Julius Henson on trial for election robocalls

BALTIMORE (AP) - Opening statements are under way in the trial of a political operative charged with using Election Day robocalls to suppress black voter turnout during the 2010 gubernatorial election.

The trial of Julius Henson, a campaign consultant for former Republican Gov. Robert Ehrlich during his 2010 rematch with Democratic Gov. Martin O'Malley, began Tuesday in Baltimore. The calls told supporters of O'Malley and President Barack Obama to relax because they had won.

Henson has said he did not believe the calls were illegal and were not meant to suppress the vote. Ehrlich aide Paul Schurick was convicted on similar charges in a separate trial last year and sentenced to home detention and community service.

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