May 2, 2008
Democracy North Carolina, a nonpartisan elections reform organization, called for an investigation of an automated phone message that it says is designed to depress participation by black voters in North Carolina’s May primary.
The Lie: The “robo” calls are from a “Lamont Williams” and tell voters to wait for a voter registration form to come in the mail, which they need to complete and mail in – THEN they can vote on Tuesday. Listen to the call: http://www.democracy-nc.org/nc/spprncall.wav
The Truth: anyone not already registered who wants to vote in the NC Primary can go to any One-Stop Early Voting location through Saturday, May 3, register to vote on the spot, and cast a ballot.
It is a Class I felony in North Carolina “to misrepresent the law to the public through mass mailing or any other means of communication where the intent and the effect is to intimidate or discourage potential voters from exercising their lawful right to vote.”
Said Bob Hall, Executive Director for Democracy NC:
“This is another in a long line of deceptive practices used in North Carolina and elsewhere that particularly target African-American voters. In our view, this phone message plainly violates North Carolina law. We ask the Attorney General, State Bureau of Investigation, and the State Board of Elections to investigate, expose, and prosecute the sponsors of these calls.”
Voter Protection Hotlines
If you believe you or someone you know is the victim of voter intimidation or interference, call toll-free to 888-OUR-VOTE or 866-OUR-VOTE or the State Board of Elections hotline: 866-522-4723.