had their credit card charged for this yet?

For someone not following it closely you sure do seem to be in a hurry to get the whistleblowers punished. Yes, people have had their credit cards charged.

If there's evidence of fraud on the other side then let's see it and deal with it. However, that doesn't address the issue at hand.

I don't know who the "your people" is that you refer to. I've just read about what's happening and it's pretty clear what's going on.

I certainly hope the authorities DO take notice, because they'll want to know why the Obama people have their AVS disabled DELIBERATELY to allow fraudulent donations.

3:23:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Hey Fogg, if I knew you were going to put these guys in their place, I wouldn't have bothered. These guys just have nothing better to do now that the birth certificate thing was thrown out of court.

And it's wise to stay anonymous where you are if you're guilty of voting Democratic. The voter intimidation is getting ugly out there.

Lovely to see you by the way.

3:26:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Bilby your concern is duly noted. I'm looking forward to receiving your CV "proving" your computer expertise that renders you an expert in judging whether the only explanation is a deliberate attempt on the Obama campaign's part to circumvent the law.

3:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Bilby said...

Maybe this will help.

Mark Steyn:

"I took a look at the inner sanctum of my (alas, far more modest) online retail operation this afternoon and, in order to permit fraud as easy as that which the Obama campaign is facilitating, you have to uncheck every single box on the AVS system, each one of which makes it very explicit just what you're doing - ie, accepting transactions with no "billing address", no "street address" match, no "zip code" match, with a bank "of non-US origin" (I've got nothing against those, but a US campaign fundraiser surely should be wary), etc"

See, the default is to have it set up to reject the suspicious contribution. Actions must be taken to disable it.

3:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Steyn? Please.

3:59:00 PM  
Anonymous Americaneocon said...

"The Obama campaign is deliberately disabling AVS (Address Verification System), which is basic for online credit card transactions to prevent fraud."

It's all the GOP "minions" fault, Bilby.

Meanwhile, Obama may now be running the biggest underground finance operation since Nixon deployed the plumbers as his key operatives in 1972.

4:12:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL. Powerline? Steyn? Home of the always wrong for the last eight years.

Well that corks it. I suggest all you concerned souls report Obama to the authorities immediately.

Meanwhile, shouldn't you be out canvassing for your candidate instead of inventing kerfluffles about mine?

4:18:00 PM  
Blogger George said...

Libby,

So you plead ignorance on the part of Obama's campaign? Listen, and listen well.

I have a B.S. in Computer Science, and my company runs several web sites that do credit card payments for products and services. One of our main partners is a major payment processing company.

The Obama campaign's decision to not check addresses or even CVCs on their online form is exactly that - a decision they've made.

These are industry-wide standards that all major online retailers use - as a bare minimum.

Some go even further, with systems such as 3DSecure which forces people to log into their online bank system to verify a transaction, type in the pin code on their card, or use a code-generating calculator to type in a verification code.

Obama's campaign has chosen none of this to verify credit card payments done on their site. In the world of online payment processing, this is a big no-no, and is what you might expect to find at sleazy web sites that revel in credit card fraud.

Fact is, I doubt even porn sites have as low security checks as Obama's site does when it comes to processing credit card payments.

You seem awfully incurious and blissfully ignorant of what this all means for Obama's campaign, and how Obama handles his fundraising.

Take it from someone who knows how all this works: all of this was set up deliberately to elicit any and all donations, facilitating credit card fraud and donation fraud.

For a campaign that supposedly is "in touch" with how things work on the Internet, making fun of McCain for not using e-mail, they seem awfully backwards when it comes to payment processing.

If you think that's an "accident" or a "bug" or otherwise innocent, then you're a naive, sycophantic fool.

I donated to the Obama campaign in the beginning of the year. I'm an American living and working abroad. Do you know how many months it took the Obama campaign to actually verify that I indeed am an American?

Over 6 months. The Obama campaign sat on my $25 for over 6 months, before finally getting around to verifying my donation.

At that time, they didn't even have a form set up to ask for SSN or US Passport No. in the case of Americans living abroad. Now they at least have that, but they've hidden a link to that form away in the bottom of the main one they have.

A Norwegian blogger, who should not have been able to donate, donated $25 to Obama during the spring. They didn't try to authenticate his identity until the end of September, when they realized that he wasn't even a US citizen.

Now tell me, honestly, that the Obama campaign could not have prevented this.

The bare truth is this: they could have prevented it, easily, but they didn't want to.

Even today, near the end of the campaign, you can still donate to Obama with a fake name, fake address - the only thing you need is a functioning credit card.

I could steal a credit card in Russia and donate to the Obama campaign, and it would apparently take months until they get around to finding out whether or not it is legit.

Stop being a lame sycophant and demand that your preferred candidate clean up his act.

9:42:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Perhaps you have a point, perhaps not, but your case is so damaged by the year of contrived outrage and some by some really disgusting reports about Obama being a foreigner, under foreign control, a Muslim, a terrorist and even plotting to kill his own grandmother, that it's impossible to believe anything you say or that they say about him.

In fact, regarding the nearly unprecedented corruption and incompetence; the election tampering, the scofflaw attitude toward the Constitution and the courts, the wholesale destruction of our economy, the Republican party sounds ridiculous complaining about what might or might not be due diligence in collecting funds.

Regardless of what percent of his contributions are dubious, he's going to win. He's going to win for the right reasons and not because of some Norwegian who sent him 25 bucks or a hundred Norwegians. It's about the votes - and yes, I suspect the GOP of election fraud - big time.

It's hardly only Democrats who are turning away from McCain and the sleazy, slimy tactics and you know it. You're grasping at straws and you've been grasping at the same straw all along. You're going to drown anyway.

11:20:00 PM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Hey wait! Don't go away - I'm sure you want to talk about the tens of thousands of people in States like Georgia who have been purged from voter rolls with no chance of getting back on before the election. Nationwide it runs into the hundreds of thousands. Nearly all of it is incorrect, but the process is secret and it seems to select for likely Democratic voters.

I know you'll want to get all outraged and everything. . .

9:50:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I love you Fogg. Thanks. I have nothing to add to your excellent response.

11:15:00 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Oh, I could go on, but those red herrings do smell so awful.

You know there's still no story I can find other than on the host of wingsites quoting each other. Is that herring or bullshit I smell?

Oh, I know - it's a vaaaaaaaaaaaaast Liberal conspiracy throughout the world that's covering for Obama.

11:34:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

The only thing I've seen is the WaPo piece I linked to. Otherwise it's just the latest ginned up wingnut outrage. Guess everyone needs a hobby.

11:55:00 AM  

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