Sunday, December 28, 2003

look I can't let this go... I will never get over it. This is from the BBC

Gore 'was cheated'

The BBC's Malcolm Brabant says that anger is bound to resurface at the Civil Rights Commission hearings, which began on Thursday.

The commission is trying to determine whether black voters in Florida were discriminated against.

The first main witness is the state's governor, Jeb Bush, the brother of the president-elect.

Many blacks believe that he fixed the election.

Mr Bush insists he has nothing to hide and has joked that the only crime he is guilty of is being the president-elect's brother.

Mr Bush does not believe the Commission will uncover any evidence of a deliberate attempt to disenfranchise black voters, 93% of whom voted for Al Gore.

Scared off

- But the Commission is looking at:

- why black precincts were given some of the oldest and most unreliable voting machines

- why 27,000 black votes were disqualified in Duval County in north-eastern Florida
whether the Florida Highway Patrol scared some people into not voting by setting up checkpoints near polling stations.

The Highway Patrol says it is insulted by the accusations and insists its operation was a routine effort to crack down on traffic violations.

The Democratic-leaning Commission is the most powerful Federal organisation that deals with racial discrimination, but it does not have any powers of enforcement.

It can only recommend changes to the President and Congress.

Black leaders have urged Mr Bush to prove that he is a President for all Americans by listening to their complaints and ensuring that there is no repeat of the Florida fiasco.

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