Josh Marshall and the folks @ Talking Points Memo is all over this.
Here are the details, in brief:
- The National Republican Campaign Committee (NRCC) is making automated telephone calls, known as "robo calls."
- The calls begin "Hello, I'm calling with information about <Democratic candidate>"
- If the recipient listens to the whole call, it slams the Democrat, spewing all kinds of poison.
- If the recipient hangs up, it calls back multiple times, flooding the line and calling at ungdly hours of the early morning.
Since the recipient didn't listen to the whole message, they think the Democratic candidate is the one placing the calls.
- This is happening in at least 53 competitive House races.
- FCC rules say all prerecorded messages must "at the beginning of the message, state clearly the identity of the business, individual, or other entity that is responsible for initiating the call."
The GOP is the entity responsible, but the start of the call only identifies the Democratic candidate.
- Illegal telephone harassment isn't new to the GOP -- New Hampshire RNC directors were found guilty of similar stunts in the 2002 election.
If you hear of anybody getting flooded with robocalls, make sure they know the blame lies with the GOP, not the Democrat who's being doubly smeared.
Also, Josh Marshall and his crew are looking to hear from people who received these calls, so spread the word.