|An Opinion on the Situation in Florida|
Issue 01 (September 2003)
For those willing to take the time and objective position of studying federal and state (Florida) law on what has happened with this election, along with case precedence, you will see that it is clear that the recount process was properly called for and correctly performed. The ballots were all completed in full compliance with Florida law. And no matter how many misunderstood or incorrectly punched ballots there are, by law the vote stands. If we don't like the result, then too bad. It's not our job to change a result we don't like. It is our responsibility to revise the law so that this out of control situation does not repeat itself in the future.
Allowing a re-vote in any circumstance violates every voting citizens' right of privacy. That is one of the reasons why network "projections" on election night are out of control and can encroach on our constitutional right of privacy. Yes, we can make the choice to tune in or tune out the networks when we cast our ballots. However, when we make our vote, we do not have the "luxury" of knowing how the entire nation has already voted, nor do we have the "power" to make a "second" choice, knowing full well that the choice is under the microscope. If a Florida or Palm Beach County re-vote is allowed by any court, the rest of the US voters are compromised.
Every registered voter receives a sample ballot by mail. It is their choice to familiarize (or not) themselves with the format and how to complete the ballot properly. It is incumbent on the voter to do this. To not review the sample ballot and to not familiarize oneself with a ballot, the candidates, and any other issues requiring a check mark, pull of a lever, or poke of a hole, is irresponsible on the part of the voter. And if a voter can't do this on their own, there is plenty of help available.
In my opinion, and I believe both state and federal election laws support this opinion....you familiarize yourself with the issues, the candidates, the ballot...and then you vote in privacy, without knowledge of what other voters are doing or have done. No second chances.
Whether it is Gore or Bush...once the recount is complete, it is time to move on with the business of transitioning the current administration to the new. Then whoever wants to take on the challenge of improving the law, improving the process...so be it.