Federal prosecutor says Inquirer story is false

The U.S. Attorney’s office says that a Philadelphia Inquirer story that federal prosecutors “flooded Camden phone lines the day of the May 8 councilmanic race with warnings that taking money for votes was a federal crime” is false.

U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie says his office would never engage in such a practice, which clearly could have been used as a voter-suppression tactic.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office was not contacted to authenticate the matter or comment for the story, which implied the office sanctioned or was the source of the recorded phone-message blitz, Christie says.

According to the Inquirer report, automated phone calls were made with this recorded message: “Voters alert! Please note that it is a federal crime to be paid for a vote. I repeat, it is a crime. If you or your neighbor have been offered payment, please report it immediately to the U.S. Attorney’s Office at 856-757-5026.”

Federal prosecutor says Inquirer story is false