No fewer than three street vendors have claimed credit for helping to prevent the Times Square bombing by alerting police of Faisal Shahzad's smoking SUV. Now the New York Times reports they are fighting amongst themselves. Who's winning?

Times Square vendors Duane Jackson, Lance Orton and Aliou Niasse have all been named heroes by the press. But at least two of them are not happy with sharing credit. Here's how the campaign for Ultimate Hero Vendor of Times Square is going so far:

Duane Jackson

His Story: On Sunday, NBC Nightly News reported Duane Jackson as the hero vendor of Times Square. According to the New York Times, he's been the most vocal about his role in preventing the bombing, receiving an "endless line of people congratulating him" in the last coupled days
Sells: Handbags, watches and scarves
Soundbite: "There are a bunch of us disabled vets selling here, and we're used to being vigilant because we all know that freedom isn't free."
Highest-profile Media Appearance: "Good Morning America"
Google Results for "Duane Jackson" + Vendor: 31,200
Vietnam Vet: Yes
Call from Obama?: Yes
Why He Could Win: Jackson came out strong, claiming credit for saving Times Square early and often. Unlike his grumpy rival Lance Orton, he's been friendly to the press and fans.
Why He Could Lose: Might appear to be taking to much pleasure in his 15 minutes.

Lance Orton

His Story: Lance Orton was quoted in a number of early articles as the sole hero vendor—most notably by the New York Times. But when mobbed by the press initially, he refused to talk. He says that he was the first person to see the smoking SUV notify officer Wayne Ratigan. Jackson, he says "was across the street, with his arms folded, looking around, while we were doing what we did."
Soundbite:"There can't be two heroes. I don't want anyone riding on my story."
Sells: T-shirts
Highest Profile appearance: "TODAY Show"
Google Results for "Lance Orton" + Vendor: 30,500
Vietnam Vet: Yes
Call from Obama?: Yes
Why He Could Win: While Duane Jackson has luxuriated in his fame, Orton has actively gone after Jackson. If his criticism sticks, he could be the only vendor hero left standing.
Why He Could Lose: Criticizing a recognized hero is a bit unseemly.

Aliou Niasse

His Story: Senegalese immigrant Aliou Niasse was the last vendor to emerge as a hero, but he claims he was the first one to notice the smoking SUV. According to his story, he saw the smoke and went to a pay phone to call 911. While at the phone, he told Lance Orton about the smoke, and Orton told him to talk to a mounted police officer instead of calling. But before he had a chance, the police had already been notified by Orton's colleague.
Soundbite: "I feel somebody cheat me."
Sells: Framed photographs
Highest Profile Media Appearance: New York Times' City Room blog
Google Results for "Aliou Niasse" + Vendor: 70
Call from Obama?: No
Vietnam Vet: No
Why He Could Win: His is the ultimate underdog story—the unknown immigrant stripped of his chance at glory by fame-seeking rivals.
Why He Could Lose: Weird name.

[NYT, City Room, Gothamist]