Thursday, October 23, 2008

Un-American: Democrats Outsource Attacks on GOP to Romania

You would think the party that claims to represent the working people would at least give some jobs to Americans to help spread their lies.
Republicans, furious about negative campaign phone calls made by Democrats last week in Billings, did everything but label the tactic un-American.

Turns out, they could have.

The calls were made from Romania, according to phone records submitted this week to the state commissioner of political practices.

Jack Sands, a GOP candidate in Senate District 27 and the target of the Oct. 12 calls, filed the complaint alleging that the people making the calls didn't identify who they were calling for. Senate District 27 includes parts of Billings and Yellowstone County. State law prohibits anonymous election material.

"They're obviously spending thousands of dollars to defeat me," Sands said. "You'd think the least they could have done was to provide some jobs in Montana instead of exporting jobs to Romania. Maybe they couldn't find Montanans with the stomach to make the calls."

The gist of the calls, according to voters who spoke with The Gazette last week, was that Sands supports drug dealers and wants to keep them out of prison. What they didn't say was that Sands is a criminal defense attorney who represents the accused for a living.

Often, the people making the calls failed to identify with whom they were affiliated, provided unverifiable names or hung up. Voters with caller ID said the source phone number for the negative calls came up 406-000-0000.

Sands hired a detective, Dale Mortensen, to trace the origin of the calls. Mortensen worked with voter Echo Jamieson, who got Bresnan Communications to release its log of incoming and outgoing calls related to her account. The 406-000-0000 calls, of which Jamieson received six in four hours, originated in Romania, according to Bresnan.

Wednesday, Political Practices Commissioner Dennis Unsworth said Sands' complaint against the Montana Democratic Party met the procedural requirements for consideration. The Democrats will be asked to respond to the charge. Afterward, the commissioner will have to decide whether a full investigation is necessary. In the final weeks before the Nov. 4 election, the compliance cases are beginning to pile up at the commissioner's office.

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