How The Supreme Court Stole The Election For Bush
The United States Supreme Court decision which stopped the vote recount in Florida was based on the concept that "varying methods and a loose standard would be used to (re)count the votes."
Florida votes with 11 different voting systems in its 67 counties. The undervote and overvote percentage ranges from a low of 0.24% in Seminole County to a high of 12.4% in Gadsden County. This means that voters in Seminole County, which uses the Global Election System of McKinney, Texas, had a 12% higher chance of having their votes counted in the election than voters in Gadsden County.
Gadsden County uses the Election Systems and Software models 115 and/or 315 of Omaha, Nebraska. The best county using this system had a 3.73% under and over vote, while the worst county using the Global Election System had a 3.63% under and over vote. So the worst GES system was better than the best ES&S system.
Now, if during the election voters in some voters had a 12% higher chance of having their votes counted, how can the Supreme Court come along after the election and say that the state of Florida can not remedy this obvious disenfranchisement of voters by hand counting ballots because there's no uniform standard? There's already no uniform standard, that's why the votes needed to be recounted. To then say that no votes could be counted because of varying methods and a loose standard is absurd, because the recount was the device for making the vote method uniform.
As usual, the Supreme Court made its decisions based on an idealized view of the world, not the world as it really is. According to this decision, the Supreme Court is mandating that every county in the United States must use the same or comparable voting system in presidential elections. That would be a good thing, but does the Federal Government now have the power to run presidential elections because of this decision in favor of Bush? If the answer is yes, then this is the most far reaching constitutional change in the history of presidential elections. And the people didn't have anything to do with it. Some conservative court.
The purpose of the electoral college is to keep the choice of the president in the hands of the states. George W. Bush, having lost the election, asked the Supreme Court of the United States to stop the recount of the vote so he could carry Florida, in spite of the obvious errors in Palm Beach County, and in spite of being 338,000 votes behind in the popular vote, and squeak to victory with 271 electoral votes.
Of course, Al Gore is partially responsible for this mess by choosing to try and solve the problem of the diverted ballots in Palm Beach County through legal instead of political means. Gore should have waited for the votes to be counted (all candidates should) and then declared victory, pointing to the diversion of his votes into Buchanan and McReynold's columns in Palm Beach County and to his popular vote margin.
Then, he should have made his stand in the electoral college, challenging the Republican electors to give him the extra four electors needed to win. That's why the electoral college was created. It is an extra legal body designed to represent the national interest in choosing the president, in just such a case as Florida's where local shenanigans or errors threaten to distort the results of the election. The electoral college was the solution to the diverted ballots in Palm Beach County, not the problem.
Gore should have forced the Republican Party to take a stand in support of the voters and democracy. Instead, Al "I will fight for you" and "A woman's right to choose" Gore, sided with the legal system against his own voters. The election is not really over until the electors vote on December 18th and the votes are counted on January 5th. So, why did Gore throw in the towel before the end?
The "rule of law" has become a substitute for "justice" in the two party system. Gore would not fight all the way to the electoral college for his voters, and he would not support the voters' right to choose their own president because he is a coward who is totally devoted to the two party system. His post-election behavior proves that Gore is unfit to be president. But the voters rejected Bush, who is now going to occupy the office. And the Supreme Court has destroyed one of the fundamental checks and balances of the constitution, the requirement that the states choose the president.
To do this, they needed a gangster candidate in the person of George W. Bush, using an 1887 law which was passed when women and blacks were not allowed to vote. What better method to disenfranchise women and blacks?
It is going to be four rough years. Not a single one of the presidents who assumed the office with fewer votes than the person who did not become president, had a distinguished term of office. The controversy surrounding their election endured the whole four years. Bush is not going to break the mold on that historical reality, regardless of what the Supreme Court says.
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Contact: Joshua Leinsdorf