Saturday, March 10, 2012

RoboCon : Republican edition

The Cons' somewhat belated talking points about their use of the US voter contact firm Front Porch Strategies in the last election have been all about only using them for townhalls :

U.S. phone firm was just for town halls, say MPs 

"Jim Ross [Front Porch's Canadian liaison and Con MP Rick Dykstra's former campaign manager] said telephone town halls were about the only service the company provided in Canada. As for other calls, “Rick got all his live calling from Canada just like all the other (Tory) candidates.”   
and  "Del Mastro stressed that the U.S. company wasn’t hired to do any telemarketing or solicit votes. Front Porch Strategies was hired to host an April 7 telephone town hall on its server, he said, and was booked through its Canadian affiliate and paid in Canadian dollars." 

Yet here is Front Porch Strategies President Matthew Parker sitting in the campaign offices of Con MP Julian Fantino with a phone to his ear, a pencil in his hand, and a paper with the header "Election Day is Monday May 2nd - You Can Vote Now" in front of him.

Photo caption from FPS :
"Matt lending a hand for MP Fantino here in the greater Toronto area (GTA)"


Foreigners interfering in a Canadian election?

Ok, maybe Matt Parker and his business partner PJ Wenzel flew up from Ohio just that one time to do a little campaigning for Fantino, now the Assistant Minister of Defence, on their day off. Let's go to twitter :

So how did all this front lines taking over business get started?

Sorry - wrong one. That's one of their other causes - overturning Roe vs Wade in the US for the fetus fetishi.

Is this it?

Nope, not that one either.              
Ok, here we go :

You mean effective communications like this?

Perhaps the Cons require another presentation from their Republican friends on "effective constituent communications" because their current credibility on RoboCon communications is right in the toilet.

Why Nobody Believes the Conservative Talking Points on the RoboCon Scandal.

Meanwhile in other RoboCon news in just the last day :

Dawg : "The Speaker of the House of Commons is now ruling opposition questions about Roboscam out of order. ... And what should be front-page news barely gets a mention in the corporate media—it’s as though the Parliamentary Press Gallery is on an extended sleepover with Rob Anders."

CBC : Three former Conservative organizers want Elections Canada to look into how money was collected and spent in Fantino's campaign. They allege a second secret bank account of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Pogge does a round-up including a link to a great editorial on the above CBC story, and also notes that although the Elections Canada investigation into harassment phone calls in Eglinton (Volpe's riding) was closed last May, now that over 2700 ballots of last minute unregistered voters with no or bogus addresses have turned up in the same riding, perhaps someone could take a mo to look into that please.

Dave unravels the stuffing of ballot boxes , plus the strategic targeting of voters over 60 for phone calls telling them to go the wrong or non-existent polling station : “Every single person I’ve contacted has been (born) between 1947 and 1949,” said one unidentified Elections Canada employee."

And to cap it all off with a huge dollop of irony, Stephen Maher of Postmedia, who along with Glen McGregor of the Citizen broke the robocalls story in the first place, was reportedly thrown out of the Manning Centre for Building Democracy conference party last night. (h/t Ian by e)

Just one day in the media half-life of RoboCon.
Arghhh Update : Or, had I known, I could have skipped doing the first part of this post and just linked to this ongoing and continuously updated version : The View From the Front Porch Looking North
One month later : RoboCon Republican edition update


Toe said...

Wow! Thanks for a much clearer picture of how insidious this is. But who needs reality when there is ideology? That's their biggest weakness and hopefully their downfall.

Anonymous said...

Holy crap!

Anonymous said...

Wow. The Cons' credibility is in the toilet. A tele-town-hall is totally different from door knocking.

Beijing York said...

OMG! That Front Porch Strategies stuff is some smoking gun. So much for Harper not having a "social conservative" agenda.

Anonymous said...

Many older citizens, don't even have computers. The media is a propaganda machine for the government. I know of elderly people, who have no idea, of what is being done to them, by corrupt, deceitful, lying politicians. They don't even know about the robo-call cheaters.

That's why Elections BC and Gordon Campbell, chose to terrorize an, eighty year old lady, during BC's fight over the illegal HST, that Harper and Campbell forced onto the BC citizens. That poor old lady, was far too afraid to fight back. She was threatened with a prison term and a $10,000 fine. She didn't realize, she was only to sign in her own riding. She was told that was ok, her first vote would be invalid.

Most Canadians are decent, good honest people. It is the politicians, that are the scum of the earth. Namely Harper and Gordon Campbell. They are worse than scum, they are dirty, disgusting bas...turds.

laura k said...

Alison, thanks for this amazing research. I'm sharing this post everywhere.

Saskboy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Holly Stick said...

And here's some statistics to go to town with; significant negative effects in robocall ridings 1000 to 2500 votes (though I haven't checked details of what she considered robocall ridings):!/askessler/status/179285462018572290

Holly Stick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Holly Stick said...

Oops wrong numbers above:

That's 1000 to 2500 votes per riding, for 27 ridings:

Anonymous said...

This post has been all over twitter for days and people are even posting links to it under online MSM articles that have nothing to do with roboscam, yet not a peep about it in our media.
What the hell does that tell you about all of them?

Saskboy said...

Has it come up in the House of Commons too? It should. to send them the tip. Email your local MP at the same time.

Anonymous said...

The following is an extract copied from the Front Porch Strategies bio of Matthew Parker: Matthew Parker is a native of West Virginia and holds a degree in Economics with a minor in Political Science from Marietta College and he is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Theological Studies from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. In 2011, Parker was honored by the Marietta College Alumni Association as the Outstanding Young Alumnus.
Matthew and his wife Marina, reside in Newark, OH with their dog Brutus and they are currently in the process of adopting a child (or children) from Ethiopia. They are members of Christ Redeemer Church where Matthew serves as an elder.

Anonymous said...

Julian Fantino has a secret ideology. Here is another extract from the Front Porch Strategies website, this one for a very radical christian cause: Personhood USA. The company is very porud of its campaign. "On Tuesday, December 27th, Front Porch Strategies helped pull off an extremely complex and successful TeleForum featuring four top-tier Republican Presidential candidates. The event, sponsored by Personhood USA and several other pro-life groups, reached out to almost 150,000 Iowans just one week prior to the Presidential Caucuses. The TeleForum garnered over 26,000 participants on the telephone, and was heard live on 88 syndicated radio stations across the country. Conservative radio host Steve Deace broadcasted the TeleForum on his hour-long talk show, and acted as a moderator on the event which included Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum.
Front Porch worked to ensure that all parties involved in the event were thoroughly prepared, and had a strong 75-minute event strategy. With so many moving parts, Front Porch’s experience conducting large national events made the difference. Because of Front Porch’s effort, the candidates spent a combined 2,000 hours with Republican Iowa primary voters just days prior to the heated Presidential Caucuses.
The day after the TeleForum was completed, news organizations from around the country were writing stories about the event. The New York Times noted that the Presidential candidates were, “polishing and trumpeting their credentials as Christian conservatives in their efforts to be seen as the leading Not Romney.”

Anonymous said...

Vaughan Weekly, Wednesday March 14 2012, Page 2

Alison said...

Thank you, Anon in Vaughn. Linked in next post.

Saskboy said...

I deleted my comment above because it contained an error that I couldn't edit away due to Blogger's commenting system.

Here is the correct information, it appears that this was a contravention of the Elections Act.

Anonymous said...

How is it even legal for an American to canvas Canadian voters and why isn't that picture front page news?

Alison said...

Thanks, Saskboy. Dave asks the question I keep hoping CBC or some MSM reporter will address. Every day I check my stats on this post and every day I see the media bigs there reading it and every day they don't mention it yet again.

Maybe one of you twitter geniuses could send it off to McMaher for me.

Dave said...

Yeah, I'm seeing the media heavies doing their searches too. We'll see how this goes. One thing new is the number of (House of Commons) hits. Today alone is now in the 100+ range.

Alison said...

Dave : Excellent work! Some lookins for me a week ago but they dwindled off pretty fast. But hey, here's the PCO now.
Very grateful to you for posting yet another link to this.
Also from last week, thanks to Boris, Dr. Dawg, RossK, Dammit Janet, Saskboy, Accidental Deliberations, LauraK, and the mysterious twitteri.

And if you missed it in the post, check out the link to Kim Leaman's The View From the Front Porch Looking North for a much more comprehensive look at this.

Dave said...

Anytime, dear lady. T'was a great piece of work on your part.

I've noticed the PCO dropping in for a look all morning. Very odd.

I did see Front Porch Looking North. Very good stuff, and it keeps updating!

Ah... the Twitteri. When they go, they really move stuff along. Just can't bring myself to get all wrapped up in it.

Holly Stick said...

I've tweeted both your links to Maher tonight. Maybe he reads your blogs anyway, and he probably won't acknowledge the tweet.!/softgrasswalker/status/181950903522304000

Holly Stick said...

The foreign campaign aspect has been noticed:!/bigpicguy/status/181939518679678977

Alison said...

Thanks, Holly Stick, and to Dr. Dawg who brought it up again yesterday.

Anonymous said...

Brock Press student newspaper did an article yesterday on Front Porch Strategies election campaigning in Canada:
Conservative Party may have broken election law
but Kady says it isn't illegal.

spellcheck said...

Stephen Lautens has a piece up on this on his blog; he's given you credit in his piece:

Alison said...

Thank you, spellcheck, and to Calgary Sun columnist Stephen Lautens!

Stephen Lautens' Parking Space: Foreign Election Campaign Workers?

Anonymous said...

Kady says Republican telemarketing CEO campaigning in Canadian election is nothing to get "crazypants" over. Huh?

Anonymous said...

OK, now Kady now admits there may be grounds for a complaint against Front Porch Strategies after all:

but she still doesn't credit you with breaking the original story.

Blog Archive