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From the September 27, 2004 issue: Adventures in "Fake But Accurate" reporting.

Sep 27, 2004, Vol. 10, No. 03 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
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"The other side says that a million African-American votes not counted, continuing acts of voter suppression, and the most tainted election in American history is the best that we can do," Kerry said. "That's W. That's wrong. And we're not going to let it happen again. This time, we will fight to make sure every vote is counted and every vote counts. And we are already on the ground in Florida and elsewhere to make sure that nothing stands in the way."

Leave aside the risible claim that 2000 was "the most tainted election in American history." (What about 1824? 1876?) Kerry's charge that African-American votes were deliberately suppressed in Florida is a serious allegation. It is also a calumny--one that was refuted by the June 2001 report of U.S. Civil Rights commissioners Abigail Thernstrom and Russell Redenbaugh.

Their analysis, a dissent from the Commission's hopelessly flawed majority report, reached these conclusions (among others): Rates of ballot spoilage in Florida 2000 were statistically unconnected to the race of voters. In 24 of the 25 counties with the highest spoilage rates, Democrats supervised voting. There was no racial discrimination involved with the "purge list" of felons who were ineligible to vote. And, most important, no evidence was ever produced that Florida police racially profiled at roadblocks or otherwise hindered black voters.

Maybe John Kerry should read the Thernstrom-Redenbaugh report. But we're not holding our breath.

Great Moments in Lawyering

Lawyer David Van Os explains to the New York Times why his client, whom many suspect of providing the forged Texas National Guard memos to CBS News, is an innocent man:

"If, hypothetically, Bill Burkett or anyone else, any other individual, had prepared or had typed on a word processor as some of the journalists are presuming, without much evidence, if someone in the year 2004 had prepared on a word processor replicas of documents that they believed had existed in 1972 or 1973--which Bill Burkett has absolutely not done--what difference would it make?"

Convinced? Didn't think so.