February 7, 2007 by Ryan Joy
I received a voicemail this morning at my work phone number from a Bill Barkus claiming to work for Representative Tom Cole (R-OK) and the National Republican Congressional Committee. According to the message, the RNCC wants to recognize me with their “national leadership award”. Of course I’m immediately skeptical as I consider:
a.) why would a Rep. from Oklahoma want to recognize me as a national leader?
b.) why would the RNCC want to recognize a Democrat?
c.) how did they get my work number?
I thought surely that someone had nominated me as a joke.
However, I needed some answers so I searched on the Internet for “Tom Cole leadership awards“. Lo and behold the first site that came up was another blog about these so-called ‘leadership awards’ and I learned that many, many people had been called. You can read all about it here.
Apparently they ask permission to use your name in a full-page ad they’re taking out to “support further tax cuts and to defeat the Democrats in the upcoming elections” and they also ask that you donate a few hundred dollars to help out with the “media blitz”. I’m assuming that their goals have changed since the Republican defeat in November. Then again, maybe not. They may just be that out of touch.
The common link seems to be registered business owners, but it’s still odd that I was called on my work number. My DBA doesn’t list my work number. The other commonality seems to be that we’re all Democrats (or at least vote that way), but I don’t believe that can be substantiated. Perhaps it’s just Democrats who were skeptical enough to research it further on the Internet.
I haven’t called the number back yet, but I think I might tomorrow sometime just to have a little fun. I did, however, put a call into MY Congressman, Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) to inform his office of this scam on the part of the RNCC in case they were not aware. I’m hoping that someone will introduce a symbolic resolution demanding that the RNCC stop harassing and trying to dupe voters across the country. That should embarrass Mr. Cole, Mr. Reynolds, and the already disgraced Mr. Delay.
Update: (03/16/2007): I just received another phone call from Mr. Tom Cole’s office. This time the caller identified herself as Amanda Peyton on my voicemail, but gave the same spiel. They should google their name and their award. They’d see that I come up first.
Update: (05/02/2007): These guys are UNBELIEVABLE! I just got another voicemail, this time from a Douglas Wilson with the Business Advisory Council telling me that Congressman Cole would like to invite me to dinner with President Bush on June 13th. This time I was instructed to call 888-383-8065, so it looks like they’re changing up a little bit.
Update: (05/11/2007): It will never end. I returned from lunch just now to find yet ANOTHER voicemail from Jacqueline Grupe (sp?), my contact at the Business Advisory Council. I was asked to call the same 888-383-8065 number as before and to do it with urgency to be able to have dinner with President Bush. Tom Cole must really, really want me to join them for dinner.
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