Melissa Carone is a contract IT worker who was a key witness in the Trump campaign’s Michigan voter fraud claims. However, her appearance before a state House panel has the memes flying, with some people joking about whether she’s really a Saturday Night Live character.
“Everything that happened at that TCF Center was fraud,” she said, when appearing on December 2 in front of a Michigan House oversight committee. “Every single thing.” On some of her social media pages, she goes by the name Mellissa Carone, and a LinkedIn page by that name includes documents calling her Melissa Wright and Mellissa Wright. Her piled up blonde hair, slightly slurred speaking style and unverified accusations sparked rounds of Twitter jokes.
She’s a former Hooters waitress who calls claims she was a stripper “far-fetched.”
“I have 19 things in my affidavit. I was at the TCF Center for 27 hours. I am a mother, I have two children, and I have two degrees,” Carone said in a video shared by President Donald Trump on Twitter. “I don’t know any woman in the world that would write an affidavit under oath just to write it. You can go to prison for this. So anyways, I want to make this very clear. My, I was initially supposed to work at the Detroit Department of Elections building. That was an order by my manager … part-owner of Dominion. I have it all in emails. … I was trained on the adjudication and tabulation process. … I know for a fact there was illegal activity going on there. People have pictures of people carrying ballots out of that place.”
Twitter immediately filled with jokes.
However, others leaped to Carone’s defense.
Either way, she quickly became a meme. At one point during her testimony, Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani even tried to “shush” her.
Mellissa Carone has an acting/modeling profile on Explore Talent.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. A Video Showing Carone Insisting the Michigan Poll Books Are ‘Wildly Off’ Has Millions of Views
A video captioned, “This is like pretty much the trumpiest thing I’ve ever seen” has 16.3 million views on Twitter. It was shared by an editor at large of the Daily Beast.
In the video, Carone squares off with Representative Steven Johnson of the Michigan House of Representatives, talking over him as he tries to ask a question.
“The poll book is completely off. Completely off. … I’d say that poll book is off by over 100,000. That poll book … how many registered voters are on there? Do you even know the answer to that? … Zero. Zero. There’s zero. … What about the turnout rate? 120%?” she says at one point to Johnson.
Others comments by Carone in the video are:
“You take a look again. Take a look again.”
“Dead people too?”
“What did you guys do, take it and do something crazy to it?”
“The numbers aren’t off by 30,000 votes,” says Johnson. At another point, he asks, “Are we saying that the poll book is either wildly off or that they are filling in names?”
“It’s wildly off. And dead people voted. And illegals voted,” says Carone, who asks at another point, “I signed something that says if I’m wrong, I can go to prison. Did you?”
2. Carone Performed IT Duties for Dominion Voting Systems on Election Day as a Contract Worker
Court documents say that Carone was a contractor for Dominion Voting Systems to do IT work at the TCF Center. “Ms. Carone was at the TCF Center from 6:15 a.m. on November 3, 2020 to 4:00 a.m. on November 4, 2020. She then went home to get a few hours sleep and worked again at the TCF Center from 10 a.m. until 1:45 p.m. on November 4th.” She claimed she “witnessed nothing but fraudulent actions take place.”
You can read more about the controversies surrounding Dominion Voting Systems here. Dominion has denied claims of wrongdoing.
Carone appeared November 11 on Lou Dobbs Tonight on Fox News, making a series of unverified claims about the election. One of her claims during that interview was that vans intended to carry food to election workers were instead being used for undefined nefarious purposes. When Dobbs asked what the vans had in them instead of food, Carone replied, “I never saw anything being brought out of the vans. I know that whatever was being brought out of the vans was being brought out of the back of the vans. But I was not allowed over in that area at all.”
She has also insisted, as The Washington Post reported, that “tens of thousands of votes had been counted twice.”
The memes quickly flew after her appearance.
3. A Judge Previously Deemed Carone’s Claims Not Credible
According to The Washington Post, Carone signed an affidavit saying that she saw two vans that were supposed to be delivering food, but, “I never saw any food coming out of the vans, coincidentally it was announced on the news that Michigan had found over 100,000 more ballots — not even two hours after the last van left.”
Wayne County Circuit Judge Timothy Kenn on November 13 concluded that Carone’s “allegations are simply not credible,” The Post reported, adding that Giuliani has highlighted her claims.
You can read her claims in court documents here that were submitted as part of the Trump campaign’s unsuccessful attempt to stop certification of the Wayne County election results.
In court documents, Carone stated:
3. The counters (which were trained very little or not at all), were handed a ‘batch’ (stack of 50) of mail-in ballots in which they would run through the tabulator. The tabulators would get jammed 4-5 times an hour, when they jammed the computer would put out an error that tells the worker the ballot number that was jammed and gives an option to either discard the batch or continue scanning at which the counter should discard the batch. I witnessed countless workers rescanning the batches without discarding them first which resulted in ballots being counted 4-5 times.
4. At approximately midnight I was called over to assist one of the counters with a paper jam and noticed his PC had a number of over 400 ballots scanned – which means one batch was counted over 8 times. This happened countless times while I was at the TCF Center. I confronted my manager, Nick Ikonomakis saying how big of a problem this was, Nick told me he didn’t want to hear that we have a big problem. He told me we are here to do assist with IT work, not to run their election.
5. The adjudication process, from my understanding there’s supposed to be a Republican and a Democrat judging from these ballots. I overheard numerous workers talking during shift change in which over 20 machines had two Democrats judging the ballots – resulting in an unfair process.
9. When a worker had a ballot that they either could not read, or it had something spilled on it, they would go to a table that had blank ballots on it and fill it out. They were supposed to be filling them out exactly like the one they had received but this was not the case at all. The workers would also sign the name of the person that the ballot belonged to-which is clearly illegal.
13. I called the FBI and made a report with them. I was told that I will be getting a call back.
4. Carone’s Social Media Pages Show She Is a Trump Supporter
A Facebook page in the name of Mellissa Carone from Allen Park, Michigan, shows she attended a “Stop the Steal” rally supporting Trump. She has also promoted her media interviews on alleged election fraud, shared related articles, and made numerous pro-Trump and anti-Joe Biden posts.
A LinkedIn page with the same spelling says Carone, of the Detroit metropolitan area, is a cyber security analyst working in IT since 2006, earning a bachelor’s degree in information technology from ITT Technical Institute in Dearborn in 2015, an associate’s degree in computer/information technology administration and management from the University of Michigan in 2019, and a certificate in security with that college in 2018. Heavy has reached out to the University of Michigan to verify that claim.
Another LinkedIn page for Mellissa Carone-Wright lists her as an “arts and crafts professional” in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, with 8 years of volunteer experience.
The profile picture on the Facebook page shows Carone with Giuliani. One photo has a Trump 2020 filter. The page reads, “‘Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom’ #trump2020 #boymom #girlmom #cybersecurity.” The page shared a photo of a Time Magazine cover showing Biden, writing, “What a joke- clearly Time Magazine isn’t credible. What a shock these people are in for.”
Another post read, “But Biden won?!? lol this is awesome, we will get #4moreyears like it or not. BTW Lansing is PACKED too, I’m am here I will be posting on it later today.” The page indicates that she’s engaged.
There are police reports accusing Mellissa Anne Wright of crimes. Online databases show Carone has used the name Mellissa Carone-Wright.
Carone appears to have been involved in a domestic dispute per police reports in which another woman was cited.
The other woman named in the police report wrote a series of allegations on Facebook in January 2020. She claimed that Carone sent “pornographic videos of herself” and her current boyfriend, the father of the other woman’s child, and then told police the other woman had hacked into her email and stolen the videos. She said the incident happened in November 2018 with an investigation that continued into 2019, and that she had a no-contact order against Carone.
5. Carone Says She Worked as a Cyber Security Analyst for an Automaker
Carone’s LinkedIn page says she had an internship as a cyber security analyst for Ciber Global from May 2019 to August 2020. Her duties “required critical thinking and exceptional problem solving skills” and “required the ability to stay calm under pressure.” She also wrote that she was responsible for “installing security patches on gauge PCs at numerous Ford plants to improve usability.”
Carone wrote that she was a full-time cyber security analyst for Ford Motor Company in Livonia, Michigan, also from May 2019 to August 2020, and had an internship as an IT technician for a painting company in Dearborn, Michigan, from May 2018 to August 2020. She also wrote that she worked as an IT specialist on a help desk for a company in Lincoln Park, Michigan, from January 2006 to March 2016.
However, we reached out to Ford Motor Company. “We looked into this. Carone was never an employee of Ford Motor Co.,” their spokesman told us.
She further wrote that she is a “certified ethical hacker.”