Ahead of Tuesday’s presidential primary, many Wisconsin residents found their phone lines blasted by pre-recorded messages from candidates and campaigns. A state lawmaker says those so called robocalls need to be stopped, or people should at least have the option to prevent them from coming in.
State Representative Andre Jacque (R-Bellevue) says he plans to reintroduce a bill next session that would add recorded political messages to the state’s Do Not Call list. The popular list already allows Wisconsinites to stop unwanted calls from telemarketers, although it currently includes exemptions for charities, public opinion polls, and political campaigns. Jacques bill would still allow campaign calls from a live person.
Jacque says the calls leading up to the presidential primary were at the point that some people reported getting more than a dozen a day. He says constituents told him they were often afraid to answer their phone, which the Bellevue Republican argues in unacceptable.
He says the calls can often be very nasty and there’s little accountability because it’s not a live person on the other end of the line. If campaigns want to send out those types of messages, he says a live person should have to do it.
Jacque introduced a similar proposal during the recently ended legislative session, but the bill failed to receive a hearing. With recall elections, statewide primaries and the presidential election coming up this year, he predicts there will be a strong demand from the public to see the legislation move forward when lawmakers return next spring.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:09)