Presidential Election

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In 2004, the election has been the “biggest” news of the year. In 2000, the presidential election was marred by turmoil and scandal over the Florida punch card votes and alleged racial discrimination acts against minorities at the polls. The article, “Poll: U.S. Voters Skeptical of Elections” revisits the horror of the 2000 election and examines the current position of voters, Republicans, and Democrats on the accuracy of our (the U.S.) voting methods. The article states that six out of every ten Republicans and persons surveyed believed that no clear winner will be determined by November 3, 2004 and seven out of every ten Democrats feel the same. In addition, one-half of the voters feared the results would be challenged in the Supreme Court. Both political parties, Democrats and Republicans, have filed lawsuits over a variety of complaints--ranging from how provisional ballots are counted to alleged fraud in voter registration. The article states that a majority say that they are confident the vote count in their own state will be accurate, but when Democrats, as a group are asked less than one-half of them say that they are “very confident” their state’s vote count will be accurate, while three-fourths of Republicans feel that their state’s vote count will be accurate. The article says that during the closing days of the campaign, close tabs are being kept on Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Iowa, and New Mexico, which are all potential battleground states where a challenge to a close race might be lodged November 3, 2004. When reviewing the 2000 election and the Florida catastrophe more than one-half, 54 percent to be exact, thought that the vote count was unfair and inaccurate. The Democrats overwhelmingly say that the vote count was unfair and inaccurate while Republicans overwhelmingly say that the vote count was fair and accurate. Independents say by a 2-to-1 margin that it was not fair. The conclusion drawn by the article is that political and legal challenges far outweigh any other worries intended to disrupt the elections. For millions of Americans every vote no longer counts. In political debates and elections the application of schemas, mental structures people use to organize their knowledge about the social world around themes or subjects and that influence the information people notice, think about, and remember, are very important in getting support, votes, and earning the trust of millions of Americans in Democracy and our processes.

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