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  1. NIMBUS III - After a long and hard-fought campaign, Nimbus III Chief Administrator Narala emerged victorious in the race to become the next Federation president. Continue reading the rest of the article at the FNS website. FNS Home FNS Data Feed FNS on FB
  2. Narala leads post-debate polls as election draws near By Reza Kardgar Stardate 239212.11 PARIS, EARTH — As citizens across the Federation prepare to head to the polls next week, Nimbus III Chief Administrator Narala tops the latest polls following the FNS presidential debate. “After skipping the Berengaria Caucus, Narala needed to hit it out of the ballpark, and boy did she do it,” said Professor Emil Arbelaez, chairman of political science at Pike City University on Cestus III. “It seems this election cycle, voters are looking towards greater representation from all corners of the Federation, and Narala’s message of inclusiveness for all members, not just the core worlds, really struck a chord with the audience.” Indeed, as of stardate 239212.11, Narala leads the FNS poll with 35% of the vote. Right behind her is Councilor Kevin Steiner of Terra Nova with 30%, and tied for third place are Ambassador Lily Ventu and Trill Chief of Staff Anari Kthria at 15% each. Coming in last is Axanar Governor Adellia Vor, with 5% of the vote. “The Vor Campaign is in crisis mode right now,” said political adviser Matthew Broteivach. “Despite all of her accomplishments in her own system, she wasn’t able to connect with voters in the wider Federation, and frankly, I’m not sure she has any time left to do so.” Debate highlights candidates’ differences The debate last week (full transcript available here) was the final chance for voters to get a look at all five of the major candidates on one stage before the election period begins. In a civil discussion that ranged from foreign policy to the dispute between the United Earth government and the Federation regarding the New Zealand penal settlement on Earth, the candidates quickly distinguished themselves from one another as they answered the questions from FNS moderators Maronida Shiir and Churok as well as direct questions from the audience. In addition to promoting a more egalitarian approach to Federation administration, Chief Administrator Narala answered a question about potential low voter turnout, again pointing to a disconnect between voters and the politicians that are supposed to represent them. “They have a right to feel that way. If the people feel they don’t have a connection with me or my fellow candidates, then it’s our job to rectify that problem,” she said. “However, I can’t fix what I don’t know about. I can’t speak for the others, but I believe it is up to the voters to alert me to their concerns—I’m not an all-knowing being. I’m one person, prepared to take on an extraordinary role, and part of that role is being prepared to listen to the citizens of my charge. I am prepared to achieve the desired outcome of their issues for the citizens of my charge.” Councilor Kevin Steiner, as he has throughout his campaign, again stressed the importance of a strong Starfleet to secure the Federation’s prosperity against the growing and competing interests of neighboring powers. When asked about how to balance Starfleet’s dual roles of defense and exploration, Steiner clarified his view on the connection between both mission objectives. “Here’s the issue: Starfleet’s mission of exploration and defense are inherently linked to one another. When our Starfleet is weakened, we are unable to engage in bold missions of exploration. We simply do not have the number of ships to do so!” he said to audience member Rho Falcon, who had asked the question. “Every ship we have to pull from the frontier to help in patrol duty or to assist in anti-piracy operations is another ship that isn’t out there exploring strange new worlds.” However, Steiner received the most applause following a question from moderator Churok, who asked the councilor what his view on holographic rights were. In an unexpectedly poignant reply, Steiner brought up the example of the android Data. “Nearly three decades ago, a judge ruled that an android—an artificial lifeform created by a man—had the right to choose its—his own destiny. That he was not merely property,” he said. “That android since went on to become one of the finest officers in Starfleet. Now, we are talking about holograms—another artificial lifeform, created by man—that have displayed similar sentience as that android.” “It’s time we acknowledge once and for all that what truly defines a person goes beyond their physical form, whether flesh and blood, tripolymer composites, or light and force fields. I fully recognize the rights such lifeforms are owed by the Articles of Federation, and I believe I am not alone.” In contrast to Steiner’s approach to foreign policy, Ambassador Ventu stressed peace and understanding towards those beyond the Federations borders and even those who sought to do harm to the Federation, such as the Maquis Reborn. “We will not quell the violence with more violence,” she said. “Terrorism has always been used as a tactic to goad our baser instincts, to have us lash out in fear—both back at them and at each other. The answer lies in vigilance. We must remain vigilant—to guard against impending threats, of course—but also against those who would infringe on our way of life, whether they be the Maquis Reborn or those in power.” When questioned by audience member and Starfleet commanding officer Selene Faranfey about whether vigilance alone was enough to defeat an enemy that had managed to pull off highly-sophisticated attacks, the ambassador acknowledged the seriousness of the threat and what particularly troubled her. “[The Maquis Reborn] do have many resources to draw upon, both in terms of personnel and matériel, and that is worrying to me,” said Ventu. “It is worrying precisely because it means that there are many people out there who feel they have no one else to turn to, that the Federation has failed them, and that they must resort to violence.” However, the ambassador remained firm on her message of understanding as the ultimate solution. “To those who say that they use violence against us and so we must use violence against them, I say that they are not our teachers,” said Ventu. “We must understand the Maquis Reborn. We failed to understand the Maquis, and to find a diplomatic solution, and that ended in the deaths of their majority at the hands of the Jem’Hadar. As your president, I will not allow this violence to continue—because I will get to the root of why it is occurring and proceed from there.” Excellency Kthria was asked to describe in more detail how her radical proposals for sector-level governance of the Federation could be a solution for piracy. “The main goal of sector-level administration is to coordinate responses, but for something like piracy, especially by rogue houses, a sector government could collaborate to efficiently place patrol routes and automated sensor platforms to decrease reaction time and enable placed ships to respond faster,” she explained. “Ultimately, though, we may have to resort to a solution that Earth did: fleets whose only job was to hunt out and destroy piracy. I would rather keep that as a last resort, however.” Kthria was likewise skeptical of Ventu’s plan to handle the Maquis Reborn. “Ambassador Ventu, while I applaud the sentiment and largely agree that adding more security can devolve into security theatre and a curtailment of rights, I am also cognizant that many of the attacks of the Maquis Reborn are due to security lapses in Starfleet and Federation day-to-day operations,” she said. “In addition, people who have embarked on a path of terrorism will require actual force to defeat.” When asked about the dispute between United Earth and the Federation over the future of the New Zealand penal settlement, Governor Vor expressed sympathy for Earth officials who wanted more of a say in the administration of a facility on their own land but stated that the proper path towards a solution was working with the Federation, not around it. “If the United Earth government has an issue with the original agreement signed in 2346, then the appropriate channel is to open new dialogue between the Federation and themselves, not attempt to usurp the agreement through their own internal legislation,” said the governor. “I needn’t remind the United Earth officials that as with all such treaties and agreements, they are bound by interstellar law to honor them unless amendments have been made between the two parties.” When pressed on whether the Federation itself being the one to enforce such laws represented a conflict of interest, Vor disagreed. “Again, if United Earth wants to have a conversation about the penal settlement—or any other issue—then they should do so, with the Federation,” she said. Citzens react After the debate, those in attendance seemed not to have been too surprised by the candidates’ responses, but Chief Administrator Narala appeared to have benefited the most from the exposure. “I have to admit, I hadn’t really known much about her or what she’d done for Nimbus III,” said Jan Wahler, a mechanical engineer from Hekaras II. “But I found myself nodding over and over whenever she spoke. She definitely won my vote!” Like Excellency Kthria, others were equally skeptical about Ambassador Ventu’s peace and understanding first approach towards the Maquis Reborn. “I don’t know what world the ambassador is living in,” said Hishama of Rigel IV. “These people are terrorists. They aren’t going to be swayed by an outstretched hand but a charged phaser rifle. Diplomacy only works if you have some teeth to back it up with.” When asked about whom he was going to vote for, Hishama said he still hadn’t made up his mind. “I like Steiner. If we had listened to him twenty years ago, maybe things would have turned out a lot differently,” he answered. “That said, he’s also been in Paris for decades. I’m not sure if Kthria’s proposals would really work, but hey, maybe it’d be good to shake things up.” In the final days of their campaigns, all candidates have begun a final push, rallying voters across a dozen worlds. Councilor Steiner is expected to give a speech at the University of Betazed tonight, and Ambassador Lily Ventu will be attending a dinner with returning Starfleet members coming home from Operation Safe Harbor. Excellency Kthria and Governor Vor will be visiting Andoria and Ktaris respectively. Finally, after some had questioned whether she was even eligible to run for the presidency earlier this year, Chief Administrator Narala appeared to be enjoying her new status as the front-runner following the debate, smiling widely as she greeted supporters on Bolarus IX. “We are many, but we can be one!” she yelled out to cheers, repeating her call for Federation unity during the debate. The 2392 Federation presidential election period begins next week. FNS Home FNS Data Feed FNS on FB
  3. The candidates have spoken, and now it’s your turn. Who do you think won the FNS presidential debate? VOTE NOW! A full transcript of the debate is included below the poll.
  4. Candidates prepare for final debate By T'Vas Stardate 239212.05 TELLAR PRIME — The five leading candidates in the 2392 Federation presidential race will take the stage at Gral University for the final debate of the election cycle. As the election draws near, Federation citizens will get one last look at all of the candidates together on one stage: Ambassador Lily Ventu Chief Administrator Narala of Nimbus III Governor Adellia Vor of Axanar Federation Councilor for Terra Nova Kevin Steiner Trill Chief of Staff Anari Kthria The debate will be hosted by FNS political contributor Maronida Shiir and FNS columnist Churok and will cover foreign policy, domestic and social issues, and questions directly from the audience. Join us this Saturday on stardate 239212.05 at 7pm London/2pm New York/11 am San Francisco through our live data feed!
  5. One on one with candidate Narala By Vian Nova Stardate 239210.17 Nimbus III Chief Administrator Narala on Deep Space 9, Bajor Sector. Narala is known as "the crusader" in her run for the presidency. Much of her publicity has boasted of her ability to take action when it comes to politics. Yet while her record fighting corruption and transforming Nimbus III from a failed colony to a prosperous, galactic hotspot is impressive, she remains unfamiliar to many across the rest of the Federation. She was also the only candidate who did not attend the Berengaria Caucus - a move many political commentators believe may have cost her the presidency. I was able to get a hold of an interview with Chief Administrator Narala whilst she held a meet and greet on Deep Space 9. Despite being a candidate, it is surprisingly difficult to get a one-on-one interview with her. I was lucky to get this rare opportunity. There's been a lot of controversies whilst you've been in the running - I'd like to go over them with you. The first one is that your eligibility to run has come into question numerous times throughout the campaign. Has it hindered you in any way? "No more than it being an awfully common question. I am a Federation citizen - Nimbus III was a joint effort involving the Federation. I know they've run investigations into my eligibility, but there's no question about it - I'm a legitimate candidate for this election." There's been a few questions about how you came to power on Nimbus III, namely about how quickly you came to power after the arrest of Chief Administrator Ventimago Weil. "It was a fluke. I had nothing to do with the rallies that were run. I'd certainly never considered being Chief Administrator before then, too. But when the opportunity arose, and I was urged to run for office, I took it. I ran legitimately there, too. A lot of those rumors you're talking about mention some backdoor dealing, but there was nothing like it. It was a proper campaign, the people voted, and I was put into office." The Prometheus Incident was quite the debacle. Do you stand by your comments about the investigation being led by someone not affiliated with Starfleet? "Of course. I stand by those comments 100%. Starfleet does a lot of things for the Federation, but when a mistake of that magnitude occurs, I believe it's best that an independent party comes in to investigate what exactly happened." Moving forward to more recent events - Vivian Voreic, Orion crime lord, on Nimbus III. Did you push forward with your appeal? "The people of both Nimbus and the Federation are rightfully concerned about Voreic. I can say that the case has been appealed, and it's currently under review by a secondary prosecutor as per the Nimbus Security Regulation Act." READ PREVIOUS STORY: "Candidate Narala faces questions about crime lord's sudden acquittal" - SD 239206.10 There was a report released recently about Bajoran voters. Have you seen it? "I have." What are your comments on that report? "I think that the Federation has lost its way by focusing more on a select group of planets than not of the entire Federation itself. The United Federation of Planets doesn't feel very united right now - it seems that the planets have been categorized in a "level of importance", and I don't stand for that. That is something that must be changed. The figures and comments from Bajor seem to indicate that the Bajoran people no longer feel important." Do you think there should be a Bajoran candidate? "I think every planet should have a candidate. Every planet's needs should be represented, the Bajorans included. I pledge myself to represent the needs of those who feel unheard. Every voice is important, not just a select few." Do you plan to go to Bajor? "It's my next shuttle ride." True to her word, Narala departed Deep Space 9 shortly after our interview to head to Bajor. Whether she'll be headed to Paris at the end of this year to take the oath of office remains to be seen. Read More: Exclusive Election 2392 Coverage FNS Home • FNS Data Feed • FNS on FB This story was written by the writer for Lt. Cmdr. Tristam Core. Submit your own news stories to the FNS!
  6. Voter apathy a major concern on Bajor By Nash Blaxland Stardate 239210.15 BAJOR — A poll of eligible voters on Bajor this week has shown that nearly three in every five Bajorans do not plan to vote in this year’s presidential election. Consistent responses across all eighteen provinces indicate the majority of Bajorans view the upcoming election, which will determine Nan Bacco’s successor as Federation president, as an issue of relatively little importance. In Jerad and Tozhat provinces, only 51 percent plan to vote (the highest proportion planetwide), while in Kendra Province, an overwhelming 71 percent intend to stay home on election day. The poll was taken in the aftermath of the Berengeria caucus, during which the five major candidates met with journalists and voters, explained their major policy goals, and outlined their strategic plans for the Federation. Since the close of the caucus, everyone from interest groups to bookmakers has been anxious for early predictions about the result. Everyone except, it may seem, the Bajorans. Voter intention by Bajoran province. “I watched several of the debates,” said Gorna Zehesh, a katterpod farmer from Rakantha Province, “but I wasn’t very impressed with the candidates who participated.” Similar statements were made by poll respondents across the planet. Many also expressed frustration with a perceived decrease in the strategic importance of Bajor in the Federation. “We were the most important planet in the galaxy at one point not so very long ago,” said Yirduk Pim, a member of the Council of Ministers, “but in the four years since we joined the Federation, our influence has diminished considerably.” While stopping short of saying so explicitly, Minister Yirduk also implied that were there a Bajoran among the field of candidates, interest in the election might be higher: “I think the prevailing opinion amongst Bajorans is that there is no current candidate to which we can relate.” Indeed, the Bajoran poll showed low support for all five major candidates. Kevin Steiner leads with 9 percent, with newcomer Anari Kthria in second place on 5 percent. Adellia Vor and Narala share third place on 3 percent each, while Lily Ventu is last on 1 percent. “Councillor Steiner spoke strongly in favor of Bajor’s entry into the Federation, despite the difficult circumstances surrounding our accession,” said Seermi Aleya, professor of Contemporary Studies at the University of Bajor. “Out of all the candidates, he enjoys the highest name recognition on Bajor.” Dr. Keahvon of the Cerberus Group, an Earth-based think tank, concurs: “The Bajorans have not forgotten the Occupation, or the Dominion War. A candidate who commits to a continued Starfleet security presence in the Bajoran sector will likely win the support of the government. “As for the Bajoran people,” he continued, “that’s less easy to predict.” 79 percent of Bajorans do not prefer any of the five major candidates. Over 22 percent of Bajorans named a non-candidate as preferred president, while nearly 57 percent expressed no preference whatsoever. Analysts worry that the threat of low turnout on Bajor may be mirrored on other planets. “Low turnout on only one planet is not a mathematical concern,” said Professor Ograx of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Betazed. “But voter apathy on a larger scale is dangerous for democracy, because it increases the likelihood that the result will not be viewed as a legitimate expression of the will of the people, and the election of candidates with only minority support furthers people’s frustration and reluctance to vote.” The Bajoran poll is only the first planetwide poll to have been published since the close of the Berengeria caucus, but political analysts, and the candidates themselves, will be watching to see if voter sentiment on Bajor is a unique phenomenon, or part of a larger problem. Read More: Exclusive Election 2392 Coverage FNS Home • FNS Data Feed • FNS on FB
  7. HAVE YOUR SAY: The Candidates at the Caucus The Issue: At the recent Berengaria Caucus, three of the four Presidential Candidates joined by newcomer Anari Kthria participated in the noted Presidential Panel, giving the Federation a snapshot of their views on many different issues. With domestic issues like the Federation Transport Union Strike and Starfleet reform taking precedence alongside foreign policy debates like hypothetical Klingon expansion and just what direction the Federation should take as it approaches the 25th century. While some candidates agreed on some issues, they often diverged and the FNS would like to know which candidate you feel you could support in the wake of the Caucus. The Poll will be closed and your vote will remain anonymous, but you are free to comment on why you support your chosen candidate. In the spirit of the caucus, please keep all comments respectful. Read more about the Election & The Berengaria Caucus:Berengaria Caucus ends, candidates speakBajoran author Pela Zhor speaks at opening of Berengaria Caucus For more on the course of the election, please refer to the FNS' dedicated election coverage Election 2392: The Road to ParisAs with all FNS stories, your comments on the current situation are welcome below. FNS Home FNS Forum FNS Data Feed FNS on FB Join the FNS Team
  8. Berengaria Caucus ends, presidential candidates speak By Lara Senekal Stardate 239210.08 This year's Berengaria Caucus closed with a Presidential Panel attended by four candidates, with Anari Kthria, the Chief of Staff of Trill, making her surprise announcement for her own bid for the presidency. BERENGARIA VII – The main event of the Berengaria Caucus took place earlier today with the Presidential Panel featuring three of the four established major candidates thus far and a surprise announcement of a fifth candidate, Anari Kthria of Trill. "As we approach the 25th century, now is a good time for us to consider new ways to make sure we can continue our mandate of exploration of the galaxy while upholding the ideals of the Federation," said Kthria during her announcement speech. Excellency Kthria has served as Trill's Chief of Staff since 2377. She along with Ambassador Lily Ventu, Governor Adellia Vor and Councilor Kevin Steiner all participated in a debate on issues concerning the Federation and beyond. For nearly two hundred years the Berengaria Caucus has been an arena for the exchange of ideas and the discussion of the most important issues of the day. During election years, the Presidential Panel is held at the close of the Caucus and is the first event where all major candidates are presented to the Federation at large on an equal footing.This year’s panel was moderated by the legendary Maronida Shiir, who took the various candidates to task in her usual style, asking hard hitting questions on a wide variety of topics from holographic rights to Cardassian foreign policy. The Ambassador, The Visionary Lily Ventu, former Starfleet Officer and Federation Ambassador Ambassador Lily Ventu is a woman with impressive credentials. A former Starfleet Officer with a background in both the mental and physical sciences with several decorations therein. Also a Command-level officer and former Captain of Starbase 118, Ambassador Ventu first emerged on the interstellar stage when she resigned her commission to play a role in the formation of the Thracian Alliance. Afterwards, Ventu ran to replace Kasumi Shakaturi as Earth’s junior Councilor after she died in office and was narrowly defeated by Malcom von Tesch. Since then she has been something of a celebrity in diplomatic and foreign policy circles. In three years she has handled over thirty first contact situations and her influence as Ambassador-at-Large to the Galactic West is widely felt in the Menthar Corridor. Astrofori One, while coming to a rocky start, has proven a success thus far. Future prospect for Federation development in the region, along with continuing peaceful relations with the neighboring powers, are largely thanks to her. Having a Starfleet and foreign policy background is certainly an unusual combination in a Presidential Candidate and many have been wondering if Ambassador Ventu can bring the same type of vision that helped her form two major interstellar initiatives to the Federation proper. During the Panel, Ambassador Ventu highlighted her accomplishments, but did not rely on them and voiced her opinions on every topic raised. Having spent several years along the Federation-Klingon border, Ambassador Ventu offered a unique, hands-on experience on Federation-Klingon relations: "Since the Khitomer Accords, the United Federation of Planets and the Klingon Empire have been staunch allies, the evidence of which is plentiful in the decades since -- from Ambassador, then Captain, Jean-Luc Picard serving as the Empire's Arbiter of Succession to our wartime alliance in opposing the Dominion. The way forward, then, is neither to respond to rattling sabers nor by rattling our own. Only peaceful dialogue and diplomatic congeniality can sustain our long friendship, as they have since the Accords and as they will continue to do as the Federation and the Empire learn and grow together." More a dove than a hawk, Ambassador Ventu continued her diplomatic language when speaking on the possibility of renewed Tholian expansion. "Never has the time been more ripe for productive conversations between the Tholian Assembly and the United Federation of Planets. The recently reopened diplomatic missions to Earth, Vulcan, and Andor, as well as the Tholian Embassy currently serving Astrofori One, demonstrate for us that the Assembly, or at least some within it, are as interested in discourse as we are. We must appeal to these elements as we encounter the Tholians, as their expansion marks an exciting time for the Assembly, a sign that the political factions that favored insularity may have been supplanted by other, more liberal voices." While if anyone could finally bring the Tholians into the fold, it would be Ambassador Ventu, many wonder if the Assembly’s knee-jerk expansionist tendencies and isolationist mantras can be curbed. Ambassador Ventu did not shy away from criticizing President Bacco on her deal to end the Federation Transport Union strike and her strong words and tone surprised many. "Privatization to please the interests of individual corporations and commercial entities flies very much in the face of the nationalized, egalitarian framework that have successfully supported the United Federation of Planets for two centuries. While President Bacco must be commended for her part in amicably ending the Federation Transport Union strike, I feel very strongly that she used the wrong methods to do so. I do not cling to our ideology hollowly, either; the openness and equality that have been rooted so deeply in the running of bodies like the Federation Transport Union must remain so if we are to have a Federation that we recognize and can continue to cherish." With her reputation as a deal-maker, a forger of alliances, but also someone with the right Starfleet background, Ambassador Ventu certainly has appeal to a wide variety of voters though many question if she is ready to take on the monumental task of leading the Federation without any previous administrative experience. With the Alpha Quadrant showing some signs of instability though, a great diplomat, a great peacemaker, may be just what the Federation needs. One thing is for sure though, Ambassador Ventu is a visionary with several success stories behind her and a keen eye for the flow of history that is not to be underestimated. The Governor, The Builder Adellia Vor, Governor of the planet Axanar Young, beautiful and immensely popular on her homeworld of Axanar and throughout the Federation core worlds, Governor Adellia Vor is a symbol to many of the Federation’s youngest citizens about what can be achieved at any age if one has the will. Elected to the governorship of the economically important Federation world at the age of 30, Vor is both the youngest and first Human governor elected. Running on a progressive and politically asymmetrical platform of multi-culturalism, economic growth and job creation, Governor Vor has exceeded even her own mandates in just two years in office. Axanar’s economic growth has been in the double digits for two years, replicating the startling economic growth she instigated in the polities where her electoral list Patash Molok was in government. The woefully lopsided growth compared to other areas of Axanar was noted and four years later, she and her party washed over Axanar in an election known as the Blue Wave. During her time in office, Governor Vor has “pruned” the Axanari government and its institutions of ineffective policies, inept administrators and cut a swath through the bureaucracy for a lean and efficient political machine that has allowed a river of credits to flow into the system. Her most controversial decision, but now regarded as a success story, was the partial nationalization of the Axanar Fleet Yards. Streamlining the administration of the Fleet Yards, growth has been tremendous since the Yards started fulfilling private contracts, even more so than during Axanar’s heyday from 2250-2350. Using these new funds and resources, Governor Vor has expanded the building and reform program begun in Varia-Nueva Alajuela to the entire planet, building vast amounts of infrastructure and reforming the education system. With a strong economic and administrative background, Governor Vor is certainly a natural choice but in an election where foreign policy is taking a lead and experience is key, Governor Vor has tried to present herself as wise beyond her years. Speaking on her own experiences with nationalization and privatization, while highlighting her own successes, Governor Vor refused to criticize President Bacco’s deal. "Nationalization and privatization are two very powerful tools in any government's tool set. On Axanar, I instituted several initiatives that mixed both processes to maximize efficiency along with job and economic growth. The nationalization of the fleet yards was a very arduous process though and the process of privatizing mining contracts opened up a lot of unknowns. It is the duty of any administrator, any government, any leader, to foster cooperation between the concerned parties and reassure the electorate that they are still in control of the situation. This deal took a very long time to iron out and I think any deal that stopped this destructive strike is a good deal.” Governor Vor also spoke on Klingon Expansion and the general expansion of any other power, voicing opinions on foreign policy issues she has not had to face on Axanar. "For the past twenty years there have been policy experts saying that the mentality among the Klingon leadership is 'expand or die' as a response to perceived cultural and military stagnation. Since the Klingons rarely integrate planets peacefully any expansion should be treated as a worrisome development but the reaction must be tempered. The President of the Federation needs to leverage the diplomatic, economic and cultural capital that the Khitomer Accords have afforded our two great interstellar bodies to see that Klingon expansion does not threaten the relationship we have worked so hard to build.” Like Ambassador Ventu, Governor Vor favors keeping the peace, but puts more emphasis on political and economic ties than pure diplomacy, though many wonder if economic ties matter to the Klingons or anyone else. When pressed on the issue of imperialism and whether she would go to war to prevent it, she had only this to say. "That would depend on the nature of the situation." A woman noted for her grand plans, Governor Vor also spoke plainly about her vision for the 25th century. "Vision is a word we should talk about a lot in this election, and the elections to come. After nearly fourteen years of a Bacco Presidency I think many of us are yearning for a fresh take on politics, on our democracy, our values, a lot of things. I'm not saying President Bacco did a bad job but I think the past four years have definitely felt stagnant for a lot of people and stagnation breeds all kinds of ills. I would like to see a grand enlargement of the Federation. I would like to see the fostering of new ideas and new interpretations of old ones. I think the 25th century could be just as great a time for the Federation as the 22nd. Advances in warp technology have been few and the frontier has shrunk because of it. Now with new territories opening up, we would be fools not to cease the initiative out there, while promoting growth and an intellectual Renaissance at home. And we should build! Build roads, build buildings, build ships, build cities, build institutions, build things people haven’t yet conceived of yet. I think the people of the Federation need to feel a sense of accomplishment and fight the feeling of stagnation by showing them that the task of building our great civilization is not yet done. We should constantly have a hammer in hand building new things, if not improving old ones. Just because something is the way it is now, does not mean must always be this way.” The Councilor, The Hawk Kevin Steiner, the senior Federation Councilor from Terra Nova Long time Federation Councilor for Terra Nova, Kevin Steiner has been a fixture of Federation politics for decades. Conservative and hawkish on foreign policy, Councilor Steiner is often quoted in the media when Federation interests are threatened or relations between other powers break down. His famous "crows" speech in 2373 on the Council floor where he passionately declared that "the crows have come home to roost" as the Dominion War broke out made him a household name and is still quoted by others to express the political naiveté some in the Federation have about the galaxy we live in. Like many other candidates, Councilor Steiner has also put a strong emphasis on service and responsibility and has used these past assertions against “baseless” accusations that he is an isolationist. Councilor Steiner himself served in the Peace Corps for six years before returning to his homeworld of Terra Nova and says he has a deep appreciation for other cultures, though says that we must not be blind to the ambitions of other powers. He has also fought for the admission of several of the more controversial recent member worlds, including Bajor and has repeated time and again that diversity is the Federation’s greatest strength and continued cultural diffusion is the only way that the Federation grows and becomes greater. Councilor Steiner is also a noted supporter of Starfleet and other service organizations. Many accuse him of being militant and overly aggressive but he maintains that “exploration” should not be an excuse not to defend the Federation’s borders. He has long been a critic of President Bacco and President Inyo before her over their perceived weaknesses in dealing with other powers. With some of his words prophetic in the wake of the Dominion War, the Hobus Incident and the Klingon Invasion, it appears that his once “reactionary” and “extreme” views now have a base in the electorate that is to some degree tired of non-starter shows of strength. While he says the right things, the experienced legislator is known for being a bit long winded and not carrying the same dynamic presence his competitors have. Painting himself as a sort of different politician however, Councilor Steiner says his use of “real words for real policies” should be taken as a positive. Such as when he spoke at the Panel on President Bacco’s handling of the Transport Union strike. "I'm not about to pat the President on the back for this supposed solution, especially when it's been her poor stewardship of our Starfleet that has led us to this act of desperation. I and other concerned councilors have been saying for years now that we simply do not have enough ships for Starfleet's mandate. Some have accused me of being a militant, but I'm not just talking about defense. Starfleet's exploratory division is a fraction of what it was even five years ago. It's simple math: if you have to reassign ships back to patrol duties, that's fewer ships out on the frontier." He also spoke on his chosen cause of foreign policy, giving harsh words for those who think that peace is an easy thing to maintain. "Whether it's the Klingons, Tholians, or Romulans, whoever takes office next year in Paris must understand that both our enemies and allies ultimately respect one thing: strength. Let's take the Tholians, for instance. The layman's analysis is that their xenophobia means that if we stay out of their space, they'll stay out of ours. And yet this ignores history, where time after time, the "isolated" Tholians have gone out and annexed surrounding territory. They are opportunists, and if we're not careful, they'll continue to encroach on our interests." Councilor Steiner ended with a side of him few people get to see or remember, a man who is deeply appreciative and supportive of the Federation’s diversity. Speaking on his vision for the 25th century, he had this to say. "I talk so often about foreign policy and defense that I think sometimes people forget that's not only why I'm running. This election is about the soul of our Federation as we move towards the next century. Just in the last one hundred years, we have seen countless challenges our forefathers would have never imagined. We faced total annihilation from the Borg and the Dominion. Thankfully, the solid foundation laid in place in government by those past leaders--and the sacrifice of so many in Starfleet--enabled us to weather those crises. Yet despite the numerous innovations and cultural achievements across all our member worlds, I'd argue the advances in technology and society from 2161 to 2261 were a lot greater than from 2261 to 2361. I think part of that has been the centralization and homogenization of many Federation agencies. As President, I will encourage greater cultural exchanges among our members and allies. Our strength has always been in our diversity, that we are greater than one solar system and one species." The Administrator, The Crusader Narala, the Chief Administrator of Nimbus III While declining to be at the Caucus, citing her commitment to both her own world of Nimbus III and “action, rather than words”, Chief Administrator Narala is still very much in the running for the Presidency. A woman with firm convictions and an unquenchable drive to get things done, Chief Administrator Narala turned the infamously lawless and failed colony of Nimbus III into something its people could be proud of. Once the poster child of a failed planetary society, muttered in the same breath as Turkana IV, Nimbus III is now thriving, if in the early stages of development. Fighting corruption at every level, the road has been long and hard for once the only honest politician on the planet but Chief Administrator Narala has taken it in stride. She has worked tirelessly to transform her planet at every level and it appears to be working. It hasn’t been without its hiccups however, the Chief Administrator’s legal decisions were notably called into question several months ago but she has brushed off these allegations just like she brushed off the allegations that she is unable to run for President. Out of all the candidates, Chief Administrator Narala has had to work the hardest to get people to trust her. Virtually unknown, half-Romulan and leader of a planet that most people are unaware has changed for the better, Narala has had to fight an upward battle throughout the entire election cycle. She maintains that this is just another battle among many and she remains undaunted by the challenges stacked against her. A lifetime of service to the people, fighting gangsters, corrupt officials and pirates has given her a thick skin and she has rolled with the punches. The Negogiator, The Federalist Anari Kthria, the Chief of Staff of Trill When Anari Kthria, the Chief of Staff for Trill, asked to join the Presidential Panel, no one suspected this would be a prelude to making her own bid for the office. While a Candidate declaring late in the race and at the Caucus no less, has been done before (most notably by Chelia of Catia in the early 24th century), Anari Kthria was not the woman pollsters picked as a dark horse candidate. For the past fifteen years, Anari Kthria has served as the Chief of Staff for Trill's government, a non-partisan position amongst Trill's sometime factious parliamentary politics. Akin to a non-executive or ceremonial President, the only mandate the Chief of Staff has is serving as a national unifying figure and is often the one to conduct negotiations with other powers, be they Federation members or not. Most of these dealings were conducted with fellow Federation members in the Kalandra Sector, a diverse grouping of polities that has been in flux since the Dominion War. When she started serving as Chief of Staff, Excellency Kthria tried to be a voice in the storm amongst many worlds who desired preferential treatment in reconstruction resources. To facilitate a better allocation of resources, she established the Kalandra Reconstruction Authority, a Sector agency which controlled the flow of reconstruction materials into the sector. It was perhaps here, where Excellency Kthria formed her opinions on Federalism and the need for a more centralized administration in the Federation. Proposing sweeping reforms of the Federation and on Starfleet, Excellency Kthria proposes setting up Sector governments and more sector versus planetary commands, designed to facilitate rapid response and a more cohesive Federation government. Some see her proposed reforms as too extreme a reaction to recent crises and say that this would defeat the purpose of the Federation by marginalizing the various polities that it consists of. Excellency Kthria does not see it this way however and maintains that this would be a necessary evolution of the Federation and perhaps the first steps in establishing a common Sector or even Federation identity. While it is contested that these reforms are putting the cart before the horse, they are quite ambitious. As a woman who calls for unity, Excellency Kthria has taken a dim but somewhat sympathetic view of the Colonial Coalition. "It is regrettable that they feel the need to discuss remonstrance's with us. It may be us, it may be them, but I can imagine with the recent need of Starfleet to have to hire outside help - and one sincerely hopes that it's properly overseen - that we've began to outpace our ability to administrate and properly see to the safety and prosperity of our outlying colonies. " While remembering the Prime Directive, Excellency Kthria did express hope for the future of Inox in the wake of the recent revolution which has overthrown the allegedly corrupt central administration. "While I do not wish to overly comment on what is an Inoxian internal affair, I just hope that in their zeal, the new revolutionaries do not create a government worse than the old one." She has also been wary of the Klingon Empire, much more so than many of her fellow candidates. "I hope the accords we have reached with them start smoothing out the difficult relationship we have had since the fall of Romulus. I can't help but imagine something is going on behind the scenes." A woman with much to prove and little enough time to do it, time will tell if Excellency Kthria will add flavor to the election or go down in history as a candidate who was late to the start and last to the finish line. With the end of the panel, the election season is seen to have officially begun and the next three months will be a torrent of campaign events, speeches and press opportunities as the five candidates jockey for votes. Read More: Exclusive Election 2392 Coverage FNS Home • FNS Data Feed • FNS on FB
  9. Bajoran author Pela Zhor speaks at opening of Berengaria Caucus By Deyvani Chandur Stardate 239209.02 This year's Berengaria Caucus features a star-studded list of guests and speakers as the Federation elections loom near. BERENGARIA VII — The Berengaria VII Caucus began today in the capital city of Urraca, with all major (and even many minor) candidates in this year's presidential race present. Joining them are such Federation luminaries as Siraan of Vulcan, Cardinal Maria Santiago, Dr. Ven Tell, and many, many more, including many FNS contributors. "The Value of Open and Free Discussion" Noted author Pela Zhor of Bajor gave the opening address, reflecting on the changes in the galaxy since the last time he opened the Caucus in 2320, most notably the transformation of his homeworld of Bajor and what value and place Federation ideals have in an increasingly factious and unstable galaxy. "We look to the Federation Charter not as the haughty values of yesterday's idealists but as the culmination of hundreds—thousands of political movements over just as many years and ten times as many worlds. Over the Federation's existence, these ideas have been challenged, from within and without, and there have been temptations to call our ideals 'superior' to those we would call 'barbarous' and 'backward'. But that's not what the Federation stands for." "The Federation is not a haughty, shining city on the hill; it is an organization that seeks to turn fists into open palms, by extending one of its own. Our ideals make no claim to completeness, to absolute truth. Rather, our ideals believe most of all in the value of open and free discussion. We do not let differences simmer and shatter the peace we have all so hard worked for. We acknowledge them and the validity of our opponent's opinion." A Historic Forum The Berengaria Document, signed by Vulcan, Andoria, Tellar, and Earth, was a statement of common values and ideals among the assembled worlds when the Federation proper was still a nascent idea. It outlined comprehensive concepts of citizenship, sovereignty and interstellar law that would eventually give rise to the Federation Charter. In the late 22nd century, the Berengaria Caucus was started by T'Shar of Vulcan and her New Federation movement to serve as a free and open intellectual arena, in the spirit of the Document. While the New Federation Movement quickly declined, the Caucus continued and came under the direction of the Berengaria VII government, which has organized it annually ever since. Everything one can think of is discussed in the Caucus, and many regard it as the high point of interstellar discourse. So called "dangerous ideas" and unpopular opinions are never shunned, and the only rule is that the decorum of the Caucus be maintained and that speakers discuss and debate in a respectful manner. As Governor Ingrid Stellstrom reminded the audience, "This isn't Chaya VII". Indeed, very few of the workshops ever turn heated, and the Berengaria Caucus is known for its sincere and calm exploration and discussion of ideas. Much like a classroom, the point of the Caucus is to explore ideas, not to declare a winner in an intellectual battle or determine the moral superiority of one view over another. Discussions on Policy The first workshop of the Caucus was devoted to a discussion of Federation foreign policy, with special attention given to the new alliances of the Menthar Corridor. Ambassador and presidential candidate Lily Ventu joined the discussion as one of the experts, alongside noted Detapa Council member Natima Lang and Federation Foreign Minster Shelaen Varea. By all accounts Ambassador Ventu did well and was deemed by attendee Lirisha as "poised, confident and eminently quotable" in her discussion points. Other candidates are lined up to speak at various individual workshops, while the main event of the Berengaria Election Forum will be held at the end of the week, with an open invitation to all declared candidates to join. Other hot topics on the board include the Prometheus Incident and a discussion on Starfleet oversight and scientific ethics in the wake of the disaster. It's also standing room only in the discussion on the Prime Directive as it relates to the Romulan Republic and whether the Federation should recognize the nascent liberal Romulan state. Read More: Exclusive Election 2392 Coverage FNS Home • FNS Data Feed • FNS on FB This article was written by Erin aka Anen Sonbef, FNS Team Facilitator.
  10. Candidate Narala faces questions about crime lord's sudden acquittal By Vian Nova Stardate 239206.10 NIMBUS III - In a stunning decision, Vivian Voreic, a known Orion crime lord, has been acquitted of all charges in the Nimbus system. Tensions were high in Paradise City when crime kingpin Vivian Voreic (last name recently changed from Volkoff) touched down a week ago and was arrested on sight by the city's security force. It marked the first time Voreic was positively identified by the general public after rumors of her organization's activity in the Nimbus system. Detained, charged, and put on trial, the verdict was given today: acquitted of all criminal charges within the Nimbus system. Voreic's history of charges (criminal and otherwise) across the Alpha and Beta quadrant include kidnapping, treason, arms trafficking, drug dealing, and much more, many of these activities she was charged of carrying out in the Nimbus system. She has rumored ties to the Orion Syndicate, Scarlet Brotherhood, and more recently, the Maquis Reborn, as a weapons supplier. Leaked reports rumored to have originated from Starfleet seem to indicate that Voreic has a background in Starfleet Intelligence as an analyst, one of the potential reasons behind her charge of treason in Federation space. Starfleet officials have declined to comment. For Voreic to be acquitted of all charges in the Nimbus system is something that has been unheard of ever since Chief Administrator Narala came into power. Despite powerful evidence against her, Vivian Voreic walked out of Paradise City courts with a smile on her face and as free as a bird, and even made no attempt to avoid reporters or hide her face - an indication that she's quite comfortable on Nimbus III. Many of her answers to questions by press were simple yes and nos - however, when asked about her possible membership in the Orion Syndicate, she gave a full statement. "Today is a good day for myself, and for the people of Nimbus III," says Voreic. "I don't plan to ruin today by asserting dominance over a legal system, so let me make myself clear. I am not the Orion Syndicate, I am not the Scarlet Brotherhood, and I am certainly not the Maquis Reborn. I do not endorse any of their actions. I am simply a good businesswoman, trying to make a living." She declined to make any further comments. Chief Administrator Narala was questioned about her government's decision whilst promoting her campaign in the cloud city of Stratos, Ardana. "Nimbus III's legal system is not me, sitting in a sort of throne in a law court," said Narala. "I do not make every sole decision, and I certainly wasn't consulted on the case of Vivian Voreic. I will appeal to the Chief Prosecutor to reconsider the decision the courts have made - in a correct and lawful manner - but if our system has deemed Voreic is to be acquitted, then that is the result for now." However, political experts observing the situation are unconvinced about Narala's confidence in the situation. "This is a justice system that Narala has based her campaign on." Political adviser Matthew Broteivach says to FNS. "It's how she came to her position on her home world. She has used it as her podium, asked the Federation citizens to trust her to bring this sort of system to the potential role of President of the Federation, and that system has just decided to release a known crime lord back into their home. That decision alone may have just shot their candidate in the foot." This article was written by Deliera, the writer for Tristam Core. Submit your own news stories and headlines to the FNS or consider joining the FNS team! FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB • FNS Team
  11. Presidential ribbon cutting or something more? By Lara Senekal Stardate 239205.11 PARIS, EARTH — It is hardly news that the exact contents of a President's speech be unknown to the greater public or even some insiders reporters go to for sources and sound bites. What is unusual is that the President of the United Federation of Planets should make no mention of the contents of her largest speech of the year, and perhaps the last major one of her career and then fly off to a soon to be completed space station on the far side of Federation space. A few days ago President Nanietta Bacco left Earth to travel to Astrofori One: a major cornerstone of her foreign policy in recent months, to cut the ribbon, shake hands and deliver a short speech on the progress of interstellar relations and what this jointly administered station could mean. All fairly standard and to those outside the foreign policy and economics divisions of many news organizations-the FNS included-this was nothing special, with all eyes on the elections as the field comes close to being solidified as the deadline to declare candidacy comes to a close. That is it was fairly standard until some intern in my office piped up, "What about the State of the Federation?" For a moment, the room was silent, and for a few moments afterwards many of us opened our mouths to speak but could not come up with the words. Within minutes though, a frantic buzz returned to the room as people scrambled to explain this aberration of an error. While a crucial and defining speech that comes along yearly, let's face it, people are only reminded of it because someone remembers it for them and the media creates a hype over it. "Wasn't that supposed to be a few months ago?" Charlotte Answorth, nurse practitioner, mother of three, and restaurant patron observed when asked. Indeed Ms. Answorth is right, the State of the Federation was supposed to be a month ago but was pushed back with the crises revolving around the Federation Transport Union and when some in the Colonial Coalition started calling for independence for their respective worlds. Naturally these took precedence, along with other issues, over a three hour speech few people talk about a few days after. But with the revised date for the speech coming up, someone finally took notice and calculated that the President could not make it back in time to deliver her speech to the Council. This left many reporters scrambling for answers, eclipsing the election for the first time in months. Astrofori OneWhile we are no doubt all aware of the glimmering, shining, well marketed new 'Station of Galactic Peace', let's give a short summation. While seemingly hastily built and thrown together by an army of contractors, engineers and workers, Astrofori One is actually the culmination of a few years of diplomatic legwork and bridge-building done by Presidential candidate and Federation Ambassador Lily Ventu. While the Bacco administration became attached to and formally endorsed and funded the project six months ago, Astrofori One has been the glimmer in Lily Ventu's eye for quite some time. Normally there are not any votes in foreign policy but Ambassador Ventu doesn't need Astrofori One as a statement of policy, she can use it as a monument of her tenacity and skillset as a woman who builds bridges and gets things done. Where other candidates need only turn to their homeworlds and say 'look and what I've built', Ambassador Ventu can hardly say the same. While intangible, her accomplishments are many but hardly awe-inspiring, and as people have been saying from the start, no one doubts her qualifications, they just need to see the woman in action before they can commit. Well instead of boring us and potentially loosing the electorate, Lily Ventu can now also look behind her and in the grand tradition of showing, not telling, point to the giant, glittering Astrofori One and say 'I built this'. As she fights it out with skilled civic administrators and social and economic developers, Ambassador Ventu finally has something tangible to lend to her campaign, though only time will tell if the shiny new station, along with a laundry list of qualifications, will be enough to sway the electorate in her favor. Of course there is the nasty question of 'what if'? What if Astrofori One fails? What if the 'Station of Galactic Peace' turns into what the Planet of Galactic Peace was up until a few years ago? Well the campaign will certainly be over by the time the honeymoon period ends, or so Ambassador Ventu can hope. But by so tightly hitching her bandwagon to the station and having little to fall back on, Ambassador Ventu will rise or fall with Astrofori One and if it's enough of a debacle, it might turn her into a one term President, or even a one year President. Ribbon Cutting, Major Policy Speech, or Something More?While it certainly seems like President Bacco is going to add a dash of flavor to her State of the Federation by using the shock and awe of the ribbon cutting ceremony to add some more pomp and circumstance, there have been further rumors that might not be all she's adding to this year's policy pot. Tyson Holt, the noted CEO of Holt New Alliance, was also allegedly on the presidential transport Paris One with President Bacco. Having announced something no less than a paradigm shift, many wonder if the state of the Federation will combine several announcements into one. Whatever Mr. Holt and President Bacco have planned, the suspense is certainly building. And then there is of course the forgone conclusion that President Bacco will be formally announcing that she will not stand for reelection for a fourth term in office. But then again, with so much mystery, so much suspense, perhaps she's building all of this up for the greatest shock of all, the announcement of a fourth term in office. Yes, we all thought it unthinkable a few months ago but as the election field shaped up and most of us shrugged our shoulders at the list of people we were offered, perhaps a fourth term for President Bacco wouldn't be so unthinkable. Or maybe she'll use this opportunity to be something few other Presidents have ever been, a Kingmaker, using this opportunity to throw her hat and weight behind a candidate to be her successor. Whatever the outcome, the Federation and beyond will find out soon just what is happening on Astrofori One, and with all of this buzz, we at the FNS can only hope that we aren't setting ourselves up for a fall. This article was written by Erin, the FNS team facilitator and writer for Dr. Anen Sonbef. Submit your own news stories and headlines to the FNS or consider joining the FNS team! FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB • FNS Team
  12. President embattled and candidates emboldened By Lara Senekal Stardate 239202.18 Federation President Nan Bacco's approval rating has fallen in recent weeks, especially in regards to her handling of the Federation Transport Union strike. PARIS, EARTH — It seems the superlative 'Most Popular' has been stripped from President Nanietta Bacco. In a detailed poll released this week, only 11% approved of her handling of the current Federation Transport Union crisis, with 55% disapproving and 33% undecided. While her overall poll numbers remain high, the polls on the individual issues and current crises are abysmal.Trust in Starfleet is also in flux, with the subspace rifts caused by a Starfleet experiment wreaking havoc across the quadrant and public opinion wishing for more controls and oversight of the fleet. While President Bacco and Starfleet Command have ordered a full investigation into the incident, the Federation Council has moved to create an independent committee to investigate just what went wrong and what steps can be taken to make sure this never happens again. Public opinion on the rapid response from Starfleet is positive, though the numbers fail to reflect the full spectrum of emotions in the wake of this latest misstep by Starfleet. As the presidential campaign season is beginning to hit its stride, many are anxious to hear from their favored candidates, and many more are still trying to make up their minds about this eclectic and unusual field of candidates. While the field has been widened recently with Governor Adellia Vor of Axanar and Primal Kp'shaiel of Xyrillia declaring their candidacy, it has hardly brought stability to the poll numbers which show that the majority of Federation citizens would like more candidates, or at least more high profile ones. Governor Adellia Vor of Axanar has officially joined the race for the presidency along with Primal Kp'shaiel of Xyrillia."I mean we all love Governor Vor and she's pretty popular in the Core Worlds, but I think we know that she's not precisely serious about running this time around. Shame, too, I don't think I like the other candidates," said Lindiwe Masambe, mother of three. "I didn't vote for Ambassador Ventu three years ago, and I'm not going to now. Steiner's a stingy little man and that Narala... have they decided if she can run?" It's turning into an incredible if lackluster election, and Mrs. Masambe's sentiments are being echoed everywhere, but that hasn't stopped the various candidates from trying to turn their public perceptions around. On The Trail Terra Novan Councilor Kevin Steiner spoke on Mars yesterday, while touring the recently expanded Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards, an expansion he championed as a way to increase Federation stability and security in these trying times. His miraculous fundraising initiative helped his poll numbers last year and now in light of recent events, many find Councilor Steiner's message of security and looking inward to be rather enthralling. Terra Novan Councilor Kevin Steiner toured the newly expanded Utopia Planitia Fleet Yards yesterday, a staple of his agenda for an expanded Starfleet. "Starfleet Command has my full support in using all of our resources to deal with this crisis," said Steiner, as he stood in front of a Horizon class starship, the USS Darwin-A, set to be relaunched next week as part of Starfleet's response. "I'm also calling for a full investigation into what happened, and I urge the President to join me in doing so. Now is not the time to play politics. We need to know the truth about what caused this disaster, including whether or not it was because of mismanagement from the top," said the veteran councilor in a somewhat candid moment from his podium at the unveiling. Chief Administrator Narala also set out from Nimbus III early last week to begin her campaign in earnest, though many are still apprehensive and cautious about her candidacy, especially the issue raised by the ambiguity of her fulfillment of the residency requirements for the Presidency. While the Federation Supreme Court has taken up the matter and has promised to rule soon, Administrator Narala is starting to belay everyone's fears and sweeping away their caution. Earlier this week, the Administrator addressed her supporters when asked about what action should be taken in light of the now so-called 'Prometheus Incident'. Chief Administrator Narala of Nimbus III continues to face questions regarding her eligibility to run."Until such time the relevant information has been provided to the general public—of not only the Federation, but those who have been or can be affected by this incident—I cannot give a worthwhile response," said Narala, speaking from Archer IV. "That said, it is my understanding that Starfleet is involved, both with causing the incident and now trying to rectify it. I don't believe Starfleet leading the investigation is the correct course of action. The investigation of the Prometheus Incident should be handed over to a Federation agency unaffiliated with Starfleet to minimize the chance of Starfleet covering up mistakes that may have been made." Coming from a world that was once rife with corruption, the Administrator is perhaps justifiably cautious about Starfleet and the Presidency investigating themselves. The public is aligned with her it seems, and when two candidates agree on an issue so early in the election cycle, you'd best believe it's a reflection on the President and her ability to govern and handle a crisis. But when questioned about her eligibility to run, the Administrator brushed off her detractors. "To people saying Nimbus III isn't Federation, maybe they need to double check their facts before they start making assumptions," she said. "A bit hurtful, don't you think? The Federation was a founding member of this world, and though many have tried to forget about that responsibility, we certainly haven't." Meanwhile, Ambassador Lily Ventu has not issued a formal statement but continues to be the tepid frontrunner of this election, though she holds that title by the thread of a needle. A Starfleet veteran, Ambassador Ventu is most likely staying 'strategically silent' on the issue, not wanting to alienate the massive Starfleet swing vote or open herself up to allegations of hypocrisy considering her former occupation, no matter how ill-connected and ill-conceived they may be. Reporting for the Federation News Service from the FNS Paris Bureau, with additional reporting from Sol Sector FNS correspondent T'Vas. FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB
  13. Presidential prospectives court public opinion By Lara Senekal Stardate 239202.02 As the election of 2392 draws closer, many wonder just who else will throw their hat into the ring. PARIS, EARTH — With three candidates officially in the race and Federation President Nan Bacco herself still undeclared, the 2392 elections have come off to a false start with a lack of popular or notable candidates only a month before the deadline for declaring their intent to run. Lily Ventu is an ambassador and former Starfleet psychologist who has little notoriety despite her many accomplishments. Chief Administrator Narala, the surprise candidate from Nimbus III, might not even be eligible to run, and Terra Novan Councilor Kevin Steiner does little to inspire the masses as a man, owing most of his popularity to his platform than his command of the hearts and minds of Federation citizens. Without a clear frontrunner and President Bacco's own decision to run again still a mystery, the media and the general public are looking to other prospective candidates to capture their imagination and get their blood pumping for a tough election cycle. "I'm really looking forward to participating in competitive elections, but I don't feel too excited about any of these candidates," said Maris t'Rhel, a recently naturalized Romulan refugee. "I saw President Bacco sweep the Federation in a few months when she ran for the first time. I don't know if any of these candidates have the charisma she had." Maris isn't alone in her beliefs. In a recent poll, 89% of polled voters declared they would like to see a broader range of candidates, and 45% stated that they wouldn't vote for any of the three current candidates if the election were held today. While there is still plenty of time for these candidates to catch up and court public opinion, their campaigns live in the shadows of not only President Bacco's potential candidacy but also the massive popularity of other politicians who haven't yet declared. Waiting In The Wings There are a variety of potential candidates that have the popularity and political acumen to blow the existing candidates out of the water. Adellia Vor The young governor of the planet Axanar, Ms. Vor has been making more than a few fiery and impassioned speeches of late, reaching out to her massive constituency. She is well-known as a model of civic duty packed with youthful charisma that has made her an icon among the young voters of the Federation. Governor Vor is a popular search request and regularly covered in the Federation press, both for her obvious natural skills as an administrator and leader, and her incredible accomplishments at such a young age. Many political commentators see Governor Vor as a likely candidate but not one who is "in it to win it" so to speak. Many think she will run just to get her name out to a wider audience and take advantage of the wide electoral coverage to set up both herself and her ideals for a serious run in 2396. Siraan A noted Vulcan Kolinahr master, Siraan has been a powerful force for peace and logic in the sometimes turbulent 24th century. A High Priest of Mount Seleya, Siraan has organized various charitable, diplomatic and humanitarian ventures throughout the Federation and beyond. While he has never given any indication that he wants to run for public office, he has surprisingly widespread appeal for a Vulcan. Siraan is well-versed in the histories, cultures and philosophies of many species and has something of a cold, fatherly charisma. He has been a powerful voice for the expansion of holographic rights and increased humanitarian missions and foreign aid. Siraan has met with the last five Federation Presidents and is a valued consular for the Vulcan High Command. Should he chose to run, Siraan would be an unorthodox candidate but with more widespread appeal and name recognition than anyone else, giving him a boost despite his unusual profession as a philosopher, writer, and noted artist. Metera zh'Fey Like Governor Vor, Metera zh'Fey of Andoria is young and charismatic, but she also bears the name of the perpetrator of one of the largest corruption scandals in Federation history. Daughter of Zhon sh'Fey, the Andorian businesswoman and shipping magnate who was convicted of bribery of public officials after being caught and exposed by veteran journalist Maronida Shiir, Metera has a dark cloud hanging over her candidacy. While she may be counting that the current generation won't know her familial relation and that the older generation won't care, it is an awful lot to gamble in a potentially ruinous race for the highest position in the land. zh'Fey was elected as Chancellor of the Andorian Empire early last year when her coalition gained a majority of seats in the Andorian Parliament. Since then she has gone on a massive infrastructure revitalization policy that has caused the Andorian economy to boom. Her personal appeal is what got the Andorian city of Lor'Vela the seat of the Olympic Games earlier this year and has put her at the center of the media's attention. Kp'Shaiel The Primal of Xyrillia, Kp'Shaiel is one of the most stunning political stories to ever grip the Federation. Once a simple artist, painting in the countryside, Kp'Shaiel submitted his candidacy for governor of his local territory after years of mismanagement by the administration. Sweeping the election, he became popular as his time as provincial governor ran on and garnered the attention of the Xyrillian public. He ascended higher and higher to office, outperforming his rivals at every turn and connecting with the people on a deeply personal level. Kp'Shaiel has eschewed many of the trappings of power and still paints regularly. He has a policy of good and honest governing by the people, for the people. One of the few populists to actually be one of the people, Kp'Shaiel, more than any other candidate, is a true outsider who embodies many of the Federation's core values. He has a Human husband, reads Vulcan philosophy, served in the Dominion War and speaks dynamically but plainly about his ideals, preferring to write his short but empowering speeches himself. In the words of his former neighbor Ak'Le, "He's just a plain young man who decided to become Primal; couldn't have asked for a better man for the job." In the Shadow of a Giant There is one potential candidate who might dwarf all others: incumbent President Nanietta Bacco. She has repeatedly evaded the question of a fourth term in office. Her aids state that the president has "larger concerns," but that an announcement will be made "soon and with the ceremony befitting a sitting President." Many have interpreted this line as a statement that President Bacco will announce her candidacy at this month's State of the Federation address. While her popularity has waned recently in the wake of current crises involving the Federation Transport Union, the Colonial Coalition, and just whom the Federation should be helping, she remains one of the most popular presidents in Federation history and could conceivably make a run at an unprecedented fourth term in office. In the words of dockworker Martin Livsky of San Francisco, "Hey she might have dropped the ball on this one, but she's still got my vote over... who's running again?" 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  14. Terra Novan Kevin Steiner makes long-rumored presidential bid officialBy Reza KardgarStardate 239201.29 TERRA NOVA — In an unsurprising announcement, Terra Novan councilman Kevin Steiner officially announced his candidacy for the Federation presidency. "We are at a crossroads, my fellow citizens," said Steiner from his home in Logan City on Terra Nova, as his wife Adelise sat beside him. "We can continue on a path of diminishing influence and power on the interstellar stage, where our allies will no longer be able to count on us and where our own worlds continue to suffer from foolhardy policies that ultimately benefit no one. Or we can consider the possibilities." "Ladies and gentlemen, when I was growing up, being in the Federation meant something. It was a promise. A promise that you could grow up to achieve your dreams. That if you worked hard and helped to better the world around you—and even other worlds around you—you could secure a good life for you and your family." "Inherent in that promise was a calling. A call to serve, a call to look out for one another. That call is why millions of you join the ranks of Starfleet, the Diplomatic Corps, the Merchant Service, and the Peace Corps. Even more of you give back in your own time, volunteering or through your private careers. That call is why I came to the Federation Council twenty years ago: to make a difference and ensure a better future for my children and yours. And that call is why I want—why I hope—to lead the Federation forward as your next president." Late to the Party Reactions to Steiner's announcement were mixed. While some praised the councilman's speech as one of the elder statesman's finest, others were not so impressed. "I think he realized he was getting left in the dust after the buzz about Ambassador Ventu and then Chief Administrator Narala that he felt rushed to make a 'me, too' statement," said Professor Samit Blutan of the ShiKahr Institute, who pointed out several places where the councilman seemed to stumble over his own words, most noticeably with his final statement. "It's also a bit strange for him to pit himself as this Paris outsider challenging Bacco when he even acknowledged in his speech that he's been on the council for two decades," added Blutan. "His campaign manager needs to find a single, coherent narrative they intend to use in the election and stick with it." Steiner's speech was noted by other commentators to be light on specifics. "It was a competent announcement," said Churok, FNS columnist and former press secretary for President Ra-ghoratreii. "Yet if Mr. Steiner has aspirations of leading the Federation into the 25th century, he will require more than platitudes and flattery to the citizenry." "He talked about possibilities," said Guqatwa, an Ariolo civil engineer who watched Steiner's announcement along with several others gathered at a bar on Fillandia. "I kept hoping for the possibility he'd say something meaningful in such a long-winded speech." Still, Steiner's supporters, and those who have been upset by President Bacco's handling of recent crises such as the Federation Transport Union strike and the rising tensions between the Federation and the Klingon Empire in the aftermath of the Hobus supernova, were energized by the possibility that Bacco's time in office could come to an end. "I'm tired of hearing every day about how another transport was attacked or how one of our colonies was raided out there, while Bacco tells us how we owe it to our interstellar neighbors that they can get back on their feet," said Ropp Tehalo, a musician on Althos IV. "I want a president who understands we can only help others get back on their feet when we're securely standing on ours first." FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB
  15. Narala of Nimbus III joins race for the presidencyBy Vian NovaStardate 239201.18 NIMBUS III — On the heels of Ambassador Lily Ventu's presidential campaign announcement, Nimbus III Chief Administrator Narala joined the race for the presidency. Many citizens of the Galactic Peace planet Nimbus III had gathered in Paradise City for what quite possibly was the ambitious chief administrator's most staggering announcement yet. "My fellow citizens of Nimbus, these are troubling times in our galaxy. Strong leadership is needed to handle both the challenges ahead and those that will always require a watchful eye and a steady hand. We as a planet have experienced similar disarray, and look at what we have accomplished," said Narala to cheers. "I believe that I can steer the Federation as well back towards the right direction. How? With the ideals and experiences I received after a life of service here. Today, I announce my candidacy for the Office of President of the United Federation of Planets." Narala's entry stunned many political commentators, who were still reacting to Ambassador Ventu's earlier announcement. "This is shaping up to be one of the most exciting presidential elections in decades," said Professor Samit Blutan of the ShiKahr Institute. "We've yet to have a member of the Federation Council throw his or her name into the race, and that's practically unheard of." Although Terra Novan councilman Kevin Steiner has long been rumored to have his sights on the presidency, the councilman has yet to make an official announcement. Incumbent President Nan Bacco has also not yet officially announced her re-election campaign. Still, others found Narala's bid highly unusual and were skeptical of her promises. "Nimbus III isn't even a Federation member," said Erol Broam, Governor of Proxima Centauri. "Yes, she's done great things there, but the fact is she would have no experience dealing with the Federation Council. People think the presidency is all-powerful, but the truth is you have to work with the council as a partner to get things done." Yet Narala's outsider status is likely to be the crux of her campaign. She was born in 2297 to a Vulcan mother, from whom she received her own Federation citizenship, and a Romulan father. Her parents were residents on the joint Federation-Klingon-Romulan colony, and Narala has spent most of her life there. She started her career in the Paradise City Police Department, rising through the ranks, before attending law school and eventually becoming Chief Prosecutor for the colony. During this time, she was credited with leading several operations to eliminate Orion Syndicate activities and those of other major criminal organizations that had long treated Nimbus III as their own fiefdom. Having solidified her support among the population, she next focused her efforts on eliminating corruption within the Nimbus planetary government. In 2377, Narala and officers from the Nimbus III Police Force stormed the office of Chief Administrator Ventimago Weil while he was giving the annual State of the Colony address, dramatically arresting him live on air and charging him with breach of conduct. Her popularity, already high, soared overnight, and when the next chief administrator was to be selected, rallies broke out across the planet demanding that she take office. Although she claimed she had never sought the position of Chief Administrator, within her first year in office, she balanced the operating budget of the colony and announced renewed investment in education, crime reduction, and other quality of life services. By her third year in office, she had managed to halt the population loss of the colony, and she is credited with turning around what was once the poster child of failed colonies into one of the most promising hotspots in the galaxy. "I can't wait to see what she does when she gets to Paris," said Pai Xi Feng, a shopkeeper and Narala supporter who attended today's rally. "The people of the Federation only need to see what's happened here to know what prosperity is possible with the right leader, and she's the real deal." FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB
  16. Ambassador Lily Ventu announces campaign for the presidency By Tellaria D'Sol Stardate 239201.17 EARTH — Ambassador Lily Ventu formally announced her candidacy today for the Presidency of the United Federation of Planets, becoming the first official challenger to incumbent Nan Bacco. Ambassador Ventu made her announcement earlier this morning from the bridge of the hospital ship Britannia. "I am announcing today my candidacy for the Presidency of the United Federation of Planets," she said, standing in front of her partner and the Britannia's commanding officer Fleet Captain Hayden Reynolds. "The Presidency is the most powerful office in the great republics of the Alpha and Beta Quadrants. Its great mantle provides the ability to provide for the many and varied citizens of the Federation and its allies. The years that immediately follow will involve many vital decisions for our citizens, including our response to the incursions and aggressive motions made by the Klingon Empire—to new alliances and old partnerships between ourselves, new neighbors, and the beneficiaries of renewed commitments—and to the role of the Starfleet and all our other wings of exploration as we push beyond known space." "Our preparation for the twenty-fifth century forces the people of the great Federation to choose its direction in a new century. I urge them to choose carefully. In my many years of service as a Starfleet officer and as a Federation ambassador, I have encountered policies that embrace a desire for war, that would seek to minimize exploration and peace, that would turn us from our peaceful, prosperous life and the destiny that we have made for ourselves throughout the Federation's long life. I intend to ensure the prosperity and perseverance of our citizens, and it is upon this foundation that I wish to become your president." Many on Earth know Ambassador Ventu for her narrow defeat by Malcolm von Tesch in the 2389 special election to succeeded deceased Federation Councilor Kasumi Shakaturi. In the time since, the Ambassador has returned to the Diplomatic Corps, being assigned to the Menthar Corridor and the surrounding area and neighboring powers. A recipient of the Campbell Award and the Cochrane Medal of Honor, Ambassador Ventu was formerly a noted Starfleet psychologist and commander of Starbase 118, before resigning her commission to play a key part in the development of the Thracian Alliance. Her career since then, baring her defeat in the 2389 election, has been impressive, and she has handled more than 30 first contact situations. With her extensive career both in Starfleet and the Diplomatic Corps, Ambassador Ventu is seen as a natural candidate with broad experience in many fields, but not all reactions are supportive. A Natural Choice? "I mean who is she really? A psychologist turned failed Starfleet Captain and Ambassador to nowhere? I cannot believe Ambassador Ventu thinks she has a chance of winning this election," said Mara Kell, former junior Councilor from Betazed. Others who knew the Ambassador, however, were quick to defend her candidacy. "I served with Ambassador Ventu back when she was a Commander in Starfleet," said Lt. Cmdr. Lara Godolphin, an instructor at Starfleet Academy. "She was a fine officer and has made an equally fine, if not better, diplomat. She's a natural peacemaker and a compassionate woman who has experience in all major areas. She's got foreign policy experience, military credentials and is a decorated scientist. She wants to bring the Federation back on course for a shining new century. She has my support, and I'm sure much of the fleet as well." FNS contributor Maronida Shiir found the Ambassador's timing of her announcement, in the midst of the current Transport Union strike crisis, questionable. "While I supported Ambassador Ventu in her quest to become Earth's junior Councilor, I think she's jumped the gun by declaring her candidacy," remarked the veteran Parisian journalist. "I mean, must I remind everyone that the most important prospective candidate, the incumbent President herself, has not yet declared one way or another? We should hold all speculation of other candidates until President Bacco announces her decision to run again or not." Given her considerable experience, no one seems to doubt that Ambassador Ventu is somewhat qualified to be President, but it begs the question of just how much of a viable candidate she is. She has attracted only minor buzz since her electoral defeat three years ago, but her natural ability and popular platform made her defeat an electoral upset. Should President Bacco not run, Ambassador Ventu would be the popular candidate for those in the Federation who call themselves 'idealists', committed to the virtues upon which the Federation was founded and continuing to push them as the next century inches closer and closer. Her previous endorsements by popular columnist Maronida Shiir and various retired Starfleet officials and civilian leaders were strong pushes in her campaign three years ago, but it is unknown if these will earn her the same respect on a Federation-wide scale. Regardless, should President Bacco not run, Ambassador Ventu's early announcement will certainly help her in the long run as she will have several weeks ahead of every other candidate and will have the limelight all to herself. Perhaps this is all the time Ambassador Ventu will need in preparation for the most intensive part of the campaign. Reporting for the Federation News Service from the FNS Paris Bureau.FNS Home • FNS Data Feed• FNS on FB
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