AG's office files voter intimidation charges against alleged robocall makers | Michigan Radio
WUOMFM

AG's office files voter intimidation charges against alleged robocall makers

Oct 1, 2020

Credit steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Two men are facing criminal charges as part of an effort to allegedly suppress the vote in next month’s election in Michigan.  

Michigan’s attorney general’s office alleges political operatives Jack Burkman and Jacob Wohl attempted to discourage voters from participating in the general election by creating and funding a robocall targeted at certain urban areas, including Detroit.

Specifically, the robocall call claims police, the CDC and credit card companies will use mail-in ballots to track down people.

“Don’t be finessed into giving your private information to the man. Stay safe. And beware of vote by mail,” the call says.

Listen to the whole call here:   

Attorney General Dana Nessel says similar robocalls reached voters in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Illinois.  

“This effort specifically targeted minority voters in an attempt to deter them from voting in the November election,” says Nessel. “We’re all well aware of the frustrations caused by the millions of nuisance robocalls flooding our cell phones and landlines each day, but this particular message poses grave consequences for our democracy and the principles upon which it was built.” 

The felony charges include:

  • One count of election law – intimidating voters, a five-year felony;
  • One count of conspiracy to commit an election law violation, a five-year felony;
  • One count of using a computer to commit the crime of election law – intimidating voters, a seven-year felony; and
  • Using a computer to commit the crime of conspiracy, a seven-year felony. 

More than 2.5 million Michiganders have requested absentee ballots for next month’s election.