Robocalls appearing to come from Dallas City Hall are being dispatched across Councilmember Paula Blackmon’s district, pointing out how she voted to cut $7 million from the Dallas police overtime budget. A pro-defund police Dallas publication isn’t objecting solely to the calls’ deceptive official appearance, but also the content—which accurately points out how Blackmon voted.
The robocalls have been made in District 9 in Dallas, the area Blackmon represents. They display phone numbers that appear to be from city hall and reference her vote on September 23 to cut $7 million from police overtime in the new year’s budget, which a Dallas citizen has called “defunding the police.”
Because the calls are made to appear to be coming from city hall, Dallas has filed an FCC complaint, and a piece from the Dallas mainstream media objected to such tactics.
In the same piece, however, the content of the calls was framed as an attack on Blackmon. A recording of the call shows it accurately recounts how she voted. See the transcript below:
The city council of Dallas just voted to approve the 2021 budget. Your council member, Paula Blackmon, is very proud of her vote to cut $7 million from the police overtime budget. She does this because she values you, the average common citizen. Ordinary, hard-working, middle-class and lower-class people such as yourself should feel happy about her vote for racial equality. Thank you for your continued support of Paula Blackmon.
D Magazine, the publication that brought these calls to light, is a member of the Dallas media that pushed the “defund the police” narrative this year, repeating local leftist talking points that define it as taking taxpayer dollars from police to spend on other government programs.
Another piece from this publication claimed there was widespread citizen support for defunding, repeating an activist’s claim that if residents set the budget, they would slash police funding in half.
While making these calls appear to come from city government is wrong, what would be the objection to accurately informing voters how Blackmon voted? Is the support not as widespread as they claimed?
In the final vote, Dallas City Council gave “neither side a victory.” They still cut $7 million from police overtime but decided to spend most of it moving 95 sworn police officers from desk work to patrol by hiring an equal number of civilians.
Keep Dallas Safe, a citizen organization formed in response to the decision on police overtime, said they “have no idea who is behind the calls.”
They shared with Texas Scorecard responses they’ve received on social media from citizens about Blackmon’s vote.
“Unfortunately, I am in her district,” citizen Robert Walton commented. “Will definitely be voting against her next year because of her vote to defund DPD overtime.”
“I am so sorry so many in Dallas are forcing this dangerous agenda on their law-abiding citizens,” wrote citizen Jan Galyon.
KDS offers two pieces of advice for citizens disappointed in Blackmon’s vote.
“1) Let her know how dissatisfied [you] are in her representation,” KDS coordinator Daniel Taylor said. “2) Be ready to vote her out in the spring.”
Concerned citizens may contact Councilmember Blackmon.