New information reveals not even the private contractors hired by Elections Canada to investigate the possible 2011 "robocalls" are neutral, non-partisan individuals. A search reveals that many members on their board of directors have donated money to the Liberals and Bloc Quebecois -- the same parties which have the most to gain in propagating any sort of "robocall" voter conspiracy myth.
My recent Access to Information request revealed that Elections Canada has spent almost $780,000 chasing the fantasy that Conservatives robocalled Canadians into voting in the wrong places in the May 2011 federal election. In my previous post we learned that the Commissioner's Office spent $192,203.48 on "Investigators' Fees and Salaries." So who are these investigators?
Well, I mocked and I teased but in the end, I couldn't resist. Year-end retrospectives might be trite, but dagnabbit, they're also a lot of fun. So here's my picks for the "Top Five Media Bites Moments of 2012", also known as the "Top Five Times the Canadian Press Was Inadvertently More Interesting Than the Stories They Were Trying to Cover."
Nine months ago, you could scarcely open a newspaper without reading all sorts of scary allegations about the Prime Minister's secret army of robo-men and their efforts to systematically rig the 2011 election through ambiguously deceptive phone calls. But if you're still jonsing for a Robocall fix, fear not!
As Canadians respond to allegations about the misuse of robocalls in the 2011 federal campaign, it's critical that such technologies are not confused with tactics. The public debate must consider the potential these technologies offer political leaders to more effectively reach the citizens they serve.
Chief Electoral Officer, Marc Mayrand, had some tough talk for the Economic Club of Canada in Ottawa today. He said that we must "maintain trust and engagement in Canadian elections." As a first time candidate, I have been the target of many ugly tactics used by the army of political operators that make a healthy living doing this.