Justice Antonin Scalia: Al Gore to blame for 2000 US election mess

The 2000 presidential election debacle was the fault of Al Gore, who should have followed Richard Nixon's 1960 example and conceded without legal action, according to the Supreme Court's leading conservative judge.

"Richard Nixon, when he lost to [John F.] Kennedy thought that the election had been stolen in Chicago, which was very likely true with the system at the time," Justice Antonin Scalia told The Telegraph.

"But he did not even think about bringing a court challenge. That was his prerogative. So you know if you don't like it, don't blame it on me.

"I didn't bring it into the courts. Mr Gore brought it into the courts.

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Greg L, Reinders - 7/6/2008

John, what would have happened if they followed the Florida court rulings and allowed recounts in all contested counties? The Constitution allows the states to set the rules in elections; the federal judiciary has no role.I thought the judges (Republican appointees) are supposed to follow the Constitution, and not make law. At least that is what we are assured.

John Olerud - 7/1/2008

Every newspaper that looked at the results where all of the votes were recounted statewide, as the 14th amendment called for, instead of in selective heavliy-democratic counties, as Vice President Gore unfortunately pushed for, found that President Bush won the election. The facts are clear.

Greg L, Reinders - 6/28/2008

Judge Scalia must have a very short memory because the title of the pleading is Bush V. Gore, meaning Mr. Bush filed the complaint. Personally, I believe the Judge to be a liar. He seems very conceited and acts as though he was anointed rather than appointed. I suppose he has he has to twist facts. The court did have the choice saying this is a state matter, and not accept jurisdiction.

Guy Moseley - 6/28/2008

It is interesting to think that thousands or tens of thousands of years from now when AI scholars in other solar systems are studying Earth blogs they will run across
that little post by Michael Green on Scalia and think "what a dumb shit" and do their little artificial intelligence laugh. Not agree, sure, but all that flea's navel
stuff? How retarded.

Mary Cowan - 6/27/2008

Justice Scalia's assertion that Richard Nixon "not even think about bringing a court challenge" in the 1960 election is contrary to the facts. As detailed by Gerald Posner (http://archive.salon.com/politics/feature/2000/11/10/nixon/index.html), although Nixon publicly took the high road, behind the scenes he encouraged other Republicans' challenges of the results and demands for recounts. Perhaps today's Republicans don't remember those events as they actually happened because the recounts so often reduced the votes for Nixon instead of increasing them, thus proving that Kennedy had legitimately won the election. In contrast, the reviews of the Florida ballots consistently showed that votes for Gore had been undercounted, often because of deliberate and illegal exclusions of ballots from the original tally (cf. http://www.failureisimpossible.com/essays/escambia.htm and http://www.failureisimpossible.com/essays/lostvotes.htm).

Michael Green - 6/27/2008

I think this news story helps demonstrate why Antonin Scalia is unfit to serve not only on the U.S. Supreme Court, but as a dogwalker or butterfly catcher. To paraphrase Fred Allen on Hollywood, you could take Scalia's understanding of the law, put it in a flea's navel, and you'd still have room for six caraway seeds and Clarence Thomas's brain.

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