Do you remember what happened eight years ago on November
7, 2000 and in the 36 days that followed in the recount battle in Florida between
then-vice president Al Gore and then-Texas governor George W. Bush?
Below are some essential materials to get you reacquainted with the events of
2000 in this 2008 U.S. presidential election year.
The 2000 U.S.
presidential election was one of the most extraordinary events to occur in
American politics in many years. There have been divisive fights on the
convention floor in both the main political parties in the U.S. during some
prior presidential campaigns over the years to be sure, but the 2000 election in
the state of Florida, where critical turning points such as then-governor Jeb
Bush's Florida governor's government payment of $4.3 million to private company
Data Base Technologies to engage in the wholesale purging from the voting rolls
of up to 100,000 legally-registered law-abiding black voters in Florida,
complicated and unclear ballots in predominantly democratic voting Florida
districts, the turning away of black voters in many parts of Florida and the
unusual, controversial and unprecedented U.S. Supreme Court decision Bush v.
Gore, which the Court in a 5-to-4 decision exercised a dangerous federal
jurisdiction over state affairs by ruling that the Florida Supreme Court erred
in its decision to allow the recount process in the state to continue -- all of
these factors and others contributed to turning around the election, handing the
25 electoral college votes of Florida to Mr. Bush and thus awarding the Texas
governor the keys to the White House in what would be a fateful, one-time only
High Court decision binding only in this unique and singular case.
Jay Roach's marvelous film examines all of these events in an excellent
political drama that is riveting and thrilling to watch. The Popcorn Reel
film review of "Recount" is here.
"Recount" premieres on HBO cable in the U.S. on May 25 at 9 p.m. Eastern and
Pacific time and is repeated on May 26 at the same time. The film will
play throughout June on the pay television channel.
Here are the reading materials and links to audio, documents and news stories from The
New York Times, The Guardian, The British Broadcasting Corporation, U.S. News,
Public Broadcasting Service, Cable
News Network, The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, The Washington Post, and the actual U.S. Supreme Court Bush v. Gore decision which was
made on December 12, 2000.
Other recommended sources: The book The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, by
Greg Palast (see chapter two, "Jim Crow In Cyberspace"); documentary films
"Fahrenheit 9/11" and "Unprecedented: The Story of the 2000 Presidential
Countless other books and documentaries have been written and made about the
2000 U.S. presidential election.
2000 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION-RELATED ONLINE NEWSPAPER ARTICLES, DECISIONS,
AUDIO, VIDEO AND