Why This Election Stuff Is A Good Thing

B5JMS Poster b5jms-owner at shekel.mcl.cs.columbia.edu
Wed Nov 15 04:38:03 EST 2000

From: jmarien3 at aol.com (JMarien3)
Date: 14 Nov 2000 00:17:02 -0700
Lines: 59

jmsatb5 at aol.com  (Jms at B5) on 11/13/00 wrote:


>Some people have referred to this as a "constitutional crisis."  But it's
>This IS the system working, using all of the various permutations set in
>at the federal, state and local levels, at the polling place and the court
>house.  What this says is that WHATEVER the problem, sonuvagun, there are
>peaceful and statutory means set up to deal with them.
>If the system didn't work, if this were a constitutionsl crisis, there would
>no other option but violence.  And that ain't the case here.  Either side
>the legal courtroom route isn't going outside the system, the courts are a
>of the system, part of the chain of checks and balances that keep the whole


I agree with your assessment on the whole, and arrived at many of the same
conclusions myself. People have been too complacent for too long. Personally, I
get annoyed by people who complain about the system or about a politician who
gets elected---and then you find out that they didn't even bother to vote (or
aren't even registered at all!); that turns me off. The voter turnout in this
country is shameful, and a little cage rattling with this election will
hopefully change that.

You are correct: this is NOT a Constitution crisis. I've heard people say it
is, but it isn't so.

However, as I said in an earlier post, it could turn into one. Despite the fact
that Gore appears to have had the election slip away from him (and not via any
deliberate fraud or illegalities), there's little doubt in my mind that Bush
will officially win Florida. But what if it does not stop there?

So, Bush gets Florida and has 271 electoral votes. What if Gore continues his
battle into the Electoral College, actively trying to get two or more electors
to switch? Or, what of this: 25 states plus DC require by law that the electors
cast their votes for their state winner. Florida is not one of those states.
(And no elector's ever been prosecuted or penalized before when he did switch
his vote.) Suppose two or more electors decide that their conscience requires
them to switch? I can see a big-time Constitutional crisis brewing here.

That scares me.

If that nightmare scenario does happen, I have enough faith that the country
will sort out the mess and pull through. But it will get messy, and could
indeed lead to volience. Right now, the courts are the right battleground and
hopefully everyone concerned will do "the right thing", but there is still
danger ahead. (And, no, I am not usually paranoic!)

'Nuff said.

From: jmsatb5 at aol.com (Jms at B5)
Date: 14 Nov 2000 16:25:39 -0700
Lines: 19

>Suppose two or more electors decide that their conscience requires
>them to switch? I can see a big-time Constitutional crisis brewing here.

Because the electors in question are appointed by republicans (the winning
party gets to slot in their electors), you would have to imagine a republican
elector changing his/her vote for a democrat, and I think the odds on that are
slim and none.  (It would be the same in reverse, I imagine.)


(jmsatb5 at aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2000 by
synthetic worlds, ltd., permission
to reprint specifically denied to
SFX Magazine)

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