Former AG Bill Barr laughs at Dinesh D'Souza's election conspiracy theory film '2000 Mules' in January 6 Committee deposition

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US Attorney General Bill Barr is pictured on October 15, 2020.Jeff Roberson/Pool/AFP via Getty Images
  • Former AG Bill Barr mocked and trashed the conclusions of film "2,000 Mules."

  • The film, made by Dinesh D'Souza and True The Vote, claims fraud took place at ballot drop boxes.

  • Barr called the film, which has also been panned by experts, as "unimpressive" and "indefensible."

Former Attorney General Bill Barr mocked  the premise of "2000 Mules," a conspiratorial movie that purports to show massive fraud with ballot dropboxes in the 2020 election. The film has been widely panned by experts and fact-checkers. 

The committee's hearing on Monday focused on the election lies President Donald Trump Trump and his allies spread to discredit the 2020 election results. The hearing featured extended clips from Barr's sworn deposition before the committee.

"The election was not stolen by fraud, and I haven't seen anything since the election that changes my mind on that, including the '2000 Mules' movie," Barr said in his deposition, laughing.

The film, made by conservative activist Dinesh D'Souza and conservative election-focused group True The Vote, uses surveillance footage, photographs, and geolocation data from cellphones in key swing states to argue that people -- the "mules" -- committed election fraud by essentially stuffing ballot dropboxes with fraudulent ballots.

But election experts say that the evidence presented by the filmmakers isn't enough to show widespread improper activity with dropboxes, much less a conspiracy to steal the election.

"The [Georgia Bureau of Investigation] was unimpressed with it. I was similarly unimpressed with it," Barr said.

"The cellphone data is singularly unimpressive," Barr added. "Basically, if you take 2 million cellphones and figure out where they are physically in a big city like Atlanta or wherever, by definition, you're going to find many hundreds of them that have passed by and spent time in the vicinity these boxes. And the premise that if you go by five boxes or whatever it was, that that's a mule, is indefensible."


The Associated Press' in-depth fact check of the movie described the film as "based on faulty assumptions, anonymous accounts and improper analysis of cellphone location data, which is not precise enough to confirm that somebody deposited a ballot into a drop box, according to experts."

One reason that cellphone data is an imperfect measure of how many ballots are dropped off at a dropbox is that many ballot dropboxes are located in high-trafficked, easily-accessible public spaces like libraries, town halls and other government buildings, and even grocery stores.

President Donald Trump's spokeswoman Liz Harrington also asserted that the cellphone data collected by the makers of "2,000 Mules" helped solve the murder of a young girl in Atlanta, a claim discredited by True the Vote themselves, who acknowledged to NPR they contacted law enforcement two months after arrests had already been made in the murder.

Barr described the photographic evidence in the film as "lacking" and noted that even if the filmmakers had shown that so-called ballot harvesting occured, it wouldn't be enough to prove that those votes were fraudulent or would have swung the result of the election.

"Courts are not gonna throw out votes and then figure out what votes are harvested and throw them out," Barr said in his deposition. "The burden is on the challenging party to show that illegal votes were cast, that the votes were the result of undue influence or bribes...absent that evidence, I didn't see courts throwing out votes anyway."

D'Souza slammed the committee and Barr in a number of tweets, calling Barr ignorant and "a fat guy."

"The debunkers have themselves been thoroughly debunked. And all of them are too cowardly to debate the issue with me. As is the January 6 Committee," D'Souza wrote in a subsequent tweet.

Read the original article on Business Insider