The movie 2000 Mules, a documentary by filmmaker and author Dinesh D’Souza has become the “most successful political documentary in a decade,” according to its distributor, Salem Media Group. D’Souza is getting mixed reviews from conservatives as well as the mainstream left with his latest cinematic effort. It is unlikely he anticipated a backlash of sorts from his own side of the political aisle, which begs the question: Why is the movie generating such a wide range of reactions?
The Plot and the People
The film carries an IMDb rating of 7.1 and a rare 100% positive audience score on the movie rating app Rotten Tomatoes. All this even though it is not an easy get. Amazon Prime does not carry it, nor does HBO, Hulu, or Netflix. In a rare distribution scheme, D’Souza’s movie appeared in select theatres across the country at the same time it began streaming on the little-known app SalemNow.
The documentary revolves around the work done by True the Vote (TTV), a non-profit election integrity watchdog whose work is carried out through election intelligence. In other words, they look at data in all aspects of the voting process to see if they spot fraud. D’Souza’s film zeroes in on True the Vote’s extensive research regarding Election 2020, explicitly highlighting the harvesting of ballots by five unnamed non-profit organizations and their alleged involvement in paying 2,000 so-called “mules” to repeatedly stuff election drop boxes with ballots.
For most of the movie, D’Souza sits at a table firing questions at True the Vote’s Catherine Engelbrecht and Gregg Phillips. Engelbrecht is the founder of TTV, and Phillips is the resident election geek who runs the tech side of the organization. Also at the table is D’Souza’s wife, Debbie, whose presence leaves the viewer a bit confused since she is mainly silent throughout the film.
Stylistic formatting aside, the movie tracks the 2,000 mules; people presumably being paid for their work to carry ballots from politically motivated non-profits to drop boxes in densely Democratic urban areas in the swing states of Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan, Georgia – and the big kahuna – Pennsylvania.
Perhaps the most compelling part of the movie was seeing the staggering amount of data that needed to be sifted through and analyzed. This included four million minutes of surveillance video and 27 terabytes of information. True the Vote set a high bar for its statistical subset – making sure that a mule went to the same drop box at least ten times and to a minimum of 23 drop boxes. Two thousand of these individuals in the five states met this criteria though TTV was quick to point out there were myriad others who did not meet these standards.
A whistleblower’s confession was documented along with video clips of people stuffing numerous ballots into drop boxes between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m. The footage also showed one person who ripped off her latex gloves and immediately stuffed them into a garbage can after making a drop. Another video showed a furtive man taking a picture of just the drop box, presumably proving he had done his job so he could be paid. Is this evidence you could present in a court of law? Maybe. But is it enough to win the day?
For the skeptic, a couple of things get in the way of the documentary’s election fraud conclusions. First, ballot harvesting is legal in approximately half the states in the US. Second, a ballot’s legitimacy cannot be determined once the envelope has been removed. Third, one can’t ascertain which candidate was chosen on those ballots.
On the other hand, logic dictates that if multiple ballot boxes were being visited by the same people over and over in Democratically controlled urban areas, one could easily surmise how the scheme worked in favor of the Democrats. As Engelbrecht repeated in the movie, election fraud is most effective when accomplished bit-by-bit over time. Liberty Nation’s senior political analyst, Tim Donner, seconded that sentiment when he said:
“It [the movie] is persuasive in uncovering the mechanisms of fraud, if not the mathematical certainty presented by Mr. D’Souza. The piece is disturbing at best and should compel more states to remove drop boxes and cause election authorities to investigate election irregularities further.”
This is precisely what happened on May 20 in Yuma County, AZ, where law enforcement raided not-for-profit organizations connected to the ballot trafficking outlined in 2000 Mules, which showed a disguised mule describing how the bogus drop box operation worked in Yuma. Although the Arizona County sheriff denies the raids were conducted due to the film, a new investigation is underway into election fraud. Should other counties follow suit, critics of D’Souza’s film may have to sit down and shut up because he will have accomplished his goal of shining the light on election fraud.