Understanding the 2000 Election: A Guide to the Legal Battles that Decided the Presidency

The Contested Election of 1876

The election appeared to pivot on voters not closely affiliated with either party, especially in fifteen swing states.


Further complicating the election were the two third-party candidates. Despite the amount of time and money expended on the election and the potential for sweeping the political table, the campaign appeared lifeless with little heated debate and a lot of well-worn political rhetoric.

Gore stressed the growing economy and the benefits of government programs. Given their carefully scripted and nuanced positions on most of the issues, neither Gore nor Bush enjoyed a boost from the three presidential debates.

Add comment

Bush was strongest in rural areas and in the South, Midwest, and Mountain states. Many predicted Bush would win the popular vote while Gore would earn the necessary votes in the Electoral College.

Most political pundits thought the election hinged on three critical swing states: Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Florida. On the eve of the election, Time unveiled its poll showing Bush with 49 percent, Gore with 43 percent, Nader with 3 percent, and Buchanan with 1 percent of the vote. On Election Day, Tuesday, November 7, shortly after 7: Eastern Standard Time, working from exit polls, television commentators and news services began to announce their projected results.

A Guide to the Legal Battles that Decided the Presidency

Obvious to both elections was the discontent justifiably felt after the popular election results were essentially pushed aside. To ardent liberals, Humphrey—until recently denounced by rightists as a dangerous radical—was becoming the very image of the establishment. Before reaching the U. Both states established rival Democratic governments that threatened the legitimate Republican state governments and refused to recognize the validity of the Hayes presidency. The volume also offers a clear overview of the Electoral College, its history, what would be involved in switching over to a direct election, and the likely future of the Presidential electoral process. View the Ask FactCheck archives. In both case studies, the ultimate victors secured the presidency without securing the popular vote of the American people.

Gore was the projected winner in the northeastern states, including the swing state Pennsylvania. Below the Mason-Dixon Line, Bush racked up projected victories. Then, shortly before 8: Two hours later, they projected that Gore would be the forty-third president of the United States. In Austin, Bush, upon hearing from observers in Florida that the vote was too close to call, announced that he would wait until all the votes were counted. His assessment was correct as, minutes before Dan Rather sheepishly admitted that Florida seemed to be going for Bush.

Believing it was over, Gore phoned Bush to congratulate him on his victory and left for the Nashville War Memorial Plaza to publicly concede the election. Florida was again too close to call. Gore phoned Bush again at 3: NBC anchor Tom Brokaw admitted the networks had erred again: The nation awoke Wednesday to learn it would have to wait for an official recount in Florida, where Bush led Gore by 1, votes. It was not the first time that a presidential election did not immediately crown a winner, but it had not happened since —and Florida had been part of that dispute too.

Few thought the recounting process would take long. She would then certify those votes, but final certification of the winner would come only after all the absentee ballots were counted on November The machine recount was quickly completed. Bush remained the leader, although his lead was only votes. The newspaper said that Gore might have won narrowly if lenient standards were used that counted every mark on a ballot.

  • Vamps and the City (Love at Stake, Book 2)?
  • Disability and New Media (Routledge Studies in New Media and Cyberculture).
  • Lifes Not Always Fair: A Childs Guide to Managing Emotions?
  • The Florida Recount of 2000.

Although their conclusions were similar, the Miami Herald study and the later and larger study came up with different numbers, evidence of the uncertainties involved. An official recount might well have come up with yet a third set of numbers. In a statewide election decided by hundreds, maybe only dozens, of votes, the limitations of the voting machinery — compounded with sometimes sloppy custody of the ballots and the slight but measurable biases of allegedly neutral human tabulators — make getting precise vote totals virtually impossible.

Tanner, Robert and Sharon L. Study reveals flaws in ballots, voter errors may have cost Gore victory. Cauchon, Dennis and Jim Drinkard.

Bush v. Gore

Understanding the Election. A Guide to the Legal Battles that Decided the Presidency. Abner Greene. pages. March, ISBN: Understanding the Election: A Guide to the Legal Battles that Decided the Presidency [Abner Greene] on bahana-line.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying.

That false story was first published by a website that calls its work satire. Skip to content FactCheck. Similar Conclusions, Uncertain Results An earlier study by a different media consortium reached similar conclusions. Next Story Clinton-Obama Slugfest. Read the full question and answer.

View the Ask FactCheck archives. Facebook Initiative Debunking false stories. Even for those who followed the events most closely, the legal twists and turns of the post-election struggles seemed at times bewildering. We witnessed manual recounts of election ballots, GOP federal court lawsuits challenging those recounts, two Florida Supreme Court opinions, lawsuits over butterfly and absentee ballots, questions about the role of the Florida legislature and the United States Congress in resolving presidential election disputes, and two United States Supreme Court decisions, the second of which finally handed the election to Bush.

Although the Presidency was decided through much legal wrangling, one should not have to be a lawyer to understand how we came to have Bush rather than Gore as our President in that hotly contested election. Understanding the Election offers an accessible, comprehensive guide to the legal battles that finally gave George W. Bush the Presidency five weeks after election night. Meant to stand next to and clarify the numerous journalistic and personal accounts of the election drama, Understanding the Election offers a offers a step-by-step, non-partisan explanation and analysis of the major legal issues involved in resolving the presidential contest.

The volume also offers a clear overview of the Electoral College, its history, what would be involved in switching over to a direct election, and the likely future of the Presidential electoral process. While some still decry the election outcome as the result of political manipulation rather than the rule of law, Greene shows that almost every legal conclusion of the post-election struggle can be understood through the application of legal principle, rather than politics.