- It doesn't add up. Why is Voter News Service (VNS) really
going out of business? That's only one of many questions that dog VNS,
a private consortium of the major news organizations that allegedly projected
election night winners using exit polls. VNS is owned by ABC News, The
Associated Press, CBS News, CNN, Fox News, and NBC News. But VNS has always
conducted its operations in a highly secretive manner.
- I want to know why VNS sent surveys to counties asking
them for information about the kinds of voting machines the counties used?
Why should VNS care? What do voting machines have to do with exit poll
projections? The voting machine industry is completely dominated by Republicans.
Many people believe that the major news networks are also dominated by
Republican ownership. Is there a connection between VNS closing its doors,
the increase use of computerized voting machines, and the growing disparity
between pre-election polling predictions and election results - a disparity
that appears to heavily favor Republican candidates? Are we witnessing
election fraud on a massive scale and is VNS involved?
- One reason VNS is shutting down could NOT be, as VNS
spokespeople continue to claim, that they screwed up the 2000 election
exit polling in Florida. Any comprehensive review of the Florida vote count
proves that VNS's projection was correct...Gore would have won Florida
handily had it not been for uncounted "over-votes", the notorious
butterfly ballot, and the illegal removal of 91,000 names of mostly black
and Democratic registered voters from the rolls by a Texas firm hired by
Jeb Bush's Secretary of State.
- The second reason VNS has offered for closing its doors
is that they couldn't handle the technical and logistic demands of Election
Day exit polling. What has changed from previous years? After all, the
major news networks have claimed that they've been processing election
data and using computers and thousands of temporary employees since the
mid-1960's. For this last election VNS even hired the well known, if not
controversial, Battelle Memorial Institute to revamp their system. The
hiring of Battelle, a major military defense and government intelligence
contractor, raised the eyebrows of many observers who believe that there
may be a connection between the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and VNS.
Some suspect that the CIA doesn't limit its legendary vote rigging abilities
to elections in foreign countries.
- Here's a thought. Maybe VNS has never actually done exit
polling before. Maybe this was the first time. Some people believe that
VNS never really conducted exit polling in the first place, that VNS's
claims were a logistic impossibility. Some people believe that VNS only
put a few people at the polls for public relations purposes. Lee C. Shapiro,
VNS's longtime spokesperson, told this reporter in an interview last fall
that VNS was going to use 46,000 temporary employees for the November 2002
election. But news stories are reporting 30,000 instead. Since Shapiro
has always refused to provide any information or evidence to prove the
existence of this army of Election Day workers, we can only wonder at where
the truth lies.
- Some people believe that VNS instead used pre-election
polling data to project winners on election night. The late Collier brothers,
authors of Vote Scam: The Stealing of America (1996), believed that VNS
(and its predecessors) may have been used to help rig elections by supplying
bogus exit poll results to support equally bogus election results.
- Let's look at Florida 2000 again. Why does VNS keep claiming
that they screwed up in the Florida 2000 election when they didn't? Some
people believe that VNS decided to stay on the sidelines in Florida and
simply use the pre-election polling data to project the winner. As things
got increasingly ugly after the election the Bush people may have given
VNS a choice, "either your with us or against us." The result...
VNS keeps apologizing for projecting the correct winner.
- And what's the real reason VNS is closing its doors?
- Maybe election rigging through the use of computerized
voting machines has become so pervasive that VNS simply couldn't keep up
and instead decided to "stand down". Maybe network insiders and
journalists demanded access to the highly secretive VNS operations and
the scrutiny was going to more than what VNS could withstand. Or, maybe
government authorities are investigating VNS.
- Whatever the reason, it doesn't mean an end to the mystery
and suspicion that surrounds Voter News Service.
- Lynn Landes is a freelance journalist. Lynn has been
a radio show host, a regular commentator for a BBC radio program, and environmental
news reporter for DUTV in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
- 217 S. Jessup Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
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