Talk:2011 Canadian federal election voter suppression scandal

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Needs to start tracking evidence of a coverup, such as news reports indicating managers were 'reviewing' all call recordings at RMG, and the 'missing' activity logs from the Tory CIMS voter database, which would otherwise have identified Pierre Poutine, as reported the National Post on April 17. Also, the National Post reports that the calling list clearly came from CIMS. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:20, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

The article is quite selective in it's adjectives and references. The primary author appears to attempt to lead readers to partisan conclusions. I have attempted several updates to clarify facts with supporting references. Each edit has been removed. It seems the author has a theory and lists only material supporting one view and is not open to contradictory evidence.

Just for the record, anyone who looks at the specific details of this matter for long enough comes to pretty stark partisan conclusions. It is simply a sickening accumulation of specific facts. ~~

Maynard, in his report to Parliament regarding the "Guelph Robocall", specifically warned against drawing conclusions from inaccurate or incomplete information in the media being used for partisan purposes.

This article, while containing facts is also rife with opinion and conjecture.

I live in Guelph and have personal knowledge of people and events referred to in this article. It is unquestionably biased and needs balance. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:50, 9 March 2013 (UTC)

Seriously lacking article[edit]

This article is based on numerous news and journalistic articles. Why are there no references to any Elections Canada publications or notices?

These articles or from organisations that have repeatedly attempted to discredit the CPC and are undoubtedly biased.

This article needs to be cleaned up and should be much more rigorous. (talk) 09:06, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

Unfortunately the only sources are the news articles. Elections Canada has refused to report anything until the investigation is complete. Karl 334 TALK to ME 17:43, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

Elections Canada has been silent, check their websites. Could you cite what organisations you think discredit the CPC are too biased to include? Ottawakismet (talk) 01:14, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

I can answer that... The Guelph Mercury, which is a Torstar rag cites many facts and references that are not included in this article. Maynard has published several reports in which he warns against some of the editorial included in this article. EC has said their investigation and that of the RCMP is so far inconclusive and insemination of incomplete and inaccurate information in the media is being used for partisan purposes. This article is a prime example of such activity. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:59, 9 March 2013 (UTC)

Elections Canada has now made a statement also their internal emails have been released, as well as the activities of some of their investigators Ottawakismet (talk) 02:33, 20 March 2012 (UTC) Also, the CElectoralO has now announced a report to parliament on march 29 Ottawakismet (talk) 14:10, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

I've added several tags to this article to reflect the nature of the article and the "scandal" (if it is one) in general. Seriously, how can we call this conspiracy theory a "Scandal" when it has been partisanly driven from the start? ARMY101 (talk) 17:07, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Tags removed; see WP:DRIVEBY. Rostz (talk) 17:28, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
Tags re-added. The tags appropriately describe the multiple issues with this biased article. Nor was it a drive-by tagging. — Preceding unsigned comment added by ARMY101 (talkcontribs) 21:40, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

Election receipts[edit]

This sentence I wrote has now been removed twice, by two different users, from the article:

The Conservatives have denied Elections Canada access to their election spending receipts.<ref>{{cite news|url=|title=Elections Canada denied new powers by Tories, MPs say |last=Payton |first=Laura |publisher=[[CBC News]] |date=2012 March 6 |accessdate=2012-03-06}}</ref>

Last week, Elections Canada wanted the Conservatives' spending receipts to see whether they payed for robocalls, so User:Karl 334's claim that "the conservitives denied a request by elcections canada for the ability to demand reciepts from all political parties spending, this is not related to robocall" is inaccurate and his deletion of my sentence uncalled for. MattieRenard (talk) 17:29, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

I disagree, if you read the article, the Conservatives denied Elections Canada the ability to demand election receipts by political party whenever they required it. Not just for the robocall incident. The request came from a 2008 report suggesting that the Government allow this. The rest of the article is just quotes from opposition parties guessing on the reason why this was done this week. Karl 334 TALK to ME 17:41, 7 March 2012 (UTC)
It's true that better wording would have been "The Conservatives have denied Elections Canada the power to access political parties' spending receipts," upon rereading the article. But nevertheless. MattieRenard (talk) 17:36, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

Outcomes Fix?[edit]

"Many ridings in the election were won by a margin of fewer than 1,000 votes. If the election results are thrown out in those ridings where election fraud is stated to have taken place the Conservatives could lose their majority government."
-The two sentences together are misleading, implying that the ridings affected were won by less than 1000 votes (4 were, as stated by second source).
-Isn't it a bit premature to have a speculative outcomes section when we have no outcomes?
Wilson (talk) 04:28, 10 March 2012 (UTC)

Right, I was thinking of writing "Potential outcomes" but I didn't really like that as it is not a potential outcome that there is a potential outcome that the conservatives may lose seat, but an outcome is that there is potential for the conservatives to lose some seats.
Potential outcome - the cons will lose a seat
Outcome - There is potential for the cons to lose a seat...if...
See what I mean?
As for your first point, when I original wrote it there was much more and the context was the complete 301 ridings in which dozens of ridings were won by less than 1000 votes as seen, with some work,here.
Feel free to change it as you see fit, Canadian Spring (talk) 15:37, 10 March 2012 (UTC)
Changed the wording to emphasize a judge will most likely only order new elections in ridings where the end result was changed by the interference and specific mention to the majority government as we don't know if there will be more than 11 by-elections or who would win them. Wilson (talk) 16:10, 10 March 2012 (UTC)

The scope of the article[edit]

I've altered the scope to "The Robocall scandal is a political scandal arising from the use of both robocalls and live calls to suppress voting by misleading recipients as to where their voting stations were located."

I bring this here as there are many sides people may try to/want to attach on and I'm wondering how to deal with these side issues. These side issues include the alleged harassment of Jewish voters on Sabbath, the annoyingly high use of legal robocalls by many parties, or even that calls were made on behalf of a Liberal candidate in which they failed to identify themselves properly.

Should these get their own section as a part of this article or be addressed only over at Controversies in the Canadian federal election, 2011? Canadian Spring (talk) 03:31, 11 March 2012 (UTC)

Basically what you are saying is: "if it isn't reported by left-wing media" it isn't a valid source. Have a look at all the references in this article. They are ALL notoriously left-wing and pro-liberal. All this is another article that has been hijacked. - (talk) 01:21, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
What are "left wing media" in Canada? Here are the endorsements for media in 2011 The Toronto Star has zero citations on this article, in fact a majority are from papers that supported the Conservatives. The Vancouver Observer has one citation. The National Post has at least 4 citations and the Globe and Mail has 6, both papers which endorsed the CPC for the last 3-4 elections. You must show some evidence of bias, it seems that what are you implying by your position is that you dont trust any of the media, since its inherently left wing. You cant simply say everything in Canada is left wing media, short of Sun Media, and nothing is to be trusted. Ottawakismet (talk) 14:02, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
I've been trying to use this page to research the Robocall scandal, and have found it frustrating to distinguish which parts of the article are about (a) Guelph (b) on a national-scale and (c) controversies that don't really involve voter suppression. I've remade the information hierarchy. I have barely touched the text, but have significantly altered the hierarchy of information. My next task (which I would invite someone to help me with, dear god) would be to help me take the information now put together in these categories and start to edit for clarity and redundancy. ChrisMiller42 (talk) 21:24, 14 January 2013 (UTC)
I've reviewed your edits and they look good. The article has kind of grown "organically" over time and because it was initially organized by topic, rather than chronologically, some of the information ended up organized "sub-optimally". Your changes have gone a good measure to fixing that deficiency, although, as you point out, more work needs to be done. Because unfolding stories like this are easy to add material to, as news outlets carry updated material, it tends to get added a bit indiscriminately and not all of it will prove important to the final, historical, story, once it is all finished and done. The thing is that it is easier to add too much (especially refs) and then cut it back when the direction of the story becomes more evident over time, rather than add too little and try to expand it years from now, starting with trying to find refs after the fact. In general then most Wikipedia "current event" articles tend to be a bit long and ill-organized until the events are completed and then irrelevant material (in other words "dead ends" in the story) can be trimmed. If you want to work more on it then please do, but I would ask that you not trim too much detail at this stage until the outcome is better known. Later we will all know what was important and what wasn't. I hope that makes sense? - Ahunt (talk) 21:54, 14 January 2013 (UTC)


I have removed the following section, as have others before me, I just want to explain why.

"Some of the contacts made to Elections Canada are the result of automated complaint systems on the websites of activist groups such as Avaaz and<ref></ref> Involvement of these partisan groups have worried many, including NDP leader Nycole Turmel, of American involvement in Canadian elections.<ref></ref>"

This goes under WP:REDFLAG as a "surprising or apparently important claims not covered by multiple mainstream sources;". I cannot find these claims being made by a mainstream source other than Quebecor, an organization with a quite poor reputation and blatant objectives. At the websites of Avaaz and Leadnow I can see no evidence of what is claimed, all I see are semi-automated emailing politicians and not Elections Canada about starting a public inquiry into the voter suppression. Canadian Spring (talk) 14:24, 11 March 2012 (UTC)

Reliable sources is clearly an issue in this article because this is an ongoing event. It seems, however, that Sun News is not ok to reference because they are right-wing and CBC is ok, although the CBC are obviously left-wing and extremely anti-conservative. There needs to be some clarifications on the guidelines here or we should delete the entire article because it is in it's entirety based on heresay from the media. There are no references from an RCMP or Elections Canada report since they have not completed their investigations.
You need to provide some input Canadianspring as you are deleting sections that are relying on, alleged right-wing media, when referencing left-wing media; CBC is notorious for being anti-conservative so if you don't abide by WP:REDFLAG either your edits will also be deleted. (talk) 01:15, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Okay. First of all, the biases are arguable, but regardless, bias in a news organization doesn't usually amount to outright false facts; however, when one news organization reports something which they have no evidence for and that is not supported by any other sources, that is the time to employ WP:REDFLAG. InverseHypercube (talk) 01:30, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

There's a big difference between Sun News and the CBC. Take the Globe and Mail, which in its reporting refers to Sun News as a "right-leaning network" [1], really something of an understatement. The fact Sun News is conservative is something everyone agrees on. But you won't find the Globe - which endorsed the Tories in the last election - claiming straight out that the CBC is a "left-leaning network," which everyone would recognize as a polemical statement. What you'll find instead is reporting of the fact that the Conservatives and Quebecor claim the CBC is biased, mention of criticism of individual instances of apparent bias, or opinion pieces on the subject. So reliable sources would never equate the CBC and Sun News. This is really just common sense for anyone who's watched both networks. (talk) 04:25, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

The Globe endorsed the Conservatives? The Globe's coverage in general is pretty far-left in my opinion.--Львівське (говорити) 04:32, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Far left? I've never seen a mainstream newspaper that was "far left", nor "far right". All of them are subservient to the state, though; see Manufacturing Consent. InverseHypercube (talk) 05:57, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes. [2] For the third time running. In fact, if you look through the Globe's endorsements, the last time they supported the Liberals but Canadians didn't elect a Liberal government was in 1930, when they supported Mackenzie King. Since then they've supported the Tories seven times in elections they lost. So the Globe's editorial line is more to the right than Canadians are generally. I think what you said just goes to show where you're coming from, when the Tories are already to the right of 63% of Canadians. (talk) 06:36, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
By the way, I thought it was amusing that Sun News didn't mention its fake citizenship ceremony until it ran a story saying Kenney had apologized to them for it. They never mentioned what every other news outlet had reported - that a Sun News producer had written "Let's fake it!" in an e-mail to the government. This shows how dangerous it is when some people - left and right alike - conclude the mainstream media are biased and shut themselves into media that are in fact far more biased. (talk) 07:13, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Ugh, please cut the right-wing vs far-right wing bullshit. I stated that one single source is stating facts without providing primary evidence and that no other RS is stating the same facts. The facts themselves are suprising therefore it goes under WP:REDFLAG of "surprising or apparently important claims not covered by multiple mainstream sources;". Find other sources or it stays out as unreliable. Canadian Spring (talk) 15:00, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Dont remove something because you feel its unsourced enough, go and check and add more sources. Its not your prerogative to remove everything you dont feel has sufficient sources, you should check to see if its incorrect or whether just needs more sources. If something is true, but doesnt have enough sources then go do research - it seems more like you are trying to edit out what you dont like Ottawakismet (talk) 21:58, 13 March 2012 (UTC)

The trouble with the Internet is that lies live on and lend credence to the deception. (talk) 04:40, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

I hope you can read French Canadianspring and Ottawakismet. You both should do more research before deleting things. And stop projecting. (talk) 05:17, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

I havent deleted other peoples material. I restored deleted material that a random IP address had removed, and added more sources, since it wasnt incorrect, just someone seemed to think the sources were inadequate and removed them on their own prerogative. I was objecting to the removal of material. I do read French, though the only french articles I saw on les appels automatises, had little content, and I havent added any. I see your Sun News article, but I think what was added is thin on content... There are lots of articles about people saying they are concerned about this and that, Im not sure what the NDP thoughts on Avaaz being based on the US shows, other then a reflexible anti-American position on behalf of the NDP. I think what you are alleging is that the Americanness of these sites is somehow influence over our system. I dont really think the Canadian/Americanness of these web based sites is very important. Ottawakismet (talk) 15:05, 15 March 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I want to remind editors that this talk page is for discussing improvements to the article, it is not the place for rants, axe grinding or forum posts. Save that for the comments section on CBC. - Ahunt (talk) 20:07, 15 March 2012 (UTC)


There seems to be a tiny bit on non-neutrality when the issue is presented in the as well in several subsequent sections. Not 100% sure though as this was after reading this article for the first time today. Just thought I should tag it and let others see.

For instance: "After the Guelph reports, an unprecedented 31,000 reports with information about calls were filed to Elections Canada, making it clear that the calls were not limited to the Guelph riding." Seems to be a little biased.

How is it not neutral? It's a factual claim. If it's false, that's a different story.
The news reports I read confirmed this; specifically, the cited article says,

What started as a report about crank phone calls in the riding of Guelph is now extending across the country as voters come forward with complaints about phone calls that directed them to bogus voting sites or harassing them late at night.

It seems clear that calls did occur in other ridings. InverseHypercube (talk) 01:11, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, some definite editorializing / weasel wording with the "unprecedented!" and "making it clear" parts--Львівське (говорити) 01:34, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
I used "unprecedented" not as hyperbole, but as its literal meaning; see the reference. I couldn't think of any wording other than "making it clear". Feel free to change it. InverseHypercube (talk) 02:18, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
Okay, I've removed the "making it clear" part, since the next sentence explains it more fully. InverseHypercube (talk) 02:46, 12 March 2012 (UTC)
I have carried out a complete copy edit of the article, although more work can certainly still be done. I have also assessed the neutrality and can find no major issues. All allegations are fully referenced, so I have removed the tag. - Ahunt (talk) 20:21, 27 March 2012 (UTC)
WOW - vast improvement in 12 hours - great job.Moxy (talk) 20:25, 27 March 2012 (UTC)
Well your reflink job helped a lot fixing up the refs, which were the worst problem the article had. That is a great tool. The rest was just copyediting, which is a tedious, but necessary, task. The quality of English in the article was pretty poor overall. Probably more needs to be done, including some section reorganization. The real trick will be to keep on top of new submissions and make sure the language stays readable. We can all help there! - Ahunt (talk) 20:42, 27 March 2012 (UTC)
This has been an article that has grown very quickly in a short time, I remember it doubled in size in 4 days. Duplication, timelines that jumped all over the place, and poor organization are starting to sort themselves out, and become a more readable article. Since this article has grown with each newsday, its coherence has declined sometimes, and I accept that Im sometimes part of the problem of chucking information willy nilly into the article. Thank you to the editors who have improved the coherence, and flow of the article, but I still feel this is a work in progress Ottawakismet (talk) 16:27, 28 March 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────While is it getting better I think that the current section organization is slowing it down. I believe that these sorts of articles are better organized chronologically than by sub-topic as it enables them to grow more easily and still remain comprehensible. See a very complex and long story in chronological order History of Eclipse Aviation to see what I mean. - Ahunt (talk) 17:28, 28 March 2012 (UTC)

Be bold "Ahunt" thus far your copy editing has been nothing but helpful. I thus have full confidence that all your actions will be an improvement to the article. Thank you "Ahunt" for all this.Moxy (talk) 22:11, 28 March 2012 (UTC)

Quote Box[edit]

Explanation of my removal of this quote box from article:

“We’re sending people to the wrong place,”

— Annette Desgagné, call-centre employee<ref></ref>

In my opinion, the quote is too short and insubstantial to merit a quote box. Moreover, there is no context - it is only part of a sentence, and makes it look like Desgagné herself is admitting guilt, or that she is some sort of major player in the scandal. Highlighting a quote like this places undue weight on it. Based on the quote alone, we don't know who "We" refers to. The quote, with the proper context, could be worked into the article. (I have no partisan agenda here, I'm just trying to improve the article, now that Google News is linking to it.) Cheers, Dawn Bard (talk) 12:05, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

I dont understand why it is removed. Its meaning is clear, who "we" is, is clear from the context (call-centre employee, we refers to the call centre) Secondly, Desgagné isnt admitting anything beyond her scope, she is referring to her direct personal experience, she knew what she and the call-centre were doing. I dont understand why the length of the quote reduces its impact. Short phrases can be succinct and expressive. Ottawakismet (talk) 14:08, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

She did provide sworn testimony in Federal Court, where RMG had to become a defendant in the lawsuit to overturn 6 election results in order to file their denial affidavit. Pretty significant. Several other co-workers spoke with the Toronto Star, with the same report of voters being misdirected by the Conservative-supplied 'screen pops' at their call centre, but she was the one who offered to testify in court as a witness to the scandal. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:55, 12 April 2013 (UTC)

Article Name[edit]

"Scandal" is not the right word. Scandals require proof of wrong-doing. "Robocall Accusations" would be better name for article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by ‎ (talk)

The article name for an incident should be the most common name, one that is the most recognizable, and likely to be searched. "Robocall scandal" is the name most used by the media. Google has 1,110 results for robocall scandal, but only 702 for robocall accusations. 117Avenue (talk) 05:14, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
As per WP:COMMONNAME I don't see any case for changing the article name at this point in time, although that may change over time if there are criminal proceedings, a change in government though by-elections or a public inquiry with a specific name that alters the commonly used name. - Ahunt (talk) 11:40, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
I would change the name to 2011 Canadian federal election robocall scandal, since "robocall scandal" is too general, and there have been other robocall-related scandals. InverseHypercube (talk) 19:35, 18 March 2012 (UTC)
But the scandal happened in 2012. 117Avenue (talk) 01:24, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes, but it was about the 2011 Canadian federal election. Do you have an idea of how to make this clearer in the title? InverseHypercube (talk) 04:53, 19 March 2012 (UTC)
If there's no other scandal of comparable importance known by the name "Robocall scandal," I don't see why the name needs to be changed. I think a good indication is that there's no other article by that name currently. (talk) 23:27, 23 March 2012 (UTC)
Are you kidding? There are calling records in Guelph, and reports from most of the other ridings across the country. What would constitute proof in addition to calling records that clearly enumerate the fraud calls? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:17, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

This article should return to its previous title... This is like renaming the Watergate page the the Democratic Party suppression scandal... Ottawakismet (talk) 14:55, 13 March 2013 (UTC)

What about robocalls from 2008 still under investigation?[edit]

I think that Briony Penn's story of the 2008 election gives some more insight and background on the issue an is also useful for showing how elections Canada operates. The article is at — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:59, 21 March 2012 (UTC)

The Yukon[edit]

Please know that the name of the western territory is simply "Yukon", not "Yukon Territory". It seems we have gotten it into our heads that "the" should be added in front of the word Yukon, all the time. This is grammatically incorrect, we do not say things like "I came from the Alberta to the Ontario". MOS:CA#Territories states that "the" can be used in article prose, I disagree with this, but this version of the article is not referring to the territory, but the electoral district, as Yukon (electoral district) is linked. Like provinces, we do not say "the" in front of district names, it is grammatically incorrect say things like "from the Abbotsford to the Avalon". If you need help in order to write a sentence using the word Yukon, just replace it with any other place name that begins with a vowel. 117Avenue (talk) 05:48, 24 March 2012 (UTC)

I am thinking this edit war should be added to Wikipedia:Lamest edit wars. - Ahunt (talk) 11:35, 24 March 2012 (UTC)

Annie Hawdur[edit]

The text below was removed from the paragraph related to Annie Hawdur's (an Elections Canada official) warning calls on the day of the election by another editor who felt that a citation was required:

"It is not clear how Hawdur came to believe on the day of the election that the calls, which identified themselves as being from Elections Canada, were organized by the Conservative campaign office. Subsequent examination of the calls months after the election only suggested Conservative supporter involvement when it appeared that the majority of voters targeted had previously indicated non-support for the Conservative Party during polling surveys."

I don't see how a citation would be required for this statement. Essentially, the question of how the Elections Canada official knew on the day of the election that the Conservative Party organized the robocalls is one that arises naturally from the article's preceding sentences. Having searched the citations, I can't find an answer to that question. It's worthwhile mentioning as much in the article itself; at the least, it will prevent other readers from spending time sifting through the sources trying to find an answer to it. Geoff NoNick (talk) 14:04, 30 March 2012 (UTC)

Statements like this require citing to reliable refs or they become editorializing and shouldn't be included, see WP:V. As Wikipedia editors we have to stick to what is known and can be sourced, and not to adding speculation and raising questions. - Ahunt (talk) 14:13, 30 March 2012 (UTC)
What part of the statement do you regard as editorializing? That there is no reference available to provide a piece of information that is obviously missing? That statement doesn't contradict the cited references or introduce any new information or opinion - it simply saves the reader the effort of trying to find the missing information in the references. If we have that information, then it should by all means be included in the article; but failing that, the statement itself can be verified by consulting the two sources that reference the previous statement.
As long as the fact is stated in an WP:NPOV way, I don't see anything in policy to preclude noting the absence of a source. I can concede that it might be better included as a reference footnote than in the main body (which is badly cluttered enough; this article needs a going-over with an eye to WP:NOTNEWSPAPER). Geoff NoNick (talk) 16:50, 30 March 2012 (UTC)

Sworn affadavit by Annette Desgagne[edit]

According to the Toronto Star, Annette Desgagne has signed a sworn affadavit that she was ordered to make such calls based on a script provided by the Conservatives. I'm sure this belongs in the article somewhere. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 02:21, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

More on this here as well. I will try to include this this morning. - Ahunt (talk) 11:17, 19 April 2012 (UTC)
OK, I incorporated both those articles as refs and some text from them. Have a look and see if more from those refs needs to be added or not. I kept it brief, but there is more that can be used in those refs. - Ahunt (talk) 13:59, 19 April 2012 (UTC)


To respond to the question posed in the intro para, misdirecting someone to the wrong address is a criminal offense if it has criminal intent. If you were charged, you could argue you legitimately thought you were giving the correct address and made a mistake, however, if the Crown could show you were trying to misdirect someone intentionally, for whatever reason, then you could be successfully prosecuted. If you dissaude your spouse from voting, Id imagine thats always a criminal offense -- trying to persuade them not to vote, is exactly what the law is intending to criminalize. The idea of the Act is to criminalize actions which undermine Canadian democracy Ottawakismet (talk) 14:59, 6 June 2012 (UTC)

It's also highly illegal to pretend to be Elections Canada, or any other branch of government. Just as it would be to claim to be you were the RCMP or a Crown Prosecutor when you're not.Skookum1 (talk) 03:23, 18 January 2013 (UTC)


what are the potentional consequences to anyone or the Conservative party being found guilty of election fraud. IMHO the party should be banned if that is the case.--Kanga-Kucha (talk) 01:20, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

I'm sure there are many who agree with you and many who don't Regardless, unless you have a source talking about the issue, this isn't the place to discuss it. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 02:57, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
WP:NOTFORUM - Ahunt (talk) 10:09, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
Elections Canada does have the power to ban a party (de-register) if they are found to have violated electoral law, they have the scope to do so. They can liquidate the partys assets, and deregister it. 503 2 and 3, it lists what offenses could trigger this penalty. Ottawakismet (talk) 15:26, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

The header "Outcomes" doesn't contain any outcomes, since court is still investigating. I think it's better to change it to "Possible consequences". Once the first case will be decided in court, we can start a separate section "Outcomes", or we should mention that for the moment the evidence is still being examined by the court. Jurjenb (talk) 07:02, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

"Robocall scandal" title seems undescriptive[edit]

Aren't there other robocall scandals that might be of equal or lesser prominence that should be listed? The robocall entry doesn't link to this one, either. Seems a weird title. (talk) 23:33, 14 June 2012 (UTC)

It's a deliberately misleading term and widely used by the media to misrepresent the true nature of the scandal, which is voter suppression and electoral fraud. This is especially the case because many calls were NOT made by the robocall method, but by live-action "meat puppets", i.e. call centre workers.....the term robocall has been used as a red herring to avoid the REAL subject of the scandal, which is FRAUD used to alter the outcome of an election. Yes it needs a new title, but part of the problem with WP:TITLE is that what "reliable sources" (the mainstream media) are using is what a Wikipedia title will be, even if not factual. Until the major media mends its ways (hah!) this will continue to be the case. SAdly. (talk) 09:27, 7 December 2012 (UTC)
That problem can easily be fixed with redirects to this article from other potential titles. The key thing is making sure readers can find it, more than what it is called. - Ahunt (talk) 11:42, 7 December 2012 (UTC)

Multiple issues[edit]

This article has been tagged for multiple issues, including the neutrality, accuracy, point of view, naming of this "scandal" as a scandal, the lack of the point that none of these allegations have been proving (and it is indeed an ongoing investigation), and the fact that this is a politically-motivated investigation, which means biased organizations (e.g. The Council of Canadians) are participating in this investigation and tainting the media coverage. All these points need to be addressed before the article reflects the actual importance of this "scandal."ARMY101 (talk) 21:55, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

Per WP:DRIVEBY, "The editor who adds the tag must address the issues on the talk page, pointing to specific issues that are actionable within the content policies, namely Wikipedia:Neutral point of view, Wikipedia:Verifiability, Wikipedia:No original research and Wikipedia:Biographies of living persons. Simply being of the opinion that a page is not neutral is not sufficient to justify the addition of the tag. Tags should be added as a last resort." Rostz (talk) 03:51, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
I have added several tags to this article, citing its numerous issues such as its biased title and one-sidedness (Disputed, Hoax, Unbalanced, POV-title, and POV). Yet these tags have been repeatedly cited as vandalism and removed. Please note – specifically – why these tags are not acceptable for this article. ARMY101 (talk) 21:10, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
Considering no response, the tags should be re-added to this article until it is adjusted.ARMY101 (talk) 18:12, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
The tags have been repeatedly removed by several editors showing that no one else agrees with your tags. The consensus is that the tags should not be on the article. - Ahunt (talk) 19:38, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
It's not consensus when it continually seems to be you removing these tags.ARMY101 (talk) 20:25, 8 January 2013 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Your tags have been removed by:

So no it isn't continually me removing the tags. Also you haven't found anyone's support here for these tags. No one supports your position on this article, so I suggest it is time to move along. - Ahunt (talk) 00:50, 9 January 2013 (UTC)

I suggest you have a look at Army101's contributions history concerning other charged POV edits, such as those to the Frank Valeriote page........Skookum1 (talk) 03:39, 18 January 2013 (UTC)
Yup already considered - it was clear there was a POV and probably COI issue here. - Ahunt (talk) 12:10, 18 January 2013 (UTC)
COI and AUTO are common problems on political articles and political bios....hard to prove, and there's that old "no outing" rule too, even though in many cases it's obvious who they are.Skookum1 (talk) 05:11, 19 January 2013 (UTC)

Responsibility section[edit]

I have edited the "responsibility" section as the previous version gave undue weight to investigations into the Conservative Party, without detailing the other relevant responsible parties. Liberal MP Frank Valeriote, for example, is the only person to be charged to-date for illegal robocalls, so it is particularly important that he obviously be mentioned for his role in this scandal. ARMY101 (talk) 21:55, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

Your "solution" adds non-reliably-sourced material, which is not allowable per WP:RS. Rostz (talk) 03:51, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
"illegal robocalls" is a Tory-coined phrase, and the nature of these robocalls is a red herring attempting to justify the silly Tory talking point that the electoral fraud calls are a Liberal conspiracy......Valeriote's calls weren't like those of Pierre Poutine and Racknine, that's for damshur.Skookum1 (talk) 02:32, 18 January 2013 (UTC)
This revision has been deleted several times now. I added it because it more accurately describes the “responsibility” of those involved in the robocalls “scandal.” For example, Liberal MP Frank Valeriote is the only person to-date fined for illegal robocalls, yet the responsibility section focuses only on the Conservatives. A complete description of the responsibility needs to include the involvement of other parties.

Please note – specifically – why this revision is unacceptable or considered vandalism:

  • because it's a spin/deflection from the actual subject matter, which is the use of robocalls (and real-person calls) to redirect voters away from real polling places to fictional one. Valeriote's campaign didn't do that, but the Tories sure like to highlight it as a way to deflect attention from electoral fraud, which is what your insistence and WP:UNDUE weight about Valeriote's campaign is obviously about. And yes, I do say obviously.Skookum1 (talk) 07:07, 11 March 2013 (UTC)
    • It's true; "Robocall scandal" is totally inappropriate a title for this article, because there are more than one "Robocall scandals" out there. This article is specifically about the alleged election fraud of 2011 which happened to involve Robocalls as one part of the scandal, and should be renamed as such. Another article (Robocall scandals in Canada?) should be started to give an overview of, and disambiguate, the different scandals involving Robocalls. The focus of this article should not be obscured by unrelated-but-similarly-named scandals. Curly Turkey (gobble) 08:01, 11 March 2013 (UTC)
      • I've been a bold-assed little bitch and moved the article. Let the whinging commence. Curly Turkey (gobble) 08:05, 11 March 2013 (UTC)


As the case is currently being investigated by Elections Canada and the RCMP, any assigning of responsibility for the calls is purely speculation at this time. An expected deadline for the release of Elections Canada's investigation is not known.

Conservative: Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party of Canada have denied any knowledge or involvement. Harper dismissed the allegations, calling them, "broad" and "sweeping". Then-NDP leader Nycole Turmel replied, "The Prime Minister must be tough on crime."[1][2] A Conservative party staffer who worked for the Guelph riding campaign during the election and since then as an assistant for Conservative MP Eve Adams resigned soon after the scandal was reported, but has since come forward stating that he was not involved.[3] The Conservatives in turn have blamed the calls upon multiple parties including the Liberal Party,[4] Elections Canada,[5][6] unnamed "third parties", [7] an isolated incident,[8] that they do not know who was responsible,[9] and that they did misdirect voters, but accidentally.[10]

Liberal: In August 2012, Liberal Member of Parliament Frank Valeriote was fined by the CRTC for illegal robocalls in the riding of Guelph (the riding where the alleged robocalls took place). Valeriote was fined $4900 and forced to undertake an intensive re-training program to correct his illegal behaviour. Evidence of whether it was Valeriote's campaign which participating in or caused the illegal robocalls has been submitted to Elections Canada.[11] This remains the only legal action taken to-date for illegal robocalls in the 2011 federal election.

NDP: although few media sources have considered the NDP as the possible originator of the robocalls, they have not been ruled out as having been the culprits.

Anarchist groups: although few media sources have considered anarchist groups to be possible conspirators in this allegation, they have not been ruled out as being a possibility. ARMY101 (talk) 21:12, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

Not hearing any reason(s) why the above is unacceptable, it will be re-added to the article.ARMY101 (talk) 18:14, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
The insertion of your unsourced opinions on anachist groups, the NDP and the insertion of other unsourced and irrelevant text to replace sourced relevant text is not acceptable under WP:NPOV. The text has now been challenged and removed several times, there is clearly no consensus to include this and your edits have been so clearly POV that no one feels like arguing with you about them. Wikipedia is not a blog, so please find a better venue for your unsourced text and theories. - Ahunt (talk) 19:25, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
The section above on the Liberals uses the "illegal robocalls" phrase so popular with Tory talking point-oids, and the claim that "the only legal action" is a red herring as it's not about the robocalls the scandal is about. Also given the six cases now in court about the robocalls in question it's also patently false.Skookum1 (talk) 02:56, 18 January 2013 (UTC)

Wrong title = should be "Electoral fraud scandal"[edit]

The use of Robocalls as an encompassing term for this, though standard in the media as part of their own spin/suppresion game, is entirely incorrect and has been widely criticized in alternative media and forums....the Tories have used that term to talk about illegally-licensed Liberal Robocalls in Guelph, but THOSE were not ELECTORAL FRAUD like those that Elections Canada told the Tories to stop much Canadian media is spin I'm of the opinion, here as on Idle No More, that they are not reliable sources nor really verifiable. This is a Newspeak title meant to take the heat off the political problem, which that if electoral fraud is overturned in court, the current government is illegitimate and all that it has done should be repealed. I know because of WP:COMMONNAME and wp:V and WP:R apply, the mainstream media's pushing of this term is going to stay what it is here; but I searched for "electoral fraud" on the page and found it only four times, including the one in the See Also, and none anywhere near the start.....Skookum1 (talk) 19:07, 17 January 2013 (UTC)

WP:COMMONNAME does indeed apply. I would also caution you that Wikipedia is not a soapbox, including the talk pages. If you want to discuss improving the article then fine, but if you are here to post your own opinions and theories then I would suggest you start a blog instead. - Ahunt (talk) 19:11, 17 January 2013 (UTC)\
I've heard that before and it bores me......and it's hard calling a spade a spade in Wikipedia when it's insisted that they're not spades, they're really garden trowls. My point remains; the phrase "electoral fraud" does not appear until the end of the article and should be in the lede (if not in the title).Skookum1 (talk) 03:10, 18 January 2013 (UTC)
We need a reliable ref that labels this scandal as such, then it can be added. - Ahunt (talk) 12:09, 18 January 2013 (UTC)
Here's half a dozen, and more.Skookum1 (talk) 05:10, 19 January 2013 (UTC)
I'll try and winnow them later so as to provide cites others won't claim are non-WP:R......Niagara At Large should is such a "large" and important political blog in Canada, that it behooves that question about when is WP:V/R a blog and when isn't it. and other sites which rightists will dismiss as left-wing pulpits are another consideration; someone tried ot have ruled out because of its NDP allegiance, but the same person had no ssue with the mainstream media being pointledly Tory-aligned.....Skookum1 (talk) 05:14, 19 January 2013 (UTC)

Skookum1 does have a point—the subject of this article was not the only "Robocall scandal" (the Liberal one in Guelph certianly has been enough written-up in the papers that an article could easily be made from it), though most Canadians would associate the term "Robocall scandal" with the alleged CPC electoral fraud. I'd hesitate calling it anything like "Election fraud scandal" until the courts have their final word, though. Curly Turkey (gobble) 08:38, 19 January 2013 (UTC)

A scandal is a scandal and doesn`t need the say-so of the courts to be that. A good example is Fast Ferries Scandal, where the media labelled it a scandal even though there was no wrongdoing, just ineptness (maybe); it's another case where the media set the language and the agenda, as part of the witchhunt against Glen Clark and the BC NDP that so typified that era and the events leading up to the end of NDP rule....BC Rail Scandal, now a common phrase, was avoided by the media until the illegal plea bargain that brought the case to a screeching halt so as to protect the highest-ranking govt and corporate officials from cross-examination......the real scandal is the rigged bidding process that as discovered as the result of what is described in the article called BC Legislature Raids. There are other "election fraud scandal" as you can see by googling that phrase, in Australia, Birmingham and Iowa.....point is that "robocalls" is highly misleading since the calls that are at t he core of the scandal were often live-person, not robocalled recordings, though it's those that tipped off the controversy. Point is the subject matter of the political misdeeds in question is indeed "electoral fraud" and "voter suppression", not robocalls as such. That the MSM choose to continue to deceive and deflect over this case does not mean that Wikipedia should unquestionably state a false title simply because POV-aligned news outlets are doing that......Skookum1 (talk) 11:48, 19 January 2013 (UTC)
As I said, you have the refs,so make the changes! - Ahunt (talk) 18:41, 19 January 2013 (UTC)
I'll use the Niagara OnLine and ones, and will be interested to see the objections to the use of Rabble.caSkookum1 (talk) 09:21, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
I don't see any reason at to think that it is not a WP:RS. - Ahunt (talk) 12:52, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
Yeah, well, we'll see what objections are raised, betcha there will be some; on the Vancouver Olympics "controversies and concerns" article, once it was POV-forked off, there were various citations someone went through and stripped, along with related content, because the editor doing it said they were "fringe", some were in fact major publications. The resulting article was neutered of its political content entirely, including the justification that the local political scenario/controversies were not of wider interest so should be excised from the "controversies" so it was only about sporting controversies and not about the political-economic crises and scandals; beecause the mainstream media wasn't covering it, all else was garbage -canned because of whatever reason; the result was an APOV or whatever article, overly apolitical such that any British Columbian reading it would wonder where the considerable politics went.....Skookum1 (talk) 16:46, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
It's kind of hard to make this article apolitical, it is all politics! That said there are certainly many different viewpoints in the media on what the subject is about. We won't know until the cases are all done, but in the meantime I think we have to record all the viewpoints expressed in reliable sources. - Ahunt (talk) 17:01, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
Political articles are inherently awkward in POV terms because they are political; and because all sources are POV one way or the other......but TRUTH IS NOT A POV. I just added the electoral fraud scandal cites, we'll see what comes of that (damn cite web is awkward, I'm used to just using the ref tag and the square bracket+URL formation).Voter suppression scandal is also out there somewhere, and I've just amended the Canadian section on Voter suppression.Skookum1 (talk) 05:29, 21 January 2013 (UTC)

Ugh. Trying to copyedit this page, but it's hard to navigate the sea of refs. If I had more time, I'd love to clean up the citations (it's one of those OCD-type things I love to do, but it's a lot of work, and I have a few other real-life things on the table at the moment).

For the record, I support changing the article name to 2011 Canadian federal election voter suppression scandal or 2011 Canadian voter suppression scandal. Skookum's faith in a Platonic, Everlasting Truth makes me giggle, though. Curly Turkey (gobble) 07:24, 21 January 2013 (UTC)

Giggle if you must, but the penchant of others for circulating lies and misinformation and newspeak in the interest of supposed NPOV makes me 'puke.Skookum1 (talk) 07:51, 21 January 2013 (UTC)
WP:THETRUTH applies, which is why Wikipedia is based upon verifiability instead of "the truth". - Ahunt (talk) 11:16, 21 January 2013 (UTC)
that's still no excuse for propaganda masquerading as verifiability or POVism pretending to be NPOV. I'll read the particulars of THE TRUTH but equivocation in the name of supposed verifiability has resulted in a lot of wishy washyness and general obfuscation. the verifiability or reliability of sources, and their potential for POV abuse, is most notable re articles like Tibet and others where totaliatarian interests in revisionism are opposed to 'Platonic truth' (Plato's description of truth is a bit more complicated than the boiled down version alluded to; the mere shadow on a wall seen by someone with the light of actual reality at its back; in my terms the light seen by someone who does not have the courage or substance to turn around and face that light or admit to it. I've never liked Plato anyway, much more a Heraclitus kind of guy.Skookum1 (talk) 13:14, 21 January 2013 (UTC)
Oh, I agree with you that the verifiable facts should be presented plainly and not watered down, just that truth crusades may not always help build an encyclopedia. Have a read of WP:THETRUTH, it is humourous, but makes a good point. - Ahunt (talk) 18:20, 21 January 2013 (UTC)
In my view the title of the article should be changed to Robocall Scandal. For better or worse, Robocalls is the name that is most widely used in the media to describe this event. I understand that there have also been other less significant events where Robocalls were used (though not to suppress the vote). While this makes the term less precise in a way, it does not detract from the fact that most members of the public know this event as the Robocall Scandal.--Darryl Kerrigan (talk) 17:53, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

other Guelph suppression issues[edit]

Because of the timing and same players, the attempt to seize a ballot box a U Guelph and the overall campaign by Tories to order the closure of polling stations on universities across Canada should be mentioned. Also the slashing of tires in the same riding (this probably went on elsewhere but was unreported because unattached to the intimidation/ballot box-grabbing).Skookum1 (talk) 09:28, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

It seems to fit the article scope under the new title, so if you have refs then please do add it. - Ahunt (talk) 17:05, 11 March 2013 (UTC)

Conclusion of investigation and no finding of wrongdoing[edit]

As the investigation is now closed and the Commissioner has said there was no wrongdoing or criminal activity, how do we deal with the (now untrue) propositions in this article? JOttawa16 (talk) 20:12, 24 April 2014 (UTC)

I have added tags to the article to reflect this. JOttawa16 (talk) 23:58, 28 April 2014 (UTC)
The norm on Wikipedia is to adjust the wording to show the events as they unfolded in chronological order, including allegations and then the outcome. I'll have a run though it and the refs tomorrow. - Ahunt (talk) 00:04, 29 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done - Ahunt (talk) 22:28, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

They have definitely not "said there was no wrongdoing or criminal activity", only that they do not have enough evidence to prosecute. Pashley (talk) 14:17, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

Michael Sona, separate article or incorporated here?[edit]

I started a separate article concerning Michael Sona. Ahunt has correctly raised this issue of WP:ONEEVENT for consideration. I think the Robocall scandal was significant enough of an event and Sona played enough of a role in it, that a separate article does not run afoul of the policy. I would of course, however, invite editors from this page to consider it. If a separate Sona article is not appropriate, perhaps parts of the article can be further incorporated in to this one. Anyway, some food for thought. Happy Holidays--Darryl Kerrigan (talk) 20:38, 24 December 2014 (UTC)


  1. ^ Maher and McGregor. "Robocalls probe centres on disposable 'burner' cellphone linked to black ops in Guelph riding". National Post. Retrieved February 28, 2012. 
  2. ^ Press, Jordan and Berthiaume, Lee (February 28, 2012). "Harper denies Tory involvement in robocalls". The Province. Retrieved March 8, 2012. 
  3. ^ CBC News (February 29, 2012). "Who's who in the election phone calls controversy". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved March 8, 2012. 
  4. ^ gloria galloway (March 5, 2012). "Tories demand Liberals release call records – but refuse to follow suit". Toronto: The Globe and Mail. Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  5. ^ Cite error: The named reference CPMar05 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  6. ^ Canada (March 5, 2012). "Backbench Tory blames Elections Canada for robo-calls". Toronto: The Globe and Mail. Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  7. ^ tamara baluja (February 27, 2012). "Mike Duffy points finger at 'third parties' amid election-mischief furor". Toronto: The Globe and Mail. Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Robocalls Scandal: Polls Find Support For Conservatives Unchanged Despite Allegations". Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  9. ^ Posted: March 3, 2012 9:54 AM ET (March 4, 2012). "CBC News - MP says Guelph robocalls a mystery to Tories". Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  10. ^ Cite error: The named reference MacCharlesFeb27 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  11. ^ {{cite news|author=Matt Gurney |url=, repeat Liberals fined for illegal robocalls in Guelph |publisher=The National Post |date=August 24, 2012

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