The campaign is being run by Lincoln Strategy Group, a political consulting firm Tempe, Ariz. Its founder, Nathan Sproul, has been linked to several instances of suspected voter fraud and barred from Republican Party contracts. The company also worked with Steve Gates, the only person previously identified with Protect America's Consumers, on the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity's 2009 "astroturf" campaign, when it was busted for sending fake letters to Congress.
* * *
Outside the event, five women held a banner and handed out fliers, obtained by PI, criticizing Cordray and linking to the fake website. But when these protesters were asked for their affiliation, they said they were day laborers paid to be there, according to Mikki Anaya, the New Mexico director of the Center for Economic Integrity, a community development organization, who attended the meeting. Anaya saw Bowman speak with the protesters as the meeting wrapped up. "It's not authentic at any level," Anaya told PI. "It's an intentional distraction from the true issue."