It all started with this tweet:
i love working at the post office in Columbus, Ohio and ripping up absentee ballots that vote for trump
— raandy (@randygdub) October 16, 2016
I suspect that most postal workers, along with anyone who has ever cast an absentee ballot, would see that tweet and think “Well how would you do that?”
Absentee ballots are usually designed to protect the secrecy of the ballot box by using inner and outer envelopes which are supposed to be sealed before mailing. So if you really wanted to tear up ballots for a particular candidate, you’d need to open both envelopes first. But ballots arriving in envelopes that appear to have been tampered with aren’t counted, so you’d end up invalidating all of the ballots, not just the ones you tore up.
But that apparently didn’t occur to the editors at Gateway Pundit, who ran with the “story”- although they later added an update noting that the tweet was alleged to be a hoax, harrumphing that “I’ve seen people get banned from Twitter for less than this.”
The Drudge Report linked to the Gateway Pundit story, and Rush Limbaugh ranted that the story wasn’t being reported more widely because of liberal bias in the media, and, of course, Benghazi. Eventually the official USPS Help twitter account weighed in with this:
The Postal Service has completed an initial investigation of the mentioned tweets and does not believe these tweets were made by a postal employee. However, the Postal Service will continue to monitor this situation and if it is determined that the individual making the tweets is a postal employee and there is substantiated evidence of mail being tampered with or destroyed , then the Postal Service will take appropriate corrective action to address the situation.
To which “raandy” responded:
— raandy (@randygdub) October 17, 2016
For more, check out Wonkette’s take on the story.