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The Real Deal Los Angeles

Prop 10 supporters accuse opponents of hacking into text message campaign

Texts sent from the "Yes on Prop 10" group included messages with outlandish claims
November 06, 2018 09:00AM

Voters received some strange messages about Prop 10 in recent weeks (Credit: iStock)

Supporters of the Proposition 10 rent control measure are accusing opponents of infiltrating a text message campaign, then altering texts to scare people away from voting for it.

Thousands of California voters received the text messages over the past several weeks, purportedly from the “Yes on Prop 10” campaign, according to Curbed. If passed, Prop 10 would allow local governments around the state to pass new rent control laws.

Some messages claimed that Prop 10 would “exclude African Americans… from paying any taxes,” and give “undocumented immigrants the chance to have a fresh start with a govt. subsidized [sic] Tesla,” referring to Elon Musk’s electric car company.

Another claimed to be from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in New York, and said that “Prop 10 will fund the construction of adding Hillary Clinton to Mt. Rushmore.”

The phony texts came from a San Francisco text campaign firm that routes texts through volunteers. The Yes on Prop 10 campaign wrote the original messages, but one volunteer appears to have changed them before sending them out.

Steve Maviglio, a spokesperson for the campaign against Prop 10 denied any involvement, and said it was “certainly something we would not do or sanction.”

Prop 10 supporters claim it’s the latest dirty trick employed in the multimillion-dollar fight against the measure, whicProp 10 supporters have also accused landlords of scaring tenants by threatening to raise rents if the measure is passed. Polls suggest voters will reject the measure. 

[Curbed] — Dennis Lynch