RE: What a weird situation

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From: Lisa Dusseault (
Date: Sat Nov 18 2000 - 09:23:06 PST

Much of the discussion on the list has been about whether it's "fair" to do
a Florida recount if other places don't get a recount, the answer (which I
agree with) being that a recount is only likely to change electoral votes in
FL. Although there is a margin of error everywhere, usually the margin of
victory, by one side or the other, is greater. Thus, with an electoral
college, only recount in places that could actually affect the results.

Other discussions have been about the electoral college itself, and whether
the president should be elected by popular vote alone.

Just think what would have happened, however, if the electoral college
didn't exist in this election. With such a close race nationwide, we'd have
_every_ county in the nation clamouring for a recount. Any pro-Bush county
would have Bush supporters asking for a recount, because (assuming no bias
in uncounted votes) new votes would likely increase the nationwide edge for
Bush. Any pro-Gore county would have Gore supporters with the same wish.
Any hotly-contested county would have both sides asking for recounts.

Does any nation actually have a system which could result in this kind of
widespread confusion?

Of course in Canada (and UK similar), since we don't elect our Prime
Minister but instead elect Members of Parliament, only regions where the
vote is very close need to recount to make sure that the right MP gets sent
to Ottawa. Then the party with the most MPs has their leader become the PM.
(I'm not sure what happens if two parties have equal MPs, but I suspect if
those two parties couldn't form a coalition, a new election would be


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