'Stop the Steal' Facebook Group Taken Down After Attracting 300,000 Members in Two Days

Facebook appears to have deleted a "Spot the Steal" group from its website. The group's aim was to convince its members to interfere in vote counts. Membership in the group skyrocketed in the days following the election, gaining over 300,000 people in two days.

Nonprofit Sleeping Giants shared the news that the page was taken down on their Twitter account. While the group itself is still visible in Google searches, the Facebook page shows that the "content isn't available right now."

CONFIRMED: The “Stop the Steal” page, which encouraged organizations to disrupt the vote count, has been taken down by @facebook. https://t.co/7nGFf9wvtr

— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) November 5, 2020

The group was created by Amy Kremer, founder of the conservative organization "Women for America First." Kremer tweeted when the group was removed, calling it "outrageous." She said that social media was "complicit" in "The left is trying to steal an election," despite the fact that her organization seems to want to halt the Democratic process of counting every vote.

The organization has started a website, asking for donations and calling for "boots on the ground." While it doesn't explicitly state what it expects those boots on the ground to do, before linking to the donation page, it does say that resources will be needed "From legal and communications to travel and technology."

"Democrats are scheming to disenfranchise and nullify Republican votes. It's up to us, the American People, to fight and to put a stop to it," the website says.

Despite the large group being deleted, a number of similar, smaller groups have popped up, with some focusing their election disruption efforts locally, while others appear to be more national.

The largest group has about 2,000 members (and counting) and is trying to gain similar momentum to the original group. A post tries to warn people in the group how to protect it from getting deleted, including warning that it will be made private in three days. Another post said it would be made private once 10,000 people joined.

In October, Facebook announced that one of its goals for the election was "Protecting the integrity of the election by fighting foreign interference, misinformation and voter suppression."

Facebook's October press release said that it would also delete content that encouraged voter intimidation, arguably exactly what those behind the #StoptheSteal groups are trying to do. "[W]e will also remove calls for people to engage in poll watching when those calls use militarized language or suggest that the goal is to intimidate, exert control, or display power over election officials or voters," the announcement stated.

In a statement received by Newsweek, a Facebook spokesperson explained why the group was deleted. "In line with the exceptional measures that we are taking during this period of heightened tension, we have removed the Group 'Stop the Steal,' which was creating real-world events. The group was organized around the delegitimization of the election process, and we saw worrying calls for violence from some members of the group," the spokesperson said.

Count the votes
Demonstrators with ShutDown DC hold a protest to promote the counting of votes near the White House in Washington, DC, November 5, 2020. Getty/SAUL LOEB / AFP