Post 2020 election information has revealed that Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections, Wendy Sartory Link, accepted a $6.8 million dollar grant from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg during the 2020 elections via the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) while Facebook actively censored the campaigns of Republican candidates, including Congressional candidate Laura Loomer and Presidential candidate Donald Trump, two Republican Palm Beach County candidates and residents who are permanently banned from Facebook.
Under Sartory Link, Palm Beach County received the largest grant from Zuckerberg in the state of Florida out of the nearly $400 million in grants he and his wife Priscilla Chan gave to Supervisor of Elections offices in Democrat leaning counties throughout the country during the election season.
Most of the election equipment on Wendy Sartory’s wish list for the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections office was purchased with Zuckerberg’s grant money, and according to Wendy Sartory Link, not all of the money was spent, and she has stated her plans to use it during the 2022 elections in Florida.
However, with the recent signing of Govenror Ron DeSantis’s Florida election integrity bill, which he first announced and signed in Palm Beach County, Wendy Sartory Link is in direct violation of the new law, which has established a “prohibition on the use of private funds for election-related expenses”, The new policy was created in direct response to the fact that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and others in Big Tech provided funding to some states and cities last year to help run elections. Zuckerberg’s donations of nearly $400 million dollars for election operations during 2020 has many crying foul, with accusations of campaign finance violations and election interference. Many Republicans have accused Zuckerberg of using the funding in targeted blue areas, favoring Democrats.
The legislation states, “No agency or state or local official responsible for conducting elections, including, but not limited to, a supervisor of elections, may solicit, accept, use, or dispose of any donation in the form of money, grants, property, or personal services from an individual or a nongovernmental entity for the purpose of funding election-related expenses or voter education, voter outreach, or registration programs.”
Despite the fact that Wendy Sartory Link is prohibited from using the leftover funds from Zuckerberg’s 2020 election grant in any future Florida elections, she told Fox News in April that she plans on using leftover funds from Zuckerberg, which are now being referred to as “Zuckerbucks”, for the 2022 election in Palm Beach County.
Wendy Sartory Link told Fox News,
“Our original understanding of the grant was that it had to be used for 2020, so we didn’t spend all of the money. We are now getting permission from CTCL to complete the purchases. So, to answer your question, some of it would be for 2021, 2022, because some of that equipment, we weren’t able to get in time — whether it’s equipment or the firewall, some of the security, or IT security programs, didn’t get implemented. We knew we weren’t going to have time to get them in as it turned out for 2020. So we didn’t purchase them because we wanted to make sure we stayed within the definition of the grant, which at the time was for 2020. We have since gotten permission for those now, so they are in that process for some of the equipment and some of the IT programs.”
Along with her admission to use Zuckerbucks for the 2022 election in direct violation of Florida’s new election integrity law, Wendy Sartory Link has committed an ethics violation by accepting funds from a partisan company that actively suppressed the campaign and was involved in litigation with Laura Loomer, who ran for Congress in Florida’s 21st Congressional District, located in Palm Beach County.
Loomer’s campaign made history as the first deplatformed campaign in United States history, and it was the only general election campaign banned by Facebook during the 2020 election cycle. Following Loomer’s announcement that she was running for Congress, Facebook went as far as changing their terms of service in reaction to her campaign and established a new policy that denied canddiates access to Facebook accounts if they were banned prior to running for office. As a result, Laura Loomer for Congress was the only campaign in the nation that was denied Facebook access during the 2020 election cycle.
Despite meeting with Loomer on October 13, 2020 at the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections office and knowing this information about Facebook censoring Loomer’s campaign, Wendy Sartory Link never disclosed her acceptance of $6.8 million in grant money from Zuckerberg nearly one month after Loomer officially won the Republican primary to be on the ballot as the official Republican nominee for Congress in a Congressional District located in Palm Beach County.
The Palm Beach County grant from Zuckerberg was received on Sept. 30, more than one month before the November general election. Loomer won the Primary on August 18th. Equipment that was used in the 2020 elections in Palm Beach County, FL was purchased with the Zuckerberg grant money, which begs the question, why did Wendy Sartory Link refrain from disclosing this information to the voters, as well as the Laura Loomer for Congress campaign that was deliberately being silenced by Facebook in an election season?
Red flags should also be raised over the large discrepancy between grants received by different counties in South Florida.
While Palm Beach County received a Zuckerberg grant for $6.8 million in 2020, Miami Dade County received $2.4 million, and Broward County received $1.4 million.
In other words, Palm Beach County received nearly double the grant money that Miami Dade and Broward counties received from Zuckerberg, combined.
Could this be because the most anti-big tech platform in the nation was radiating out of Palm Beach County, FL through the Laura Loomer for Congress campaign? It certainly has people asking the question as to how this money was spent and why the Laura Loomer For Congress campaign was never notified of the egregious conflict of interest.
Zuckerberg’s money via the CTCL was dispersed in 49 states across 2,500 jurisdictions for election administration to pay for additional polling places, ballot drop boxes, and “voter education”.
Along with failing to be transparent about Zuckerberg’s financing of the election equipment in Palm Beach County for the 2020 elections, Wendy Sartory Link has also not provided a line item forensic accounting of the money that was spent, and what it was spent on.
Following the widespread corruption in both the Broward County and Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections office in both 2016 and 2018, in which a recount was issued between the elections of then candidate Ron DeSantis and Democrat Andrew Gillum, there were widespread calls for removal of corrupt Supervisors of Elections, including Brenda Snipes and Susan Bucher. In January 2019, Susan Bucher was suspended by Govenror Ron DeSantis as the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections due to her role in election chaos during the 2018 midterm recount in Florida.
“An election that happened the week after Halloween, you ended up not having the recount done until after Christmas. Palm Beach County stands alone in that level of ineptitude,” Govenror DeSantis said of Bucher.
As her replacement, Governor DeSantis appointed Wendy Sartory Link, a West Palm Beach lawyer who pledged to serve the rest of Bucher’s term, but to not run for re-election in 2020. However, Wendy Sartory Link did end up running in the 2020 election, she won, and is now serving as the elected Supervisor of Elections of Palm Beach County.
It is worth noting that Wendy Sartory Link is a registered Democrat, and Political corruption within the Supervisor of Elections office in Palm Beach County seems to be a pattern.
Ahead of the 2022 elections, Wendy Sartory Link must be required to return all of the leftover Zuckerbucks she accepted in the form of a $6.8 million grant, or be held accountable in violation of Florida’s new election laws.
The Laura Loomer For Congress campaign will also be requesting that Governor DeSantis consider investigating Wendy Sartory Link’s acceptance of the Zuckerberg grant money as well as consider a total forensic investigation and analysis of every dollar of the grant money that was spent during the 2020 election in Palm Beach County. It is highly inappropriate for the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections office to be taking money from a partisan tech CEO who actively censored candidates on the ballot in Palm Beach County in 2020, and has pledged to further do so in 2022 and 2024 through measures to censor Governor DeSantis’s re-election campaign, and President Trump if he decides to run for President a