Election 2006: The GOP's final act of desperation before the election
UPDATE: Conquest Communications Group, working for the GOP, appears to behind many of these robocalls. Details and suggested actions here.
There is no act criminal enough for today's Republican party leadership. In what is clearly a sign of sheer desperation in the midst of bad polling news on the eve of the election (see here and here), the GOP has unleashed nationwide fraud in order to steal the election by suppressing voter turnout for the Dems - I'm talking about repeated robocalls (sometimes late in the night) to potential voters to make them angry and either vote against the Democrat or not vote at all. Examples of robocalls are here and here and stats on how much the GOP is using them is here. Some examples: New Hampshire, New Jersey, Montana, Maryland, Ohio, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Washington, etc. The GOP is using this in at least 53 races across the country.
As Matt Stoller says (emphasis mine):
Terry Nelson, an unindicted co-conspirator in the TRMPAC Tom Delay scandal, and the boss of Jim Tobin, the convicted felon in the NH phone-jamming case, is the head of opposition research for the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee. So it's not a surprise that these kinds of unethical dishonest tactics are being used.
Terry Nelson is a key GOP operative, a senior advisor to John McCain and someone heavily involved with both Tom Delay and Karl Rove. This guy breaks the law and gets rewarded for it. Democrats should make election reform a very core part of their agenda for a lot of reasons, but the rampant criminal nature of the Republican operative class is a pretty good rationale.
Fortunately, there's something you can do about this. You can get out into the field and help candidates with GOTV. Go to Do More Than Vote, which has nice lists of opportunities to work, work, work.
Let's blow these people out of the water. Even Terry Nelson can't stop that.
FIRST THING MONDAY morning: Call your local Telco business office and subscribe to the Call Trace feature. This will cost you about $5 per month but it will capture calls that do not show on Caller ID, and turn the number over to Telco Security for investigation. You have to agree to press charges. You might also have to file a police report. Police departments in progressie jurisdictions may be more amenable to this than in hardcore R jurisdictions.
In SBC/AT&T areas in California, residential business office is 1-800-288-2020, and for business subscribers, 1-800-750-BELL (BELL = 2355 on your dial). If you're not sure, dial 0 for Operator and ask for the number.
Additionally, some quick tips:
- If you have a voice mail based phone system, here is a tip on how to record the robocalls for use in a criminal investigation
- Call 1-888-DEM-VOTE, the DNC's voter protection hotline
- Josh suggests: "If you've gotten one of these calls, write down as much information about it as you can (time, phone number, etc.) and call the 'metro desk' of your local paper."
Let's make life hell for the criminals trying to suppress the vote.