You may be wondering why we're talking about Al Gore today. From being a vice-president he has descended into obscurity. He is so insignificant that the only time he gets the attention he so craves, is when he makes one of his ridiculous, unfounded claims about "Climate Change." His whole life centers around trying to frighten people using bogus "scientific" information. When the world didn't end as he predicted, people mostly forgot about him. (Are you listening, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?)
We’re talking about him now because last Friday, December 13, 2019, was the anniversary of the day that ex-Vice President Al Gore finally ended his attempt to sue his way into the White House. A month prior to that I had become so fed up with his underhanded tactics that I wrote a Letter to the Editor of the Palm Beach Post-Times that detailed all the corrupt lies and tricks Gore tried to pull on the courts of this land at every level – County courts, State courts, Federal District courts, and finally the US Supreme Court.
My letter also included an analysis of the many court rulings, and the results of interviews I conducted with people involved in the process. After sending it to the newspaper, I realized that it had about as much chance of being published as a positive story about President Trump would have today of being published in the New York Times.
I sent the letter by email to about 20 friends on my church email list, and promptly forgot about it – even though I had spent weeks researching the information it contained. I had gotten it out of my system, and decided to move on. Either Gore would steal the White House using the courts and false information disseminated to the public by the Liberal media, or the rightful newly-elected president, George W. Bush would move into the White House. I didn’t realize that Conservative Truth, the oldest continuously published Christian Conservative publication, now in its 20th year, had been born that day.
Imagine my surprise when I got hundreds of emails asking to be put on my “list” for further updates. The problem was, I didn’t have a list (except for the people I had sent it to), and I had no intention of doing more updates. Apparently the people I had sent the original letter to had forwarded it to their friends, many of whom forwarded it to others, and so on.
I prayed about it, and felt I should continue to update anyone who was interested. I was singularly qualified to do so for two reasons. First, I lived in the epicenter of the election controversy – Palm Beach County, FL. In fact, I served as a Republican observer of the recount to insure fairness. Second, I had taken Business Law in college. I was (and still am) far from being a lawyer, but I understood the briefs and rulings better than most, and I have always had a knack for explaining complex topics in an easy-to-understand way.
So every day I sent out an email to my growing list. It was not-very-imaginatively titled, “Election Update.” I received hundreds of requests to be included every day. So most nights I was up until 2:00 AM researching, writing, adding emails to the list, and sending out the daily update.
On Election Day, November 7, 2000, Gore had called George Bush to concede the election. He knew he had lost, and admitted as much. But 30 minutes later someone (probably a crooked lawyer) had gotten to him and convinced him that if he couldn’t win the presidency fairly at the ballot box, he could win it falsely in the courts. So he called Mr. Bush back and took back his concession. He immediately dispatched dozens and dozens of lawyers to key states where he thought he might have a chance of invalidating the election – but primarily to Florida.
Eventually, after putting the nation through hell for over five weeks, Al Gore finally called George W. Bush again and conceded for a second time. This time he promised he would call again and retract his concession.
Now George Bush had the keys to the White House. Presidents normally have close to three months for their transition teams to get them ready for their first days in office, and for the inauguration. Bush had just seven weeks due to Al Gore’s distraction and harassment. But I am told by my cousin, who was one of Laura Bush’s best friends, that he never wavered in his faith that God would make the election honest.
Since the Republic was safe, I wrote a final email update to my list (which by then had grown to over 5,000) and informed that this would be my last communication. This had taken so much of my time that I had neglected both my ministry and my business.
Within days I had received almost 1,000 emails saying, “No! Don’t stop!” “Keep writing and explaining our nation’s convoluted political system.” “We need you.”
I talked this over with my wife, and with Fred. Fred, a former UPS truck driver, is a big guy with strong hands who came to our house once a week to give my wife and me therapeutic massages. We spent most of my hour talking about philosophy, religion, economics, history, and politics. I called him my Philosopher-Massage Therapist.
Fred (who was also a subscriber) encouraged me to keep on writing. I had two problems with that. I didn’t have time to research and write daily columns, and I didn’t want to just write about politics. As usual, he had a practical suggestion. Start writing once a week, and tell my subscribers that I would be expanding the scope of my writing. Fred even suggested the name for the new publication: Conservative Truth.
I tagged that with “The Antidote to the Liberal News Media,” since many of the things I wanted to write about were things that the Liberal “media” either censored or slanted to their own views. I promised biblically sound, Conservative commentary on Social, Moral and Political issues. I started sending out weekly emails, and my list grew exponentially – to the point where it was getting difficult to send out many thousands of emails. (Remember, this was 20 years ago, and we didn’t have a lot of the great tools for mass communication that we have today.)
It was around this time that my nephew, Mark Wilson, suggested that I start a website. I naively asked, “Can I do that? I thought just businesses could have websites.” He explained that anyone can start one, and that it would make it easier for people to read. I asked, “Do you know how to start one?” (He had been a computer tech in the Air Force.) He had never built a website, but he gamely replied, “I can figure it out.” So he became the first Technical Director of ConservativeTrouth.org.
Along the way other authors, who were too Conservative for many of the political websites, asked if I would publish their weekly articles. So Conservative Truth became not just a place to post my columns, but a newsmagazine where many authors published Truth. Since then I have written well over 1,000 Conservative Truth articles, which are read each week by about 250,000 people. (These include those who receive my emails, those who read it on our site, those who read it on the hundreds of other websites who publish my columns on their sites, and the occasional national newspaper that picks up my articles.) And we have published tens of thousands of articles by other great Conservative authors, all of which can be found under our Archives button on the website.
So there you have it. What started as me putting together the truth about the 2000 election, has ended up being something I never could have imagined. Servicemen, missionaries, and ex-pat Americans living abroad depend on Conservative Truth to give it to them straight. Home-School parents use it as their Current Events curriculum. And I continue to enjoy disseminating Truth and Knowledge.
One small point before you read my Letter to the Editor below. You will find references to “chads” and “hanging chads.” If you are too young, or weren’t paying close attention to the recounts Gore forced the nation to endure, you won’t understand these terms.
Our ballots were stiff cards which had partially pre-cut areas beside the names of the candidates. We had a wire device that was sharp on one end. When we used it to push out a chad, a clean hole was left that the voting machines could easily read – much like the old IBM punch cards.
A hanging chad was one that was partially dislodged. By law, if it wasn’t a clean hole, it could not be counted. A hanging chad could result from a number of situations. A voter could have started to push out one chad, then realized he or she had partially punched the wrong one and proceeded to punch the right one. The ballot cards were handled roughly in many cases which often resulted in dislodging chads – remember, these were pre-cut in order to be easy to punch out. And Democrats who handled the ballots after the election, but before the recount, were found to have punched out the chad for Gore if the voter did not choose a presidential candidate.
What follows is a piece of history that should not be forgotten. I remembered a number of things that had slipped my mind over the years as I re-read it. We can never forget that Democrats are masters at voter fraud – from dead people voting, to hiding or destroying ballots from primarily Republican Districts, to tampering with the actual ballots. As you read the Letter to the Editor below, remember that all three Election Boards in the disputed counties were controlled by Democrats who hated George W. Bush almost as much as today’s deranged Democrats hate President Trump.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR OF THE PALM BEACH POST-TIMES:
Knowing the liberal bias of your newspaper, I am sure the following will be promptly relegated to the "Too Conservative for Publication" file. However, on the off-chance that you may want to emulate the FOX News Network and provide "Fair & Balanced Coverage" to your readers, I offer this guest editorial. As a close observer of many of the events here in South Florida (I was a Republican observer in the Palm Beach County recount and voted using the infamous "Butterfly Ballot"), perhaps my conservative viewpoint may be of interest.
Vice-President Al Gore fought hard to become President Al Gore. He lost. He is now at a crossroads. He must decide whether to be a Patriot- that is, to put the interests of the country before his own- or to be a Litigant. I believe that, in the same situation, most public servants of both parties, would say, "I fought hard. I lost by a slim margin. Now I must allow the country to unite behind the man they have chosen." Those are the words of a Patriot. I don't believe we will hear those words pass the lips of Vice-President Gore until the last members of his party say publicly many are now saying privately: "Give it up, Al." Instead, I believe that we are doomed to hear Litigant Al defiantly whining, "I want to be President. I deserve it. If I can just talk to enough judges, I know I can find one that will help me. I want this." I, I, I. Me, Me, Me.
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?
Democratic apologists have been making the rounds of the talk shows claiming the high ground because they say Bush sued first. While it is true that Bush was the first one who was man enough to put his name on a lawsuit, Al Gore sponsored eight lawsuits within 24 hours of the election. The morning after the election, Palm Beach County was crawling with vermin trying to confuse senior citizens and twisting arms to get them to sign documents stating that they were "confused" by the now infamous Butterfly Ballot. Most of the litigants in these cases are elderly people living on Social Security. Do you think they could afford to hire Alan Gershowitz? No, Al Gore's name doesn't appear on these suits. But his people surely instigated them, and are paying the bill for them.
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.
THE BUTTERFLY BALLOT
I, along with 600,000 of my fellow citizens, voted on November 7th, 2000, using the so-called. Butterfly Ballot. It was designed by Palm Beach County's Democratic Supervisor of Elections, to help Senior Citizens. You see, we had so many Presidential Candidates that to list them all on one page required type so small that it would be hard to read. She was trying to be nice. Now the Democrats claim the ballot was some kind of plot by Jeb Bush to defraud the voters. Let me see if I can follow this. The Republicans got a Democrat to design and supervise the use of a ballot in order to steal votes from Al Gore... Am I missing something here?
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 turnout. 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
Another mantra of the Democrats, repeated often enough to nauseate even the Party faithful, is that there are "thousands of votes that have never been counted." Joseph Stalin was a master of this kind of lie. Say something often enough that has a little bit of truth in it, and the masses will start to believe it. The 11,000 votes in Miami-Dade County that were "never counted" were in fact counted twice: first on election night, and then again in the statewide machine recount. They just didn't have a valid Presidential vote on them. This is not unusual.
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
Joe Lieberman and other prominent Democrats repeatedly refer to the demonstration in Miami as a "mob", a "riot" and "violent". If any of those descriptions were even close to the truth, why were there no arrests made? There were hundreds of police officers present. These officers are obligated to arrest anyone involved in the acts Lieberman claims took place. Obviously the "riot" is a fantasy dreamed up by the Vice-Presidential hopeful. The fact is that many of the "rioters" were media people and legally appointed observers who were told that 11,000 questionable votes were going to be counted by the Canvassing Board out of the public view. The "open and fair" process was about to become closed and secret. That is a clear violation of Florida's Government in the Sunshine law. Of course they were upset. Of course they shouted and protested. But there was no riot.
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
The Democrats continually harp on their theme that "all the votes should be counted." But they have been deathly afraid of the Military vote, because the Clinton-Gore Administration is despised by most Military men and women. So they sent out a five-page memo to the Florida Counties Canvassing Boards explaining in great detail various ways in which to exclude Military votes. (There was no mention of ways to exclude American voters living in Israel, whom the Democrats feel are likely to vote for Gore.) The main thrust of their argument was that Florida law requires that all foreign absentee ballots must be postmarked on or before Election Day. They knew (but conveniently failed to mention) that a Federal law (which supersedes State law) requires only that ballots be received within ten days after Election Day, and requires no postmark. This is because many APO (Army Post Office) units simply bag the mail and ship it to the states without a postmark. Another ploy they used to exclude Military votes was requiring that postmarks on foreign absentee ballots be foreign. They knew well that APO mail is often postmark when it is received in the States (usually in San Francisco), and they could use that as an excuse to exclude them. Also, for security reasons, military mail often CANNOT be postmarked, because doing so would disclose the location of Military people in secret or sensitive postings. Again, the Democrats have tried to use this perfectly normal situation as a ruse to exclude these ballots.
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 they are 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 was a forged signature; no such experts were present when these votes were illegally thrown out.
DEMOCRAT FELONS GET TO VOTE
While our Military men and women are being denied the right to vote by Democrat lawyers and politicos, over thirty felons have voted for Al Gore. The Democrat Party in Florida made a major effort to register voters in Florida's jails. Yes, you heard me right: in the jails! You see, felons lose their civil rights, including the right to vote, but those convicted of misdemeanors can legally vote. Apparently in their zeal to register these unsavory characters (I guess they take them where they can get them), Gore's people didn't check very well. In Miami-Dade County alone, they registered 39 felons. 32 registered as Democrats, 4 as Independents, and 3 as Republicans. If you extend those percentages to the whole State of Florida, as many as 2,000 felons may have voted illegally for Mr. Gore, more than enough votes to put Mr. Bush far ahead. It seems fitting, somehow. Do you still want the whole State recounted, Mr. Gore?
FAIR AND OPEN COUNTING
Get this. The same Elections Canvassing Board in Palm Beach County that granted the WINNER of the Presidential race in this County a hand recount, denied a hand recount to the LOSER of an election here just two months ago. Of course, she was a Republican, but surely that had nothing to do with their decision. Here are the facts. Normally, losers ask for recounts if an election is close. In Palm Beach County, Gore WON by tens of thousands of votes, but was granted a hand recount by the ALL DEMOCRAT Elections Board. In September, Republican Beverly Green, who was running for the Florida House in the primaries, lost by ELEVEN votes. She was DENIED a hand recount by the same Board that approved Al Gore's request. Their reason? The difference, she was told, had to be less than ten votes to qualify for a hand recount.
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.
Hand recounts are inherently unfair, because people are doing the counting. Let’s say we set aside the fact that these ballots are delicate, were never intended to be handled manually, and change with every count because human hands (deliberately or not) are knocking out chads and making a true count less likely with every handling. The fact is that it is impossible for partisans to be un-partisan. That's like asking a dog to stop being a dog while sitting in judgement on a dispute between a dog and a cat. The dog can try to be fair, but he can't stop being a dog. If there is a doubtful ballot, even the most fair-minded Democrat is going to decide in favor of the democrat; Republicans would do the same. In this case, all the counties in which Gore has requested hand recounts are heavily Democratic with large populations. Hand recounts can have only one result in such circumstances. Machines are neither Republican no Democrat. Are they perfect? Of course not. But machines are FAIR. Mistakes will be made with machine counts, but both parties will suffer or benefit from the mistakes. Machines don't care who wins. Many of the people in charge of counting these votes care DESPERATELY about who wins.
Take Carol Roberts, one of the "impartial" Board members who are crucial 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.
Partial recounts are even more unfair than full recounts, because the partial result is more likely to be slanted. For example, Palm Beach County, knowing that they probably would not complete their recount by the deadline, counted their most heavily Democratic precincts first. These precincts would be expected to yield the most votes for Gore. Thus, the partial recount would probably give Gore a higher percentage than he would receive in a full hand recount. This is why Florida law allows the State Elections Board to refuse partial recounts.
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, and 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
While trying to convince the American people of the supposed neutrality of the Florida Supreme Court, Joe Lieberman told one of the biggest lies of this election. He said that when the Justices took office, they gave up their party affiliation. In fact, six of the Justices are registered Democrats; the seventh is registered as an independent, but describes himself as an "independent Democrat."
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
Gore's political hacks keep harping on the theme that Gore won the popular vote, even though legally this is meaningless. It is meaningless statistically as well; his lead is less than one-fifth of one per cent. Why then do they keep referring to this razor-thin popular vote lead? Because the Gore campaign is not concerned with the law and the Constitution, which make it clear that the winner is decided solely by the Electoral College. They are trying to win in the court of public opinion. They know that most Americans have never read the Constitution, and that many think the Electoral College is a place where you send your son if he wants to become a politician. They are playing on this ignorance by saying how "unfair" the Electoral College is. They have even had Hillary Clinton call for the abolition of the Electoral College.
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
Mr. Gore at one point dramatically offered to "recount the whole state of Florida" if Governor Bush would agree. That's like offering to give someone a million dollars if the moon turns purple. It's easy to make a promise you know you'll never have to make good on. Gore and his legion of lawyers know full well that it would be impossible under Florida law to recount the entire State. The law clearly states that recounts must be requested within 72 hours after the polls close. The last thing Gore would want would be a full hand recount of the entire state if the same standards were used everywhere, because he knows he would lose such a count. The great majority of Florida Counties voted for Bush. But he feels safe hiding behind his empty offer, because he knows it can't be done.
During oral arguments before the Florida Supreme Court, one of the Democratic Justices 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?
Now, what are Gore's chances to succeed in the contests he is beginning? First, he wants the courts to force Miami-Dade County to recount their votes. Remember, they initially decided NOT to recount after doing a machine recount, then a sample hand count. The law says a candidate can REQUEST a hand recount, but it is up to the local Board to decide on whether it is warranted. After seeing little indication from the sample hand count that a full hand count would make a difference, the Board declined NOT to do one. Gore promptly threatened to sue to force them to do a hand recount (intimidation). They caved in and changed their vote.
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 must. 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.
Palm Beach County, FL