Democratic candidates get “vile” calls after personal cell phone numbers put on opponents’ mailings

Some Democratic candidates received “hateful and scary” phone calls – after their Republican opponents put their personal cell phone numbers on campaign mailings.

House Minority Leader Donna Lasinski said it’s happened in six highly competitive races, and the calls are getting more frequent and malicious as the election gets closer. She said the campaign strategy encourages harassment and is unethical.

“Our candidates had to notify local law enforcement of these messages,” Lasinski said. “Right now, they haven’t crossed the line to a threat that would take one of our candidates off the campaign trail, but they’re getting messages that are just horrible, they’re pretty horrible.”

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At least six candidates had their personal cell phone numbers published in GOP mailers, Lasinski confirmed. (The calls were first reported by Capitol News Service Gongwer.) Those “doxxed” include Democrat Jaime Kirchen, whose opponent in the 27th District race is Republican Bob Howey.

Others include Democrat Rob Kull in the 28th District, running against Republican Jamie Thompson, Democrat Joey Andrews, who is running against Republican Kevin Whiteford in the 38th District, Democrat Denise Mentzer, whose Republican opponent in the 61st, running for to represent the 103rd District against Republican Jack O’Malley.

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Michigan Radio reached out to the Republican candidates by email or phone, but did not receive a response at the time of publication, except for Jack O’Malley.

O’Malley’s office emailed this statement:

“It has come to my attention that a mailer has been sent out with my opponent’s cell phone number. It is reported that she has received several harassing calls from individuals as a result of this. Let me first say that the mailer in that case was sent without my knowledge or consent. It was also not paid for by my campaign. My opponent is fully aware that this can happen because she too has had to explain false statements on her behalf.”

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“With that said,” O’Malley’s statement continued, “having been on the receiving end of threats and stupidity myself, I do not condone this type of behavior and never will. Although I had no part in this, I apologize I myself to the lady. . Coffia for the stupidity of others.”

A spokesman for the Michigan Republican Party said in a statement that it uses “publicly available information” in campaign materials.

Lasinski said Democrats who have been harassed are taking extra security measures.


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