Canada’s Conservative government said Saturday there appeared to have been deliberate and illegal efforts to suppress votes in one constituency during last year’s national election, though a spokesman didn’t say whether the party now thought members, or those working for them, were responsible. Canada’s election agency is probing allegations that some Canadian voters were misled about the location of polling places by automated phone calls, or robocalls, during an election in May 2011. Opposition politicians have accused the Conservatives of an orchestrated attempt at suppressing votes, a charge the party has denied. The comments by Dean Del Mastro, a Conservative legislator and the main government spokesman for the controversy, marked the first time the government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper has acknowledged there may have been specific wrongdoing.
Mr. Del Mastro said in a radio interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. on Saturday morning that allegations of misleading phone calls placed last year in the southern Ontario city of Guelph—allegedly made to direct voters to the wrong polling stations—are “serious” and “troubling,” and merit investigation.
… Guelph was a riding the Conservatives targeted for victory in the May 2, 2011, election, but it was eventually won by the Liberal Party incumbent. The Conservatives won a resounding parliamentary majority in the Canada-wide polls. Canada’s elections agency confirmed Friday that a probe was under way regarding the alleged use of misleading calls, and that it had received more than 31,000 complaints regarding troubling phone calls during last year’s election campaign.