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Neoconservative group planned to smear Beto O’Rourke with a fake Iranian endorsement.


The Daily Beast is reporting that Voicebunny, a company that specializes in hiring voice actors, had been hired to produce an ad in which an actor pretending to be President Hassan Rouhani endorses O’Rourke’s Senate bid. Voicebunny eventually rejected the project because it was “fake news.” Evidence suggests that the ad was originally commissioned by Secure America Now, a hawkish dark money group funded in part by Robert Mercer, a long time political ally of Ted Cruz, who is defending his seat against O’Rourke. Mercer is also one of the major supporters of President Donald Trump.

The script called for an actor who sounds “Middle Eastern and stern” to say: “Hello, I am Hassan Rouhani, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Today, it is my pleasure to endorse Beto O’Rourke for U.S. Senate. As a Congressman, Beto was a strong supporter of President Obama’s Iran Deal—which gave billions of dollars to my country of Iran.”

Secure America Now has a history of deception. As The Daily Beast notes previously “Secure America Now worked with Facebook and Google to place anti-refugee ads in swing states including Nevada and North Carolina. These included fake tourism videos showing France and Germany under Sharia law and ads linking Democratic Senate candidates like Catherine Cortez Masto with terrorists.”