A Questionable Robocall

I just received a robocall from Sen. Vincent Fort urging me to vote no for the TSPLOST. He highlights that it is a regressive tax (true) and that Fulton County voters will pay two cents while voters in Cherokee County and other suburbian wastelands counties will pay one cent (I’m sure there was no sub-text of white people will pay less than black people).

However, what is interesting is the caller ID said it came from the “Georgia General”. One assumes that means Georgia General Assembly, especially considering the number displayed is his legislative office at the Capitol. You can see a photo of the ID below.

While I have no idea if this is legal (and doubt it is but IANAL) it seems to surely cross an ethical line.
Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

60 comments

    • Calypso says:

      Well, it is your birthday.

      I’m pretty sure dialing for campaign dollars is a no-no from your state office, but, like you, wonder if this type of campaigning is also verboten.

  1. Ed says:

    Thanks for the well wishes ms. Caly. As iunderstand it you can’t. Use state resourcesfor campaigningc

  2. debbie0040 says:

    Speaking of crossing an ethical line, Edens Davis works both for Gov. Deal and CTM. Does he do work for CTM while on the hours the state pays for ?

  3. Stifler65 says:

    Actually Debbie, Edens is no longer on the state payroll and is a full time employee of CTM. Do you generally just mouth off without knowing things or is this the first time?

    • debbie0040 says:

      Then maybe Edens should change his LinkedIn

      Edens Davis’s Overview
      Current Field Director at Citizens for Transportation Mobility
      County and Local Government Liaison at Office of Governor Nathan Deal

      Join Today·Sign In. Edens Davis
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      View Full Profile
      Edens Davis’s Overview
      Current Field Director at Citizens for Transportation Mobility
      County and Local Government Liaison at Office of Governor Nathan Deal
      Past Campaign Manager at Tricia Pridemore for Chairman of the Georgia GOP
      Director of Operations at Governor Elect Nathan Deal’s Inauguration
      Staff at OnTarget Public Affairs
      Political Director at Eric Johnson for Governor Intern at Republican Governors Association Political Staff at Perdue for a New Georgia see less

      see all
      Education Emory University
      Sewanee-The University of the South
      Connections 500+ connections

  4. jaysen30034 says:

    If I’m not mistaken, there isn’t access to robocall software at the Captiol. I’m pretty sure that (which legislators do all the time) the number used on the robo call was just Senator Fort’s office number. All robocalls have to have SOME number that shows up on the caller ID even if that actual phone did not make the calls. That would mean that no state resources were used for campaign resources.

  5. NoTeabagging says:

    Georgia has little or no laws restriciting robocalls. Anyone can robocsll any number for any reason. Exceptn, the rarely enforced national do not call list. Political robocallers have upped the ante of offenses by using out of state robocall services ( wouldn’t want to support to many local businesses and jobs would we?) the little loophole avoids the requirement to register in state auto dialed auto delivery equip,ent as required by the PSC. Not that political campaigners register their ADAD equipment anyway. There is no enforcement of this rule by the PSC. Political campaigns rarely give out a campaign number to reach the candidate, I guess they don’t want too many dinnertime calls interrupting their dialing for dollars. Most political robocallers are also spoofing caller ID name and number. Many times the display number is a disconnected number, again I guess candidates jut don’t want to hear from the people they just royally ticked off by calling their home multiple times a day. I guess they dont want my vote either. Commercial callers are required to display a proper caller ID name and number, seems our good politicians think they are not legally required to do so and therefore ethics and common decency don’t apply either. It is time for candidates to have full disclosure of who is calling, who ispaying for the call, a valid call back number and proper caller ID info. Oh and let’s publish the home phone numbers of all candidates on the Secretary of State’s Election page. You call me, it’s only fair I have equal access.

    • Napoleon says:

      Political and charitable organizations are exempt from the Do Not Call registry. The reason these callers are exempt is political and charitable calls are under a higher level of 1st Amendment protection than commerical calls.

      Also, as I doubt Fort has a robo call machine hooked up to his legislative office line, more than likely he used the number since the FCC requires a call back number.

      Generally, the reason they have your phone number is you put it on your voter registration form. If you give it out, don’t be surprised if it is used. This isn’t always the case, but for most people it is.

      I don’t think the law really contemplates the use of one’s legislative office number as a callback number where state resources will only be used if people call back the number, but were likely not used for the outgoing call.

      It may be no different legally than having a political ad encouraging people to call an elected official’s government office because they don’t like what that official is doing.

      I still think it’s worth investigating.

      • NoTeabagging says:

        Our county claims it does not give out phone numbers when they sell voter info to campaigns. So robocallers use a variety of sources to find legit phone numbers to match voters names and addresses. Or simply use another frowned upon method, sequential dialing.

        My home and telephone are private, robocalls invade my privacy and are NOT covered by freedom of speech. No one has the right to go to someone’s home, knock on the door repeatedly multiple times a day, until they answer, then step inside to recite a political message. Anyone doing so would be arrested for trespassing and harrassment. Unwanted robocalls are a similar offense. One day soon they will be regulated as such. Some states already provide this protection for citizens.

        • Napoleon says:

          Under your logic:

          My home and television are private, unwanted television ads invade my privacy and are NOT covered by freedom of speech.

          Or, how about this:

          My home and kitchen table where I read my mail are private, unwanted junk mail ads invade my privacy and are NOT covered by freedom of speech.

          The fact is, they ARE, like all of the examples above, are covered by the same first amendment which allows tv and radio ads into the privacy of your home. You have to turn on your phone to hear the ad. You have to turn on your tv to see and hear the ad. You have to open the mailbox to see the ad. In all instances, the ad requires some action by your to observe it.

          Also, in all cases, you can avoid the ad once you realize it’s an ad by:

          1. hanging up the phone.
          2. turning the channel.
          3. dumping the mail piece in the garbage.

          You don’t complain about the tv or radio ads because usually they come through after you have already turned on those systems. The mail ads only serves as noise to the bills and personal correspondence. The difference with the phone is it is the ad itself that gets you to engage and turn on your device. That bit of action by you does not prevent 1st amendment protection.

          • Charlie says:

            If someone had the ability to turn on my TV at their whim and run an ad when I’m sitting in my quiet home with the TV off, then you would have a valid point here. But you don’t.

          • NoTeabagging says:

            Sorry Napoleon, but TV and radio are broadcast to a wide audience simultaneously. there is a difference between tuning in to the public entertainment and private communications.
            Joys of mute button.

            My phone number is not published, not given to any campaign, not given permission to be sold for direct marketing with any person or entity whether for-profit or not-for-profit.
            I use call screening software, but keep a tally of political robocalls. Vote no for robocallers.

            I opt-out when possible of direct mail. But it is fun to read candidates pathetic lies on occasion. Even more fun to pull out the scapbook and reminisce, “Remember when this D-bag sent this letter stating no raised taxes? or lied about so-and-so’s voting record?” Oh, and I recycle the printed BS.

  6. EdensDavis says:

    First time caller, Long time listener…..Debbie you are wrong and I would appreciate if you deleted your comment. I am not on the state payroll and am working on the citizens for transportation mobility campaign. While I have the mic….Vote Yes on July 31st or vote early if you prefer.

    • you says:

      Isn’t it nice how Deal keeps all his peeps in jobs, just moving them around when needed.

      Vote No!
      Consider this- if this tax passes it will cost all forms of business more to purchases everyday supplies; this in turn will mean cost will have to be raised to cover it. So, not only will you be paying the 1% tax, you will be paying a little more for everything because it will be costing every business more just to stay open.
      Vote No!

      • you says:

        Eden,
        Can you please tell us who “citizens for transportation mobility” is and how much they have spent on pushing the highest tax increase on us?

    • rrrrr says:

      Point of Information! ( In training for Tampa)

      Or perhaps you took a short leave of absence and will return to capital duties Aug 1st?

      That addresses the timesheet issue nicely and would account for NOT changing LinkedIn data. No reason for the question to be deleted – just answer it via reply. The ”ruffled feathers” response just makes us wonder all the more…

      While I have the mic – Vote NO to T-SPLOST on July 31 or earlier!

  7. dirL says:

    EdensDavis,
    This is a horrible piece of Legislative gumbo(re edited for decorum). How/Why do you work in it’s support? The fact that they are sneaking it in an off election- election speaks loudly but I have seen all the billboards touting the UNTIE the Knot implying that this will relieve traffic congestion. This bill will do no such thing, this is an outright LIE. There is no reason to vote for this at all. This is just a bunch of handouts to contractors and their reps to make money hand over fist and leave us holding a bag (of re-editedness). Don’t you think the government should do away with the 400 illegal toll booths and that ill advised hot (as in they stole it from you) lane, you know, the lane we have already paid for with our taxes and now they are charging us to use? Shouldn’t the government do these things first before they steal again. Seriously, at least a kiss before the …..well you know?

    While Debbie was wrong in what she stated, Can you not see the obvious question about your involvement? One could easily wonder why you no longer work for the state and now work for this group. I am asking honest questions here, please feel free to respond.

    • Napoleon says:

      You know, it serves no useful purpose to personally trash Edens because he believes differently than you on this issue. It’s personally none of anyone’s business why he changed jobs. Maybe he left on good terms, maybe he didn’t. Maybe he’s a campaigner at heart and felt constricted by working for state government. Maybe CTM just paid more. Maybe he had a co-worker he really couldn’t stand. Maybe his department needed to cut some more to balance their budget. Maybe he really just thinks the TSPLOST is that important to Georgia.

      Pick your reason, but leave the guy alone. It’s none of your business, or mine, or anyone elses.

      And, while I have the mic….Vote NO on July 31st or vote early if you prefer. 🙂

      • dirL says:

        I am sorry you read that as trashing. In the first part of my of post I do question why anyone would support such obviously flawed legislation. Believe it or not I really want to know. Maybe there is a different point of view. In the second part of my post I just stick up for Debbie a little, but once again I want to know the answer. If EdensDavis worked for the Governor’s office and now works for this group it does raise questions. Everything you said above could be true, he could just enjoy his new job better, he could be getting paid better etc, etc. But given the way this state works, now under a one party Republican rule but formerly under a one party Democrat rule and the way people constantly and magically go from working for the state and then working for the winning bidder or contractor, these questions need to be asked. I am still waiting for all those state workers that hold the patents on the HOT lane technologies to up and leave for the Bahama’s with billions of our tax dollars. Napoleon, the lack of any, and I mean any, real journalism in this state means that we, the public, need to start asking these basic questions. I am sorry you see it as trashing but the way this TSPLOST has been rolled out with such brazen deceit and dishonesty at every step, leaves me questioning everyone who is involved in it.

  8. seenbetrdayz says:

    It just struck me that in this TSPLOST debate, we have congressmen calling up their constituents and telling them how to vote.

    Whether you support TSPLOST or not, you have to admit that the role-reversal is somewhat perplexing.

    • benevolus says:

      I don’t know about you, but I do expect our legislators to inform us about complicated issues.

      • seenbetrdayz says:

        I don’t know about you, but if legislators have more influence over the people than the people have over their legislators, this country is screwed.

  9. EdensDavis says:

    Debbie I am truly sorry about my linked-in profile, I will be sure to remedy. I am working on the transportation referendum because I truly believe this is our last best hope for Atlanta. I am sick of seeing the city I know and love dwindle further and further to a third tier city. Look I realize the project list isn’t perfect, and the political reality is that it never will be. I hate the idea of raising taxes, but infrastructure is one thing where I think government spending can make a difference. I took a leave of absence from a job I truly loved to try and do my part to see it passed. This plan really does have some great projects that won’t be funded (in my lifetime) unless this passes. If you don’t agree with me that’s fine, but I am not willing to wait on Plan B to start addressing our transportation issues. Vote Yes on July 31st! Hopefully this will be my last post on PP…..I have a conference call with UN Agenda 21 to hop onto :).

    • debbie0040 says:

      You can try that Agenda 21 crap on someone else. That has never been one of my primary concerns. Others have taken the lead in that.

      “I hate the idea of raising taxes, but infrastructure is one thing where I think government spending can make a difference. ”

      So I take it you supported the Obama Administration’s Stimulus bill?

      I take it that you disagree with Republicans on a national level when they state raising taxes DOES NOT create jobs and a recession is not the time to raise taxes…

      • Stifler65 says:

        Debbie,

        I disagree with national Republicans on many issues and I am still a Republican. It is ok to do that sometimes. We forgot how to compromise in this country and I hope your organization learns that old principle again.

        • debbie0040 says:

          Then you have sold out your former conservative views on taxes for a paycheck…

          What is a big deal Ramble is that some Republican elected officials are hypocrities. If the Dems propose tax increase they rant and rave about raising taxes is wrong and it does not create jobs and that you cannot tax and spend your way into prosperity.

          Let the chamber wave political contributions and/or other monetary backroom incentives and these Republicans suddenly love tax increases…

      • Rambler1414 says:

        There is a very big difference between the infrastructure projects that were built in Gerorgia as a result of Stimulus, and the infrastructure projects in the TIA Project List.

        Stimulus demanded shovel-ready projects. Stimulus required that the projects still follow the state/federal environmental process. TIA does neither. (Both are a big deal if you understand transportation projects)

    • Joshua Morris says:

      Davis, why don’t you start by working to identify and eliminate inefficiencies in the GA DOT and then talk to your state legislators about maintaining a SINGLE managed source of revenue for that department? This proposed sales tax, added on top of current motor fuel taxes, is not the only solution to our transportation needs as it has been promoted, and there is absolutely NO evidence that this initiative will “untie” Atlanta traffic.

      CTM’s advertising campaign is overtly dishonest, as is the ballot question. I would be embarrassed to be part of such a deceptive and detrimental effort.

      • Three Jack says:

        Joshua,

        You asked of the CTM mouthpiece, “why don’t you start by working to identify and eliminate inefficiencies in the GA DOT and then talk to your state legislators about maintaining …”

        We both know the answer to that question — ‘ready……fire…….aim’

  10. you says:

    “third tier city”
    Infrastructure was the one think we actually ranked high in but don’t keep that from pushing you agenda.

    • benevolus says:

      Stop it!
      That survey ranked airports and moving goods through the state, but did you see anything about congestion in there?
      I didn’t.

      • you says:

        I don’t take those things seriously..I am just tired of the doom and gloom if we don’t raise taxes now.

  11. Brunswick Stew says:

    @Ed-

    First, “suburbian” is not a word.

    Scondly, a robocall agency simply asks for a number to put in the caller id– as someone pointed out in an earlier comment. I think its safe to say that the call was not made from state phones.

    Third, your use of sarcastic race-baiting completely negates any stance you may have on this issue. Whether you agree with Senator Fort on how to vote on the 31st or not, which I do not, he has a point citing the disparity of the tax burden and the regressive nature of it. He did not bring race into it– you did, and you did so in an incendiary manner as to imply that Senator Fort is trying to create a racial division over this issue. Senator Fort has never been one to shy away from talking about race. But, as of right now, if a manufactured racial division over this tax is being nurtured, it is from the likes of you.

    Lastly, it is one thing to question the ethics of an incumbent using his/her office number to send out a political call. It is a completely different thing to question the legality of it without even asking a friend/colleague how a robocall works. Typing IANAL is a lazy excuse to be bellicose without having to go through the painstaking process of typing a question into google.

    • Calypso says:

      @ Brunswick Stew

      First, “Scondly” is not a word

      Secondly, your use of the word ‘its’ is correctly spelled it’s

  12. Brunswick Stew says:

    “Scondly” is a slip of the finger–one I should have caught. Nonetheless, “Suburbian” is turning suburbia into something that’s simply wrong.

    You got me on “its”.

  13. TheEiger says:

    Edens/Stifler65 – your arrogance and condescending tone towards Debbie is quite baffling. You are suppose to be a spokesman on behalf of the transpiration referendum and you are only pushing more people way with your snide comments. “… I have a conference call with UN Agenda 21 to hop onto.”

    Whether you like it or not the Tea Party and Debbie represent a large voting block. You need them. Mainly because you aren’t winning over the Democrats like you thought you would. I guess belittling the voters and the people you need to win an election is what you learn when you work on two back to back losing campaigns. Looks like it’s going to be 0 for 3 for you at the end of the month. (EJ and Tricia) 🙁

  14. debbie0040 says:

    Edens, just a bit of advise for you guys in CTM. When you are visiting voters in Atlanta Housing Authority Senior citizen high rises, may not be such a good idea to bring them fried chicken for lunch. They may just get insulted…..

    • Now THAT was funny, mostly because all those buildings have been torn down and nobody lives there. Not saying nobody VOTES from there, just that nobody lives there.

      • debbie0040 says:

        There are still high rises in Atlanta that seniors live in. There maynot be that many but there are still a few and CTM visited them on a week day.

  15. SFrazier says:

    If a stimulus plan works is it bad? Our most hurt area in the job market is construction jobs. We do not want too put them back to work building homes as this would hurt housing prices. But if we put them to work fixing our roads new business could come to Georgia and those construction workers back on their job could buy back the house that they lost with a new fridge and big screen tv. This is a stimulus that could work with the people in charge of what to do!

    • you says:

      Any artificially stimulus is going to fail at some point because it only “creates” short-term government jobs and does nothing for the private sector besides taking more money from it. How have all the Obama stimuli worked out for you?
      Also, there are already way too many empty commercial spaces on major roads all over GA and more are coming open every day. So, just like the housing market, we don’t need more commercial property either.
      With your plan we will just go back to over building and end up right back where we are now.

  16. saltycracker says:

    Keynesian stimulus:

    Roosevelt’s approach was: “we must build major public projects like dams
    Eisenhower’s approach was “we must build an interstate system”
    Kennedy’s approach was “we must get to the moon first”

    Today’s approach is we must go way beyond saving our monetary system, we must take ownership of mortages, student loans and healthcare while creating a financial oligarchy on wall street beholding to politicians, extend public welfare to individuals and corporations and throw trillions out the window for the unwashed and unclean and keep calling it “creating jobs”.

    Keynes is rolling over in his grave, he meant govt projects not govt welfare.

    And this week’s action by Obama was to undo Clinton to return to welfare as we knew it:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123422835499665849.html

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