Breaking the Deadlock: The 2000 Election, the Constitution, and the Courts

By Richard A. Posner | Go to book overview

Chapter 2
The Deadlocked Election

The inexact science of divining what the voter intended in the case of a mere indentation or whether the card reader counted a hole that was partly or wholly blocked by a hanging chad has been called “chadology.”1

FLORIDIANS went to the polls along with the rest of the nation on November 7, 2000. On November 18, after the ballots cast on election day had been counted mechanically and then recounted mechanically, after a few completed hand recounts (mainly in Volusia County) had been factored in, and after latearriving overseas ballots had been added to the tally, Bush was ahead by only 930 votes out of the almost six million votes that had been cast and counted in Florida for a Presidential candidate.2

____________________
1
Ronnie Dugger, “Annals of Democracy: Counting Votes,” New Yorker, Nov. 7, 1988, pp. 40, 54.
2
My voting statistics are drawn from the briefs and judicial opinions in the litigation challenging the election results, from the report of the machine count in a table published in the New York Times (national ed.), Nov. 27, 2000, p. A15, and from Gwyneth K. Shaw, Jim Leusner, and Sean Holton, “Uncounted Ballots May Add Up to 180,000: Election Officials Said Confusion, Mistakes and Protests All Contributed to Votes Being Thrown Out,” Orlando Sentinel, Nov. 15, 2000, p. A1.

-48-

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Breaking the Deadlock: The 2000 Election, the Constitution, and the Courts
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Breaking the Deadlock - The 2000 Election, the Constitution, and the Courts *
  • Contents v
  • Preface vii
  • Chronology of the Deadlock xiii
  • Glossary of Election Terms xv
  • Breaking the Deadlock *
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - The Road to Florida 2000 12
  • Chapter 2 - The Deadlocked Election 48
  • Chapter 3 - The Postelection Struggle in the Courts 92
  • Chapter 4 - Critiquing the Participants 150
  • Chapter 5 - Consequences and Reforms 221
  • Conclusion 252
  • Index 261
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