Anti-Trump Protesters Release Personal Info of Electoral College Members

Trump protest in Washington /
Trump protest in Washington / AP
November 17, 2016

A national anti-Donald Trump group called the #NotMyPresident Alliance distributed the personal information of dozens of Electoral College members to its supporters on Wednesday through a Google doc spreadsheet.

The Electoral College members targeted were those who represented states that voted Republican, BuzzFeed reported.

A spreadsheet distributed to supporters Wednesday included the personal phone numbers, addresses, religions, races, genders, and candidate preference of the electors. The document does not have a complete set of data on every elector.

The group hopes that its members and citizens around the country will contact electors and persuade them to change their vote from Donald Trump to another candidate before Dec. 19, when electors cast their votes. The group does not advocate for Hillary Clinton or any other specific candidate, rather asking protesters to encourage electors from each state to a consensus that isn’t Trump.

The group color-coded each elector in the spreadsheet according to how likely they are to change their vote based on social media comments and commentary to the press.

Iowa elector Kurt Brown told BuzzFeed that he has not "totally committed yet" to his electoral vote.  His home address and personal phone number were included in the spreadsheet.

Arizona elector Jim O'Connor was another person targeted in the spreadsheet, BuzzFeed reported.

Jim O'Connor, an elector from Arizona, was firmly pro-Trump. He called the Clinton Foundation "the largest criminal enterprise to ever exist at a global level."

O'Connor said someone made his information public on November 10 without his consent. He doesn't know who it was, but he knew someone had because emails began pouring in. Since then, he said, he's received at least 60 phone calls and 1500 emails from concerned constituents. He tries to answer them, he said, but he can't get to everything.

#NotMyPresident Alliance spokesman Jon Gedney defended the spreadsheet, saying that all the released information was publicly available through Google searches. When asked about electors facing potential hacking or harassment, Gedney said there was "no more potential than there was already."

"The point was to collect as a tool for peaceful action," Gedney said. "The whole thing is we're fighting against someone who's contentious and hateful. No one in our group is going to use it for nefarious purposes."

While experts have previously told BuzzFeed that it is "incredibly slim" for faithless electors to swing the election, Gedney was optimistic because of the anti-Trump protests all over the country.

"If we somehow do still fail to win the hearts and minds of the Electoral College on December 19," he wrote on Facebook, "we are creating the much needed infrastructure and solidarity we're going to need if we're to survive a Trump administration."