“ABC News said it has reprimanded its top producer for investigative reporting for giving Donald Trump’s presidential campaign proprietary exit polling data on election night 2016,” Politico reports. “In their new book ‘Let Trump Be Trump,’ campaign insiders Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie wrote that Chris Vlasto — then-executive producer of ‘Good Morning America’ and now senior executive producer for investigative reporting — called Bossie, Trump’s deputy campaign manager, at 5:01 p.m. on election night with information being shared within a consortium of The Associated Press and the major TV networks.”
In the book, Lewandowski and Bossie write: “Vlasto had the early exit numbers that the consortium of news networks — the Associated Press, ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Fox News, and NBC News — had collected. The consortium followed eleven battleground states, including Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania. Trump was down in eight of the eleven states by five to eight points. The news was devastating. A kill shot.”
Politico cites two sources who are familiar with the consortium process who said Vlasto should not have been providing such detailed information to anyone outside the group.
“Representatives from the AP and TV networks crunch the numbers under strict quarantine until 5 p.m. on election night, at which time they can share the data with other members of their own organizations involved in coverage,” Politico reports. “News organizations involved in the consortium typically warn staffers not to provide specific exit-poll numbers to outsiders, especially given that the polls are still open.”
Vlasto reportedly admitted providing the information to the campaign.