The Green Papers: News

Election notes posted on home page
Monday, November 27, 2000


Sunday 26 November 2000 7:35 PM EST (0035 UTC 27 November): Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris- with the approval of the State Election Canvassing Board- has certified the vote for President in FLORIDA as follows:
Bush: 2,912,790
Gore: 2,912,253
Bush wins Florida by 537 votes
George W. Bush, thus, wins all 25 of Florida's Electoral Votes and the Presidency

The tally of 2,912,790 vs. 2,912,253 does NOT, of course, include Palm Beach County's manual recounts nor does it include any of Dade County's partial pre-suspension manual recount except for those votes that were part of the original 3 precinct sample prior to the beginning of the abortive countywide manual recount in Miami-Dade; it also does not include Nassau County's automatic machine recount certified back on 14 November... these issues, among others, will be the basis of Gore's "contest" of the above certification under Florida statue 102.168


Monday, November 27, 2000
It is now time for Al Gore to bow out gracefully

Friday, November 24, 2000
The innate propriety of the Florida Supreme Court ruling of 21 November 2000

Wednesday, November 22, 2000
The Election 2000 battle in Florida escalates

States with close races (all figures below are unofficial and/or incomplete):
  • FLORIDA (25 electoral votes): Recounts: Bush has been formally certified the winner as of 7:35 P.M. EST, 26 November (0035 UTC, 27 November) by 537 votes (see above).
  • NEW MEXICO (5 electoral votes): Gore leads by 481 votes out of some 571,000 cast [0.07% of votes cast]. The results will be finalized on 28 November after which the parties have 6 days to request a recount. Current tally is Gore: 286,558; Bush: 286,077.
  • OREGON (7 electoral votes) is reporting a 4,765 vote lead for Gore out of some 1.4 million cast [0.3% of votes cast]. No information on a recount.

Popular vote [prior to Florida certification of 26 November]
(national margin 262,991 for Gore)
Gore: 49,921,267
Bush: 49,658,276

Close SENATE Race

  • Washington - Republican Senator Democrat Maria Cantwell 48.7% to Republican Senator Slade Gorton 48.6%. Advantage Cantwell by 1,953 votes. Recount begins Monday 27 November. We are listing Cantwell as the winner.

Close HOUSE Races

  • Minnesota CD 2 - Friday 17 November - Republican Mark Kennedy leads Democratic Congressman David Minge by 150 votes. Reports state Minge will seek a recount.
  • New Jersey CD 12 - Friday 17 November - Democrat Rush Holt holds and unofficial lead of 553 votes over Republican Dick Zimmer. Reports indicate Zimmer will request a recount.


Constitutional provisions for the election of the President and Vice-President
Federal Law governing the election of a President and Vice-President
Florida General Election Statutes

Next steps:

  • Links to Legal Sites
    Supreme Court of Florida - Presidential Election Cases
    Eleventh Circuit Published Opinions
    Florida Election Law (Chapter 102)
    Leon County Clerk of Courts
  • Monday 27 November, 10 A.M. EST (1500 UTC)- the Gore camp is bringing a "contest" under Florida statute 102.168 against the certified results of Sunday 26 November in Leon County Circuit Court, which 102.168 places as the proper forum for an initial "contest" hearing in a multi-county "contest". The Gore camp is basing their "contest" on 6 basic issues in 3 counties:
    • that Dade County, by suspending its countywide manual recount, had not disposed of some 10,000 disputed ballots that had never been counted at all.
    • that Dade County, even before suspending its countywide manual recount, had already counted 388 ballots (which gave Gore a +157 net) which were not included in that county's 26 November certification.

    • that the county illegally replaced a canvassing board member with someone who was not eligible, under Florida law, to serve on that board and that the newly constituted board then held a "snap" meeting (that is, one without proper public notice given aforehand) in which they decided to reject the preliminary machine recount they had already certified back on 9 November with the original raw tally immediately resulting from the 7 November election itself (without any recount)- this gave Bush a +52 net in relation to previous numbers coming out of the county... the Gore camp claims that ignoring the results of the original mechanical recount violates the provisions of Florida election law requiring an automatic statewide recount (including in, of course, Nassau County)

    Palm Beach:
    • that the denial of an extension for the manual recount in this county to 9 A.M. EST (1400 UTC), 27 November (which the Gore camp sees as an "alternative" to the 5 P.M. EST (2200 UTC), 26 November deadline in the Florida Supreme Court's ruling of 21 November) led to a significant number of ballots not having being counted as Palm Beach County raced to meet the earlier deadline.
    • related to the above: that the refusal of the Florida Secretary of State to include any of the manually recounted returns from Palm Beach County submitted by 5 P.M. EST (2200 UTC), 26 November in her 26 November certification (as per the 21 November Florida Supreme Court decision) also led to significant number of ballots not being counted.
    • that the differences in the methodology used to count "dimpled" ballots in Palm Beach County from that in, say, Broward County next door led to many votes in Palm Beach County not being counted that would have been counted in Broward County.

  • As of Monday 27 November- The Bush camp has filed law suits in the separate Circuit Courts of Hillsborough, Okaloosa, Orange and Polk Counties against said counties in an attempt to get these counties to reinstate and count previously rejected "military" overseas ballots. The Gore camp has not offered opposition as regards this case (as it, too, has asked that all votes- including any previously rejected "military" overseas ballots, such as those in the above 4 counties- be counted in Florida; note that these counties are NOT included in the Gore camp's "contest" under 102.168, noted above).
  • The Florida Supreme Court has- as of 9:45 P.M. EST, 21 November [0245 UTC, 22 November]- reversed the orders of the trial courts below and has mandated that amended certifications from the counties still outstanding (meaning the manual recounts in progress) MUST be accepted by the Florida Department of State if received from the counties by 5 PM EST [2200 UTC], Sunday 26 November OR 9 AM EST [1400 UTC], Monday 27 November- whichever time is most convenient for the State offices to be open to receive same... see the downloadable complete text of the Court's opinion: Text of the Florida Supreme Court Ruling (Requires Adobe® Acrobat® Reader™)This ruling has been appealed by the Bush camp to the U.S. Supreme Court as noted below:

    24 November, the United States Supreme Court has agreed to hear the Bush campaign's appeal of the Florida Supreme Court's ruling of 21 November. Oral arguments begin Friday 1 December. The appeal is based on the Bush camp's contention that the Florida Supreme Court ruling [dated 21 November, remember!] violates 3 U.S.C. 5 which requires that any controversy on the state level prior to the date Electors must be certified [12 December this year] must be settled "by laws enacted prior to the day fixed for the appointment of the electors" [i.e., 7 November]; the Gore counterargument- besides one arguing that this issue should be determined solely by the Florida courts [as the 21 November ruling solely involves Florida state election law]- would be that 3 U.S.C. 5 also states- immediately after that statute requires the controversy to be determined at the state level "at least six days before the time fixed for the meeting of the electors" [12 December this year]- that "such determination" be "made pursuant to such law so existing on said day" [12 December, not the law as it was on 7 November as the Bush camp alleges].

    The United States Supreme Court- on 24 November- also rejected an expedited appeal from the 11th Circuit in Atlanta re: the original Bush campaign suit- based on 14th Amendment to the Federal Constitution "equal protection" grounds- originally heard in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida back on 13 November seeking an injunction against the manual recounts on the same 14th Amendment "equal protection" grounds. This case remains in the hands of the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in which oral argument is scheduled for Wednesday 29 November: however, as of 11 A.M. EST (1600 UTC), Monday 27 November, the Bush camp has asked for a delay in oral argument until Tuesday 5 December, as they wish to see how the U.S. Supreme Court handles the Bush camp's appeal of the Florida Supreme Court's 21 November ruling noted above... the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals is expected to announce- around 3 P.M. EST (2000 UTC), Monday 27 November- whether they have accepted the Bush camp's request for a delay in proceedings in this case: the dicey legal/constitutional issue is whether this case is now moot (as manual recounts from both Broward and Volusia Counties were included in the 26 November official Florida certification noted above on this home page).

  • Monday 27 November- The lawsuit filed by Democrats who claim Palm Beach County's so-called "butterfly ballot" unfairly confused voters is now under appeal to the 4th District Court of Appeal (the intermediate appellate court in Florida) but the Democrats are arguing there should be direct appeal (bypassing the District Court of Appeal) to- you guessed it!- the Florida Supreme Court on grounds that a constitutional question is involved. (Please keep in mind that- should the Florida Supreme Court get to decide this case on FEDERAL constitutional grounds- further appeal may be had from the State's highest court [its "court of last resort"] to the Supreme Court of the United States [the Nation's court of last resort])A hearing is scheduled for Monday 27 November in the 4th District Court of Appeal on whether this appeal can go forward.
    On Monday 20 November, Palm Beach County Circuit Court Judge Jorge LaBarga ruled that he lacked the Constitutional authority to order a new presidential election in that County (on grounds that the U.S. Constitution requires that the choice of Presidential Electors be on the same day "throughout the United States" [Art II, sec.1, cl.3] and that this day was Tuesday 7 November 2000- therefore, no revote is permissible).

  • Wednesday 29 November - Circuit Court Judge Debra Nelson in Seminole County court is to conduct a preliminary hearing regarding a lawsuit, filed by Democrats, that seeks to invalidate nearly 4,700 (out of nearly 15,000) absentee ballots cast in that county. This suit claims that Republican activists were allowed- by a county election official- to fill out required information on ballots from registered Republicans which had been mailed in without that missing information.The Gore camp has distanced itself from this issue (as it, too, has asked that all votes- including any possibly disputed absentee ballots, such as those in Seminole County- be counted in Florida; note that Seminole County is NOT included in the Gore camp's "contest" under 102.168, noted above).

Links to partisan websites (in alphabetical order)...
Rev. Jerry Falwell -
People for the American Way -
Judicial Watch - -
Sierra Club -

Additional Notes...

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