House Rep. Tschida Calls Out KULR-TV Station Manager For Misinformation Report on Montana Election Integrity
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HD-97 Representative for Missoula and Lolo, Brad Tschida, sent a letter to station manager Becky Hillier at KULR-TV Channel 8 in Billings yesterday afternoon to call out a story filed by reporter Bradley Warren. Warren misquoted a speech delivered by President Donald Trump last weekend and shared misinformation about claims both Trump and Tschida have made about potential election fraud in the 2020 General Election conducted in Missoula County. As we reported on Saturday, Trump mentioned the 6% (or 4,592) ballot signature envelope discrepancy found in a review of ballots cast in Missoula County for the 2020 General Election.
In our report, we quoted Trump as saying:
“In Montana over 6% of a certain county’s mail-in ballots are missing evidence to prove if they were legitimate or not. They’re missing all of this evidence. And think of it, Montana.”President Donald Trump. Save America Rally. Wellington, Ohio. June 26, 2021.
Warren for KULR-TV quoted (emphasis, ours):
“In Montana, over 6% of a certain county’s mail-in ballots are missing, evidence to prove that they were legitimate or not. They are missing all this evidence. Think of it, Montana, a lot of mail-in ballots. Where do you have the mail-in ballots, by the way?”Former President Donald Trump calls into question the validity of Montana’s election. Bradley Warren. KULR-TV. June 27, 2021.
The KULR reporter continued (emphasis his), “There have been no reports of 6% of any counties mail-in ballots “missing” in Montana, if that information changes or new information is revealed we will update this web copy.” Warren repeated the misinformation to his 3000+ followers on Facebook.
This is a mischaracterization of the claim that Tschida and Trump made, which is that 6% of Missoula “County’s mail-in ballots are missing evidence to prove that they were legitimate or not.” To clarify, Trump and Tschida are not claiming that ballots have gone missing. They are claiming that ballots are missing required chain of custody documentation. Specifically, the ballot signature envelopes. Without the envelopes, those votes cannot be counted as they cannot be attributed to an actual voter.
Warren misquoted Trump. Perhaps because of a slight pause in the speech Trump gave. But the effect of Warren’s reporting was to change not only what Trump claimed about the discrepancies found in Missoula County Elections, but to also mischaracterize Rep. Brad Tschida’s claim about Missoula’s elections. A claim that has been covered in national media. The KULR report remains without correction.
“Along with others, I have poured hundreds of hours of time into trying to find the truth about the questionable ballots in Missoula County.” Tschida wrote in a Facebook post. “Most things worth doing are hard, and the media has simply failed to do any of the heavy lifting required to accurately portray the current state of affairs in the Missoula County Elections Office,” Tschida continued, referring to the KULR-TV report.
“With the integrity and security of our elections at stake, and the possibility of very serious wrongdoing, they have a duty to their viewers to do a real investigation rather than just filling up space between their paid advertisements. This kind of lazy and inaccurate reporting is what has caused many to no longer trust the media and why the state’s major newspapers are on the verge of completely going out of business.” Tschida wrote.
Screenshots of the letter that Tschida sent to can be seen here:
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