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Special Event

What Have We Learned from Election 2000?

Aired December 16, 2000 - 10:00 p.m. ET


ANNOUNCER: This is a CNN Election 2000 special report.

BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, I'm Bill Hemmer at the CNN Center in Atlanta.

Chances are, it will be a very long time before any of us think of Florida the same way again. That famous sunshine and surf now eclipsed by dimple, chad and butterfly ballots. But what a wild ride it was, and what an amazing education for all of us.

But looking back now, what did we learn?

Tonight we're hitting the rewind button, how five amazing weeks unfolded day by day, hour by hour, and many times minute by minute. We begin, though, where else, with the one night everyone thought would give America it's next president: November 7, 2000, election night.


GOV. GEORGE W. BUSH (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Greg? George W. Bush, seeking the Presidency. I'm doing great today. I feel good. I will feel better when I know that our people are going to go to the polls, and that's why I'm calling.

JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN ANCHOR: As voting continues, literally, at this hour...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People seem to be coming out to say, look, this is about me, it's about my future.

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: At the midnight hour, we may still be counting ballots in Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many analysts call the closeness of the Florida race the biggest surprise of election 2000. It was long believed that Governor Jeb Bush could easily carry Florida for his brother.

WOODRUFF: A big call to make, CNN announces that we call Florida in the Al Gore column.

JEFF GREENFIELD, CNN SENIOR ANALYST: This is a roadblock the size of a boulder to George W. Bush's path to the White House. CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Boy, you begin to look at those other big battleground states, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and they become so much more important now.

JOHN KING, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: This, a major boost for the Gore campaign. A cheer going up here in Nashville.

MIKE MCCURRY, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I think the results in Florida have got to be bitter sweet for the Bush family, of course, the brother of Governor Bush, the sitting governor in Florida. That can't be a happy one for the Bush family.

BUSH: I don't believe that some of these states that they've called, like Florida, I just don't believe that we got enough evidence to be able to call the state right now.

MARY MATALIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: There are a half-a-million absentee ballots out there. I'm just telling you, that state's going to flip. I really feel that way.

GREENFIELD: George Bush has to more or less run the table on it. He has got to wiin Ohio. He has got to Tennessee and Arkansas. He has got to win Missouri. These projections are not infallbile. There are times when the networks have to eat a hearty portion of crow.

BERNARD SHAW, CNN ANCHOR: Stand by. CNN right now is moving our earlier declaration of Florida into the too close to call ...

GREENFIELD: Waiter, one order of crow, please.

CROWLEY: I think you can hear the crowd reaction.

KARL ROVE, BUSH CAMPAIGN: You all called Florida before Florida even closed it's polls. Florida is a state which votes in two time zones.

MARK FABIANI, GORE CAMPAIGN: Two-thirds of the outstanding votes in Florida are from the Democrat strongholds in that state.

SHAW: We're making a call in Iowa, in the Hawkeye State. CNN declares that Al Gore has won Iowa's seven electoral votes.

GREENFIELD: Whoever wins Florida will be the next President of the United States.

SHAW: The United States has a new president. He's the Texas governor, George Walker Bush.

Bush wins. Florida goes to George Bush. The Presidency is Bush. That's it.

KING: There were gasps of no and screams of no, the faces quite glum, the Vice-President placed a phone call to the Texas governor, congratulated him on winning the election, and in brief remarks here tonight to his supporters and, of course, to the American people, will wish the Governor well. SCHNEIDER: CNN is double checking the vote count, county by county, in the state of Florida. We are going through that exercise.

KING: There will be an automatic recount under Florida state law.

CROWLEY: Put me on. Gore has retracted his concession.

SCHNEIDER: We do not have a winner in our Electoral College count, because the state of Florida is now rated officially as a toss up.

HAL BRUNO, CNN ELECTION ANALYST: Never have we seen anything like this in the entire history of the country.

KING: Here he is, Billy Daley.

WILLIAM DALEY, GORE CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: I've been in politics a very long time, but I don't think there's ever been a night like this one.

GREENFIELD: We are in a state of political suspended animation.

CROWLEY: At the Governor's mansion, they are trying to figure this out.

WOODRUFF: Don Evans, a long time close friend of George W. Bush.

DON EVANS, BUSH CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: They're still counting. They're still counting. And I'm confident when it's all said and done we will prevail.

SHAW: It's not over. It simply is not over.


KING: Now, why are you here? You have a comfortable life. You could be home watching this on television.

ROB REINER, DIRECTOR: Well, you know, I'm quite attracted to you, John, and that's why I'm here. You know, it's getting a little late. We're getting punchy. We're getting punchy.

SHAW: I especially love your straight face, too, John.

GREENFIELD: You know, I think that somehow that was absolutely in keeping with the way this night may be developing.

SHAW: Exactly.

WOODRUFF: A new day, but still no new president. The White House is still up for grabs.

HEMMER: It is a presidential election still too close to call on this, the morning after.

JOHN ZARRELLA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bush wins it. A couple of hours later, the Miami Herald comes out with "Not Over Yet".

JEANNE MESERVE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's certainly an accurate headline this morning, because we just don't know where things stand.

BUSH: How many hours of sleep did you get last night?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: About two. How about you?

BUSH: About three -- and a half, actually.

Good morning.

MESERVE: The campaign remained confident that they will be able to pull this out.

BUSH: Secretary Cheney and I will do everything in our power to unite the nation.

JONATHAN KARL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Here is the Nashville Tennesseean.

AL GORE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We still do not know the outcome of yesterday's vote. This matter must be resolved expeditiously, but deliberately and without any rush to judgement.

MIKE BOETTCHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Here in Florida, hurricane country, they're saying this is the eye of the hurricane.

ZARRELLA: They began the recount of some 587,000 votes.

JENNY BACKUS, DNC SPOKESWOMAN: We don't think this election is over. And what we're upset about, moving quickly right now, is the fact that this is all being done in the dark of night. Where is the sunshine in the Sunshine State?

MARK POTTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They're also dealing with an issue up in the Palm Beach area, where some voters have claimed that the voting procedure is confusing.

Al Gore is the second name on this side, but the third hole down.

REP. ROBERT WEXLER (D), FLORIDA: There is no doubt there was mass confusion in Palm Beach County.

ROGER COSSACK, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Sue, yesterday you went to vote, what happened?

SUE BLUM, SOUTH PALM BEACH VOTER: I could cast my vote, but it was not in line with my candidate. I had to either go above it or below it.

GOV. JEB BUSH (R), FLORIDA: This ballot, as is the law, was published, I believe, in newspapers. It may have been sent out in mailings, in some counties that's the case. So people had ample opportunity to challenge the ballot itself. POTTER: The state of Florida is in a national spotlight right now. What happens here in the state will determine the next presidency of the United States.

WILLIAM J. CLINTON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The American people have now spoken. But it's going to take a little while to determine exactly what they said.

DALEY: I saw in on CNN's screen. It was 400 a vote spread.

HEMMER: The surrogates have flown in here from the Gore camp and the Bush camp.

Are you safe saying that there is a legal fight ensuing in this race?

DALEY: Oh, already there's been suits filed. And I would imagine this will continue for awhile -- as it should.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're calling it ballot bedlam.

JESSE JACKSON, RAINBOW/PUSH COALITION: This ballot is-it is deceptive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None of these people really know who they voted for. They're just upset, in my opinion, that Gore lost.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Trust the people. Trust the people.

GREENFIELD: As the Presidency hung in the balance, the tensions and the voices continued to rise.

Nowhere was tension higher than in Palm Beach County.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are a very intelligent lady. You should read your sample ballot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why didn't those 19,000 people go up to the people that were working the polls in the thing and say, we've got a problem. Nineteen thousand? I doubt it.

KATHERINE HARRIS, FLORIDA SECRETARY OF STATE: We will all remember these times as some of the most critical and defining moments in our nation's history.

BOB CRAWFORD, FLORIDA AGRICULTURE COMMISSIONER: This is democracy in action. If you want simplicity, just go about 70 miles south of Florida and you've got Cuba and they're very simple. They have no elections.

DAVID CARDWELL, CNN ELECTION LAW ANALYST: Each time those ballots are fed through it you will get different results because the machine will read them differently.

TREVOR POTTER, ELECTION LAW ANALYST: Sometimes when it's put into the machine, the machine doesn't read that the hole has been pushed.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's right, sometimes the debris gets in the way.

T. POTTER: What the election law folk call a hanging chad.

HEMMER: C-H-A-D, I believe, Brian (ph).

LINDA STOUFFER, CNN ANCHOR: As the final county reported, we understand that there was a margin out with 327 votes.

BOB DOLE, (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think it's time for Al Gore to look people in the eye and say, "Well, we gave it our best shot."

The stock markets are effected.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Wall Street does not like uncertainty, and with the presidential cliff hanger stretching into day three, that's exactly what we still have here.

WARREN CHRISTOPHER, GORE CAMPAIGN OBSERVER: What we're doing is a constitutional process. There is no constitutional crisis.

We're going to proceed here in a very careful and lawful way.

BUSH: I understand there's still votes to be counted, but I'm in the process of planning, in a responsible way, a potential administration.

KAREN HUGHES, BUSH CAMPAIGN SPOKESWOMAN: I don't think anyone thinks that a lengthy and protracted, scores of lawyers, endless legal battles, with no reasonable or forseeable conclusion, would be healthy for the country.

CLARK: Bush, we are told, has given Baker the authority to challenge the hand count of the ballots in Florida.

For, among other reasons, according to the filing, the hand count scheme produces arbitrary and capricious decision making.

JAMES BAKER, BUSH CAMPAIGN OBSERVER: Machines are neither Republicans nor Democrats and therefore can be neither consicously nor unconsciously biased. We ask that there be no further recounts of already recounted ballots.

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Now, you might think this count would take place behind closed doors. Indeed it is. But there are lots of windows in the room too, so you can get a live look at this historical count in progress.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There are actually three types of chad that are being counted as a vote. Hanging chad, that's attached by a corner, swinging door chad, connected by two corners, and tri-chad that is attached by three corners. BOB NICHOLS, PALM BEACH COUNTY SPOKESMAN: But the chad that is fully attached, bearing only an indentation, should not be counted as a vote.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I actually know what a pregnant chad is.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a very serious process and this process is going to continue for awhile.

CAROL ROBERTS, PALM BEACH COUNTY CANVASSING BOARD: The results of the manual recount of 1 percent clearly would effect the results of the national election. I move that this board conduct a manual recount of all the ballots for the Presidential election for the year 2000.

MILES O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: The twists and turns of Election 2000 continue. The Secretary of State of Florida givinig us the latest information.

HEMMER: A two-page statement here from Kathrine Harris, the Secretary of State, just being handed out now to reporters.

BOETTCHER: Secrtary of State told Warren Christopher, in a meeting, that the election will be certified at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And there's the ballot.

BOETTCHER: So, whatever counts are in at that time, that's it.

POTTER: We've had a ruling here at the Miami Federal Court House that has gone badly for the Republicans. Judge Donald Melbrooks refused to issue an injunction that would have halted the manual ballot count in four counties, so that count now continues.

TUCHMAN: There's no way they'd be able to count 100 percent of these votes by a 5:00 p.m. deadline tomorrow.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have entered the action in asking the court to stop the Secretary of State from ending the vote counting tomorrow night.

GORE: Look, I would not want to win the Presidency by a few votes cast in error. And I don't think Governor Bush wants that either.

HARRIS: Governor George Bush, 2,910,000...

BOETTCHER: It is up to the Secretary of State to determine whether any such corrective or supplemental return filed after 5:00 p.m. today are to be ignored. HARRIS: Thank you very much.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: The outcome is by no means a foregone conclusion, although the 300 vote differential is clearly something in George W. Bush's favor.

BOBBIE BATTISTA, CNN ANCHOR: Gettinig wild here tonight.

ANDRE FLADELL, SUING PALM BEACH COUNTY: This is a copy of a sample ballot. Please vote for Pat Buchanan according to the instructions.

BATTISTA: Well, you can't do that -- well you can, but there's no arrow to the right, so you would have to ...

FLADELL: Please just mark your vote according to the instructions.

BATTISTA: How did I get on trial here?

FLADELL: How does it feel to be called confused? She doesn't have common sense, apparently.


TUCKER CARLSON, CNN COMMENTATOR: ... are not the only Republicans collecting chads. In fact, I have here chads. We collected these, Bill, as evidence, and I just want to show you what an actual chad-these are actual chads. These are both pregnant and dimpled.


CARLSON: See, perfectly innocuous and yet they could change ...

PRESS: Seventy-eight pieces of (INAUDIBLE)

CARLSON: We found those at CNN.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, as always, we seem to be at ground zero here in Palm Beach County. Here's the front page of this mornings "Palm Beach Post": "Bush by 300 and recounting".

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Recounting is necessary in all counties.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You need to have some kind of standard, uniform way of counting.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Counting is not a science.

SEN. FRED THOMPSON (R), TENNESSEE: The Republican secretary of state certainly has taken a lot of grief. The Gore spokesman who called her a hack.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Katherine Harris is someone who has been caught in the headlights of history. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Katherine Harris is a fine lady and they should lay off of her.

HARRIS: For the past six hours, I have applied these criteria in deliberating upon the specific requests of the counties, contemplating manual vote recounts. As a result of these deliberations, I've decided it is my duty under Florida law to exercise my discretion in denying these requested amendments.

DALEY: I think it is an act that indicates that there is a desire to try to shut this down too quickly, and I think that's unfortunate.

GORE: I will abide by the result. I will take no legal action to challenge the result and I will not support any legal action to challenge the result.

BUSH: Unfortunately, what the vice president proposes is exactly what he's been proposing all along, continuing with selective hand recounts that are neither fair nor accurate. Or compounding the error by extending a flawed process statewide.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You want to take a look at this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I don't want to disturb Your Honor.

BLITZER: It is day nine without a President-elect. The lawyers are busy. The candidates are in limbo. And the election outcome is still very much in doubt.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's happening is this. It's being negated.

WOODRUFF: At this hour, election officials in Palm Beach County plan to launch a full hand recount of the presidential ballots after getting a green light from Florida's Supreme Court.

DALEY: We think it is particularly significant that the Florida Supreme Court sent a clear signal to the counties that their counts could continue not withstanding the secretary's efforts to terminate those counts three times in the past three days.

BAKER: I'd like to suggest to you that you have just witnessed a superb example of the art of legal spin.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: These could be the main factor in this election.

HUGHES: No one who aspires to be commander in chief should seek to unfairly deny the votes of the men and women he would seek to command.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you voted and you did it correctly, it ought to count.

GENE RANDALL, CNN ANCHOR: And now I am told that the Associated Press is reporting the George W. Bush lead going into Florida's State Supreme Court on Monday is 930 votes and this includes the overseas absentee ballots.

CHRIS BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Gore campaign officials always said that if they kept the Bush gain to under 1000 votes, they could make it up, they believed, in the recount.

ZARRELLA: Let's give you some updated numbers here this morning. What we have out of Palm Beach County is 202 precincts of the 531 have been counted, that's 34 percent of the total ballots.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And just like in Palm Beach County, there are all kinds of accusations flying about here, some as strange as a Democratic observer allegedly munching on the chad from a ballot to a Republican operative offering me a Ziplock baggie filled with chads that he claimed were collected from the room over here.

MARY HALL, BROWARD COUNTY VOTE COUNTER: The most memorable moment is ripping, running, not getting enough sleep.

HEMMER: Just a few moments ago the Bush legal team did file their legal brief in the state Supreme Court here in Tallahassee. Within the next two or three hours, the Gore team will respond.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Let me tell you what this boils down to. It's this: are hand counts prohibited in the state of Florida and must the Secretary of State accept any hand count votes after the deadline of Tuesday, which was just a few days ago? That's the whole issue here.

HEMMER: We wanted to let you know that 148 very lucky people will be allowed to go inside the State Supreme Court building. Some folks will be able to see history.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and gentlemen, the Florida Supreme Court.

CHIEF JUSTICE CHARLES T. WELLS, FLORIDA SUPREME COURT: What's the date, the outside date, that we're looking at in which puts Florida's votes in jepordy?

PAUL HANCOCK, ATTORNEY FOR FLORIDA ATTORNEY GENERAL: December 12th, Your Honor, is my understanding, that the Electoral College meets on December 18th.

DAVID BOIES, GORE CAMPAIGN ATTORNEY: This court certainly has the power to say, "What we're going to do is tell the county boards that you've got this amount of time to complete your recount."

VAN SUSTEREN: And what the court focused in was wether or not you could do this hand count and still meet the federal requirements to get the December 12th electors elected, essentially, to then go vote on December 18th to vote for President of the United States.

JUSTICE BARBARA J. PARIENTE, FLORIDA SUPREME COURT: So, even if we said that everyone has the chance for a window period to request a recount, the position of Governor Bush is that he would not go along with wanting recounts in the other counties because the process is flawed?

MICHAEL CARVIN, BUSH CAMPAIGN ATTORNEY: No, Your Honor. I think we should follow the process that's set out in the statute.

PARIENTE: But I'm asking you that question.

BOETTCHER: I think that people looked at each other a lot during the exchanges between Justice Pariante and Michael Carvin, the attorney for George W. Bush. That was kind of seen there as the most pointed questioning during the period, the two hour period, that these arguments occurred.

HEMMER: The motto here at the state Supreme Court here in Florida translates from Latin into English the following way: soon enough if right. But how do we define soon, that's what we're waiting for here in Tallahassee, with the state Supreme Court building behind us.

DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Bush and Gore teams jobs are done. Now the Justices need for an opinion, which one of them chosen by lottery, will write. When that opinion is issued as a ruling is anyone's guess.

BLITZER: The Florida Supreme Court is still in business at this hour.

CRAIG WATERS, FLORIDA SUPREME COURT SPOKESMAN: The court has issued a 42-page opinion this eveninig in the Presidential election cases. In it's opinion, the court has reversed the two orders of the trial court.

GORE: The Florida Supreme Court has now spoken, and we will move forward now with a full, fair and accurate count of the ballots in question.

BAKER: It is simply not fair, ladies and gentlemen, to change the rules, either in the middle of the game or after the game has been played. Therefore, we intend to examine and to consider whatever remedies we may have to correct this unjust result.

RANDALL: This is a special expanded edition of "CNN SATURDAY." I'm Gene Randall in Atlanta. We welcome our international viewers.

It is only 2:00 p.m. here on the East Coast, but already it has turned into the night the lights went out in Georgia. We're having light problems here in Atlanta, and we hope to fix that as soon as a manual recount of our lighting system is done.


HEMMER: Our election map helped guide us across America's political geography. Some of us may actually believe we've earned a degree from this thing called the Electoral College. But even weeks after the election, it was not at all clear where Florida would end up, what ballots would be recounted by hand, what standards would be used for counting a vote. And again, ultimately, who would be the forty-third president? The surprises were not over yet.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There is a clear intent when you write George Bush. The clear intent is they're voting for George Bush, and I'm inclined to give this to George Bush.

HEMMER: Day 15 now in the count does continue.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ballot number five.

HEMMER: The local headline today in the paper here, the "Tallahassee Democrat," "Unanimous Supreme Court says keep counting."

CARDWELL: In Broward County, obviously, no problem finishing there. Palm Beach County should be able to. I think the question mark is going to be Miami-Dade.

HEMMER: A major decision just issued. Miami-Dade canvassing board has decided now to consider only the so-called undercount.

STOUFFER: We're just getting in some breaking news from the Associated Press. They are quoting the Bush campaign as saying that Republican running mate Dick Cheney has been hospitalized in Washington, apparently complaining of chest pains.

DR. ALAN WASSERMAN, GWU MEDICAL CENTER: There was a very slight heart attack.

LARRY KING, HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": How are you feeling, Dick?


KING: No doubt about your serving?

CHENEY: No doubt about my serving. All we have to do now is get elected.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Let us in! Let us in! Let us in!

FRANK BUCKLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Republican observers who are protesting upstairs were trying to get into the area where the canvassing board was moving its votes to observe what was going on.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Let us in! Let us in!

BUCKLEY: They were not being allowed in.

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Frank, it sounds like you're in the middle of a prison riot. I mean, are you getting a feeling that this is out of control?

BUCKLEY: These are the observers who have been a part of this process who are now being told they were no longer needed. They felt they were being excluded. And that's where some of this anger is coming from.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Let us see the ballots! Let us see the ballots?

BUCKLEY: Another development...

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Arrest him! Arrest him! Arrest him!

BUCKLEY: ... we are now on the ground floor where a Democratic attorney for the Democrats has been surrounded by police. Crime scene tape has been put up around him because he was back in that office area. And the Republicans fingered him and said, he has a ballot.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... Have twice voted no.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is not physically possible to continue with this task.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is the unanimous decision of this canvassing board that we will not be proceeding further with a manual recount.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: George W. Bush is authorizing his lawyers to file an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court in an effort to shut down all hand recounts of Florida ballots.

PRESS: Can you believe it? It's the night before Thanksgiving. And we still don't know which one of these turkeys is going to win.

LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: Many Americans giving thanks this morning. But the presidential limbo is not taking a holiday. But Al Gore and George W. Bush are planning their next legal moves.

BUSH: I want to wish everybody, all of my friends and family, a happy Thanksgiving.

PHILLIPS: It's Thanksgiving break where we're in our news room where, of course, everything is very busy.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: And you know what? CNN is serving turkey in seven minutes.

PHILLIPS: That is the official CNN Thanksgiving dinner.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Roll the turkeys.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Gore campaign lawyers are headed to Florida Supreme Court to file their appeal to get Miami-Dade County to do a hand recount.

WATERS: Vice President Gore's attorneys filed a petition for a writ of mandamus and seeking other relief here in the court. The court now has the matter under advisement.

COSSACK: They want the court to say, oK, you volunteers, give up this turkey and Thanksgiving. Well, you know what the Miami-Dade County Board is going to say, well, listen, you count. We don't want to do this anymore.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALES (singing): You put your stylus in, you put your stylus out. You put your stylus in, and you punch Buchanan out.

HEMMER: With a clear punch...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): You do the Palm Beach Pokey and you turn it all around.

HEMMER: Wow, I didn't do so hot.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's what it's all about.

MOOS: If you wanted to vote for this guy right here, Blues Clues, which of these holes would you pick? That hole right there, huh? Very good.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think now it's getting a little ridiculous.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm just looking forward to it just being over.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Bush! All right, Bush-Cheney, Bush-Cheney, Bush-Cheney...

CANDIOTTI: This is a group of about 100 or so Bush supporters. Their argument is that this hand recount business must stop, that Vice President Gore must concede the vote, and that what's happening here is an illegal process.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Bush won twice! Bush won twice!

CHARLES BURTON, PALM BEACH COUNTY CANVASSING BOARD: I have no idea how this is accomplished.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Counting and protests both under way here as we stand outside the emergency operations center here in Palm Beach County.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Certify the vote now! Certify the vote now!

SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN (D-CT), VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Vice President Gore and I call on the demonstrators and all who may be organizing or encouraging them to stop these activities immediately.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Certify now! Certify now!

PRESS: Republicans will do anything to win, even act like Democrats.

UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: Gore must concede! Gore must concede!

HEMMER: Al Gore on one side and George W. Bush on the other. I don't know if it's come to that just yet. I'll watch it for you.

HARRIS: I bet if you flip that coin it lands on its edge, too.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think of the coin flip idea?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Floridians may be surprised that they have the same law here. In doing the research, if this vote would end up in a tie, it would be chosen by a flip of the coin.

STEPHEN FRAZIER, CNN ANCHOR: This remarkable development of the last few minutes that the United States Supreme Court has agreed to hear one of the two Bush arguments in favor of stopping the hand recounts in Florida.

GREENFIELD: Hearing that for the first time in our history could directly affect the outcome of a presidential election.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The last ballot.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's a net increase for Al Gore of 563 votes. And that's the result that we intend at this time to certify.

BURTON: Dear Secretary Harris, we have been working diligently to complete the hand count of this election. Your consideration of our request to extend the deadline for final selection of this hand count would be greatly appreciated.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's the very latest?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We've counted 1,800 ballots this morning. As of this moment, it looks like there's about 2,000 left to count.

HEMMER: We're getting confirmation now the secretary of state's office here in Tallahassee has told the vote counters down in Palm Beach that the extension for that deadline will not happen.

BURTON: Your request for filing an amended certification after 5:00 p.m. today is denied.

HARRIS: We are here today to certify the result of the election that occurred November 7, 2000. The certified result of the presidential race in Florida is as follows. Governor George W. Bush, 2,912,790. Vice President Al Gore, 2,912,253.

LIEBERMAN: This evening, the secretary of state of Florida has decided to certify what by any reasonable standard is an incomplete and inaccurate count of the votes cast in the state of Florida.

BUSH: The election was close. But tonight after a count, a recount, and yet another manual recount, Secretary Cheney and I are honored and humbled to have won the state of Florida, which gives us the needed electoral votes to win the election.

GEORGE BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is a true story. She said, "Where are you going?" I said, "I'm going in to watch our son debate."

She said, "I don't want to listen to it." I said, "Fine." So I went in, listened to it. Five minutes after the debate ended, she said, "Well, how did he do?" Came in the bedroom.

I said, "Well, I thought he did very well. But I've got to listen to this CNN here to tell me what I think. I can't make up my own mind."




MOOS: Pity the poor butterfly having its image tarnished by the election flap, though not everyone is aware that's what they call the two-page ballots with the punch holes in the middle.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, butterflies are ballots that flew out the window?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It never had a ballot with wings.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Alcoholics for Bush! Alcoholics for Bush! Here's your camera right here.

GORE: The American people have shown dignity, restraint, and respect as the process has moved forward. This is America.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Gore legal team this morning is expected to file motions in the Leon County Circuit Court asking the judge to move this ahead on the fast track.

BAKER: Therefore, I would like to introduce the senior members of the litigation team who will be defending the vote of Floridians in favor of Governor Bush and Secretary Cheney.

KING: Dick, how do you want to be called? Do you want to be called secretary? Do you want to be called vice president-elect? Is that presumptuous?

CHENEY: Dick is fine, Larry.

The transition foundation now is up and running and has been incorporated under the laws of the state of Texas.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do avoid the appearance that he's retreating to his Texas ranch while you take charge?

CHENEY: On the one hand, we've been criticized for being too forward-leaning. Now you suggest maybe we're too laid back. I would suggest you can't have it both ways.

GORE: Once we have that full and accurate count of the ballots cast...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He needs to show evidence by this weekend that this court is actually going to count votes. But the Democrats are increasingly of the view that perhaps this is not going to work out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It has been almost all Gore all the time on the television networks.

GORE: You know, the only way to avoid having a cloud over the next president is to count all the votes.

JUDGE N. SANDERS SAULS, LEON COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT: I have no idea what we're going to do concerning ballots, counting, or not counting the ballots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here's what's happening. Lawyers for George W. Bush and Al Gore have filed so many motions over the past three weeks that one Florida judge says it's like getting nibbled to death by a duck. That's a real quote.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was actually with the Gore attorneys as they just filed their appeal. They are asking the Supreme Court of the state of Florida to immediately count contested ballots. DAVID BOIES, GORE CAMPAIGN ATTORNEY: They can send up the ballots that are contested right now. We can't think of any need to hold up our ballots, the contested ballots, which are a few thousand in each case, for the hundreds of thousands of other ballots.

SAULS: I'm going to leave it to them. What do you all want to do down there? Do you want to send up two times, or you want to do it once? It's your call.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: One time from Miami.

SAULS: One time it is. All right, that's it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are awaiting the Ryder truck. We anticipate it to come later this afternoon, possibly between 3:00 or 4:00 depending on progress on the interstate system here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a very sensitive cargo, to say the least. And they're taking pretty strict precautions.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If we could have talked to a fortune teller before November 7 and they would have told you that a key part of the presidential election would be three weeks afterwards a yellow Ryder truck going down a highway, you would say, "Yeah, what were you drinking?"


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's just surreal.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now we see George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Laura Bush, Mrs. Cheney, and the Powells walking out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor, with Al Gore all over the airwaves, is this press availability in part because you're responding to criticism that you've appeared out of touch in the past few days? Out of sight and out of touch?

BUSH: That's pretty humorous, Dave. Thank you all for coming.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's because we love the press, right?

CROWLEY: Bush aides say the notion that Bush is too removed is silly and believe that Al Gore's anywhere-anytime approach to the media is, quote, "not presidential."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The big difference that we can see here, Bill, is that we've got Isuzu trucks today as opposed to Ryder trucks yesterday. But that's about it.

But I can tell you the Republicans are playing a little psychological warfare. They are the car in front of the Democratic car. And they've got a little sign on the back of their car that says "W1."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Count the vote, read our lips, baby.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Charles, quite a day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes it is, Frank, unlike anything I've ever seen here at the Supreme Court. It's getting kind of loud and blustery.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have a little bit of street theatre here outside our revered Supreme Court.

The issues are, of course, whether the Florida Supreme Court acted appropriately and whether the U.S. Supreme Court has any business getting into this case. That's the fundamental question.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What did you hear? You're our first connection to what's going on in there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Frank, it was an incredibly dramatic day. At 10:01, we heard Justice Rehnquist announce the case and introduce Mr. Ted Olson (ph), who argued on behalf of the Bush team. Olson argued for no more than two minutes before the questions came. And they came hot and heavy. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is what democracy looks like.

FRANK SESNO, CNN ANCHOR: The audio tapes of the Supreme Court proceeding, the court being called to order, are being cued up. The audio technicians are about to press that play button. And for the first time in history, you will be hearing the workings of the Supreme Court in almost real time.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How could it make a difference? What's the consequence of our going one way or another now in this case?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, some of these counties that have an enormous number of votes to conduct their manual recount.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's only about the Florida election votes.

SAULS: Good morning. Let's see, we want to call at this time, this is the case of Albert Gore, Jr. et al versus Katherine Harris, the secretary of state of Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The chads just arbitrarily drop off the page?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's an automatic machine.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dimples that were never intended as votes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's why you need manual recounts. Isn't that correct, sir? Yes or no. (INAUDIBLE)

JOHN AHMANN, VOTING MACHINE EXPERT: You need either a re- inspection or manual recount where you have that situation. Yes you do, if you've got a very close election.

PRESS: How about that guy? The Bush people puts this machine expert on the witness stand. And he ended up testifying basically agreeing with the Gore people.

CARLSON: Angels on the head of a pin, though, Bill. It makes no difference.

SAULS: I'm going to take it under submission. And I will give you a decision in the morning.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The court will stand in recess.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We would also appreciate if possible to have some help unloading the transfer boxes. I believe there will be 167 of them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our clerk is not that big.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What standard would she use in the situation I proposed then?

JOSEPH KLOCK, ATTORNEY FOR FLORIDA SECRETARY OF STATE: Justice Brennan, the difficulty is that -- I'm sorry. That's why they tell you not to do that.

What I'm saying is...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have to throw their hands up.

KLOCK: ... No, Justice Breyer, what I'm saying is that...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm Justice Souter. You'd better cut that out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Klock, I'm Scalia.

KLOCK: Yes, sir.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm here watching the (INAUDIBLE) right there. The word coming across the wire is that the U.S. Supreme Court has set aside the ruling on hand counted votes in Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pardon me for being out of breath. The judgment of the Supreme Court is vacated.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... that it was a tie. But it's a tie that's going to be broken at some point because we're racing against the clock.

SAULS: There is no credible statistical evidence...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a very serious blow to the Gore campaign.

GREENFIELD: You've got to come up with almost like a Perry Mason moment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're talking about the election that will not die.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I tend to feel like the popular vote ought to take it, that we've gone beyond a need for an Electoral College.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If there's something better, they haven't found it yet anywhere.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Didn't really think it was important. But now we know it is. Bummer.

GREENFIELD: But unless or until they amend the constitution, the Electoral College will choose. And on January 5, 2001, the new Congress will gather to hear the votes tallied by none other than Vice President Gore.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I just hope they decide it soon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People just want this thing settled even if it means involving the Florida legislature.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hear ye, hear he...

HEMMER: Day 30, and again we sit here and wait.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They are sure to face some tough questioning.

BOIES: My name is David Boies.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Before David Boies had almost gotten out of his mouth "good morning," Chief Justice Wells was all over him.

BARRY RICHARD, ATTORNEY FOR BUSH CAMPAIGN: There is no evidence in this case that the ballots were ever compromised.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of the judges, who I'm not going to tell which judge it is, but one of the judges needs more time to finish her ruling.


TERRE CASS, LEON COUNTY COURT ADMINISTRATOR: We have a ruling in both the Seminole County case and the Martin County case.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A win for George W. Bush along...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chamber of horrors for Al Gore.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Governor, do you have most of your cabinet posts picked out?

BUSH: Well, I think we've got -- no?


VAN SUSTEREN: It's a must-win for Vice President Al Gore.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The count shall commence immediately.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With those words, a new lease on life.

WILLIAM DALEY, GORE CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: It is a victory for fairness and accountability...

HEMMER: The majority of the counting is going to be conducted... UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In performing the vote recount...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The counters sworn in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Very big news, a stay on the recount in Florida.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were ready to start the manual recount.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They had CNN on in the count room. So as a result they just stopped.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to need a neck brace before this thing is all over.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: With the nation and the world watching...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The surroundings couldn't be more auspicious. The stakes couldn't be higher.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of passion, a lot of fury outside, a lot of very strong feelings.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I thank Al Gore for making me a Republican activist.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is America. Count the votes.

VAN SUSTEREN: This is business. You hit the gavel.

JUSTICE WILLIAM REHNQUIST, U.S. SUPREME COURT: George W. Bush and Richard Cheney versus Albert Gore.

KLOCK: The only problem that we have here is created by people who did not follow instructions.

JUSTICE SANDRA DAY O'CONNOR, U.S. SUPREME COURT: Why isn't the standard the one that voters are instructed to follow, for goodness sakes?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Indented ballots in another county...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Around Tallahassee, Florida, like all over the country and the world watching those Supreme Court arguments and waiting for the latest once-and-for-all, now-we'll-really-know, this- is-it, this-is-really-it decision.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've got all the patience in the world. We have a president.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Others not so serene.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is really a joke, though. It's just gone on way too long. People are getting really upset about this.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Upset about it going on and/or not going on.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is anybody here sick and tired of what's going on?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no. Count the ballots.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Count the ballots, count the votes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But while they waited, no one could count on anything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The decision is going to come out...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It all started on the night of November 7.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The judgment of the Supreme Court of Florida...

GREENFIELD: The Democrats believed they had won the presidency.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is reversed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They have found a constitutional violation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Still, my colleagues madly going through a decision.

SHAW: Listen to this language from the justices.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Without substantial additional work...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Without substantial additional work...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The safe harbor day is really December, is today.

GREENFIELD: One smack against the calendar.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm going to have to extract that. Why don't you talk to Ken while I look?

SHAW: Vice President Al Gore is learning from CNN...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Clearly a sense to a person on the Gore team that this is a bad decision.

SEN. ROBERT TORRICELLI (D-NJ): It appears that the last vote in Florida has now been counted.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This, a statement from William Daley. "It will take time to completely analyze this opinion."

CROWLEY: A sense of confidence that this is indeed a victory for George W. Bush.

BAKER: This has been a long and arduous process for everyone involved on both sides.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Twenty-four years after entering public office, Al Gore, Jr. prepares to leave.

GORE: Good evening. Just moments ago, I spoke with George W. Bush and congratulated him on becoming the forty-third president of the United States. And I promised him that I wouldn't call him back this time.

SHAW: Bush will become the nineteenth Republican president, the seventeenth governor to become president, the first Texas governor ever to become president.

BUSH: Our country has been through a long and trying period. And I hope the long wait of the last five weeks will heighten a desire to move beyond the bitterness and partisanship of the recent past.

Whether you voted for me or not, I will do my best to serve your interests. And I will work to earn your respect.

SHAW: Thirty-six days later, it's over.


HEMMER: And so we move away now from Election 2000. But there will be plenty of new stories and new faces and new lessons to learn. At times it may have seemed that Election 2000 was one endless civics class. But hopefully, we're all a bit smarter now about our elections, our courts, and our country.

It sure was a wild ride. I'm Bill Hemmer. And thanks for watching.



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