The Media’s “Hear No Evil, See No Evil, Speak No Evil” Approach to Covering Barack Obama

There is now ample, ample evidence that Barack Obama’s campaign is accepting donations from foreigners in violation of federal law.

There is now ample evidence that Barack Obama’s campaign has intentionally opted out of credit card address verification services (“AVS”) thereby making it extremely easy to contribute to his campaign while the campaign can claim ignorance to theft, excessive contributions, improper contributions, and illegal contributions.

See, here, here, here, here, and here.

As Patrick Ruffini notes,

The issue centers around the Address Verification Service (or AVS) that credit card processors use to sniff out phony transactions. I was able to contribute money using an address other than the one on file with my bank account (I used an address I control, just not the one on my account), showing that the Obama campaign deliberately disabled AVS for its online donors.

AVS is generally the first line of defense against credit card fraud online. AVS ensures that not only is your credit card number accurate, but the street address you’ve submitted with a transaction matches the one on file with your bank.

Authorize.net, the largest credit card gateway provider in the country, lists AVS as a “Standard Transaction Security Setting,” recommends merchants use it, and turns it on by default. So, in order for AVS to be turned off, it has to be intentional, at least with Authorize.net.

There have been ample stories since the first reports of questionable donations, but the campaign still has not turned on AVS.

To be clear: this cannot be done with John McCain’s website. This could not be done with Hillary Clinton’s website. This could not be done with Fred Thompson’s website. This could not be done with Joe Biden’s website. This could not be done with any other candidate’s website. Only Barack Obama’s website is set up to allow transactions without any screening for fraud or other inappropriate or illegal activity.

The media has patently, willfully failed to report this story.

There is nothing you or I can do to force the media to cover this story. Nothing.

But let us not be under any delusions. Were this George W. Bush in 2000 or 2004 when he saw record fundraising numbers from low dollar donors, the media would have been all over his campaign if AVS had been turned off.

The watch word for the media right now? Crickets.

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Erick Erickson

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