Slate Papers

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Date: Sat Nov 11 2000 - 08:31:41 PPET

An LAT front pager examines the choices that Gore faces. He can
challenge the results aggressively, but he risks generating
long-lasting ill-will towards himself and his party. The WP
off-lead reports that Democrats, though they support the call for
an accurate recount, "screamed like hell" over the suggestion that
Gore might continue the fight deep into December. Prominent party
officials have expressed concern that gaining the Presidency might
be a pyrrhic victory for Gore if the public feels that he had to
insinuate his way into the office litigiously.

Republicans are busy deciding on their own strategy. The WP fronts
the countermoves leaders in the Bush camp are considering. The
first option is to take legal action to block the manual recount.
(The LAT reports in its lead that Bush has approved a possible
suit.) The second option is retaliation: Demand a recount in
Wisconsin (where Gore leads by only 6,000 votes), in Oregon (Gore
again by 6,000), and in Iowa (Gore by 5,000). The one definite
action Republicans have taken is to appeal to Gore's statesmanship.
James Baker admonished: "For the good of the country and for the
sake of our standing in the world, the campaigning should end and
the business of an orderly transition should begin." The WP notes
that the Democratic camp is divided on how to proceed. Richard
Gephardt has called for patience to ensure a thorough and decisive
recount. But Bob Dole is reported to have said, "It's time for
[Gore] to say the election is over--let's go on with the business
of America. The recount was held. Bush is still the winner."

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