FBI probes voter-suppression robocalls targeting residents in Michigan, other states

click to enlarge Polling station in Detroit. - STEVE NEAVLING
Steve Neavling
Polling station in Detroit.

The FBI is investigating voter-suppression robocalls in Michigan and other states that urged voters to stay home on Election Day.

“We are aware of reports of robocalls and have no further comment,” the FBI said in a statement. “As a reminder, the FBI encourages the American public to verify any election and voting information they may receive through their local election officials.”

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said Tuesday that Flint residents were receiving robocalls falsely suggesting they could cast a ballot on Wednesday because of long lines at polling places on Election Day. Tuesday was the last day to vote.

“Obviously this is FALSE and an effort to suppress the vote,” Nessel tweeted. “No long lines and today is the last day to vote. Don’t believe the lies! Have your voice heard!”

Nessel also warned that Dearborn voters were receiving text messages falsely claiming they had to vote for President Donald Trump if they support Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden – and vice versa – because of problems with ballot sensors.

“Do not fall for it, it's a trick!” Nessel tweeted. Officials also warned of robocalls in Florida, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and New York.

In October, Nessel charged right-wing fraudsters Jacob Wohl and Jack Burkman for making robocalls with bogus claims to discourage Black voter turnout in the Detroit area. They were ordered to stand trial last week.

Stay on top of Detroit news and views. Sign up for our weekly issue newsletter delivered each Wednesday.

About The Author

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling is an award-winning investigative journalist who operated Motor City Muckraker, an online news site devoted to exposing abuses of power and holding public officials accountable. Neavling also hosted Muckraker Report on 910AM from September 2017 to July 2018. Before launching Motor City Muckraker,...
Scroll to read more Metro Detroit News articles
Join the Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state.
Help us keep this coverage going with a one-time donation or an ongoing membership pledge.


Join Detroit Metro Times Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.