A former Barack Obama operative has amassed a team of 16,000 ‘amateur sleuths’ who are seeking to uncover dirt on key Republican candidates up for re-election this November. John Burton is his name, and he’s an angry 38-year-old former JP Morgan employee and Barack Obama opposition research guru.
Starting shortly after President Trump was elected in November 2016, Burton began assembling a team. That team’s task? Seek out damaging information on 2018 Republican candidates, namely a list of three Senate candidates, 22 House candidates, and 133 others running for state legislative positions.
“We’re going to do with real information and real Americans what the Russians tried to do with fake information and fake Americans,” Burton explained to Bloomberg.
His organization, called ‘Citizen Strong,’ has been operating under the radar and has been legally funded by ‘dark money’. In fact, there is barely a footprint online about this team of 16,000 individuals across the country. Burton even refuses to reveal who is backing him and who some of his top employees are, but tells Bloomberg that a major information dump is on its way that could feasibly turn both the Senate and the House blue, as well as help redraw congressional lines in 2020 by tanking Republicans in key state legislative races.
“There’s so much just sitting out there that’s been made available through sunshine laws, through states posting personal financial disclosures and putting lobbyist disclosures online, and through social media,” Burton explained to Bloomberg. “There’s just a ton of content, far more than there was when I was starting out 10 years ago.”
While Burton did not disclose the 158 Republicans his organization has targeted, he did reveal one name, Dana Rohrabacher. Rohrabacher is often referred to as “Putin’s favorite congressman” because of his pro-Russian stances on almost every issue.
With the election just under five weeks away, Burton’s pending dump of damaging material has to have at least some members of Congress and Republicans running for State legislative positions quite nervous. Although Burton has not said how the information will be disseminated it’s safe to assume that it will be done in a way that makes the biggest impact on the elections.