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CNN Today

Presidential Candidates Await Word from High Court

Aired December 12, 2000 - 2:30 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: Anxious but patient is how aides describe both of the presidential candidates as they wait for some kind of a resolution by the high court. Both men are sticking close to home today.

Let's check in first with our national correspondent Tony Clark, who's covering this down in Texas in the Bush camp -- Tony, what's going on there?

TONY CLARK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Lou, we haven't seen the governor all day long. He stayed at the mansion this morning. He got his usual intelligence briefing from the CIA. Then he was on the telephone with Jim Baker in Florida and Don Evans, his campaign chairman, talking about the status of the legal battle that is under way -- met with Andrew Card, his designated -- his designated chief of staff during a Bush White House.

They usually talk about transition issues. We are told that he was supposed to talk to Dick Cheney as well today, and Clay Johnson. They're handling transition up in Washington. And then there was some expectation that, if he was following true to form, he would go exercise at the gym around lunchtime or so. But we haven't seen him come out of the mansion. So one can assume he is doing much like the rest of us: simply waiting for that Supreme Court decision, and, as has been the case up until now, working on transition.

He said yesterday he was cautiously optimistic. That was the guidance from his attorneys. And he said if they feel that way, he feels that way. His aides say that he has been amazingly calm throughout all of this. While their emotions have been wrung you out by this back and forth of the Florida election battle, the governor himself has been very patient, very calm and simply waiting for the decision from the Supreme Court. When we do get a decision from the Supreme Court, the governor has indicated he will likely have something to say about that decision.

So like the governor, we simply all wait -- Lou.

WATERS: OK, Tony Clark in Texas.

And the vice president: Is he a nervous Norvis or is he calm too? Here is Patty Davis in Washington with that.

PATTY DAVIS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Vice President Al Gore is taking care of business today. That is vice presidential business. He headed to the White House just a short time ago, as he waits like everyone else for that U.S. Supreme Court decision. Of course, he is the one, though, that has the most at stake in this whole thing.

Aides, meanwhile, say that they are anxious. They have butterflies in their stomachs. They remain confident, though -- at least publicly -- that the vice president does have a good shot at winning the U.S. -- a favorable ruling, at least from the U.S. Supreme Court -- having those hand counts go forward. If the court does permit those recounts to proceed, Democrats now say that they are ready. They have observers in place in all of those counties that still have recounting to do to go forward, to observe the counting as it proceeds.

Now, if it is not allowed to proceed, aides, legal advisers, even his running mate Joe Lieberman say that it's most likely over for Vice President Al Gore. Now, as for a concession speech, we are told that Gore is not even thinking about that until he sees how the U.S. Supreme Court rules -- Lou.

WATERS: So he is calm too, eh, Patty?

DAVIS: Well, they're not describing his mood exactly today -- not a lot of information coming from -- to describe the vice president. Yesterday, he was described as resolute, determined, resilient. So I assume that is how he must be feeling today. But I will bet there is some butterflies there as well.

WATERS: Yes, some chewed fingernails. OK, Patty Davis in Washington.

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