UFPPC (www.ufppc.org) Digging Deeper LXI: November 3, 2008, 7:00 p.m.
Too Close to Call: The Thirty-Six-Day Battle to Decide the 2000Election
(New York: Random House, October 2001; paperback October2002, with “revised and expanded epilogue”).Cast of Characters.
79 individuals:candidates, campaign officials, Floridaofficials, lawyers and strategists in “thebattle for Florida,” Palm Beach Countyofficials, Miami-Dade County officials,Broward County officials, U.S. SupremeCourt judges, a U.S. District Court judge,Florida Supreme Court judges, LeonCounty Circuit Court Judges, and a PalmBeach County Circuit Court judge (xi-xiv)
Chronology: Recount 2000.
A table of events day-by-day, Nov. 7-Dec. 13, 2008,divided in four columns: StatewideDevelopments, Palm Beach, Miami-Dade,and Broward Counties ([xv]-[xix]).
Prologue: Florida Sunrise.
First signof Palm Beach County butterfly ballotproblem on Election Day (3-5). Theclosest, most dramatic, and mostcomplicated election in U.S. history (5-6). The subsequent battle is best understoodas a continuation of the campaign inwhich the “passion gap” between thecandidates was the most importantfactor (7-8).
Ch. 1: A Big Problem.
Ron Klain,whose relation to Gore and the campaigntypifies its aloofness from gritty intimatebonds (9-11). Michael Whouley,organizer of the campaign’s fieldoperation, calls Natalie Zellner, who calls Theresa LePore, the supervisor of elections in Palm Beach County (11-13). The butterfly ballot (13-16). Gapbetween Gore’s campaign managementand campaign workers (16-17). With exitpolls showing Gore winning Florida,between 7:49:40 and 7:52 p.m. EST NBC,CBS, & ABC called election for Gore whenNew Mexico goes for Gore; then, between2:16 and 2:20 a.m. Fox, CBS, and NBC,and ABC called Florida for Bush, and Goredecided immediately to concede—without consulting Michael Whouley (17-21). When Nick Baldick, Florida votecounter, reports that the networks usederroneous numbers from Volusia Countyand Florida is too close to call, a franticeffort succeeds in reaching Gore with thenews; he withdraws concession (21-25).
Ch. 2: The Flight of
John Hardin Young, recount expert,advises getting people to Florida; RonKlain will help run the effort there (26-29). Warren Christopher agrees to headit; a party line emphasizing process isadopted (30-31). Operatives are togather information (31-32). Failing tofind a law firm in Tallahassee willing torepresent them, Klain assembles a“virtual law firm” (32-34). Team decidesrecounts, not lawsuits, are called for;Bush’s lead in Florida slips to 327 (34-36). Ironically, William M. Daley, son of notorious Chicago mayor Richard Daley,is Gore’s campaign manager (36-37).Daley and Christopher decide whichcounties to “protest” (demand recounts)(37-39).
Ch. 3: “People Get Screwed EveryDay.”
[Daley quip to Gore (56)] JamesBaker, not involved in the campaign andbusy with the Carlyle group, chosen torun the Florida effort for Bush (40-42).Ben Ginsberg, veteran of the 1984recount battle in Indiana’s 8
Congressional District, stolen byDemocrats in the House, an event thatlet to “the radicalization of theRepublican minority in the House” (44;42-45). Baker and Christopher eachregarded their situations as “dire” (45-47). Baker wants to paint recounts assubversive and use the federal courts tostop them (47-48). Former Republican