Wisconsin Republicans Must Send Message That
‘Hate Calls’ are Not Welcome in Our State

MADISON – Following criticism from Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, General Colin Powell and Republican leaders in other states, the Democratic Party of Wisconsin today called on state Republicans to follow suit and denounce the McCain-RNC robo-calls that have been flooding Wisconsin phone lines with dishonest, hate-filled messages about Barack Obama.

Palin criticized the calls that her own campaign put out in an interview yesterday, as did General Colin Powell during his appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press. Republican U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Norm Coleman (R-MN) recently called for an end to the same dishonest and dishonorable auto-calls in their own states and across the nation. 

“These calls are dishonorable and disgusting and have no place in Wisconsin politics,” said Joe Wineke, Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. “I am urging Republicans in Wisconsin to take a stand and tell McCain’s campaign that the citizens of this state don’t want to be torn apart by the politics of fear and hate.”

McCain’s campaign, in collaboration with the Republican National Committee, recently started placing automated calls to thousands of households across Wisconsin to spread sleazy, dishonest messages about Barack Obama under the radar. Reports of the auto-calls started surfacing across the state on October 16, 2008. Ironically, this is the same tactic that was used against McCain in 2000, and at the time, he called the shameful automated messages "hate calls."

“John McCain had it right in 2000, and that's why so many Republicans, Democrats and Independents across America are speaking out against these insidious and false calls,” said Wineke.  “We are urging Republicans in Wisconsin to stand up and call on McCain to cease these auto-calls now.”

Across the country, news reports have highlighted McCain's dishonorable turn that has led his campaign to resort to using reckless tactics to smear Barack Obama, like these hate-filled auto-calls.

“These are the tactics of a desperate campaign that is running out of time and has already run out of ideas. But it's all they have left,” Wineke said.  “McCain’s campaign even admitted that they were going to try to ‘turn the page’ on the economy, because ‘if we talk about the economic crisis, McCain will lose.’”