The Presidential Election of 2000

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The Presidential Election of 2000 The Presidential Election of 2000 is the closet election in history. It took five weeks to decide who would be the next president of the United States of America. On December 12, 2000, the US Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 vote to stop recounting the undervotes. The decision reversed the ruling in Florida made by Florida’s Supreme Court. The Florida justices Fred Lewis, Harry Anstead, Leander Shaw, Jr., Charles T. Wells, Major Harding, Barbara Pariente, and Peggy Quince had voted 4-3 to recount all the undervotes of Florida’s 67 counties. The U.S. Supreme Court overruled the Florida Supreme Court and declared that the state’s ruling was unconstitutional. “Under federalism, the US Supreme Court can overrule state courts where issues of federal law are involved” (Cohen 42). When the Florida Supreme Court decision violated the equal rights provision of the US Constitution. Gore and his legal team repealed to Florida Supreme Court because of Judge Sanders. “ A plain outspoken, sharp-witted man who uses his folksiness as a shield, Sauls, 59, proved to be an important jurist in the legal feud over the presidency” (Roche). Judge N. Sanders Sauls, the Leon County judge made the decision not to count the undervotes in the election after listening to nine hours of argument and testimony. “On Friday night, Gore told TIME that he was ‘not all that surprised’ by the state Supreme Court decision rescuing him from the abyss” (Pooley 34). The Florida Supreme Court had decided to recount the undervotes to make the election easier. It’s decision delayed the election for more than a month. The election was delayed because of undervotes being counted and then recounted. Undervotes are ballots that contain votes in some races but not all. The undervotes raised attention because the election was really close between Bush and Al Gore. Before the Florida’s Supreme Court ruling George W. Bush was ahead with 537 votes. After the order from the court to recount 42,000 undervotes Bush’s lead dropped to 193 votes. The Election of 2000 became the most controversial one is history because of the recounts. The nation was divided on whether the ballots should have been recounted. Many of the ballots that were recounted were paper punch cards. The machines that read the cards miss counted the votes because many cards were not fully punched. Election officials never had to examine undervotes therefore they did not have a uniform standard.

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