Looks like Joanne The Scammer has some serious competition on her hands. This week, a college student from the Midwest was outed for having posed as a member of the Republican Party to raise more than six figures from unknowing conservatives.
The young woman—who used Twitter to enact her scam—posted a photo in a “Make America Great Again” hat and cleverly touted the storyline of having been cut off by her parents because of her support for Trump. The student also doctored a text message exchange to further sell the narrative and set up a Go Fund Me page for the deposits.
In an interview with Elle, the unabashed swindler, who goes by the name “Karen,” said that she got the idea for her scam from a young, Black woman who was an actual Trump supporter. In fact, the scam started out as a joke to make fun of her.
“[The Republican Party] needs Black faces,” the college student told Elle, “so they throw money at any Black person that says they support Trump so that people stop thinking of them as the ‘racist party’ But it’s never going to happen.”
“Karen” was outed after a Twitter user went back to previous posts and saw that her admiration for former President Barack Obama made her an unlikely Trump supporter.
“The Trumpies saw my old tweets about Obama and realized maybe I might have been lying. But I was faster and took everything before it could be taken from me.”
Since successfully scamming conservatives out of thousands, Twitter user @chckpeas has shown no signs of apologizing for any of it. In fact, the young woman has posted several tweets to the contrary, showing that she’s ordered a new iPhone and gone shopping with the collected funds.
According to the crafty con-woman, the scam can’t be considered stealing because Republicans aren’t people, anyway.
But, as it turns out, she over-exaggerated her haul. In an interview with New York Magazine
, Karen (who gave the name “Quran”) said she didn’t get much money at all. “That’s between me and the IRS,” she said.
She then said that she didn’t scam anyone at all:
“That’s the thing though: I didn’t,” she confessed. “I just felt really weird about taking their money. This could go south really fast, I just decided to refund everyone and give their money back. I think it was like maybe $200 at that point.”
According to NY Mag, “email screenshots [Karen/Quaran] provided back this claim up. GoFundMe refunded at least $90 (one $50 donation and two for $20).”