Tony Clark: Bush camp remains cautiously optimistic
CNN National Correspondent Tony Clark is reporting from Austin, Texas, on the
presidential campaign of Texas Gov. George W. Bush.
Q: What’s the word from the Bush campaign Monday following the arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court?
CLARK: There are two words for today: Cautiously optimistic. The governor got his intelligence briefing from the CIA Monday morning, and then went to work at the State Capitol and stayed there throughout the U.S. Supreme Court hearing. He talked to his legal team afterwards.
As he left the Capitol, the governor was asked about how he felt and he said he is
‘cautiously optimistic.’ Asked again, he said his legal team is ‘cautiously optimistic.’
‘If they are, I am,’ he said, referring to his legal team.
He was also asked about his mood. To that end, he said, ‘I am pretty calm in my life.’
Unlike so many of us who sat glued to our TV sets and watched the replay of the
Supreme Court arguments, the governor went to the gym and worked out. He did not
stick by a TV set. Then, he returned to the governor’s mansion, where it is believed he worked on transition issues.
Q: Did the Bush legal team say whether or not they were pleased with the line of questioning from the Supreme Court justices? Did they say when they felt the justices might rule?
CLARK: There is no hint as to when the justices might rule, but the anticipation is that it will be relatively quickly.
Ted Olson, Bush’s lead attorney, made the point in court that there are no standards and kept hitting that point: That there are no standards for judging those disputed ballots in Florida.
Olson said he thought the court was concerned about the fact that in every county ballots will be looked at differently according to different standards. He said that is one of the big concerns the Bush campaign has tried to show, and he felt that was a concern the court had.
He said he felt good that they were allowed to make their argument, and that he felt good about the questions.
But he said there’s no real way to gauge when this is going to be ruled on or how the court is going to rule.
Q: Any party plans being made in Austin?
CLARK: The aides who we’ve talk to say the governor has not seen a draft of any kind of victory statement, and that party plans are muted -- it’s nothing like the celebration that was planned on election night outside the Texas capitol. The current thinking is that they will go to one of the hotels here in town and have a bit of a celebration, allowing the governor to thank his supporters here and across the country.
But really, there is a concern about looking too presumptuous. They think it would be unseemly to be making definitive plans. They say they have come close to feeling like they’ve won too many times to take anything for granted. In terms of the mood of the staff, they said, ‘They are reactioned out.’