Reporting Derek Valcourt
BALTIMORE (WJZ)— Political consultant Julius Henson is blasting away at the campaign for former Governor Bob Ehrlich, blaming them for problems with the robocall that now has Henson on trial.
Derek Valcourt has more on what Henson is saying on the stand.
Henson told WJZ Monday what he told jurors on the witness stand: that the blame for legal problems with the robocall should fall on Bob Ehrlich’s campaign manager, Paul Schurick.
Henson told jurors he wrote the election night robocall in three minutes on a napkin while having lunch with his granddaughter at McDonald’s.
“The call was just meant to get people to go vote,” Henson said.
Prosecutors disagree. They say the call was an illegal trick to try to get Democrat voters to stay home by telling them Governor Martin O’Malley had already won.
“We’re OK. Relax. Everything is fine. The only thing left is to watch it on TV tonight,” the call said.
Henson told jurors he was instructed by Ehrlich’s campaign manager Paul Schurick not to include the legally required authority line identifying it was paid for by the Ehrlich campaign. Henson says he even tried to get a second opinion from Ehrlich’s advisor and confidant Greg Massoni.
“When I read the call to Paul Schurick over the phone, he said he liked the call and I said `You need a tag for this call.’ He said, `I don’t want a tag,’” Henson said.
In Paul Schurick’s trial, he essentially said that conversation never happened and that he assumed that the tag would be added.
“The reason why that doesn’t measure up to the truth is because he got the test call. He heard the test call, Massoni heard the test call and there wasn’t a tag on there so if that call was incorrect, he had an opportunity to say, `Wait a minute, let me put an authority line on this call.’ Nobody in that campaign did that,” Henson said.
It is expected the jury will begin deliberating the case against Henson later this week.
Ehrlich’s campaign manager Paul Schurick was sentenced to one month of home detention and 500 hours of community service after he was convicted for the robocall scandal back in December.