New audio obtained exclusively by Breitbart News indicates that as the Iowa caucuses began on Monday night, the campaign called precinct captains informing them that Dr. Ben Carson was suspending campaigning, and instructing them to tell voters they should “not waste a vote on Ben Carson and vote for Ted Cruz.”
The calls were placed after the Carson campaign had already clarified that Carson was not suspending his campaign.
Nancy Bliesman, a precinct captain for Cruz in Crawford County, Iowa, told Breitbart News that she received two voice mails–one at 7:07 p.m. Central Standard Time (CST), and one at 7:29 p.m.–on the night of the Iowa caucuses, which began at 7:00 p.m.
The first call came from a woman with a phone number out of Galveston, Texas at 7:07 p.m. (transcript follows audio):
[inaudible]…from the Ted Cruz campaign, calling to get to a precinct captain, and it has just been announced that Ben Carson is taking a leave of absence from the campaign trail, so it is very important that you tell any Ben Carson voters that for tonight, uh, that they not waste a vote on Ben Carson, and vote for Ted Cruz. He is taking a leave of absence from his campaign. All right? Thank you. Bye.
The second voicemail was left at 7:29 p.m. from an Iowa phone number that Breitbart News traced back to a Cruz campaign volunteer hotline.
Hello, this is the Cruz campaign with breaking news: Dr. Ben Carson will be [garbled] suspending campaigning following tonight’s caucuses. Please inform any Carson caucus goers of this news and urge them to caucus for Ted instead. Thank you. Good night.
“My precinct people voted” without hearing the rumor that Carson would be suspending his campaign, Bliesman told Breitbart News. “Ben Carson did get his votes in our precinct ’cause I didn’t take the calls.”
Bliesman’s husband, who was also with her on Monday night, told Breitbart News that they were at the precinct labeled “DC-A-B,” which stands for the areas of Dow City, Arion and Buck Grove.
According to Mr. Bliesman, the total vote count in the precinct was as follows:
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SOURCE: Breitbart – Alex Swoyer