It's not over yet folks!
November 8, 2000 1:03 AM   Subscribe

It's not over yet folks! Democratic candidate Al Gore has called GOP presidential candidate George W. Bush for the second time tonight, retracting his earlier call congratulating Bush on his victory. Gore is expected to speak to his supporters in Nashville soon.
posted by captaincursor (63 comments total)
I couldn't find a better link at this early stage. I beg metafilter's forgiveness and will bring up Nader as often as possible in conversation as penance.

Dammit I had work to do this evening!
posted by captaincursor at 1:07 AM on November 8, 2000

Staying up late has its advantages!

Bush may be up by ~1,900 votes in Florida, but:

1) There were problems reported with people accidentally voting for Buchanan... Buchanan's supporters are artificially high.
2) Still absentee ballots to be counted, and an automatic recount--because of Florida law--will take place.
posted by gramcracker at 1:10 AM on November 8, 2000

NBC just showed New York post's headlines saying "Bush Wins"
posted by riffola at 1:10 AM on November 8, 2000

I was at the San Francisco polling station tonight, working for VNS.

It is an absolute madhouse. Folks huddled around the television set, waiting for the latest info, all night long.

The fact that this election is even close scares me considerably, and the fact that Bush will probably still win scares me even more, but hey, I can't say it hasn't been a crazy ride.

New poll: When do you think the Presidency will be officially announced?

I'm calling 10:22 AM EST, Thursday.
posted by Succa at 1:13 AM on November 8, 2000

This could be a TEN day long process!!!! The time it takes for all the overseas ballots to come in.
posted by captaincursor at 1:14 AM on November 8, 2000

Oh, also, I thought the main problem was with the overseas absentee votes, which take a while to get here. Still, I think Bush is far enough ahead that they won't matter anyway.

posted by Succa at 1:18 AM on November 8, 2000

In case this official Florida site doesn't work, I mirrored the last one I could get before the server crashed. Woo. Here it is: TooCloseToCall.
posted by gramcracker at 1:22 AM on November 8, 2000

It's over. Absentee ballots are notoriously reactionary voters.

Here's what I got from the Florida server:

100% precincts reporting:

Bush: 2,904,198
Gore: 2,902,988

I'm redesigning my site all in black. Alas, poor country. It's going to be a hellish four years.
posted by ed at 1:27 AM on November 8, 2000

Still an automatic re-count to come, though.
posted by Mo Nickels at 1:32 AM on November 8, 2000

Okay so Florida is done, but what about the other states? Didn't they say that Bush was going strong in Wisconsin or something?
posted by riffola at 1:33 AM on November 8, 2000

ABC reports about the irregularities in Florida. What's the governor's name again?

posted by jay at 1:33 AM on November 8, 2000

Doesn't matter. It all hinges on Florida. It's the only state to push either of them over the top.
posted by captaincursor at 1:35 AM on November 8, 2000

Weren't there in excess of 30,000 absentee voters though?

What about the overseas voters?

My head hurts.

Hey wait a sec, I'm not an American citizen. Why do I even care?
posted by Succa at 1:35 AM on November 8, 2000

Hey, wait a sec, ed....I just looked on and it reports the same numbers as you...

I quote:"State electoral officials said Bush had 2,904,198 votes, compared to Gore's 2,902,988, with almost 100 percent of the votes counted, except an estimated 2,300 oversees absentee ballots which will not be counted for another 10 days"
posted by Succa at 1:37 AM on November 8, 2000

There's a 224 vote difference with 100% of Florida votes returned before the recount.
posted by Mo Nickels at 1:38 AM on November 8, 2000

Gore now has the majority nation-wide vote, but a minority of electoral votes.
posted by Mo Nickels at 1:39 AM on November 8, 2000

Bush and Gore Locked in Tight Race as Votes in Florida Face Recount, says the New York Times (bold emphasis is mine):

"A Florida state election official, Ed Kast, said Mr. Bush led in that state by a mere 1,200 votes out of almost 6 million cast, and cautioned that the numbers were unofficial. He also said that Florida law requires a recount when the initial count shows a margin of victory of less than one-half of 1 percent. The numbers cited by Mr. Kast have Mr. Bush leading by just 2/100ths of 1 percent."

posted by prettyliar at 1:44 AM on November 8, 2000

It's the Natual Law Party's fault. If that damn Hagelin hadn't run then Gore would be president now.

posted by captaincursor at 1:51 AM on November 8, 2000

Everyone thought that Bush would win more votes but not the election. According to CNN with 96% of votes counted:

Bush 47,115,988
Gore 47,170,257

Now, if this can only translate into a win in Florida.
posted by jay at 1:54 AM on November 8, 2000

from ABC, results in Florida:

BUSH (REP) 2,904,461 49%
GORE (DEM) 2,903,555 49%

posted by prettyliar at 1:57 AM on November 8, 2000

Here's the story on irregularities on the Florida ballot.

From the story:
Basically, voters said, the hole punch for Gore on the ballot was so close to that of Buchanan that many voters weren’t sure who they had voted for.
"By Gore there were two holes... I had to figure out which one," said voter Lena Fransetta. "I asked one of the ladies for help and she didn’t know. When I left I figured out I voted wrong."
posted by jjg at 2:00 AM on November 8, 2000

Well, if a dead man can get elected in Missouri, I wonder how many dead people voted in Florida?

posted by lagado at 2:30 AM on November 8, 2000

Jonathan Alter said on NBC late this evening that this is a major constitutional crisis, and I'm inclined to agree. If the winner of the popular vote is deprived of the presidency by a recount that ends up in the court system, in a state run by one candidate's brother no less, we will end up with a president with questionable claim on the office no matter who is declared the winner.

I wish there were some way to form a coalition government, but I can't imagine how the spoils would be divided. Perhaps the best solution is a second vote.
posted by rcade at 2:34 AM on November 8, 2000

Marilyn Manson is playing Orlando tomorrow. Could the explanation for the confusion be Satanic?
posted by Mocata at 2:41 AM on November 8, 2000

This is getting funny.

Legal Action?

And I thought the Dome Diamond Heist was going to be the weirdest story of this today's papers
posted by fullerine at 2:46 AM on November 8, 2000

Notice how Buchanan does very well in Palm Beach well above Browne, but not so well in numerous other counties.
posted by jay at 2:52 AM on November 8, 2000

No one has pointed out that Ralph Nader is the spoiler here. With his 96,560 votes Gore would easily win (even accounting for the Republican vote-rigging and their other cheating). Thanks Ralph!
posted by internook at 3:38 AM on November 8, 2000

No one has pointed out Gore spoiled the election for Nader.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 3:48 AM on November 8, 2000

That would imply that Nader ever had a chance to win. He didn't.
posted by internook at 3:58 AM on November 8, 2000

Your arguement implies Nader’s votes would’ve gone to Gore.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 4:04 AM on November 8, 2000

Most of them would have.
posted by internook at 4:19 AM on November 8, 2000

The old Roman republic had a solution for this.
They elected just two presidents (called consuls) at a time to rule jointly.

Needless to say that kept the politics interesting!

posted by lagado at 4:21 AM on November 8, 2000

Most of them would have. the absence of an alternative

posted by lagado at 4:23 AM on November 8, 2000

Just as, had Gore not run, most of his votes would’ve gone to Nader. See how silly it is to cast a political candidate as a spoiler? You’re saying that one candidate “owns” votes, that voters aren’t free to express themselves however they see fit. It reinforces the two-party system and squelches third-party candidancies by making someone an outsider to a political process which is supposed to be the most inclusive ever conceived.

Labeling one candidate a “spoiler” is as misguided as believing republicans and democrats vary wildly in ideology.

Lagado, the anti-Federalists involved in the Consitutional Convention tried to push a tribunal Executive. Three presidents at once. Somehow that became the Prez and Veep.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 4:32 AM on November 8, 2000

Hello. Can I just point out that, not for the first time, the rest of the world is looking to America with its mouth hanging open, shaking its head in a mixture of disbelief and wonder.

A TV network announces the result of an election from EXIT POLLS? The upshot of which is taken to be so official that even Gore believes he's lost?

This is even better than that one about the American Aircraft Carrier and the lighthouse....

Wooo! Good luck in the middle east.

Jofus. (A no-good limey)
posted by Jofus at 5:05 AM on November 8, 2000

A TV network announces the result of an election from EXIT POLLS?

This is nothing new. Unless it's a landslide situation it seems that, every election, the networks are called on the carpet to stop doing this type of thing... announcing who is winning exit polls, projecting winners, and such long before polls have closed in the western US.

Me, I'm just bummed about Nader.
posted by hijinx at 6:24 AM on November 8, 2000

I for one know that I would not have voted at all if it wasn't for Ralph Nader, and I know that the several people I helped get registered in time would not have voted if not for Ralph either. But in my home precinct, Nader took over 20% of the vote and 3 times that of George W. Bush.

I say we just call it a "no decision" and stick with Clinton for four more years.
posted by donkeymon at 6:43 AM on November 8, 2000

Let's face it. Speaking as a socialist (not a dirty word over here) Gore should have won by a significant margin.

Credit to the Bush campaign for avoiding the more obvious shortcomings of their candidate, but Gore blew it.

He had 8 years of economic prosperity, he had all the scare stories about abortion, taxes, healthcare, foreign policy to frighten people away from Bush. And he had a presidential endorsement from a man with the highest job approval rating of a president for decades (who happens to be one of the greatest political campaigners of his generation).

He blew it plain and simple.

Forget Nader, forget guns, forget perosnality he STILL should have won.
posted by fullerine at 6:58 AM on November 8, 2000

Why was this race even this close? Do you expect me to believe that the 48% of the populace that voted for Bush are so out of touch with reality that it was up to the 2% of us who voted for Nader to take responsibilty for them and correct their mistake?
That's stupid.
Those that criticize 'Naderites' for sticking to their principles are no better than the politicians that compromise principles for political expediancy. Which was why Ralph ran in the first place.
I voted for Nader in 1996, too. And if you got a problem with that, then tough.
The fact of the matter is, if Gore loses, its because HE FAILED to make his case as to why he should lead this country!
Making Nader your scapegoat is pure BS.
posted by black8 at 7:00 AM on November 8, 2000

(forget spelling and grammar)
posted by fullerine at 7:20 AM on November 8, 2000

Making Nader your scapegoat is pure BS.

Oh, you're right of course. How's that 3% vote count feeling?
posted by solistrato at 7:49 AM on November 8, 2000

Anybody know what the turnout was? This is so weirdly exciting, I cannot believe it. It turns out I do have a slight preference for one of the candidates, but I really cannot be disappointed at this point. We will be having gridlock like never before, can't wait to see what happens to the house and senate 2 years from now.
posted by thirteen at 7:55 AM on November 8, 2000

Some clarifications from my understanding of this:

There were something close to one million absentee ballots, which explains why exit polls wouldn't necessarily be an accurate indicator, especially since for whatever reason a majority of absentee ballots are Republican (presumably because the rich Republicans are all off on fancy vacations in Europe?).

The ~2000 overseas ballots are military votes, and those votes have traditionally favored Republicans. Dole got ~60% of those in 1996.

The Carnahan election in Missouri will most likely be contested because of big-time irregularities at the urban St. Louis (Democratic) polls. The Dems asked a state court to extend the voting hours because the high turnout was exceeding their capacity, and about an hour after the polls should have closed, an appeasl judge overturned that ruling and shut down the polls. I'm assuming they know what votes were cast at what time so perhaps they can resolve this, but one of the big points of contention is that they didn't keep the polls open later in any other part of the state (suburban and rural Missouri are mostly Republican), just urban St. Louis. I dont' know if the number of extra votes was enough to make a difference in the results or not.

As for Nader, please don't go blaming Nader if Gore loses. Obviously not all of Nader's votes would have gone to Gore, but chances are that enough of them would have to make the difference in this close of a contest. But in my mind, the fact that a mere 2% of the Florida electorate made such a potentially big difference in the election will ensure that, whether Gore wins or loses, in the future the Democrats won't totally ignore the issues of the environment and the unaccountability and undue influence of corporations in the US.

Note that if the final electoral count is Bush-271 to Gore 267, one single 3-elector state would have made the difference! Of course, the other possibility is that three of Bush's electors will defect and vote Gore, giving him a 270-268 win. Now, that would cause a big-time Constitutional crisis!
posted by daveadams at 8:13 AM on November 8, 2000

The ~2000 overseas ballots are military votes, and those votes have traditionally favored Republicans. Dole got ~60% of those in 1996.

I calculate that, in order for Bush to win, those overseas ballots would need to be >75% for Bush -- assuming the Palm Beach anomaly is corrected (admittedly a big if).
posted by johnb at 8:26 AM on November 8, 2000

Oh, you're right of course. How's that 3% vote count feeling?

Pretty good, solistrato-I voted for who I wanted to...Its been really interesting having this 'dialog' with my fellow Americans...eye opening, really.
The 'Battle in Seattle' last year, the hole in the ozone layer and the whole electoral process have been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that things are truly messed up.
People say they want change, that the system doesn't work, government is not responsive to the will of the people, corporations have to much power, blah, blah...
Reminds me of the guy who keeps going back the girlfriend who treats him like shit. He knows he should leave, but can't yet find the strength, 'cause she's being nicer this week.
You can only nod in mock sympathy when he starts whinging.

May we all get what we deserve.

posted by black8 at 8:28 AM on November 8, 2000

Well said sir. And now I'm off to the pub...Joey
posted by Jofus at 8:34 AM on November 8, 2000

I'm definitely blaming Nader for four years of a complete GOP government. By running most heavily in swing states, he damaged Gore's chances *and* his own chances to get five percent.
posted by rcade at 8:37 AM on November 8, 2000

If blaming makes you feel better, do it. After all, it's not like you have the freedom to start working as a private citizen to support the issues and principles you believe in.
posted by harmful at 9:01 AM on November 8, 2000

Ross Perot divided the Republican Party and gave us eight years of Clinton as a result. Though I do blame Nader and think that many people will join me in that belief, it probably balances things out to give a Bush the presidency because of a significant protest candidate running against the Democratic Party.

I would like to put a "Blame Ralph" bumper sticker on my car, though.
posted by rcade at 9:32 AM on November 8, 2000

B-b-b-b-but, rcade! Don't blame Nader! His returns (3% nationwide, only 4% in Oregon!) were something like half of what the polls have been showing. I think the people who were scared ended up voting for Gore. The other people wouldn't have voted for Gore anyway. I disagree that it made a difference. And it's certainly not Nader's fault Gore lost. It's Gore's. How about a "Blame Al" sticker?
posted by daveadams at 10:07 AM on November 8, 2000

How about blaming the Pinellas Country School Board, who had a mock election on Tuesday in the schools... with 2, count em *2* candidates for President.


That difference, BTW, is 1758 votes (or some non-dyslexic transposition of those 4 digits); the server is at, but it's Slashvoted right now...
posted by baylink at 10:15 AM on November 8, 2000

Sorry, Dave, but I'm with Ben Affleck on this one:
"I'm disappointed in Nader -- I really am. Ultimately, he chose the road of self-aggrandizement over trying to further the politics that he claimed to care about. I think he was disingenuous. I used to think of Nader as a man of integrity; I now think of him as a kind of a camera hog, a glory hound. It's upsetting, deeply upsetting. If I come away with one thing from this election, it'll be that Nader deliberately fragmented the vote in crucial states. If Roe vs. Wade, for example, is appealed, I hope he can still sleep. I hope that's what he wanted because he's too smart a man not to understand that that's the effect of his actions. And where I grew up, you take responsibility for your actions. I hope he's willing to accept responsibility for his."

posted by rcade at 11:06 AM on November 8, 2000

[rcade] Sorry, Dave, but I'm with Ben Affleck on this one.

Well, I'm not. It's the same old argument. I don't think Nader was just hoping for attention, except for his cause. He really believes the Democrats are going to lead us in the same direction as the GOP, perhaps at a different pace, but if things don't change, we'll still get to the same destination.

[BenAfflect] If Roe vs. Wade, for example, is appealed, I hope he can still sleep.

It isn't all about abortion! Gee whiz! There are other issues of the same or greater importance.

[BenAffleck] I hope he's willing to accept responsibility for his [actions].

I'm sure Nader will accept the responsibility for challenging the Democrats on important issues that they've ignored or been hypocritical on. If Gore ends up losing (and he hasn't lost yet), it will be his fault, not Nader's.
posted by daveadams at 11:16 AM on November 8, 2000

Sorry if I sounded exasperated in that last post. :)
posted by daveadams at 11:17 AM on November 8, 2000

The idea of an actor accusing Nader of being "a kind of a camera hog, a glory hound" is hilarious.
posted by harmful at 11:26 AM on November 8, 2000

Affleck's remarks are deeply disturbing, and certainly unamerican. He apparently wants even less political diversity and competition in this country than we have now(an attitude which is especially perverse given the increasing convergence of the major parties on a common corporate agenda). He neglects the history of American third parties, which have driven _every_ major social transformation -- from the abolition of slavery to the civil rights movement -- by energizing activists and shaping the political discourse. The health of a democracy depends upon the health of its third parties, and failure to recognize this is a symptom of short-term thinking.

posted by johnb at 11:48 AM on November 8, 2000

The sense of entitlement displayed by the Democratic party and by certain Gore supporters offends me. By what right does Gore deserve any of the votes that went to Nader? If he can't convince voters that he's worth voting for, it's his own fault.

Isn't it a little silly that the Democratic Party, with hundreds of millions of campaign dollars, a vast network of supporters all over the country, a nearly unlimited ability to get media time, an army of PR flunkies, and unmatched name recognition is complaining that the little ol' Green Party spoiled their race?

To contend that the Democratic Party lost the race not because of their stunning failure to effectively campaign against Bush, but because of their paranoid and thoroughly incompetent attempt to campaign against Nader, is as pathetic an admission of political incompetence as you are ever likely to hear.

posted by Mars Saxman at 12:25 PM on November 8, 2000

None of these high-minded statements changes an essential truth of this election: Nader "deliberately fragmented the vote in crucial states," and he confirmed that this was his goal by stating his preference of Bush over Gore and his statement that the Sierra Club doubled its membership after Reagan appointed James Watt.

Is that what you signed on for when you voted Nader? I thought his candidacy was about the environment, campaign finance reform, an end to corporate welfare, and other progressive issues. Instead, the central goal was to actively make things worse in government (full GOP control) in the hopes that the party's excesses will outrage people so much they vote Green in the future.

Do any of you believe that will actually happen?
posted by rcade at 12:44 PM on November 8, 2000

I know that I voted for Nader because he was the most likely to pursue issues that I have an interest in. Not because I wanted Bush to win in Oregon... rcade, you make it sound like it's wrong to vote for someone who has no chance of winning...
posted by Neb at 3:18 PM on November 8, 2000


Anyway, rcade, goddamnit! Nader waffled back and forth on who he said wanted for President. That Bush statement got a lot play because the media wanted to villify him (mission accomplished), but he said Gore often, too. He’s also gone on record as saying he could care less who wins. I believe the last statement is the closest to his true beliefs.

In the end, he wanted to piss a lot of people off. We’re making a green omelette over here, and if we have to crack open the whole presidential election egg to do that, so be it!

posted by capt.crackpipe at 3:23 PM on November 8, 2000

Based on the experience in other countries.....yes
posted by lagado at 3:45 PM on November 8, 2000

Hmmm..seemed a little out of context there:

in the hopes that the party's excesses will outrage people so much they vote Green in the future.

Do any of you believe that will actually happen?

Based on the experience in other countries.....yes

Every major western democracy has a viable Green party. What the hell's taking you so long?

posted by lagado at 3:50 PM on November 8, 2000

in the hopes that the party's excesses will outrage people so much they vote Green in the future

Or to outrage the Democrats so much that they'll lean a little more toward Green policies in the future in hopes of losing less votes. Granted, it's not the presidency, but it's a start.
posted by Lirp at 5:57 PM on November 8, 2000

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