Eileen O'Connor: Everything on the line for Gore Thursday
Eileen O'Connor is reporting from Washington on the presidential campaign of Vice President Al Gore.
Q: A lot is on the line Thursday for Gore when the Florida Supreme Court hears arguments for and against counting manual ballots in the final state tally. What are we hearing from the vice president and his aides?
O'CONNOR:He has basically been in touch with advisers and fellow Democrats. He believes that he has a very good chance in the Florida Supreme Court. His aides are saying that Judge N. Sanders Sauls decision (not to include manual vote recounts) was basically made without hearing from the most important witness, which in their opinion is the ballots themselves.
Q: Do we have any idea what Gore's plans are for Thursday?
O'CONNOR: Basically he has no public events scheduled. This is a day-by-day operation.
He has been going to his office over the last few days for vice presidential business. Hes no longer been meeting with his transition team, but I dont know if you can read anything into that.
Q: What would be considered a victory for Gore in the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday?
O'CONNOR: What the vice president wants and needs as a victory is for the Florida Supreme Court to overturn Judge N. Sanders Sauls decision and order manual recounts to begin. And they appoint judges or court authorities to do that, and set standards for what counts as a vote.
Q: What are the first legislative priorities of this possible new Bush administration?
O'CONNOR: The governor has stressed that education is going to be his first topic. He has said that is the most important issue he ran on when ran for governor in Texas and for president of the United States. That's going to be the first thing he tackles.
Cheney said their legislative program, the Bush-Cheney legislative program, isn't going to change from what it was during the campaign. He says this is what got them where they are today and there's no reason to change it. That's a program of education changes, tax cuts, additional funding for the military, health care and helping the elderly pay for prescription drugs.