Al Gore- Patriot or Litigant
November 27, 2000
To the Editor:
AL GORE- PATRIOT OR LITIGANT?
Gore is trying very hard to convince the American people that contesting this election is just part of the normal process in a close vote. This is NOT TRUE. NEVER in the history of this country has a Presidential election been contested, although there have been many very close votes. In fact, there has never been a contest to ANY statewide election in Florida.
Make no mistake. Regardless of the pretty phrases he uses, his protestations that he is doing this "For the people", and the LIE that this is a normal part of the election process, Gore is trying to OVERTURN THE RESULTS of a Presidential election. This has NEVER been done before, and only God knows what harm it will do to our nation. People all over the country are asking, "Why is Gore doing what no other Presidential loser has ever done? Why is he willing to further weaken the fabric of this country by contesting a Presidential election?"
The Democratic Party has been largely taken over by the trial lawyers of the nation. Gore is surrounded, as is Clinton, by advisors who are almost all lawyers. To those who ask, "Why?", I say he is listening to these unethical lawyers. He is giving heed to evil counsel that says, "What do you have to lose? You've lost the election anyway. Maybe if we get before the right judge, you might have a shot. Let's roll the dice." And they're right. He has nothing to lose. But the country has a great deal to lose. By going ahead with these self-serving, divisive court cases, Al Gore is proving that he is no Patriot.
WHO SUED FIRST?
Bush filed suit because the county Canvassing Boards were clearly violating Florida law by starting hand recounts. The law states that there are only three justifications for hand recounts: (1) Disasters, such as hurricanes that prevented normal operation of the machines. There were none. (2) Evidence that the machines malfunctioned. All the machines were tested both before and after the election using standardized tests, as prescribed by law. (3) Evidence of fraud. If there was any fraud, it was perpetrated by the Democrats who designed the ballot and controlled the entire election process.
So what did they do? They ignored the law, and made up their own. They claimed they had to do hand recounts because people were "confused". Nowhere in Florida law does confusion appear as justification for starting hand recounts. The attorneys in the office of the Chief Elections Officer of the State, Secretary of State Katherine Harris, made it clear that the hand recounts were illegal. Yet many of the counties, run by Democrats, continued. They were encouraged by Democratic Attorney General Bob Butterworth's opinion (which cited no relevant law) that it was all right to do so. By the way, on Butterworth's internet Home Page, he clearly states that the Attorney General is not allowed to give opinions on election matters; all such matters are to be referred to the office of the Secretary of State.
Let's look at the facts. "19,000 people voted for two Presidential candidates in Palm Beach County", cry the Democrats. A terrible number! A huge number! Really? Four years ago, 16,000 Palm Beach County voters did the same thing, in a year with a much smaller voter tumout. Percentage-wise, MORE people voted for two Presidential candidates four years ago than in 2000. Why didn't the Democrats cry out then? Because Clinton won Florida. We have many senior citizens in our County. Even though there are signs telling them exactly what to do, and dozens of poll workers there to help, there are always mistakes. There will always be mistakes.
What about these ridiculous 3,400 votes for Pat Buchanan? Impossible! In the Republican primaries four years ago, Buchanan got 8,000 votes in Palm Beach County. This year, there were 10,400 third-party registered voters in this County, most of them Reform Party. Pat Buchanan has always gotten more votes in Palm Beach than other Florida counties, partly because he has a relative here who campaigns vigorously for him. Is it so unusual that one third of the people who refused to register as either a Democrat or a Republican, who registered with an alternative party, would vote for an alternative party candidate? Now Gore claims that all the voters who voted for Buchanan were really "trying" to vote for him.
If you just listen to the Democrats howl, "19,000 double votes! 3,400 votes for Buchanan!", and don't put the numbers in perspective, they sound ominous. In context, they are reasonable. That's why the Democrats don't ever want you to hear the numbers in context.
THE UNCOUNTED VOTES
Nationwide in this election, 1.5% of American voters failed to indicate a preference for President. In Florida that number was 1.6%: statistically insignificant. There may be many reasons why this happens. Some people may forget. Some may just not like either candidate. But to take such a ballot, examine it by hand, and search for some indication of "voter intent" is unfair to everyone. ("Let's see, this person voted Democrat in all the other elections; they MUST have intended to vote for Gore.") You might as well call the Psychic Friends Network and ask them who the people voted for.
THE VIOLENT MIAMI MOB RIOTS
I saw the Miami-Dade Canvassing Board Chairman state on national TV that he was not intimidated by the demonstrators. He said the only factor that influenced was the time limit imposed by the Florida Supreme Court (a decision initiated by a suit brought by Al Gore). Now that the Gore campaign has decided to contest Miami-Dade, I have heard that he plans to claim that the reason the Miami-Dade Board decided against the recount was that they were "intimidated".
THOSE WHO FIGHT AND DIE SO WE CAN VOTE
Finally, Florida has not in the past compared signatures on ballots to the signatures on the voter registration. Strangely, after the Democrats mounted this offensive on Military voters, this was done in many Florida counties. This is wrong for obvious reasons. Take out your own driver's license and your voter registration card. Are the signatures identical. Most likely not. One may have been signed when you had plenty of time; the other when you were in a hurry. Only a signature expert could tell if there were a forged signature; no such experts were present when these votes were illegally thrown out.
DEMOCRAT FELONS GET TO VOTE
FAIR AND OPEN COUNTING
The Democrats keep talking about the "fair and open process" used during the recounts, that observers from both parties were present at each counting station. This is true, and either party's observer could object to any ballot, which would then be put into the "disputed" pile. The question is, what happens to these "disputed" ballots? They are reviewed and decided upon by Democrat-controlled Boards. In Palm Beach and Miami-Dade Counties, ALL Board members are Democrats. In Broward the lone Republican on the Board was repeatedly outvoted by the Democrats, who often didn't even make a show of examining the votes he identified for Bush.
Some other examples of fairness in action: The Broward County Canvassing Board Chairman had a Republican lawyer who was observing the recount removed in handcuffs because he dared to question some of the activities of the Board. In Palm Beach on Saturday Judge Charles Burton told a Republican lawyer who asked a question to "Shut up, or we'll get someone to replace you." Also, although Palm Beach County bragged about the openness of the process because they allowed TV cameras in the counting room, I was told by the cameramen that they were forced to turn off the camera's microphones whenever they were in the counting room. What was the Board trying to hide?
My personal experience in hand counting the ballots was that, although the room was peaceful enough, it was organized chaos. The first night I volunteered (Monday, November 20th) about a dozen Republican counters waited for an hour and a half, and were finally sent home because there were no Democrat counters to complete the teams. I went up to the observation gallery before I left, and found that only fifteen of the thirty stations were manned. I don't know if the Democrats were deliberately slowing down the count, but that was certainly the outcome.
The next night, my partial team waited almost an hour until they could find a Democrat observer. Then we waited another half hour before someone could find some ballots for us to count. When we were finally ready to count, they moved me to another team, because someone needed to be trained. One counter was not sure whether she was supposed to be a Republican or a Democrat counter. (That really made me nervous.) After over two hours, we finally started to count a precinct. The Democrat observer challenged over ten per cent of the ballots, many of which were clear votes for Bush. And of course, "chad" was everywhere, on the counting tables and on the floor.
One other interesting "fairness" issue: In Palm Beach County, County Employees (predominantly registered Democrats) were paid time and a half to serve as counters, and were encouraged by supervisors to "volunteer". These employees were assigned either as "Democrat" or "Republican" counters. But I can't help but wonder if these employees of a Democrat County Administration, counting votes for a Democrat Canvassing Board, and being paid up to $30 an hour might have been just a little biased. I certainly hope not, but it is something that needs to be considered before this situation arises again. Even the appearance of impropriety needs to be avoided at all costs in an election.
Take Carol Roberts, one of the "impartial" Board members who are key to deciding this National election. She has Gore/Lieberman bumper stickers on the car that she parked in front of the building where the counting took place. She has stated on television that she would "...do anything to see Al Gore elected." During a news conference, when the Board's legal counsel told the Board that the hand recount was illegal under Florida, she dramatically extended her wrists towards the sheriff's officers present, and dared them to arrest her. "I'm ready to go to jail," she shouted. She did this in front of a crowd that was already very tense, and observers could see how nervous the officers became during her histrionics. It was a reckless act that could have resulted in inciting the crowd to violence. And this is a person we are depending on to fairly judge whether a voter "intended" to vote for Gore or Bush.
Gore is making a huge issue over the fact that the Florida Elections Commission abided by the rules set down by the Florida Supreme Court in refusing to accept Palm Beach County's partial hand count. Even though the Supreme Court violated judicial standards by making law (the Constitutional duty of the Legislature) rather than interpreting it, as is their Constitutional duty, Secretary of State Harris opened her office on a Sunday, and kept it open until 5PM on November 26th. All Florida counties were given legal notice that, according to the Courts ruling, 5PM was the final time for all counts to be in.
On Tuesday evening, November 21st, I was counting votes when the Supreme Court made its announcement at 9:45. We all knew the count was way behind schedule at that point. Even though I disagreed with the hand count, I wanted to see it completed by the deadline, so the Democrats would have no excuses. I spoke personally to the woman in charge of scheduling the counters, and volunteered to work all day Thanksgiving. Several others in my presence made the same offer. She refused us, saying that the Board had decided to take Thanksgiving off.
Palm Beach County had well over 10,000 disputed votes. Broward County had only 2500, yet they worked all day Thanksgiving to make sure they made the deadline. Many Democrats have criticized the Palm Beach County Board for taking Thanksgiving off and losing Gore votes. I personally think it was the Boards intention to miss the deadline by a few hours. I watched the live TV feed all day on Saturday and Sunday. They proceeded at a casual pace, and on Sunday morning they announced that they would make the deadline with no problem. Then a few hours later they said that they had sent a letter to the State requesting an extension. It was refused, and they sent in partial returns, knowing that they were unfair and by law would be rejected. They then took a break, and subsequently completed their count by 7PM.
If they had just picked up their pace a little on Saturday and Sunday, they could easily have made the deadline. Why didn't they? I believe they had already realized that the thousands of Gore votes they had envisioned couldn't be produced short of serious fraud. What other P.R. value could they garner from this situation? I believe they deliberately dragged out the process, then issued their pitiful appeal to the mean Secretary of State, begging for just a little more time. They knew that she could not accede to their demands because she was under a judicial order. But the thought of making her look ungracious was just too tempting. Getting the vote in on time wouldn't give Gore enough votes to win. But deliberately getting it in past the legal deadline might help Gore in his P.R. wars. Anything for the boss...
THE SEVEN DWARFS
The Democrats would have us believe that it is somehow unpatriotic to question the integrity of partisan people who are acting in a partisan manner if they are judges. Suddenly judges (whom Democrats have bought and sold on a regular basis over the last century) have mysteriously become some kind of saints who don't consider their political ideology or who appointed them when rendering their decisions.
Let me describe an event that took place in the break room of the Palm Beach County Emergency Operations Center while I was there counting votes in the hand recount. This took place about an hour before the announcement by the Florida Supreme Court of their decision regarding the hand recounts. I referred to the Justices as "Gore's Seven Dwarfs". Judge Burton expressed surprise that I would feel the Justices would not give Governor Bush a fair hearing. I told him that I felt the Governor had roughly the same chance of fairness that a black man in 1930's Alabama would have if he was charged with the rape of a white woman, and had an all-white male jury. The Judge stared at me for a moment, then turned and left the break room without saying another word. He knew as well as I did that this partisan Court would do Gore's bidding. In fact, David Boies, Gore's main attorney, bragged several times afterward that the Court had given them everything they asked for.
GORE (BARELY) WON THE POPULAR VOTE
All of this is part of their strategy to convince politically immature Americans that somehow Gore has won the election "morally"; that the "fair" thing to do would be to give the White House to the man who couldn't win it legally. Fortunately, voters who understand the Constitution know that the Electoral College is vital to fair elections in this country. Without it, candidates would only need to campaign in California, Florida, Texas, and New York to be elected. If they could be elected with only the popular vote from these four heavily populated states, guess which states would be treated well by their Administrations? But Gore doesn't care about the good of the American people, or defending the Constitution. All he cares about is getting elected, whatever the cost to the country. After all, the United States Treasury has paid for every bite of food he has ever eaten, bought every shirt he has ever worn, even provided him free government housing; why should we stop now?
LET'S RECOUNT THE WHOLE STATE
During oral arguments before the Florida Supreme Court, one of the Democratic JusticesÂ asked Bush's lawyers if they would agree to a recount of the entire State. Aside from the fact that he knew Bush's position was that hand counts are inaccurate and open the door to all kinds of fraud, the Justice also knew that Florida law does not allow such a recount. Why then did he ask the question? Because it helped Gore in his P.R. battle. Make no mistake. There was no justice available from these Justices. They were openly hostile to Bush's attorneys. The so-called oral arguments were not arguments at all. Every time one of Bush's attorneys attempted at make a point, a Justice would interrupt him. I estimate that of the hour allotted to Bush, his attorneys were actually permitted to speak at the most for twenty minutes. Of course, they also questioned Gore's attorneys, but the tone was much different, and they interrupted them much less.
WHY IS GORE DOING THIS?
After the Florida Supreme Court decision (which Al Gore requested), they decided they did not have enough time to do a proper recount, and voted again not to do one. Gore tried first in Circuit Court, then in the Florida Supreme Court, to force the local Board to do his will. Both courts refused him. (Keep in mind that his mantra all along has been to "Let the local Boards do their jobs without outside interference." That seems to be his position only when they decide his way.) What likelihood is there that a local court will go against the Supreme Court's decision in this matter? Or that the Supreme Court will reverse their previous decision if it is appealed to them? Very little.
He's also suing the (Democratic) Palm Beach County Board, which "found" 200 extra votes by hand counting. Why? They didn't find enough votes to make him happy. Gore claims the rules they used were "too restrictive" in counting the "dimpled chads." In fact, the rules they used violated a rule in place for ten years in Palm Beach County that "dimpled chads" are NOT to be counted. This rule was put in place by Theresa LePore, the current Elections Supervisor and the Canvassing Board in place in 1990, citing the fact that "dimpled chads" are not reliable indicators of a voter's intent. Ms. LePore now sits on the current Board, which has changed the rule AFTER the election, a clear violation of Federal law.
Judge Charles Burton was obviously uncomfortable with the pressure he was receiving from the Democrats to count anything that could remotely be considered a possible vote, and the knowledge that he was in jeopardy because his Board was changing long-standing rules used in hand counts. He sought, and received, direction from Judge Labarga, for the exact standards he and the Board were using (even though they represented a serious liberalization of the standards in place at the time of the election). I watched the entire hearing, during which Judge Burton described in great detail the standards the Board was using. The Judge Labarga asked numerous questions, and then ordered the Board to use exactly the standards they were currently using. This is the only judicial determination during this election process of standards for determining a vote where there was no clear vote indicated on the ballot. Gore plans to go to court to contest the Board's use of these judicially approved standards. Again, his chances of successfully contesting standards approved by a court are minuscule.
By the way, Gore has no plans to contest the results in Broward County, where they made up their own rules. Both the Broward and Palm Beach County Boards kept talking during the recounts about utilizing the same standards, but in fact, their standards diverged widely. In Broward County, out of some 2500 "disputed" ballots, Gore ended up with a net gain of 567 votes. By contrast, in Palm Beach County, which used rules approved by Judge Labarga, out of well over 10,000 "disputed", Gore gained about 200 votes. Gore is happy to accept the gift of hundreds of votes created by the Board trying to imagine the "voter's intent" in Broward County. Yet he has savagely turned on his own Party members in Palm Beach County because, in following a Judge's orders, they failed to produce enough votes for him.
As any thoughtful observer can see, Gore has no chance of overturning this Presidential Election. So, again, "Why is he doing this?" Because he has to. Without the Presidency, he has nothing. He knows that if he loses here, he has burned so many bridges, turned so many fellow Democrats against him, that he has no chance to nominated in 2004. So he is willing to do anything, regardless of the harm to the people he supposedly serves, to become President. It is pitiful, but if he does not become President, Al Gore has no life.
He has written thousands of articles that have been republished in national newspapers and on hundreds of websites, and is a frequent guest on radio and television shows. His weekly Conservative Truth article (which is read by 250,000) offers a unique viewpoint on social, moral and political issues from a Biblical worldview. This has resulted in invitations to speak internationally at churches, conferences, Money Shows, universities, and on TV (including the 700 Club).
“Dr. Tom,” as his readers and followers affectionately refer to him, has a passion for teaching, as you can see from his ministry website (www.ChristianFinancialConcepts.com); his patriotic site (www.ConservativeTruth.org); and his business site (www.GoldenArtTreasures.com). Tom's friend Dr. Lance Wallnau wrote of him, "Tom Barrett is a Renaissance man with a passion for subject matter ranging from finance to theology and American history."
Visit Dr. Tom Barrett's website at www.DrTom.TV