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Amway Guy robot army encounters resistance

by: matt

Fri Oct 20, 2006 at 10:35:16 AM EDT

Dawson Bell writes in today's Detroit Free Press:
Some Michiganders were angry Thursday about recorded phone messages slamming Gov. Jennifer Granholm.

One, which appears to have been mostly received on Wednesday, used slightly vulgar language and triggered dozens of angry follow-up phone calls to the campaign of Granholm's challenger, Dick DeVos, and the Michigan Republican Party. Both said they had nothing to do with it and don't know who did.

The offending recording is of a woman's voice criticizing Granholm for "empty promises" and ends with the woman exclaiming, "Frankly, I'm pissed."


GOP spokeswoman Sarah Anderson, who said party headquarters got about 100 complaints in the last two days about the calls, said the party was not involved.

It was not immediately clear whether Michigan Working Families is a real entity. The Michigan AFL-CIO has used the phrase in some of its promotions, but AFL President Mark Gaffney said Thursday "it's stupid to think we're going to attack Granholm" and said he was preparing to file a lawsuit against Republicans, who he believes are behind the campaign. (emphasis added)
To quote one of the unfortunate victims - who sent me a copy of this pro-Dick DeVos robocall - "I'm glad my kids weren't in the room when the profanity started to fly. Nice family values."

Michiganliberal.com has obtained a copy of this latest pro-Dick DeVos robocall and has added it to the Republican Robocall Repository. This addition brings to 6 (six) the number of pro-Dick DeVos robocalls in the Repository. You may listen to the "pissed" robocall here.

P.S. - when are they at least going to learn not to hire "callers" with a Virginia accent? Someone who can figure out how to read their lines properly would be nice too.
matt :: Amway Guy robot army encounters resistance
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how pathetic and sad, and so very desperate of them. :sigh: I feel as if nothing should surprise me anymore....

I want to change the world, not help people adjust to it. - Millie Jeffrey, MI - National Women's labor and Democratic activist, Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient

Will AG Investigate?
I seem to faintly recall that when a suspicious group was paying for campaign ads against Republican Supreme Court candidates that an investgation was undertaken by Mike Cox's office.  Will he do the same now?

Callers are all women
who speak in a pissy, insidious tone.What's up with that?

"I am robot. Bad, bad Governor. She hurt children. She tell men what to do. She want power. She destroy Michigan."

I get a ton of hits on my blog...
... from Reston, Virginia- which, if I'm not mistaken, is the home of the people who did the swift-boat ads, and the home of the firm who does Dick's ads. (but I'm not positive about that)

Are they "outsourcing" the smear attacks, too?


$20 says...
...that whoever is producing these things is somewhere in suburban Washington, DC (Alexandria is a good guess) - NOT Michigan. The one woman's accent is a dead giveaway. I assume people have pursued all of their options with respect to tracing these calls.

"Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never." - Winston S. Churchill

[ Parent ]
Freedom of Information Act?
Or has that been abolished now, too?

Just like the Mongo thing, this will disappear in the air. Not enough time left now.

I hope that we pass some reform in this state so we can get the full story in the future.

[ Parent ]
Who to FOIA?
Thankfully, FOIA IS still intact here - though the Republican-controlled Michigan Supreme Court may change that one of these days.

The question in this situation is who to FOIA? Unless we know of a government agency involved somewhere, there's not much we can do.

Really, the only way to break this open is for someone with inside knowledge to come forward - or if some technological way is found that traces the calls back to somebody. I don't know what Gaffney has planned - but I imagine it would be pretty hard to do either way. One of the calls does reference a Michigan Republican Party-operated website, but that in itself is hardly enough to hang them. I would think they would at least be smart enough to do this through an organization that is partioned off from MRP and DV4G in order to create plausible deniability.

"Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never." - Winston S. Churchill

[ Parent ]
I thought an individual could request their phone records
... but maybe the cops have to do it, I really don't know, laws being as weird as they are.

Maybe Dawson will do a follow up on the people who were looking for the info and see what they come up with. Depends on how far they want to take it- I would imagine you would have to try to sue (on what grounds?) and then a discovery could force the phone company to release the info.

Just speculatin'.

[ Parent ]
Perhaps it's the same women...
from the RGA "real estate" commerical who is now featured with "her child" in the new DeVos "women on the street hit ad."  Isn't funny that the RGA and DeVos campaign have the same women in both of their ads?  Hmmmm, I thought they couldn't coordinate efforts?  Gee, Dick DeVos and the RGA breaking the rules, who's ever heard of that?  Not mention using the same actress, who's their casting director?

a few thoughts
we haven't gotten any of these calls since the first debate (which is when we put a Granholm sign in our yard...coincidence? probably), so I can't do this, but has anyone tried contacting the phone company? Just tell them that you receieved a very strange call that wasn't blocked on your caller ID, and you would like to know the number it came from. Or calling the local sheriff/police to get your phone records (although that might be more of a hassle because there's been no crime involved...well...maybe not :)). Once someone gets a #, it shouldn't be TOO hard to trace to someone or some entity.

Robo Call
I recieved this call on my answering machine (caller ID said inavailable) on Wednesday, and my seven year-old WAS in the room. My wife also thinks the voice sounds like one of the women in Devos' ad. I called the  Michigan Democratic Party and left a recording with Jason Moon but I have not heard back from them.

The end of the human race will be that it will eventually die of civilization.

 - Ralph Waldo Emerson

From Port Huron-
The Times Herald has a couple interesting tidbits-

Jan from Port Huron: "I keep getting vicious phone calls from the Republican Party about Jennifer Granholm. These are recorded messages that are just about as nasty as I have ever heard. My caller ID says the calls are coming from Texas and the phone number is blocked! Either these people are using a calling card which most reputable phone banks do not use, or more of our Michigan Jobs have been outsourced to Texas. If your message is true and honest, why hide your number?"

Dan from Port Huron: "How did Michigan Working Families, supporters of Dick DeVos, get my cell-phone number? By what right do they override my blocked number and use up my minutes with a recorded message to which I have no way of replying?"

Good going. Use up cell phone minutes- that will win you some friends. And Texas? Could be a calling card (although I have never received a calling card call with the number blocked that I can remember), could be part of Tom DeLay's posse. He and the Dick are good friends, you know.

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