GORE WON !
3 5 p.4
12. November 26:- Secretary
of State Katharine Harris certified the final election results in
an elaborate ceremony that was televised nationally. Bush's lead
was cut in half by the Broward recount to 537 votes. It would have
been reduced by another 200 votes had Harris been willing to accept
the Palm Beach partial recount which came in two hours past her
arbitrary deadline of 5 PM. The election officials had worked straight
through the Thanksgiving holiday, but the disruptions and disputes
of the Republican monitors had prevented the timely completion of
Joseph Lieberman, the
Democratic vice-presidential candidate, announced that he and Gore
would contest the official tally in the Florida courts. (The contest
phase can not happen until the after the official certification
and the "protest phase" is over.) Later that evening Bush,
quite ignoring Lieberman and the constitutional issues, proclaimed
himself to be the president-elect and demanded that Clinton make
the presidential transition team benefits available to him immediately.
13. November 30:- The
Republican-controlled legislature voted to convene a special session
to choose a slate of pro-Bush electors. This was a fail-safe measure
in the event that the recounts ordered by the courts would give
the state to Gore. Governor Jeb Bush endorsed the action.
legislature moves to override vote and name pro-Bush electors
14. December 4:- The
US Supreme Court vacated the Florida Supreme Court decision of November
21. The Court unanimously remanded the case back to the Florida
Supreme Court with the instruction to clarify the grounds on which
they had overruled the election authorities and extended the deadline
for certification. The implication was that the Florida's constitutional
guarantee of the right of the people to vote for the US president
was in conflict with the federal constitution's provision that the
state legislatures have the power to appoint presidential electors.
rulings in US election crisis attack democratic rights [5 December]
Supreme Court hearing highlights state conspiracy against democratic
rights [2 December]
15. December 8:- The
Florida Supreme Court ordered the immediate manual recount of 43,000
undervotes statewide. This ruling overturned the previous decision
by Circuit Court Judge N. Sanders Sauls in which he rejected Gore's
contest of the certified election results, saying that hand recounts
in selected counties were not warranted and that local canvassing
boards had "discretion" to reject lawfully cast votes.
During the trial Bush's own expert witness conceded that manual
recounts are needed to tabulate votes in close elections where Vote-O-Matic
machines are used.
attack on voting rights continues in arguments before Florida Supreme
16. December 9:- The
US Supreme Court ordered a halt to the hand recount in Florida.
Justices Stevens, Breyer, Ginsburg and Souter dissented, stating:
"On questions of state law, we [the Court] have consistently
respected the opinions of the highest courts of the States.... As
a more fundamental matter, the Florida court's ruling reflects the
basic principle, inherent in our Constitution and our democracy,
that every legal vote should be counted." Justice Scalia, the
only one of the Gang of Five to issue an opinion, took the position
that "there is no right of suffrage" in a presidential
election. To count the votes would "threaten irreparable harm
to petitioner [George W. Bush], and to the country, by casting a
cloud upon what he claims to be the legitimacy of his election."
They scheduled a hearing for Monday, December 11.
Court halts Florida vote count: A black day for American democracy
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