Missouri bill would prevent ‘Zuckbucks’ from flooding local election offices

By Bryan Babb, DCNF

A Missouri bill that would prevent private money, including sizable donations originating from Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, from going to state and local election officials passed in the General Assembly.

House Bill 1878 (HB 1878), sponsored primarily by Republican state Rep. John Simmons, passed in the House 97-47 and in the Senate 23-11. If Republican Gov. Mike Parson signs the bill, new restrictions will be placed on of Missouri election officials preventing them from spending or receiving “private moneys (sic), excluding in-kind donations, for preparing, administering, or conducting an election, including registering voters.”

In 2020, the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) spent $6.8 million on Missouri’s election process, according to the Capital Research Center. CTCL received hundreds of millions of dollars in funding from Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan in the same year “to promote safe and reliable voting.”

CTCL used the “Zuckbucks” primarily in likely Democratic districts in Missouri and other states, according to the New York Post. The CTCL’s expenditures helped these districts hire more poll workers and increased the amount of unmonitored private drop boxes, while demanding universal mail-in voting be promoted.

If signed into law, the bill would prevent groups such as the CTCL from funding local election offices. However, the bill states that in even-numbered years when state funds that proportionately counties are less than those a prior even-numbered year, then the Missouri secretary of state can receive private money “to disburse to counties based on the amount of registered voters in each county.”

Any private money the Missouri secretary of state receives will not be greater than the amount the county received from the state in the previous even-numbered year and the pending year “plus ten percent of the total amount that was appropriated in the previous even-numbered year,” the bill continues.

HB 1878 would also forbid absentee ballots being submitted via drop box and the executive authorization of mail-in ballots.

Meta, CTCL, and Rep. Simmons did not immediately respond to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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