The same kind of call -

The same kind of call


The aforementioned Peggy Walsh-Craig of North Bay describes her experience.

A long-time environmentalist and political advocate, she thought it was “a bit odd” when she received an automated phone call a few weeks prior to the spring 2011 federal election asking if she was planning to vote for the Conservative Party. “I was asked to press a number based on my answer,” Walsh-Craig said. “Generally you get survey calls during election campaigns, but they ask you a couple of questions and they are not generally as direct as this was requesting just a yes, no, how are you going to vote answer.”

The week before the election her phone rang again. “This call was the one we’ve heard repeated over and over on the news,” she said, “telling me that due to higher than expected voter turnout my polling place had been changed.”


The same kind of call

  1. Weird. Another riding where voter turnout was up and the Conservatives didn’t really have a shot of winning.  

    I guess some possibilities to consider:

    1) She’s telling the truth. Although its a little strange there’s so few calls being reported here. With about 60,000 voters in the riding and an 8,000 vote gap between first and second you’d think they’d need to reach a heck of a lot of people to have any effect. 

    That hints at a lone wolf or prankster.  

    2) She’s lying.

    What’s a lie coming from a politically motivated activist if it could hurt Harper and save the environment ?

    3) This is a false memory. She admits to hearing about these calls repeated “over and over on the news”.

    This is a valid and very real phenomena. People ridiculing the possibility of mass hysteria have a very shallow understanding of social psychology and blinders that ignore well documented historical cases.

    I call for more investigation !

    • The local news stories which ran in that riding quoted others, including a Liberal scrutineer who said he had heard from many voters in the same riding.  Since the recording gave a new polling station which was local (Mattawa) it could not be a call meant for the Guelph riding.  

    • 1)  You presume that the Conservatives thought that they would lose Nipissing-Timiskaming by a large margin.  In fact, they won by a small margin. They must have reached a lot of people.

      2)  Conservative supporters are desperate to call the 31,000 complainants liars.

      3)  Hysteria, indeed.

      4)  You forgot ADSCAM.

      • @briguyhfx:disqus @neuroticdog:disqus 

        According to new polling from Ipsos Reid 4% of Canadians are convinced they recieved a voter supression call in the last election. A further 7% believe they may have but are not sure.

        Assuming there are around 8 million households with landlines in Canada (pop/4) then based on the polling there should be 330,000 victims and a further 577,500 potential victims.

        So why do we only have 31,000 complaints and not half a million or so ?

        Could it be that we are seeing confusion, poor memory, mass hysteria, and individuals with a vested interest in remembering things a certain way ? A confirmation bias of sorts ? 

        Or do you guys honestly believe that the CPC put out half a million voter supression robocalls ? That 1/16th of households were targetted ?

        • 31,000 << 330,000

          No. No.


    • “People ridiculing the possibility of mass hysteria have a very shallow
      understanding of social psychology and blinders that ignore well
      documented historical cases.”

      So what are your credentials, to be dismissively judging others’ understanding of social psychology?

  2. They were making a list…. checkin’ it twice….trying to find out who’s naughty and nice…..

  3. She is probably not lying at all.  However, another possibility is simply that this is all part of the problems in Guelph.

    A cursory glance at Peggy’s online profile (linkedin) suggests that she not only used to live in Guelph but even now still has connections in Guelph.  I would probably suspect that whoever was making all the untoward robocalls in Guelph were probably themselves working with bad data (and a bit stupid to be calling outside of the area – unless Peggy uses VOIP).

    This is not particularly interesting.  I would be more interested to know whether any other persons received calls of this nature in Nipissing.

  4. I am in Guelph and just received a suspicious call telling me to put my clock back 1 hrs this weekend and not forward like I thought – should I phone elections canada and let them know?

    • I suspect it means your phone and cable lines have been hacked Tony. You should probably discontinue all use of the internet.

    • The Reds have already infiltrated. The sparrow has flown.

    • “…should I phone elections canada and let them know?”

      No, but you might get a better writer of satirical commentary and, while you’re at it, throw away the book of pithy though marginally relevant quotes.

  5. I’m actually surprised that so many people listened to obvious partisan robocalls for more than 2-5 seconds.  Usually that’s about the longest I listen before hanging up in disgust.

    • Elections Canada == Partisan.  I can understand people listening to the fake EC calls if they get past the long pause that always preceeds a robocall.