Government / Politics

Hollister mayoral candidate denies connection to robocalls attacking opponent

Sal Mora: ‘I have run a clean campaign, and will continue to do so.’
Sal Mora. File photo.
Sal Mora. File photo.

Hollister mayoral candidate Sal Mora has been using social media to tell San Benito County residents about robocalls attacking his opponent, Mayor Ignacio Velazquez, which Mora described as making himself “come off as sniveling.” Mora said that neither he nor anyone associated with his campaign set up the robocalls.

“I have run a clean campaign, and will continue to do so,” he said. “I have not and will not engage in that sort of campaigning. When speaking of my opponent on social media or publicly, I ask that he let his accomplishments of his eight years in office speak for itself.”

The robocall was sent on Oct. 1 at 1:40 p.m., originating from a Fair Oaks number professing to be from Steve with Republican Voter Action that called Velazquez a “turncoat Republican, President Trump hater, and a long supporter of the violent Marxist group known as Black Lives Matter.”

BenitoLink could find no political group operating as Republican Voter Action.

The robocall went on to claim the mayor is a longtime supporter of economic lockdown and that “he wants to fine or imprison you for not wearing a mask, and he has tried to stop all job creation in Hollister, creating nothing but discord and turmoil on the City Council and in city government.”

Velazquez told BenitoLink that he had heard the robocall and said a group of locals was behind it.

“I think this group plays a lot of dirty tricks and is doing shady things,” Velazquez said. “They’re constantly attacking me in trying to mislead the public.”

Though Mora denies having anything to do with the robocall, Velazquez said he believes Mora is connected to it.

“He has lied about everything he does and one of his supporters told me they had the dirt on me and were going to expose me to the public,” Velazquez said.

When BenitoLink called the number that the robocall originated from, a recording stated it had been disconnected.

 

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John Chadwell

John Chadwell is a BenitoLink reporter and an author. He has many years experience as a freelance photojournalist, copywriter, ghostwriter, scriptwriter and novelist. He is a former U.S. Navy Combat Photojournalist and is an award-winning writer who has worked for magazine, newspapers, radio and television. He has a BA in Journalism and Mass Communications from Chapman University and underwent graduate studies at USC Cinema School. John has worked as a script doctor and his own script, God's Club, was released as a motion picture in 2016. He has also written eight novels, ranging from science fiction to true crime that are sold on Amazon. To contact John Chadwell, send an email to: johnchadwell@benitolink.com.