Al, it’s time to call it quits


Message to Al Gore: It’s over. The Florida election results have been certified. George W. Bush gained the most votes to win Florida’s electors, the Electoral College, and the presidency.

Here’s a reality check. In every recount you and your attorneys fought so hard to obtain, George W. Bush maintained the lead. All the while, Gov. Bush maintained dignity, never gloated, but prepared to work toward a smooth transition once the results were certified. You yourself said you would abide by the results of certification. But the loss of power is apparently too great for you to bear.

The American public has been forced to endure legal challenge after legal challenge from your attorneys. And now you reverse yourself by preparing to contest Florida’s legal certification of the results, drawing this out into an endless, bitter battle in the courts.

You have said that you want this race to be decided by the will of the people. Yet your relentless lawsuits suggest differently. They prove that you would rather have the will of the people usurped by the will of the courts. Indeed, Republicans and Democrats alike want a full, fair and accurate count. What is fair and accurate about your legal team pressuring canvassing boards to decide the intent of each voter, hopefully in your favor, on ballots that have partial indents or no indents at all? For three weeks, Americans have been astonished to watch canvassers hold chads up to the light to painstakingly determine whether you got additional votes. At the same time, your legal team vigorously fought to disqualify legitimate and clearly-punched ballots from our overseas servicemen and women.

Make no mistake. Indeed, every Florida ballot was legally counted. Most by machines that are neither Republican nor Democrat. Every vote and every voter did count. Only in those counties where you thought you would pick up enough votes to surpass George W. Bush did you file to have manual recounts. Your legal team continues to repeat that every vote should be counted. Yet, they conveniently forget to acknowledge that every vote has not only been counted, there have been recounts after recounts — a process you and your legal team will not end until you finally are able to manufacture one vote more in Florida than George W. Bush.

Never in the history of the United States has any presidential candidate, with the exception of Bill Clinton, been willing to pull our nation into a constitutional crisis to serve his own power-hungry needs. Never in this land of the free has a presidential candidate held America hostage in an election until he gets the outcome he wants. In the closest of past presidential races, candidates have done the honorable thing by putting the nation’s interests before their own. Al Gore, where is your honor? You say you are your own man. But your actions of the past three weeks have shown that you have no more respect for this office and the American people than Bill Clinton.

You want this presidency so bad that you are willing to sacrifice the best interests of this nation. What good is winning the presidency if in the process you lose the nation?

Enough is enough. America’s patience has worn thin over your legal maneuvering. We want an end. In every presidential race, there is a winner and a loser. This race ended Sunday night with the certification of Florida’s results. George W. Bush is now our president-elect. It is time for you, Al Gore, to end this childish tantrum and take your loss like a man. It is time for you to live up to your word and abide by the certification results. It is time for you to quit holding America hostage to your own self-serving interests and set our nation free from the endless legal challenges for the presidency. It is time for you to respect the will of the people and do the right and honorable thing for our nation. It is time for you, Al Gore, to concede.

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