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Give it up Gore

It is time for Al Gore to bow out of the presidential race while he can still hold on to some shred of grace. The election mess has been going on for 23 days, which is 22 days too long. At this point, Bush is the clear winner of this race.

After four recounts, Gore has not come up with enough votes to swing the count in his favor. He should reject pressure from within his party and members of his campaign and decide not to forge on with any more lawsuits and accept George Bush as the presidential victor.

Though Gore won the popular vote, the outcome of the election hung on who won Florida’s electoral votes. Florida’s votes were counted four separate times, and Gore did not have more votes than Bush during any of the counts. At this point no amount of counting will tip the scales to Gore.

The United States helps other nations conduct fair national elections because our nation is looked to as the world’s bastion of democracy. However, our system is far from perfect. Florida raised questions as to the legitimacy of certain ballots.

Confusion set in as soon as anything other than fully punched chads were interpreted and counted. How can the United States hold itself up as a pillar of the electoral process if we are not sure what constitutes a vote in our own country??

Gore, instead of worrying about scraping together some very few last-minute votes, should be calling for a way to change the ballot writing and counting system.

If he took this course of action, he would appear to be a gracious loser-turned-crusader trying to make good from his loss and correcting a flaw in our system.

Our electoral system will never be perfect. It seems that Gore, by trying to count and recount, is holding the system up to a standard of perfection.

The transition of power must begin as soon as possible. Bush must be declared the absolute winner of the election, without any asterisks on the end, and he should be able to start building his administration without any further delay.

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