No 'Hit Job' on Ohio Voter Registration Fraud Reporting

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record ," October 9, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Is voter fraud happening right under everyone's noses in the state of Ohio? Well, now, here's a possible example of voter fraud in Ohio documented by the college news network


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today we followed up on early get-out-the-vote efforts in Ohio, and one of the biggest questions on everyone's minds are nonpartisan volunteers working for groups like Faith Vote actually influencing voters as they transport them to the voting places. We caught up with one such volunteer. Take a listen.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What's the general consensus? Who are these people planning on voting for?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, I'm going for Obama.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And most of these people...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, yes, yes. I think that it's time for change.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And are you encouraging them to vote for Obama?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, yes. Really, I am.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You tell them to vote for Obama?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You do tell them.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what do they say when you say vote Obama?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you're going out here to get votes for Obama, not just to get people to vote, but to actually get them to vote for Obama?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, no, no, just to get them to vote, OK? All right, I got to go.


VAN SUSTEREN: Is the Ohio secretary of state's office fully investigating cases like this? Palestra says it has been trying to get an interview with the secretary of state, but their requests have not been granted. Palestra also says that the secretary of state's office accused them of shoddy journalism.

In the interests of full disclosure, FOX News has a financial interest in Palestra. Also, as we have mentioned earlier, the secretary of state's office sent us a complaint about this very issue. We have posted it on Gretawire for you to read, so go ahead and go read what the secretary of state's position is on this.

But joining us life is Tiffany Wilson, graduate managing editor for --, I should say -- and Shelby Holiday, graduate reporter for Palestra.

Shelby, let me go to your first. You went out and investigated the story, is that right? And then you contacted the secretary of state's office?

SHELBY HOLIDAY, PALESTRA.NET: That's right. We went out -- we're a college news network. We went out to try to talk to students who are taking advantage of Ohio's early voting. And when I was down at the polls, I didn't see any students, but I saw a lot of organizations that were driving homeless people to the polls and encouraging them to register with temporary addresses and trying to get out the vote that way. So that's how this whole story began.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Tiffany, of course, homeless people have rights to vote just as much as everybody else. The question is whether or not they're told how to vote. That would be the issue. But then you people -- you, Palestra, contacted the secretary of state's office or you got a call? Explain this.

Watch Greta's interview

TIFFANY WILSON, PALESTRA.NET: Basically, we started contacting them on Thursday, October 2. We wanted to get both sides of the story. This was not an investigative piece. We were just trying to get the other side. So we started calling. We sent e-mails. And we kept a careful log of every single time that we communicated with them just because we wanted to get the other side. And unfortunately, we still have yet to talk to the secretary of state or anyone from her office.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. So what was the -- what happened today? Apparently, Palestra got a phone call.

WILSON: Yes. Earlier today, our CEO, Joe Weasel, was called by one of their communication directors, who basically said, Hey, somebody showed up. You guys have been calling. We think that you are shoddy journalists because one of your stories appeared on a Republican blog. Well, is an open-content Web site. Anybody can embed our stories on their blogs, on their Web sites. We have sports stories that are embedded. We have stories that are embedded on Obama blogs. So anybody can do this. But they were calling us out, saying that it was a hit job, and it clearly was not. Everything that we've done has been transparent.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Well, go on, Tiffany and Shelby, and take a look at what they've just said. I want to continue to follow this story, and you know, I hope you get your interview with the secretary of state. It'd probably be smart of her to talk to you and...


VAN SUSTEREN: All right, well, I'm pushing for it. I'll help you out. I'm pushing it for you. Good luck to both of you.

WILSON: Thank you.

SHELBY: Thank you.

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