If God could come down tomorrow and divulge the ACTUAL intent of the Florida Vote, ie. minus all the fradulent ballots, who would it be?

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How many of us would be surprised?

-- God (has a way of dealing with @ smug . people), November 22, 2000


It's just my own opinion...but I think if Palm Beach County had not used a "butterfly" ballot and if 19,000 votes there had not been disqualified, we would have known two weeks ago that Gore had won. Bush at the moment is leading Gore in Florida by less than a thousand votes. A very, VERY close election.

We'll never know one way or another about this. A judge has said that Palm Beach County will not get to vote a second time. As for what God's opinion on all this is, I cannot say.

-- The butterfly ballot (was@Gore's.downfall), November 22, 2000.

19,000 Palm Beach votes apparently invalidated


-- The butterfly ballot (was@Gore's.downfall), November 22, 2000.

Of course, Bush lost votes when Florida was incorrectly announced for Gore before the Panhandle closed,..and might have also affected his voters in the west.

Bush..by 10 votes. :-)

-- k (k@a.n), November 22, 2000.

Our Holy Creator will judge America with severe judgments.

According to Ken Peters, who has received dreams of the Tribulation from God, America will have *a little more time* before the judgments if Bush is elected.

For more information on the above sentence, go to www.prophecyclub.com

If Gore is elected, TSWHTF much faster!

I am not being facetious and greatly despise the shame we are experiencing at this moment.

Truth will prevail with powerful prayer...

-- dinosaur (dinosaur@williams-net.com), November 22, 2000.

Cool. Go GORE! Let's get the shit over with ASAP. Agree?

-- (@ .), November 22, 2000.

Um, Palm Beach Fan,

Wasn't there a big Bush county where 29,000 or so votes were disqualified? Hello? Come in? Earth calling....

-- David (David@bzn.com), November 22, 2000.

Wasn't there a big Bush county where 29,000 or so votes were disqualified? Hello? Come in? Earth calling....

In the Bush county, both Republicans and Democrats had votes disqualified, probably by roughly the same percentages as the way the total vote went in that county.

In Palm Beach County, there was additionally the 'butterfly ballot' factor. It's arguable that Gore lost crucial votes not just because some votes were disqualified in a heavily Democratic county, but also because the 'butterfly ballot' there apparently led to a disproportionate number of Democratic votes there to be disqualified because of double votes for both Buchanan and Gore.

In other words, it's my opinion that Democratic votes in Palm Beach County were disqualified at a greater percentage rate than what the overall Democratic percentage of the vote was for Palm Beach County.

It's too bad Palm Beach County isn't going to vote again. We'll never know. However, I will give my full respect to whichever man wins the vote of the Electoral College on December 18th.

My political predisposition? I like about 60% of Gore's proposals and about 40% of Bush's.

-- The butterfly ballot (was@Gore's.downfall), November 23, 2000.

http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/20001110/pl/election_massachusetts_dc_ 1.html


Friday November 10 4:24 PM ET

Butterfly Ballots Banned in Massachusetts

BOSTON (Reuters) - The type of ballot at the center of the presidential election firestorm in Florida -- the so-called butterfly ballot -- was banned in Massachusetts after a congressional primary recount in 1996.

Circumstances of the butterfly ballot complaints in Massachusetts were different from those that engulf the presidential vote in Florida, where George W. Bush (news - web sites) leads Vice President Gore by a razor-thin margin with overseas absentee ballots yet to be tallied and more recounts expected.

Four years ago, Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court justices recounted by hand disputed ballots from a Democratic congressional primary, reversing the outcome and giving William Delahunt the victory by 110 votes.

Delahunt went on to win the general election that year and won a third term to the House of Representatives on Tuesday.

The problem in Massachusetts was the chad -- the piece of paper that is supposed to separate completely from a hole-punch ballot. When it does not, counting machines may not be able to ''read'' the ballot properly.

``You have to review them by hand to see the effect of where somebody tried to put a puncture mark in and were unsuccessful,'' said Massachusetts Secretary of State William Galvin.

``This is exactly what we had with the Delahunt case four years ago. That's why I outlawed and decertified this system,'' Galvin said.

In Florida, the problem with the butterfly is more complex and, to date, mainly has to do with ballot design and voter error.

Hundreds of voters in Palm Beach County have protested what they said was a confusing ballot layout that prompted them to cast votes by mistake for Reform Party candidate Pat Buchanan (news - web sites) rather than their preferred candidate, Gore.

Some 19,000 Palm Beach ballots were disqualified because voters mistakenly punched their ballot sheet twice, effectively casting votes for two candidates.

With Gore and Bush only a few hundred votes apart in Florida, the disputed Palm Beach vote could be crucial to the outcome of the election in which almost 100 million people voted nationally.

In addition, there have been reports that huge numbers of other ballots statewide did not register a vote for president, possibly because machines could not read them.

``I know from my own experience that there are literally tens of thousands of ballots down there that (have) puncture marks that this machine ... will not count,'' Galvin said.

-- The butterfly ballot was (possibly@Gore's.downfall), November 23, 2000.


Thursday November 16 10:24 AM ET

Many Florida Voters Are Left Out

By DAVID ROYSE, Associated Press Writer

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Not every vote counts.

George W. Bush (news - web sites) and Al Gore (news - web sites) are just 300 votes apart in Florida's presidential election, but more than 180,000 Floridians who went to the polls on Nov. 7 could have just stayed home. Their ballots were tossed out because they chose more than one presidential candidate, didn't choose one at all or their vote didn't register.

According to an Associated Press survey of Florida's 67 county elections supervisors, the vote for a presidential candidate wasn't counted on 180,299 of the ballots.

That's nearly 3 percent of the 6,138,567 ballots that Florida citizens turned in. Experts say the national average usually runs at less than 2 percent, depending on the type of voting method used.

``It's a dirty little secret of American democracy. It would be hard to say we've never had an election without miscounted, invalid or otherwise irregular ballots,'' said Rogan Kersh, professor of political science at the Maxwell School at Syracuse University. ``Simple human error is a presence in every statewide and most local elections. Anybody who thinks we have completely reliable numbers is wrong.''

In Wisconsin, at the other end of the spectrum, slightly under 1 percent of ballots were not counted, according to an analysis by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. ``Any time you're above 1 percent, you want to look at it,'' said Kevin Kennedy, executive director of the state elections board. He said his office has encouraged local jurisdictions to replace punch card systems.

The problem in Florida largely can be traced to paper punchcard ballots, which have helped derail the presidential election and added ``chad'' to the national lexicon.

Some counties had startlingly large numbers of ballots that weren't counted. All three of these used punchcards:

- In Miami-Dade County, 28,601 ballots were not counted in the presidential race, out of about 654,044 cast.

- In Palm Beach County, home of the controversial ``butterfly ballot,'' 29,702 votes weren't counted out of 462,888 total.

- In Jacksonville and surrounding Duval County, 26,909 votes went uncounted out of 291,545 cast.

It is possible that some of those people didn't want to vote for president and were only concerned with other races down the ballot. But most of the ballots that weren't counted were ones on which someone messed up.

The number of ballots tossed out statewide increased this year from 1992 when just over 2 percent of the presidential ballots weren't counted, according to an analysis by the Orlando Sentinel and the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. In 1996, 2.5 percent of ballots in Florida were disqualified.

In Jacksonville, 21,942 ballots were nullified when voters punched their ballots for two candidates for president. An additional 4,967 did not vote for president or did not punch the ballot hard enough for their vote to be registered, according to a spokeswoman for Duval County Supervisor of Elections John Stafford.

Those disqualified ballots represented about 9 percent of the ballots cast.

There also was a problem in Gadsden County, a rural area west of Tallahassee, where more than 2,000 presidential votes were thrown out - 12 percent of the those cast in the small county.

There, the county canvassing board recounted some of the rejected ballots, something Republicans complained about in the county where Democrats outnumber Republicans 9-to-1.

Leon County, where the state capital, Tallahassee, is located, was another story altogether. There were only 181 votes that weren't counted, just 0.2 percent of the total.

That's largely because Leon and 14 other Florida counties use an optical scan system in which voters fill in a bubble with a pen instead of punching a hole in a card. Leon County Elections Supervisor Ion Sancho said that when considering high numbers of discounted ballots elsewhere, ``You are going to find right off the bat that they use punchcard technology.''

Election lawyer Kenneth Gross, who worked for Bob Dole's 1996 presidential campaign, said the problem is that holes on the cards aren't always clean.

``If there's any paper hanging, the machine tends to push it back into the hole and then records it as a no vote,'' Gross said.

Rep. Tom Feeney, an Orlando-area Republican who will be sworn in next week as speaker of the Florida House, said the system of voting will be a hot topic in the next session.

``When this cools down ... I'm hoping that what we will do is a comprehensive review of the elections process,'' Feeney said. ``That would include taking a look at how we conduct elections in 49 other states, maybe even considering what they do in other democracies.''

Part of the reason counties use punch cards is that they're cheap. Sancho estimated it could take $5 million to switch to a different system, depending on the size of the county.

The punch card system has been thrown out altogether in Massachusetts, where a judge overturned a congressional race because of voters' confusion about the ballot.

``When you have paper, you're going to have problems,'' Kersh said. ``It strikes me as peculiar we continue to use them.''


Associated Press writer Jonathan Salant in Washington contributed to this report.

-- Who lost (the@most.votes?), November 23, 2000.

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