We got an email this week from State Senator Tim Cullen’s office that reads like the first lines of a horror story. It starts, “This time next year, another Wisconsin campaign season will be in full swing.” Another campaign? Already? That’s scary. But Senator Cullen then goes on to propose something that would ease the dread of non-stop, inescapable campaign intrusions. Cullen wants to ban automated political phone messages in Wisconsin. Sign us up.
Seriously, elections are important, election campaigns are important, ads and mailings are protected free speech and knocks on the door are good old fashioned grass roots politics. But intrusive, unwanted robo-calls, with automated voices delivering market tested slogans over and over and over, is an infringement on privacy. Our democracy can live without them.
Wisconsin already has a Do Not Call list of course, but that’s just for telemarketers, not politicians. We say add ‘em to the list. While we’d prefer a bill that really reforms the system, like redistricting reform, we’ll take a return to a more respectful way of learning about candidates.