The ‘Audit’ Trying to Steal Arizona for Trump Just Got Suspended From Twitter

The account has been spreading lies and conspiracy theories about the election being stolen from former President Donald Trump.
July 28, 2021, 1:42pm
Supporters of President Donald Trump demonstrate at a ‘Stop the Steal’ rally in front of the State Capitol on November 7, 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)​
Supporters of President Donald Trump demonstrate at a ‘Stop the Steal’ rally in front of the State Capitol on November 7, 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

The official account of the Arizona audit has been shut down permanently by Twitter for violating its rules on “platform manipulation and spam.”

Just like those conducting and cheerleading the sham recount in Maricopa County, the Arizona audit Twitter account had been spreading lies and conspiracy theories about the election being stolen from former president Donald Trump.

Twitter confirmed the suspensions in a statement to VICE News, saying the ban was implemented for “violating the Twitter rules on platform manipulation and spam.” 

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According to the company’s own rules, operating multiple accounts with overlapping use cases, such as identical or similar personas or substantially similar content, is prohibited.

The account was being run, at least at one point, by Ken Bennett, a former Republican secretary of state in Arizona who was appointed by Senate President Karen Fann as the liaison between the audit and the Senate. Last week Bennett was permanently barred from the audit building where the audit is happening, after he leaked private data to outside experts.

The account was strongly criticized back in May when it falsely claimed that observers sent by Secretary of State Katie Hobbs snuck into the audit by pretending to be part of the media. The claims led to death threats against Hobbs that meant state troopers had to be assigned to her.

Responding to the criticism at the time, Bennett told VICE News that “there were a few days where some volunteers were running things without my approval, but we've corrected that situation,” adding that he was then in control of the account.

It is unclear if Bennett was still in control of the account at the time it was suspended. Bennett did not immediately respond to VICE News’ request for comment.

The account was suspended Tuesday afternoon along with an aggressively trollish account known as Audit War Room and a number of state-specific “War Room” accounts seeking to promote possible audits in Georgia, Nevada, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.

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While the Audit War Room account has remained anonymous, open source researchers tracking the Arizona audit have presented compelling evidence that the account is being run by Jordan Conradson, a teenage reporter for the Gateway Pundit who’s been a fixture in the audit building in Phoenix during the recount.

Analysis of tweets posted by Conradson’s own account and the War Room account show significant overlap in terms of the timing of tweets and the content of those posts. 

On his personal Instagram account, Conradson has also used the #AuditWarRoom hashtag in one of his posts, and photos taken inside the audit building contain almost identical images to those posted by the War Room Twitter account.

Conradson, who has posted photos of himself with some of the biggest proponents of the Big Lie, including Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Rep. Paul Gosar, didn’t immediately respond to VICE News’ request for comment.

On Telegram, the Audit War Room account didn’t pull any punches when reporting that its Twitter account had been suspended.

“Twitter has started a war with the American Patriots,” the account wrote, adding that it was also setting up an account on Gettr, the social network started by former Trump aide Jason Miller.

Conradson has also posted several pictures of himself inside the recount center with OAN reporter Christina Bobb, one of which was tagged with the AuditWarRoom hashtag.

Bobb was also previously caught up in Twitter’s suspensions of accounts linked to the audit when an account for her dark-money group Voice & Votes was banned.

The group, which Bobb has boosted over 140 times on air in recent months, was raising money to help fund the audit in Maricopa County, even while the host reported on the very same audit.