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View Sample Pages : Santa Fe New Mexican, November 18, 2000

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New Mexican (Newspaper) - November 18, 2000, Santa Fe, New Mexico A2 THE NEW MEXICAN Saturday November 18 2000 Recount roundup Developments In the Florida elec tion recount Courts In a victory for Al Gore the Florida Supreme Court ruled unani mously Friday that Secretary of State Katherine Harris may not cer tify a winner in the states presiden tial election between Gore and IGeorge W Bush until further order of this A hearing was set for The court stepped in after Harris announced she intended to certify a winner today following the counting of overseas absentee bal lots Democrats want final vote cer tification detayed until all hand recounts are completed The high courts ruling super seded a ruling earlier Friday by Cir cuit Judge Terry Lewis who said Harris may reject handcounted votes tallied after the states Nov 14 deadline In another defeat for Republi cans a federal appeals court denied Bushs request to stop hand tallies The llth Circuit Court of Appeals said states have latitude in setting up elections and declined to get involved in the Florida dispute at least for now Broward Countys manual recount of ballots contin ued Friday after a circuitcourt judge refused a Republicans request to stop it Judge Leonard Stafford refused to end the recount saying GOP activist William Scherer had not demonstrated any emergency that would require immediate action A circuit judge held a hearing Friday on several combined citizen lawsuits seeking a revote in Palm Beach County because of confusion about the ballot Judge Jorge Labar ga said hell issue a written ruling next week on whether the and Florida constitutions would even permit a revote Counting With returns in from 65 of Flori das 67 counties the tabulation of overseas ballots gave Bush votes and Gore 597 That increased Bushs overall lead to 760 votes Counties have until noon today to report their new totals to the state More than overseas ballots were rejected and were accepted Republicans com plained of a coordinated Democratic effort to reject overseas ballots especially from military personnel MiamiDade County reversing its earlier position voted Friday to conduct a full manual recount The Democraticleaning county will count all ballots Gore picked up six votes after a hand recount of ballots in three overwhelm ingly Democratic precincts Broward County resumed hand counting baljots Friday with work expected to continue through the weekend Gore gained a net of 48 votes with 121 of 609 precincts completed in the Democraticlean ing county Democratic observers com plained Friday that their Republican counterparts tried to stall the hand recount in Palm Beach County with arbitrary bapt challenges Roughly of the first ballots recounted were set aside as ques tionable to be examined by the county canvassing board Quotes This election isa matter that must be decided by the will of the people as expressed under the rule of law law which has meaning as determined in Rorida now by the Rorida Supreme Gore outside the official vice presidents residence For the next four years theres going to be an enhanced level of resentment and partisan ship because the ones who lose will certainly feel it wasnt For mer President Carter in a Friday interview on ABCs Good Morning America There are more attorneys than there are Bob Edwards chairman of the Republi can Executive Committee for Walton County during the tabulation of overseas absentee votes The voters intent was expressed nine days ago Mind reading is no way to decide the presidency and neither is a stacked political Bush spokesman Tucker judges ruling that Pam Beach County canvassing board can use its discretion in determining voters intent during hand recount Let the will of the people be Daley chairman of Gore campaign welcoming a Horida Supreme Court ruling that allowed manual recounts to continx ue Gore finally wins in New Mexico Democrat has razor thin lead of 481 votes in unofficial final tally L By CHAKA FERGUSON The Associated Press ALBUQUERQUE Al Gore won a 481 vote squeaker Friday in New Mexico the closest presidential race in the coun try outside Florida after a series of clerical blunders and a flipflopped lead that kept the race in limbo for 10 days The call by The Associated Press is based on complete unofficial results each county said it gave to the secretary of state Each countys returns wont be made official until the state Canvassing Board meets Nov 28 In New Mexico Gore had votes and George W Bush had votes Besides Florida New Mexico had been the only state without a declared winner We believe every vote has been fairly and fully state Democratic Chairwoman Diane Denish said We expect on the 28th the results will be cer tified and New Mexico will be an Al Gore state Im very proud of Gore gains New Mexicos five electoral votes but the race was not likely to be decisive Whoever wins Floridas 2S elec toral votes has enough to declare victory New Mexico could come into play if Bush were to lose Florida and challenge results here and in a couple of other close states There is no automatic recount in New Mexico a candidate has to request it Bush spokesman Andrew Malcolm said the governors campaign would not make any decision about contesting New Mexi cos tally until the recount in Florida is resolved The losing national candidate has until Dec 6 to request arecount The deadline isnt for a few days so we wont be making a decision until the last Malcolm said Friday from Bushs Austin Texas headquarters But obviously an election this close requires us to monitor it State GOP Chairman John Dendahl said We remain disappointed not to have won New Mexico at least at this point for Gov ELECTION Continued from Page Al On a day pitted with emotional highs and lows for both cam paigns the llth Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta rejected Bushs request to halt the recounts returning the matter to Florida courts As aides watched glumly from Texas Bush adviser James A Baker III said neither court has yet to address the core of Bushs case that hand counts from selected counties are unfair and expose the election to mistakes and political mischief We remain confident the supreme court will find the sec retary of state properly exer cised her discretion in barring manual recounts he said Republican operatives were in each of Floridas 67 counties in case a statewide manual recount was ordered either by the courts or as a last resort by Bush himself Bush aides had been working behind the scenes to set up a victory statement for today followed by a news conference Sunday plans that were put on hold by the court setbacks As we say around the office the worm said Gore spokesman Mark Fabiani And now the worm is getting Floridas high court stopped Secretary of State Katherine Harris from certifying the results of the states election today at the end of absentee bal loting She planned instead to release an updated count without comment The oneparagraph ruling blunted a morning order from a trial judge who upheld Harris right to seal the results In its unanimous order the high court said it wanted to maintain the status quo while lawyers made their challenges in the state that will settle the race for the presidency Harris was told not to act until further a In its order denying Bushs request to halt the county recounts the circuit court in Atlanta said States have the primary authority to determine the manner of appointing presi dential electors and to resolve most controversies concerning the appointment of There was no end to the wran gling There are more attorneys than there are said Bob Edwards chairman of the Republican Executive Commit tee for Walton County where five absentee votes were tossed oat including those of four peo ple who had already voted In Orange County officials discard ed 117 cf 147 votes received Democrats protested a num ber of ballots saying they were not postmarked as required A GOP official said Republicans might challenge the discarding Gores Election Night lead more than doubled over the next two days as updated figures came in from around the state But a computer glitch in Bernalillo County the states largest pre vented the counting of some absen tee and early ballots Some of those votes were later declared missing then turned up in a locked box After the problem was fixed Bush took the lead by a mere 17 votes Then Dona Ana County discovered that someone had read 620 absentee votes for Gore as 120 votes So Gore retook the lead early this week and was able to hold onto it Bernalillo County was one of the last to complete its canvass of election returns County elections manager Robert Lucero said the results would be delivered to the secretary of states office Saturday Weve not had a chance to review state GOP attorney Pat Rogers said of the countys results Were going to be looking very closely at these numbers the ballots and related This was the closest presidential elec tion in New Mexico since it became a state in 1912 That year Woodrow Wilson defeated William H Taft by votes according to the secretary of states office However the 1960 election was closer if the margin of victory is mea sured in percentage of the vote John F Kennedy defeated Republican Richard Nixon by percent of the or a plu rality of votes Wilson won by sever al percentage points in 1912 New Mexico had voted for the winner of the national presidential election in all but one year That was in 1976 when Democrat Jimmy Carter upset Republi can incumbent Gerald Ford Statewide Ford got percent to Carters per cent but Carter went on to win the presi dency Bernalillo County including the Albu querque metropolitan area has a popula tion of about residents And counting ballots has been a historical problem for the county In 1996 a statewide ballot measure four legislative races and a close district attorneys race werent decided until two days after polls closed In 1998 a con gressional special election wasnt decided for three days and five months later it took more than 20 hours to complete another vote tally of hundreds of ballots many from military personnel Gores presidential dreams rested with the courts and in the ballotcounting rooms of Palm Beach and Broward counties and now MiamiDade I waiit to be clear neither Governor Bush nor the Florida secretary of state nor I will be the arbiter of this Gore said shortly after the high courts ruling This election is a matter that must be decided by the will of the people as expressed under the rule of The seven highcourt justices set a hearing for 1 Monday to consider the validity oT ongo ing recounts in several counties The timetable effectively per mits manual recounts to contin ue in the three Democraticlean ing jurisdictions where about million of the states 6 million ballots were cast It was another day of tumult and tension for the candidates and their weary workers a trial1 court ruling highfives in Bushs camp a highcourt ruling cheers from Gores camp absen tee ballots counted Election Day ballots recounted a new contro versy regarding missing post marks and a ruling from a feder al court The deep partisan divide cer tain to shadow the winner to the White House was evident in the political makeup of Fridays key players Harris is a Republican who campaigned for Bush and all seven state Supreme Court justices are appointees of Demo cratic governors Its very bitter and highly partisan and its really a said former President Carter a Democrat who has overseen numerous elections in fledging democracies since leav ing the White House Another former president seemed equally philosophical There is a lesson in this and I would simply say that I think this country is totally resilient total ly said George Bush father of the GOP candidate Leaving out who wins or loses this country will be just Harris certified the bulk of Floridas votes Tuesday showing Bush with an agonizingly narrow 300vote lead That total did not include about overseas absentee had to be delivered to counties by mid night Friday and their totals reported to Harris by noon today Bush was in Texas the vice president in Washington as they and their aides rode an emotion al rollercoaster Midway through the day with a favorable ruling in their pock et the Bush team mulled whether to declare an victory today something it has nt been shy about asserting it deserved with every legal or political twist since Election Day We now look forward to the prompt counting and reporting of the limited number yof uncounted overseas absentee ballots so that the process of achieving a final result to the election in Florida is not subject to further said Baker hours before the high courts rul ing Gores team was on the defen sive then with top Gore lawyer Warren Christopher saying We dont want to have it come to an end with a rush for judgment that would leave many questions out Meeting in Wesley Chapel GOP governors offered a standing ovation when they heard of the decision Gore advisers held out hope that the election spectacle could take yet another unpredictable turn in the vice presidents favor It Pennsylvanias Tom Ridge said the room darkened when GOP governors got the news They feel a sense of helpless Ridge said I want to be hopeful I want to be Advisers said that with the favorable turn of events Gore was not considering conceding to Bush They say he is aware however that the publics patience can run out with little warning Some advisers though still eager to fight Bush have tqld Gore her would be a frontrunner in 20047 if he bows out gracefully Not counting Florida Gore won 20 states plus the District of Columbia for 267 electoral votes three shy of the number need ed to win the White House Bush won 29 states for 246 electoral votes and Florida would put him just over the top Arts 8c Crafts Fair Saturday Gonzales Elem on Food Fun Shopping 2 6 twenty for 9829663 Guadatupe at Manhattan fnaxl to Cardrageous IISDlan Automotive Detailing 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