Pro-Doug Jones Super PAC Using Voter Intimidation Tactics — Ad Claims ‘Your Vote Is Public Record’
Highway 31, a Birmingham-based pro-Doug Jones super PAC is using what could be perceived as voter intimidation tactics against Roy Moore by suggesting the votes cast in a December 12 special election are “public record.”
Beginning last week, some Alabamians were posting on social media about encountering online pre-roll video advertising making such a claim.
— Joemantler (@Joemantler) December 3, 2017
In watching some youtube videos on Cash Cab there is an ad running for Doug Jones as follows: “Your vote is public record & your community will know if you voted to stop Roy Moore” @MooreSenate I will just leave this here. #VoteRoyMoore
— Joan Alexander (@joanalex28) December 3, 2017
@fmtalk1065 have you seen the YouTube ad for Doug Jones where they state that “your vote is public record and your community will know if you fought to stop Roy Moore “? Is that not voter intimidation?
— James Owens (@JamesOw52157488) December 3, 2017
I keep hearing there are Doug Jones’ ads declaring your vote will be public, which is silly and untrue.
— Dale Jackson (@TheDaleJackson) December 2, 2017
Breitbart News has obtained two of those ads, both which taken by a resident in the Montgomery, AL designated market area.
One declares Moore to be a “child predator,” a claim apparently based on a report that lays out decades-old allegations that he acted inappropriately and that he engaged in sexual misconduct with underage women while employed as a prosecutor in Etowah County, AL in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
After leveling the “child predator” charge, the narrator tells viewers their vote is public record, and their community will know if they “helped stop Roy Moore.”
“If you don’t vote, and Roy Moore – a child predator – wins, could you live with that? Your vote is public record and your community will know whether or not you helped stop Roy Moore,” she said.
Another shorter advertisement, clocked at five seconds, also declares your vote public record and says “you community will know whether or not you helped stop Roy Moore.”
At the end of each of those videos, the group Highway 31 claims responsibility for the ad and directs viewers to its website.
Little is known about the Highway 31 super PAC given that it has been intentionally set up in a manner that prevents the public from discovering who is funding it.
According to a report from the Daily Beast’s Lachlan Markay, voters won’t know the source of nearly $2 million worth of ads until after the election.
“Super PACs are required to disclose their donors, but the group Highway 31 has structured its spending in a way that campaign-finance experts say is almost unprecedented,” Markay wrote. “While legal, it will have the effect of obscuring the group’s benefactors, who will have financed a series of ads over the last two months of the campaign propping up Jones and hammering his Republican opponent, former State Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore.”
An earlier report from Breitbart’s Michael Patrick Leahy showed three Washington, D.C. consulting firms with ties to former Obama campaign staffers “have provided millions of dollars in advertising services” for Highway 31.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor