Kamala’s KHive trolls boosted by bots while media defends harassment campaigns

While the media defends KHive’s disturbing attacks on critics of Kamala Harris, new findings reveal a Democratic Party-linked bot farm amplified its leaders.

An April 8 LA Times profile of the “KHive” attempted to put a positive spin on Twitter’s nest of Vice President Kamala Harris super fans, omitting the group’s online abuses, offline harassment, and alarming origins. Describing the KHive as “the type of modern political army that politicians increasingly rely on for both support and defense,” the LA Times painted its members as political realists united by a desire to defend one of the most powerful politicians in the country from unfair attacks. 

Delarosa’s KHive is well known for bullying and threatening critics of Vice President Harris.

According to Vox, KHive credited Delarosa with organizing KHive in a Facebook group that started in 2017. Bustle confirmed that many KHive accounts point to Delarosa as the creator of KHive, as did the LA Times’ source, Reecie Colbert, whom it identified as “one of the more prominent members.” During an appearance on  CNN pundit Bakari Sellers’ podcast , Colbert credited Delarosa with creating KHive.

Beyond its omission of this obviously salient fact, the Times failed to inform readers that Colbert and the Twitter account @BlackWomenViews were the same person. Instead, the Times quoted Colbert as two separate people.

Democratic Party-connected Twitter bots helped drive KHive

The LA Times let KHive describe themselves as “truth tellers” when, in fact, they are notorious for spreading noxious lies about their political opponents. For instance, KHive spread a baseless lie that journalist Walker Bragman was “literally caught running fake black Twitter accounts.” In reality, it was KHive members who were connected to a network of fake Twitter accounts — some of which used the profile photos of deceased women of color.

In 2018, a forensically detailed investigation discovered a network of Twitter bots run by Democratic Party communications consultant, Sally Albright. Delarosa (then @BravenakBlog) and her fellow KHive ringleader, @WonderKing82, formerly known as @MrDane1982 and @MrWeeks1982, were among the Twitter accounts most promoted by the bot network.

One of the tweets fraudulently boosted by Albright

In 2019, Albright was again caught gaming Twitter “for fraudulent purposes”. However, her Twitter account was not banned until late 2020, near the end of the election.

At least three of Delarosa’s accounts (@Bravenak, @BravenakBlog, @BiancaNDelarosa) were eventually suspended by Twitter for violations, including “abuse and harassment.” Delarosa’s current Twitter handle is @RealKHiveQueenB. She also uses @QueenBDelarosa, and has used many others, including @KHiveQueenB, @KHiveQueenBee, and @WonderBitch81.

Using multiple accounts to circumvent suspension violates Twitter’s rules. In fact, KHive uses the very same tactics that Twitter banned Q-Anon accounts for using. Yet still to this day, KHive proudly admits to circumventing suspensions as far back as 2015, and remains on Twitter.

Retweeted by Delarosa, Apr 8, 2021

Violent inspiration

In June 2020, Delarosa unleashed a call for murderous violence: “Like actually killing people for not agreeing”; mocked people promoting MLK as “too soft”; and laughed about breaking someone’s nose with one punch, while blaming the victim – “It’s his fault,” she stated.

Such declarations of violence may be why the Harris-friendly media makes little to no mention of the Queen Bee. However, there was one particularly ironic exception to the code of silence around the KHive’s menacing behavior: MSNBC’s Malcolm Nance. On Twitter, the network’s national security contributor acknowledged that some KHive tweets “openly expressed racism & violent threats”, and asked his followers to report Delarosa.

Threats of harm

In its fawning depiction of KHive, the LA Times failed to mention that its members have taken their harassment campaigns beyond Twitter and into people’s personal lives. Two women told HuffPost that KHive members made threats against their children.

KHive contacted one woman’s ex-husband at his place of employment to tell him he should check on their 11-year old daughter. KHive members accused another woman of being a “white supremacist,” calling her place of work 15 times to get her fired. Then someone filed a report with child protection services and falsely accused her of child abuse.

The LA Times reported that KHiver Chantay Berry denied making threats when she tweeted a list of Harris critics who “may go through some things pretty soon…” However, in a video published on Twitter, the paper’s other KHive source, Kenny Walden, threatened everyone on Berry’s list.

“Something is about to happen to y’all. Ya’ll bout to lose your mother fucking job”, Walden promised. “Every mother fucker who was on Chantay’s list is a fucking revisionist and a white supremacist.”

(The KHive list of alleged “white supremacists” happens to include people of color.)

KHive often insults people for being “white”. Sometimes they’re anti-semitic. Delarosa says “The jews ran off…We’re mad at them for abandoning us to go be white with white people.” In another post, she suggested Jewish people hate Black people.

Albert Molina told HuffPost that KHive repeatedly said he was white and accused him of being a white supremacist, even though he identifies as Hispanic.

Delarosa taunted Molina with a racial slur.

Media hypocrisy

The LA Times cast blame on Bernie Sanders, during his 2020 campaign, for his supporters “abusive behavior”, To this day, however, the Times defends Kamala Harris from association with the verified “abusive behavior” of KHive. There is literally no mention of “abuse”, and scarcely any allusion to it in the paper’s Kamala stan coverage.

As national political campaigns fight for social media dominance, it is natural that the online bases they establish will attract some deranged individuals. But inside the KHive, the most violently unhinged voices tend to earn the most praise while mainstream media looks the other way.

Harris and her husband, Douglas Emhoff, have openly embraced and encouraged the KHive, praising its members as “pretty awesome.”