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A Democratic activist hired a magician to perform the fake Biden robocall

A New Orleans magician claims a Democratic operative hired him to create the fake Biden robocall. According to text messages, call logs and Venmo transactions, the creator told NBC News that a Democratic consultant working for a rival presidential campaign paid a magician in New Orleans to use artificial intelligence to imitate President Joe Biden for a robocall that is currently in progress a federal law enforcement investigation.

Paul Carpenter claims he was hired in January by Steve Kramer to help Democratic presidential candidate Dean Phillips access the ballot. Carpenter’s job was to use artificial intelligence (AI) to create a voice impersonation of Joe Biden urging Democrats in New Hampshire to abstain from voting in the state’s presidential primary.

“There was no malicious intent. I didn’t know how it was going to be distributed.”

“I created the audio for the robocall. I didn’t distribute it,” Carpenter said in an interview in New Orleans, where he lives. “I was in a situation where someone offered me some money to do something and I did it. There was no malicious intent. I didn’t know how it was going to be distributed.”

Carpenter gained fame for holding the world record for fork bending and straitjacket escape. He told and showed NBC News how he created the fake Biden audio. Carpenter says he only came forward to apologize for his part in the incident and to make people aware of how easily artificial intelligence can be used to deceive.

Carpenter told NBC News that the robocall took him just 20 minutes and cost about $1 – Carpenter himself received $150, according to the Venmo transfer from Kramer and his father, Bruce Kramer.

Authorities have not identified Carpenter and Steve Kramer as targets of the investigation.

Federal law enforcement officials and New Hampshire officials are closely watching the robocall because it may have violated federal telecommunications regulations and state laws that prohibit voter suppression. Authorities have vowed to investigate the matter and have named the Dallas-based company that was responsible for the automated phone calls to voters ahead of the state’s area code. They did this because they wanted to hold those responsible accountable for the first case of malicious use of an AI-generated deepfake in an American political campaign.

Featured Image Source: Photo by SHVETS Production; Pexels

Deanna Ritchie

Senior Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is an editor at ReadWrite. She previously worked as editor-in-chief for Startup Grind, editor-in-chief for Calendar, and editor at Entrepreneur Media and has more than 20 years of experience in content management and content development.