Trump’s ‘voter fraud’ hotline faces rush of prank calls

The Trump campaign’s voter fraud hotline was reportedly overwhelmed with strange calls after it was launched.

Supporters of United States President Donald Trump have taken to the streets to protest the result of the US presidential election [Goran Tomasevic/Reuters]
Supporters of United States President Donald Trump have taken to the streets to protest the result of the US presidential election [Goran Tomasevic/Reuters]

A Trump campaign hotline set up in an attempt to uncover evidence of voter fraud in the United States elections has become a playground for Twitter and TikTok trolls.

US President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Friday tweeted a phone number that Americans could call to share their first-hand experiences with irregularities.

Trump has refused to concede the presidential election and continued to make allegations of widespread voter fraud, without evidence, even as Democrat Joe Biden declared victory on Saturday after US media outlets projected him as the winner. The Trump campaign has launched legal challenges in several states.

The most notable prank caller was Alex Hirsch, creator of the animated TV series Gravity Falls, boasting almost 680,000 Twitter followers. Hirsch shared the original number and a recording of his report of a man “wearing a black mask, black, hat, striped shirt, and red tie” who he witnessed “smuggling hamburgers” into the building.

The line clicks dead shortly after it becomes evident that Hirsch is describing famous McDonald’s mascot the Hamburglar but not before he claims the Hamburglar might be Antifa and asks to speak to Rudy himself.

Hirsch is just one of many who decided they might be able to “do this all night” – so much so that the hotline number was changed to avoid spammers, only to be retweeted by hundreds of users and reportedly deluged once more.

Pranksters’ creativity was not bound by fast-food chain restaurant characters: one caller shared game show sounds, and another animated a call in the style of the popular video game Among Us. People also took the liberty of filling in the online description section with pages of gibberish, as the page had no character limit.

TikTok users, some of whom became known for trolling President Trump in the past, also jumped on the trend. One caller reported seeing an “obese turtle”, referring to CNN host Anderson Cooper’s now-retracted description of Trump as others offered audio compilations of the president himself calling other people “losers”.

@jenny_jenny_jen_jen

they hung up on me counteveryvote #byedon obeseturtle

♬ original sound – jennyjenjen

Though some of the pranksters were hung up on quickly when their duplicitous purpose became clear, some played it more realistic and stayed on the call for several minutes. Twitter user @herosnvrdie69 shared a video where she pretends to be a Trump supporter named Jerry Mander who has committed voter fraud herself, claiming “if the Democrats can do it why can’t I?” The video lasts for several minutes as the hotline staffer tries to explain that she can’t commit voter fraud while her friends stifle laughter on a Zoom call.

 

Source : Al Jazeera

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