Officials warn of malicious robocalls seeking to confuse voters by telling them to ‘stay home and stay safe’ on Election Day

Nelson Oliveira, New York Daily News
·2 min read

Officials in several states urged voters to ignore robocalls telling them to “stay home and stay safe” on Election Day, saying the calls are an attempt to sow confusion and lower turnout.

In Michigan, the secretary of state’s office received reports Tuesday that anonymous callers were “purposefully spreading misinformation” in Flint, one of the state’s largest and most diverse cities, according to a news release. Officials said the unknown culprits falsely told Flint residents that they should vote Wednesday, the day after Election Day, because lines were too long.

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

Other states reporting similar calls included Kansas, Nebraska and Virginia.

“We are receiving reports of robocalls telling voters to stay home. Disregard these calls,” election officials in Kansas tweeted Tuesday afternoon.

Misleading and malicious calls have been going out to American voters even before Tuesday, The Washington Post reported. Experts estimate that about 10 million phone numbers have been targeted in recent days, according to the paper.

The FBI is investigating the origin of the calls.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson reminded voters to “only believe information” they get from trusted media sources, their local clerk or other government agencies.

She also urged voters in Flint, as well as other parts of the battleground state, to be in line by 8 p.m. Tuesday if they haven’t cast a ballot yet.

“Lines in the area and across the state are minimal and moving quickly,” she said in a statement, “and Michigan voters can feel confident that leaders across state and local government are vigilant against these kinds of attacks on their voting rights and attempts at voter suppression, and we will be working quickly all day to stamp out any misinformation aimed at preventing people from exercising their right to vote.”


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