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January 31, 2005

Comments

Rod Stanton

The real problem in Wash is that ballots for military were sent late - "accidentally" . Most military voters got ballots *after* the election. Democrats stole Wash Gov election with finesse,

Mr. Real Politics

I wholeheartedly agree with you, Rod. They absolutely stole it, and with aplomb.

pat m.

I wouldn't be so quick to come to the defense of poor persecuted Powerline (i.e., Time Magazine's Blog of the Year ) on this one.
Notice how Hinderaker never denies Ms. Gages' allegation that he never fact-checked the story about alleged voter fraud in Racine that he posted about on Oct.27. http://powerlineblog.com/archives/008330.php#008330
Instead, he tries a double bait-and-switch.
First, he states that a response is being prepared which will primarily focus on the Strib's failure to fact-check Ms. Gage's column, thereby neatly sidestepping the issue of whether he fact-checked his Oct. 27 post.
Second, he states that "Ms. Gage, if that’s really her name, has no knowledge about the voter fraud scandal which has now resulted in a federal criminal investigation." While I am aware that there is a federal investigation of alleged voter fraud in Milwaukee, I have googled and googled and googled but have found nothing indicating the existence of any federal criminal investigation of the "voter fraud scandal" specifically referred to by Hinderaker in his Oct. 27 post (i.e., that 2 people posing as illegal immigrants as part of a "sting" operation by an immigration reform group named FAIR were permitted to register to vote) . I did, however, find a Nov. 4 story on FAIR's site complaining that Milwaukee's District Attorney was not pursuing any prosecution's based on FAIR's "sting" operation and had in fact warned private groups from "to keep out of investigating [alleged voter fraud] on their own. [http://www.fairus.org/Research/Research.cfm?ID=2580&c=54] Further, none of the stories I read about the Milwaukee federal probe give any indication that it includes the alleged fraud claimed by FAIR. Thus, it appears to me that Hinderaker is trying to mislead his readers into believing that the feds are looking into FAIR's claims of voter fraud which he unquestioningly passed on, when there is no indication that these claims are part of that investigation.
From what I can see, it seems clear that, just as Ms. Gage says, Hinderaker did not fact-check the story upon which he based his Oct. 27 post (Parenthetically, I would note that the "news story" linked in Hinderaker's Oct. 27 post came from reporter --"Chad Groening" -- and news source --Agapepress.com "Reliable news from a Christian Source" -- which cursory checking would have demonstrated were, charitably put, somewhat less than unbiased.
I will concede that from what I looked at, I can't say with all certainty that FAIR's allegations as to what happened in Racine had "no factual basis" as Ms. Gage claims, although she claims in her column that she, unlike Hinderaker or me, actually called people to check out the claims. I can say, however, that Hinderaker's claim that Gage "defamed," "slandered" or "libelled" him is riduculous, that his calling Gage a "miscreant" was classless and unwarranted, that his response to this whole issue seems very misleading, and that it seems to me that Ms. Gage was correct in accusing Hinderaker of hypocrisy.

Mr. Real Politics

Even though I disagree with some of them, excellent points, Pat.

I'll explain why I disagree below:

It's difficult to fact-check an issue that's developing. Although statements' validity do become more visible as an issue develops, the case is being fought, AFAIK behind closed doors, in federal court.

To accuse Power Line without evidence is considered libel. Ms. Gage's failure to mention her sources does not lend any credibility to their status; she could have been talking to a senior election official or the village idiot, for all we know.

Your points are well thought out, Pat. But for the reasons above, I chose to defend Power Line.

pat m.

I appreciate the civil tone of your response, Mr. R.P., and acknowledge that no one really knows whether the allegations of voter fraud that came from FAIR are part of a federal investigation at this point.
I would maintain, however, that the "evidence" here seems very strong that Hinderaker made no effort to fact-check the article he posted about - a failing he is all-too-willing to point out in the MSM - and that issue (Hinderaker's hypocrisy) was what Gage's column seemed aimed at, at least to me. Further, I have to disagree with your statement that there was a libel here. From what I recall of the law of defamation, Gage's simple claim, in an opinion column no less, that Hindraker posted information that was false would not come close to qualifying as libel or slander, even if Gage was wrong about everything. Further, while Gage may not have named who she called, Hinderaker gives no support for his weird implications that Gage may not be who she says she is, nor does he give us any reason why we should agree with him that she's just making crap up.
Anyway, thanks for responding so civilly, even though I think defense of Powerline here may be misguided.:)

Mr. Real Politics

I thank you for responding in a civil manner in kind, Mr. M.

Rod Stanton

The real issue is the MSM's shrinking market.It has been losing to talk radio for 25 years. This shrinkage skyrocketed with Rathergate. This is why the MSM has been viciously attacking blogs and bloggers the last three months. The Strib is a very small part of the MSM. They are attacking the home town blog that is "stealing" their market . It boils dowm to $. The pretenses are as phony as "Fake but accurate!".

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