- "Let's ignore for the moment that several independent recounts of the very rejected ballots Gore sought to have (improperly, in my opinion) counted revealed....Bush won Florida. Even if you deny that (which I'm sure you will, if for no other reason than I asserted it), Gore made a tremendous legal error by only moving the courts to count certain counties' ballots. This legal strategy paved the way for the Equal Protection Clause-based decision by the Supremes. See, when you peel back the bias, there is the law. Gore's team sought to do an end-run around counting rejected ballots in places it would hurt them, in favor of only counting in certain counties. This was far more abusive than the Supreme Court following the Fourteenth Amendment. And making James Baker of all people out to be Darth Vader-esque is a joke. Baker continually surprises Republicans by not coming out with a McClellan-like book "telling all" about the Bushes. I await your assertion that I give nothing but "Talk Radio Talking Points," while refusing to address my argument."
- "The only way Al Gore wins a statewide recount in Florida -- and remember, he wasn't asking for that -- is if you count the "overvotes," where some moron both punched a selection on the ballot AND WROTE A NAME IN. These are by any standard improper votes.It's time to move past 2000, Mike. Your guy lost the Electoral College, and your guy lost worse in 2004. We're in '08 now; maybe some of the bitterness should be purged?(If only you had guns and religion to cling to, to help with the bitterness) ;)"
Yes, although I yearn for the comfort of guns and religion, I am made of stronger stuff.
Prosqtor has the details of the specious equal protection argument wrong. It wasn't that the Gore legal team had cherry-picked hand recounts in friendly counties -- by the time it got to the U.S. Supreme Court, it was a state-wide hand recount of undervotes. It was the different interpretation of the ballots -- some counties counting dimpled chads, some not. He's also wrong about what scenario would have had Gore ahead. It was not only overvotes on optical ballots -- it was also if "a statewide recount of all disqualified ballots was undertaken using the standards that each county's election officials have said they would use in a recount." That's exactly the standard the Florida Supremes ordered and that the U.S. Supremes stopped in its tracks.
You know, I was as surprised as Prosqtor was (and you know he was) when the media consortium that (finally) counted the votes found that Bush won under some scenarios, Gore in only some others. Certainly, if not for pre-election blunders (the butterfly ballots) and deviousness (Harris' overly-broad-on-purpose felon purge list), Gore wins Florida in a walk. No one believes that more people didn't go to the polls there on election day intending to vote for Gore.
But whether Gore comes out on top or not is not really the point. At the time the Bushies were fighting to stop the recount, no one knew who won. The outrage of the Bushies being able to stop the recount and run out the clock is not, necessarily, that Gore would have surely won. It was that they would go to such outrageous lengths to stop and hijack the process of democracy. As Spacey/Klain screams in a bar at the height of Recount, "Who WON??!" No one would have denied even Junior Bush electoral legitimacy if his henchmen had let the process play out to answer that question.
Let's review just some of the Republican tactics, shall we? 1) Sending congressional aides from Washington to start a riot during the Miami-Dade counting. 2) Sending in a lobbyist to sit on Katherine Harris so she'll do what you want. 3) Getting their election monitors to object to every ballot not because they had a legitimate concerns, but to slow the process. 4) Getting the legislature to vote to give Bush the electoral votes no matter what happened. 5) Using the U.S. Supreme Court to take the counting process away from the State of Florida. 6) Treating what should be a delicate matter like a scorched-earth political battle instead of a sacred protection of the voters' intent.
Now, let's play one of my favorite games: What If a Democrat Did It? If Gore was ahead by 500 votes and in control of the Florida political apparatus and pulled any one of the stunts listed above, do you think Bush would have graciously conceded, as Gore did? Do you think the (then) GOP House of Representatives and Senate would have certified the election results? Do you think Gore would have been impeached for these shenanigans in his first year?
Come on. But my favorite comments -- from anonymous pipsqueaks like Prosqtor and especially from people like Justice Scalia -- are that we should "get over it". This - yes - talking point emerged immediately after Gore's concession. This from people who never "got over" a stain on a blue dress. The hijacking of democracy in Florida is not something your "get over". It is a historical outrage. It is something that you (and your children, forever in history books) study and understand how it happened. It is something that you work to prevent. It is something that you never let happen again.