Russians on Facebook reportedly tried to organize and promote pro-Trump and anti-Hillary rallies last year near the presidential election.
Demonstrations for Floridian cities were created online by suspected Russian Facebook accounts—which have recently been deleted by Facebook—and brought together dozens of Trump supporters in real life, the Daily Beast reports.
On Aug. 20, 2016 there were dozens of collective events called “Florida Goes Trump!” They were all billed as a “patriotic state-wide flash mob,” across 17 different cities in the Sunshine State.
The Facebook event page said, “On August 20, we want to gather patriots on the street of Floridian towns and cities and march to unite America and support Donald Trump! Our flash mob will occur in several places at the same time; more details about locations with be added later. Go Donald!”
The Beast could not confirm how many of those events actually brought out supporters, but there is video and photo evidence of rallies that happened in Fort Lauderdale and Coral Springs.
The Facebook event was organized by a page called Being Patriotic, a page with 200,000 followers, which was closed on Aug. 2017 by Facebook. There was also a Twitter account “march_for_trump” that was suspended around the same time this year. A Facebook spokesman told the Beast the company was “not able to confirm any of the details” about the origin of Being Patriotic.
Being Patriotic also promoted other events last year such as a July “Down With Hillary” protest in New York outside of Clinton’s campaign headquarters, a September 11 pro-Trump rally in Manhattan, multiple “Miners for Trump” demonstrations in Philadelphia and Pittsburg last October, and a pro-Trump rally outside Trump Tower in November post-election.
H/T the Daily Beast