UPDATE: I didn’t get the number of calls made correct, there were additional ones made by Poutine to different area codes outside of Guelph that means my initial cost estimate was lower by $3 than it should have been.
UPDATE: March 23, 2012 “The cost for these May 2, 2011 calls was $162.10, Elections Canada said in court filings.” in the G&M.
I’ve seen elsewhere that the cost may have been closer to three or five hundred. What does your information indicate? It might be a handy number to pin down, so it could possibly be spotted coming from a listed campaign expense somewhere in the country.
He said he used a RackNine account he held through his own company, Prescoan, to place the automated calls announcing Burke campaign events. He said he then submitted invoices to the campaign for these costs.
“I gave them to the campaign manager,” Prescott said. “There was definitely no effort to hide anything or obscure anything.”
There is no record of these expenses anywhere in the Burke campaign return, however.
In Mathews’ sworn statement, he writes that it is “reasonable to conclude that the absence of an expense report . . . is inconsistent with the pattern” of the calls.
Prescott would not say how much the various calls cost.
Prescott said he has spoken with Mathews by phone and has another meeting scheduled in the near future.
Before the robocalls story first broke last month, Prescott told the Ottawa Citizen he had paid for RackNine bills himself and was reimbursed by the campaign through the $1,100 he was paid.
But an agreement signed by Morgan and Ali on March 26, at the beginning of the campaign, shows Prescott was always to be paid $1,100 as an honourium for providing “general labour” on the campaign. Other campaign workers who had similar agreements in place were reimbursed for the costs they incurred during the course of the campaign. But there is no sign of any expenses Prescott incurred.
(An extremely rough example:
Sam, based on that pricing of 1.9 cents, if we assume 70 ridings were called, at 10,000 people each, that’s only about $13000 to steal an election.)
Since many calls seem not to have been the cheaper robocalls, and were in fact using live callers, this estimate is lowballed, unless fewer than 10,000 were called in that many ridings. As of writing, more than 90 ridings appear to have been targets of these misdirection calls, at unknown levels of saturation.
I’m starting to wonder if Matt Meier’s effort to give Elections Canada the Rogers IP for Pierre Poutine/Jones in Guelph turned out to be a dead-end or less specific than would be needed to cause an arrest. If this crime were being treated as seriously as it should be, since the stake of Canada’s government may well rest on it, I’d have expected some arrest by now.
Front Porch Strategies didn’t stay off of Canadian porches during the Canadian election, and that appears to be a contravention of the Canadian Elections Act. Dave explains why this appears to be the case.