Gore Finally Wins in New Mexico

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Friday November 17 9:49 PM ET

Gore Finally Wins in New Mexico

By CHAKA FERGUSON, Associated Press Writer

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Al Gore (news - web sites) won a 481-vote squeaker Friday in New Mexico, the closest presidential race in the country outside of Florida. Gore pocketed the state's five electoral votes.

Counties sent complete, unofficial results to the secretary of state. The returns will be made official when the state canvassing board meets Nov. 28.

Gore had 286,558 votes and George W. Bush (news - web sites) had 286,077 votes.

Besides Florida, New Mexico had been the only other state without a declared winner.

New Mexico could come into play if Bush decides to challenge results here and in a couple other close states.

Gore was up by about 5,000 votes on Election Night, until officials in Bernalillo County, the state's largest, discovered that a computer glitch had prevented the counting of over 60,000 ballots. Some of those votes were later declared missing, then turned up in a locked box.

After the problem was fixed, Bush was ahead by a mere 17 votes. Then Dona Ana County discovered that someone had read 620 absentee votes for Gore as 120 votes. So, Gore took the lead - and was able to hold onto it.

Bush spokesman Andrew Malcolm said the governor's campaign would make no decision about contesting New Mexico's tally until the recount in Florida is resolved. The losing national candidate has until Dec. 6 to request a recount.

``The deadline isn't for a few days, so we won't be making a decision until the last moment,'' Malcolm said Friday from Bush's Austin, Texas, headquarters. ``But, obviously, an election this close requires us to monitor it closely.''

Measured by the margin of victory in votes, this was the closest presidential election in New Mexico since it became a state in 1912. That year, Woodrow Wilson defeated William H. Taft by 1,814 votes.

New Mexico has voted for the winner of the national presidential election in every year but one. That was in 1976: Gerald Ford got 50.7 percent in New Mexico, Jimmy Carter 48.3 percent.

-- (The@2000.election), November 17, 2000


The Roswell vote has mysteriously vanished. It is rumored to be in a hanger at Wright-Patterson AFB in Dayton.

-- Lars (lars@indy.net), November 18, 2000.

Gore hasn't won New Mexico. He wont't have won until we've had a third or even fourth recount there.

-- butt nugget (catsbutt@umailme.com), November 18, 2000.

I guess this means that Oregon FINALLY finished their FIRST count? I fell asleep waiting for them.

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), November 18, 2000.

How many Oregonians does it take to install a lightbulb?
None, they don't have electricity yet.

-- Oregon Hater (stupid@state.wow), November 18, 2000.

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