Fact Check: WEF Did NOT Sign 'Order Cancelling US Election' To Make Americans 'Ruled By Global Elite For Their Own Good'

Fact Check

  • by: Uliana Malashenko
Fact Check: WEF Did NOT Sign 'Order Cancelling US Election' To Make Americans 'Ruled By Global Elite For Their Own Good' No Such Order

Did the World Economic Forum (WEF) issue an "order" banning elections in the United States and will Americans from now on be ruled by a global elite? No, none of it is true: A non-governmental organization such as the WEF doesn't have the capacity or power to override the existing American laws. The article's headline notwithstanding, the source cited to support this false claim did not make a single reference to the WEF.

The story originated from an article (archived here) published by The People's Voice on August 29, 2023, under the title:

WEF Signs Order Cancelling US Election: Americans Must Be

Ruled By Global Elite For Their Own Good.

It continued:

There will be no US elections in the future according to Klaus Schwab and his WEF cronies who have ordered the Deep State traitors working at the heart of government to pull the plug on the 2024 election.

Here is what the article looked like at the time of writing:

Screen Shot 2023-09-11 at 9.59.51 AM.png

(Source: The People's Voice screenshot taken on Mon Sep 11 13:59:51 2023 UTC)

The public affairs department of the World Economic Forum told Lead Stories via email on September 12, 2023, that the story is:

baseless and false.

A search for the keywords "World Economic Forum," "US election" and "cancel" on Google News limited to the most recent developments between August 1, 2023, and this writing does not produce any results:

Screen Shot 2023-09-11 at 10.06.06 AM.png

(Source: Google News screenshot taken on Mon Sep 11 14:06:06 2023 UTC)

In recent American history, the question of a possible election delay gained attention at least twice: after the 9/11 attack and in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic. Both times the idea of total cancelation was not seriously considered, and the federal election was held on the same day as usual, "the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November."

The U.S. Constitution -- the nation's supreme law -- contains several deadlines that have to be met so the country continues to have a head of the state. For example, according to the 20th Amendment, any current president's four-year term ends at noon on January 20, and that does not make an exception for those serving the first term. Thus, by then, state electoral votes have to be submitted to Congress. As the election law specifies, it has to happen by "the fourth Wednesday in December," roughly about a month before the current president's last day in office.

Neither the U.S. Constitution nor local state laws determining the exact voting procedures transfer any power over any election-related decisions to foreign or international actors such as the WEF, a Switzerland-based non-governmental organization mostly known for establishing an annual forum in Davos, Switzerland.

A closer look at The People's Voice article shows that, contrary to the headline and the first sentence, the third paragraph admits that "there will be a vote." In fact, the piece doesn't even cite the purported WEF "order" -- it only refers to a guest essay by Adam Grant, a professor at the Wharton School, published in The New York Times on August 21, 2023. Its original title was "Elections Are Bad for Democracy" (archived here), but later it was changed to "The Worst People Run for Office. It's Time for a Better Way."

This opinion piece did contain a sentence suggesting that "if we want public office to have integrity, we might be better off eliminating elections altogether." But it did not overtly say or imply in a more subtle form that Americans should be "ruled by the global elite for their own good."

The piece did not discuss the WEF. Contrary to the claim in The People's Voice, Grant's article exploring a different, non-traditional way of looking at the electoral process did not suggest any external rule at all:

In the United States, we already use a version of a lottery to select jurors. What if we did the same with mayors, governors, legislators, justices and even presidents?

The piece argued that such a "lottery" -- compared to expensive federal races -- may save money, democratize the pool of potential leaders and reduce incentives for corruption, especially if the candidates are pre-selected just like jurors are so that the people who may not meet basic requirements for the job will be excluded.

But the author did not offer any particular path to the practical implementation of such ideas: Grant is not an elected official with the direct power to change laws -- he is an organizational psychologist, and one of the main opening arguments he cited was not in-depth legal or political research. It was a psychological study that reached the conclusion that groups with randomly selected leaders demonstrate better performance than those whose leaders are "systematically selected."

Grant's articles did appear on the WEF website in the "Agenda articles" section described as "opinion articles, timely analyses and explainers from leaders in business, politics, and civil society." However, he is not a member of any bodies governing activities of the World Economic Forum.

Discussing The People's Voice claim, Reuters reported he described it as "wildly inaccurate," adding:

...my article called for a mechanism that would allow all citizens (as opposed to mostly elites) an equal opportunity to lead.

The People's Voice has a lengthy record of publishing false stories in the past. Its Facebook page, "The People's Voice," lost its verification checkmark, according to a 2018 report from Media Matters For America.

The website describes itself as a resource "comprised of various web pages operated by Fact Checked Limited," but it has nothing to do with fact-checking.

As of this writing, it contained a liability disclaimer, saying:


Other Lead Stories fact checks about elections can be found here.

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  Uliana Malashenko

Uliana Malashenko is a New York-based freelance writer and fact checker.

Read more about or contact Uliana Malashenko

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