Daily News from New York, New York on November 2, 2006 · 4
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Daily News from New York, New York · 4

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New York, New York
Issue Date:
Thursday, November 2, 2006
Page:
4
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uvS or DD LfuE BY DAVID SALTONSTALL DAILY NEWS St MOR CORRESPONDENT YOU VOTIN' for me? U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton has added some muscle to her campaign team: Robert De Niro. The tough-guy actor is urging New Yorkers to vote for Clinton in a prerecorded telephone message that is blanketing the state. But for those who may like the softer touch, the former First Lady has someone else, crooner Tony Bennett, whose mellifluous voice is also gracing answering machines all over the state on her behalf. ( ' J Who's Calling? So-called robo-calls an nothing new In politics. Here's a smattering of who's calling for whom: Former President Bill Clinton taped a call for Sen. Joseph Lleborman (D-Conn.) last summer but it didn't work Lieberman lost his primary bid anyway. Actress , y Kathleen - Turnar lent her sultry voice to the reelection bid of Mayor Bloomberg, who also enlisted former Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Ed Koch, and actress Whoopi Goldberg. Actors Billy Crystal and Sally Field recently lent their voices to a preschool focused ballot Initiative in California. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California is calling voters in his state this week to remind them tha, Eectjon Day I i is Nov. 7 when 1 2t he'll be on the A If uanui. r. v David Saltonstall mm "Some people think I left my heart in San Francisco, but it really is right here in New York. That's why I'm promoting Hillary," Bennett says. De Niro, the star of such New York-based film classics as Taxi Driver" and "GoodFellas," boasts that Clinton "took on the Bush administration" to keep a Dubai-owned company from managing the city's ports and has worked to boost homeland security funds. "New York is my state and Hillary Clinton is my senator," said De Niro, an apparent riff on TV ads in which he refers to American Express as "my card." Next up for Clinton Paul Newman, the blue-eyed actor and philanthropist, whose message should be debuting soon. The celebrity telephone messages are the latest examples of what's known in the business as "robo-calls" prerecorded messages from politicians or celebrities aimed at boosting turnout for a candidate or cause. They interrupt your dinner, draw quizzical looks from children who pick up the phone and fill up your answering machine while you're away. Campaign operatives insist they are an effective and cheap way each call typically costs 3 to 5 cents to reach a targeted group of likely voters. And because they are deemed a "protected" form of political speech, they cannot be blocked like telemarketing calls. Independent experts are divided on whether the calls motivate voters to do anything other than maybe slam down the receiver in annoyance. "The general finding is that the more personal a contact is, the more effective it is," said Prof. Donald Green of Yale University's Institution for Social and Policy Studies, which has studied robo-calls extensively. "And robo-calls are, by their very nature, impersonal." Former Mayor Ed Koch conceded that while most voters seem to appreciate his many calls over the years, one voter did track him down at his office to demand in decidedly colorful language that he never call him again. "I told him, 'Be assured, I won't!" " said Koch. "I'd like to think that people who alert other people about an election should be praised, not assailed." dsaftonsfaMnyda7ynews.com n nn IF" rm 'Education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your ' homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq.' 'Do you know where you end up if you don't study, if you aren't smart, if you're intellectually i..nir. a s up getting i us stuck - in a war , ' in Iraq. i?' ; mm m ej oust asis HIS PAST BLUNDERS ft W President J : Bush.' : : s- ' . J 1 mmmw,km ;-,a :

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