DAVE "DOCTOR" GONZO
November 15, 2000
In one way, you can't blame the press.
The present events in the state of Florida are just too tempting to cover 24-7 :
the near-tie in the presidential race, recounts and re-recounts, lawsuits, counter-lawsuits, and what seems like the convergence of every major-league litigator in the country in Florida. At times, two or three news conferences, public hearings, or judicial rulings are simultaneously jockeying for attention.
When you think about it, that's way more than enough for a cable news channel to cover.
But there is a serious and practically unreported side to the Florida election fiasco that is going almost entirely unreported.
On Monday, The Jacksonville Times-Union reported that
some 27,000presidential ballots were voided in Duval County -- from primarily black precincts, with voters leaning overwhelmingly for Gore.
A campaign spokesman for Gore's north Florida efforts, Mike Langdon, was a master of understatement : "It's very disturbing that those numbers are that high. Something's awry here. It's disproportionately out of whack."
Duval County Voids
Also on Monday, The Sun-Sentinel reported the FBI has been investigating allegations that some voters, primarily Haitians with limited or no English speaking or reading ability, were duped into voting for Bush by misleading "palm cards" that made them think they were voting for Gore.
Misleading palm cards
And then, of course, there was the report in the Times of London that mentioned a request by the Gore campaign team that the FBI investigate how thousands of primarily black supporters of Al Gore were given ballot documents allegedly pre-marked for other candidates.
"It's no secret that America's big, dirty secret is still racism --
and there's no question from what I've seen that it is alive and well in Florida." That is what a friend of mine said to me thi smorning. He is very close to the action in Florida and was calling me from West Palm Beach.
"If you think that these reports of what looks like organized and orchestrated election fraud targeting minorities is a coincidence, you've got another thing comin'."
We have a term for this mostly unreported pattern of events in Florida here a American Politics Journal :
'Nuff said ...