Right now the Cons are "reviewing tapes of every call made by the Responsive Marketing Group call centre in Thunder Bay in the last election before Elections Canada investigators arrive next week," reports CBC, before adding the Cons deny it.
Presumably Steve would be in search of exactly where to place his own 18 minutes of tape hiss or RoboConfetti.
So after four decades of simply adding the suffix -gate onto the scandal du jour - from cleavagegate to gazebogate - Canada finally gets to watch Steve watergate the question : What Would Milhous Do?
On Tuesday Steve pledged to get to the bottom of the lone, single, solitary, isolated, rogue robocalling incident, but by yesterday - with thousands of voters reporting electoral fraud clear across the country - their new story is that it's all just a case of "Liberal and NDP sleaze", a giant RoboConspiracy!
AssMin of National Defence Julian Fantino, who is aghast his name cropped up in the Guelph burner phone logs search warrants at Item #39, is going with the "smear campaign" story, while in-and-out scandal alumnus and the Cons' campaign chair emeritus during the last election, Senator Doug Finley, nails the argument for Con Party innocence :
“This is the whole point : the central campaign does not know because they had absolutely no idea it was happening.”Thank you, Senator Finley, for that moment of lucid RoboContemplation.
Speaking of in-and-out shenanigans, here's the new robocalling edition. Quebec Con candidate Bertin-Denis told Le Devoir and two radio stations yesterday that $15,000.01 was funneled into his riding and right back out again in the last election, ostensibly for local RMG poll research that he never saw.
Really? A Con candidate said that?
Oh wait, he has since mysteriously recanted that accusation - a RoboConcaving.
More RoboContenders. Last Friday, after being fingered by Sun TV for complicity in the Guelph robocall shenanigans, Con parliamentary staffer Michael Sona quit his job. Two days later DefMin Airshow MacKay announced "the party doesn't need to investigate any further" because :
"I think they've identified the individual that was involved in this," he said.But I guess the God of the Rescue Helicopter Taxi Service wasn't listening because by Tuesday Mr. Sona was publicly protesting his innocence and expressing his hope the real guilty party would be caught.
In QP yesterday the Cons sent out Mr Creosote to accuse the Libs of sabotaging their own ridings by using a North Dakota automated calling firm :
“These calls were made on behalf of the Liberal party,” Del Mastro said.Unfortunately for Mr Creosote, it was immediately pointed out he had confused the name of a US firm with the completely unrelated but identically named Canadian one used by the Libs, but no matter : Corporate Television Vehicle ran with it anyway. RoboComplicity.
“I see that they used this company quite a bit. It seems that they were robodialing quite a number of people on behalf of the Liberal party.”
Still, you can see why the Cons instinctively turned to their the-Libs-do-it-too defence.
However clownish, it was a pre-emptive strike to protect their robodialing ReformAlliance/Mike Harris/Republican buddies at RMG, which worked on 97 individual Conservative candidate campaigns in the last election after a 2010 merger with Xentel under IMarketing Solutions Group :
The company that handles the Conservative Party’s computerized voter-identification system and powerful fundraising machine has a checkered legal history in the United States, where it operates call centres that have repeatedly been the subject of lawsuits and complaints over its telemarketing practices.
Longtime key Conservative organizer Stewart Braddick is listed on RMG’s web site as director of the company’s Focused Direct Response program. Braddick is also listed as director, Focused Direct Response, for the American company Target Outreach Inc., which works for Republican campaigns.The Cons think they are playing us for suckers. They think we're all rubes, that we won't get it, that we'll put up with their imported Rovian Republican tactics. So - are we rubes? Are we going to let them get away with it this time?
Last word on this goes to Nixon Watergate dirty trickster Donald Segretti, yesterday.
His assessment? : "Worse than Watergate."
“We never tried to do something that would, at the end of the day, take away the right of somebody to vote,” he said. “That goes beyond a prank. It’s just wrong, on many levels.”
Their dirty tricks campaign, Mr. Segretti claimed, was designed to disrupt the Democrats, not hoodwink voters.".