Is Senator Santorum Breaking the Law?

I think he may be.

This email was in my in-bin this morning:

Dear Mr. Grimm:
Having personally witnessed the devastation from flooding in central Pennsylvania in the past week, I am writing to make you aware of federal assistance that you may be eligible for. As you may know, President Bush issued a disaster declaration for numerous Pennsylvania counties. This declaration allows eligible individuals in these counties to apply for federal disaster assistance. If you have been affected by recent floods, I urge you to contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as soon as possible to apply for possible relief. FEMA can be contacted at (800) 621-FEMA or www.FEMA.gov and the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) can be reached at www.pema.state.pa.us/paflooding. If you own or operate a small business, you may be eligible for relief from the Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA can provide low-interest loans for business repairs or replacement costs to eligible individuals and businesses. Businesses may apply directly through the SBA for disaster assistance. Information on how the SBA may help you and your business recover from this disaster can be found at 1-800-659-2955 or online at http://www.sba.gov/disaster_recov/. In addition, Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) can assist small businesses with loss documentation, information on claim filing, locating and setting up short-term and permanent replacement facilities, and assessing environmental clean-up options. There are 16 SBDCs located throughout the Commonwealth. Further information on how SBDCs can be of assistance can be found by calling (215) 898-1219 or at www.pasbdc.org. While FEMA and PEMA provide much-needed aid during times of disaster, charitable organizations also play an important role in helping during time of great need. Specifically, the American Red Cross has a long track record of providing a great deal of assistance during natural disasters. Please contact the American Red Cross at 1-800-REDCROSS or www.redcross.org should you be in need of aid or if you wish to contribute to the relief of those in our communities. Be assured that as your Senator, I will continue to fight for aid for our communities and I will work with FEMA to ensure those who are in need receive the aid they are eligible for. If I can be of further assistance to you, your family, or your business, please do not hesitate to contact my Harrisburg Office at (717) 231-7540. Sincerely, Rick Santorum United States Senate This e-mail, a copy of which has been archived in the United States Senate, is an official Senate communication intended for the individual or entity named above. Any improper alteration or fraudulent misuse of the contents of this e-mail may constitute a violation of federal law (18 USC 1030; 18 USC 2511; 18 USC 2701), and/or state laws governing defamation and misattribution.

If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient, please notify us that the message was received in error and then delete it.

Notice that there is no way for one to unsubscribe from Senator Santorum's SPAM. So, I responded:

Please remove me from your list. I used to like Senator Santorum. After he played bait and switch with his homes in order to get the State to pay for his kids' cyber-school, I stopped liking him. That was really uncool and I won't be voting for him.

Best, Marcus Grimm

To which a bot responded:

Thank you for emailing me. I have detected, however, that your emailmessage was not submitted through my website. Therefore, I am unable toprocess your email request. Please go to www.santorum.senate.gov andclick on the "contact information" link and then select "Email SenatorSantorum" at the bottom of the page. If you need further assistance,please feel free to contact my office at:511 Dirksen Senate Office BuildingWashington, DC 20510 Telephone: 202-224-6324

To which I responded (not knowing for sure if this was a bot):

You're right. I didn't send the email through your website. I responded to the SPAM you sent me. Are you aware of Canned Spam legislation? When you send bulk emails, you're REQUIRED to make it easy for people to unsubscribe. If you truly can't remove my email address, I'm relatively certain you're breaking the law.

To which the bot responded:

Thank you for emailing me. I have detected, however, that your emailmessage was not submitted through my website. Therefore, I am unable toprocess your email request. Please go to www.santorum.senate.gov andclick on the "contact information" link and then select "Email SenatorSantorum" at the bottom of the page. If you need further assistance,please feel free to contact my office at:511 Dirksen Senate Office BuildingWashington, DC 20510 Telephone: 202-224-6324

As a disclaimer, several (read: five) years ago I *think* I wrote a complimentary e-mail to the Senator, so they may have gotten my email address that way. Since then, I've just been dismayed by so many things he's done - the aforementioned bait and switch rather high on the list.

Now, it appears, he's going to SPAM me, which won't help his cause in my book. More importantly, an e-mail that is supposed to appear as dialogue is obviously anything but.


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