by The Editors
As the National Opinion Research Council (NORC) Florida recount
results hit the press last night, one thing is clear: Not
only did more people nationwide choose Al Gore as their President,
but more people in Florida cast their ballots for Gore.
A year after election day, we have bittersweet vindication
that a statewide recount by any standard would
have handed Gore the state, and the presidency. Whether you
like your chads dimpled, hanging, or poked clean through,
Gore is your man.
The final numbers? Gore by a margin of 60
to 171 votes (depending on the standard) had every legally-cast
vote in the state been counted. This may not seem like much,
but it's plenty. In a Democracy, the idea is that the majority
decides who will represent them. Gore's margin is small, but
it still puts him on top.
Keep in mind that the NORC totals do not include a huge number
of additional overvotes that favored Gore by a large margin.
From the New
York Times: "More than 113,000 voters cast ballots for
two or more presidential candidates. Of those, 75,000 chose
Mr. Gore and a minor candidate; 29,000 chose Mr. Bush and
a minor candidate. Because there was no clear indication of
what the voters intended, those numbers were not included
in the consortium's final tabulations." But even without
this relatively huge block of votes, Gore still won Florida.
Not surprisingly, the conservative news media seems to be
giving the greatest amount of play to the revelation that
Gore's flawed recount strategy would have resulted in a Bush
win. But this angle misses the point. The point of the recount
was not to weigh the merits of Gore's strategy. The point
of the NORC recount was to determine once and for all who
really won Florida.
On that, the recount leaves little doubt; Gore won.
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