Students await election results
By JEFFREY TAM
The 2000 presidential election had all the makings of a suspense thriller - nearly a month after the election, the winning candidate is still unknown. Is it Texas Gov. George W. Bush, who is already busily preparing his presidential transition team, or is it Vice President Al Gore, whose lawyers will be arguing their final appeal for a hand recount to the Florida Supreme Court tomorrow?
Thomas Grey, a law professor and a former clerk to the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, said, "The case on the election contest has gone against Gore on grounds the Florida Supreme Court is unlikely to reverse, and that is probably the end of the matter."
Bob McGrew, a junior and editor in chief of the Stanford Review, confidently said, "I think the election's over and George Bush won."
Not so, according Krista Glaser, a senior and chair of Stanford Democrats.
"It's frustrating not to have closure and know who has won," she said. "But, I'd prefer waiting in order to ensure that we have a fair and accurate result. The Republicans should stop proclaiming victory before a winner is decided."
Jefferson Eppler, a junior and treasurer of Stanford Republicans, criticized the ongoing litigation. He said, "It seems unfair given the Democratic Party's mantra of counting every vote to focus on those 14,000 votes."
Are Stanford students sick of the election drama yet? Freshman Nick Williams said he is: "I'm very tired, it's been very drawn out." Referring to the current fight in the courts over who won the election, Williams stated, "I have very ambivalent feelings towards it; the law's been applied very clumsily."
Megan Root, another freshman, agreed that the process has lasted a long time, but prefaced that opinion by saying, "I'd rather they be confident in who they choose."
If Bush does win the election, it seems likely that he will face a divided Congress and an electorate that may not see him as being the legitimate president considering he lost the popular vote. But Gore has stated that if the court process goes against him in the end, he will be willing to support Bush as president.
Ali Reichenthal, a freshman, expressed those same sentiments. "It seems a little hard to support Bush as president, but once he becomes president, that's it," she said.
Glaser, though, remains confident that this will never happen. "[The Stanford Democrats] believe that if every vote that was cast on Nov. 7 is counted, then the true preference of Florida voters means Gore is our next President," she said.
"If this does not happen, surely we are dealing with an illegitimate process."
On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to send back to the Florida Supreme Court for clarification an earlier ruling to extend the Florida election certification deadline a week beyond what it was originally.
Grey commented, "It wasn't what I predicted, but it was a clever stroke to avoid what otherwise might have been a 5-4 decision along partisan lines.
"They really didn't reach any conclusions, which is why they were able to agree on the opinion."
Grey said he would like to see the electoral college abolished as the country's method for electing the president.
"I would favor adopting direct national popular election of the President, but I think there is almost no chance of such a constitutional amendment being adopted," he said.
"It requires three-fourths of the states to ratify, and too many small states benefit from the Electoral College to make that feasible," he said.
With a decision expected from the Florida Supreme Court within days, it seems probable that the election is finally close to an end.
So it looks like after about a month of waiting and watching CNN for the latest developments, we should soon know who will be the 43rd president of the United States of America.
Copyright © 2000
The Stanford Daily