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19th CD candidate reportedly built career on domestic surveillance

Feb 23, 2018 7:15 am

Writing in The Intercept, Lee Fang is reporting previously undisclosed details from the business background of Democrat Patrick Ryan, a candidate in the June 19th Congressional District primary election. According to Fang, Ryan has failed to disclose that his business used to be domestic surveillance. During his tenure with a firm called Berico Technologies, Ryan compiled a plan to create a real-time surveillance operation of left-wing groups and labor unions. At one point, Fang writes, the proposal included an idea to spy on the families of high-profile Democratic activists and plant fake documents with labor unions in an attempt to discredit them. The idea, a joint venture with HBGary Federal and the Peter Thiel [TEAL] -backed Palantir Technologies, fell apart in 2011 after details appeared in a series of news reports. Ryan then went on to work with Dataminr, a company that provided social media monitoring for law enforcement, producing real-time updates on political activists, including Black Lives Matter. In a statement to The Intercept, Ryan’s campaign said he expressed “concerns with the nature of the work” at Berico Technologies, noting the project did not advance past the proposal stage. As for his time with Dataminr, Ryan said that work "saved lives by providing real-time information to first responders and others in harms way." Ryan's campaign has received financial support from The New Democrat Coalition PAC, a group that supports business-friendly Democrats for Congress. The PAC wants to grow the number of moderate and conservative-leaning Democrats in Congress next year. Read the full story in The Intercept_.