The Presidential Election of 2000 was stolen by the Bush-Cheney Campaign and the Florida GOP, Jeb Bush, Katherine Harris, County Election Officials, the U.S. Supreme Court, the Media, and Attorney General John Ashcroft.
The list below documents all of the crimes that were committed to steal the election. These were not isolated instances of carelessness - they were deliberate election fraud. We believe these crimes are so serious that they should be given a name: FLORIDAGATE.
FLORIDAGATE is the nation's biggest scandal since Watergate. So why isn't the mainstream media reporting the story? Because the media - especially the huge broadcast networks - were participants in the crime, and are now participants in the coverup. So is Attorney General John Ashcroft, who should be investigating these crimes. Meanwhile, Democratic leaders in Washington are afraid to demand a thorough investigation, because they know they would be viciously attacked by the Republican propaganda machine.
We demand a thorough investigation of FLORIDAGATE. Sign our petition.
We are fighting a heroic battle to bring FLORIDAGATE to the attention of the American people - and the world. We need your support! Please contribute today.
To comment on the crimes cited below, click here.
Read the Boston Statement detailing how Bush stole the presidency.
Bush-Cheney Campaign and the Florida GOP
- Absentee ballot law (FL GOP)
The Florida Republican Party sent a letter with Jeb's signature and the Florida state seal urging Florida Republicans to vote by absentee ballots. But Florida law (which was made even stricter in 1998) is not a "vote-by-mail" system - voters must have a valid reason for voting by mail. The Republican Party was thus encouraging Republican voters to break the law.
Florida's absentee ballot laws were tightened because of the 1997 Miami absentee ballot scandal that resulted in the voiding of ALL absentees and the overturn of the election. The man who engineered that massive fraud - Mayoral candidate Xavier Suarez - played a key role in the GOP absentee effort in 2000.
- Absentee Ballot Law, Voting Rights Act (FL GOP, Seminole County, Martin County)
With the active assistance of GOP Election Supervisors, FL GOP officials sent GOP operatives to illegally alter over 2,500 defective Republican absentee ballot applications, while at least 550 Democratic applications were ignored.
- Conspiracy to Interfere with the Lawful Count of the Votes (Jeb Bush, Katherine Harris)
When the TV networks called Florida for Gore, Bush campaign spokespeople (Rove, Matalin, etc.) went on TV to declare the results were wrong and would soon be changed. Was there already a plan to use state and local government powers to interfere with the lawful counting of votes?
- FL Absentee Ballot Law
Pressured canvassing boards in Republican counties to violate Florida's election laws and count clearly illegal overseas Republican absentee ballots, while fighting to prevent Democratic counties from counting similar absentee ballots
- 14th Amendment, Voting Rights Act
Forced hand counting of heavily Republican absentee ballots that the machines couldn't read - while delaying and blocking hand counting of poll-cast ballots in heavily Democratic counties that the machines couldn't read, thus treating ballots differently and discriminating against black voters
- Legal ethics
Urged courts to block hand counts in Democratic counties in FL while urging courts to conduct hand counts in NM
- Interference with Administration of Elections; Assault (Rep. John Sweeney, Congressional staff, etc)
On 11/21, organized a riot in Miami/Dade County that intimidated the canvassing board into stopping its hand count, and then assaulted Joe Geller, chair of the Dade County Democratic executive committee. This riot was paid for by the Bush recount committee.
- Abuse of Congressional office for partisan politics; politicization of active-duty military (Rep. Steve Buyer, Rep. Tillie Fowler, Michael Higgins, Rob Carter)
On 11/22, Rep. Buyer gave the Pentagon a list of active duty sailors whose ballots had been rejected as invalid, which was provided by Florida Republican operative Rob Carter. Buyer demanded their e-mail addresses immediately. Buyer's aide Michael Higgins then contacted the sailors and put them in touch with Carter, who enlisted these sailors in a propaganda campaign to attack Vice President Al Gore as anti-military, and to pressure county officials to count invalid ballots. Carter also supplied Rep. Tillie Fowler with stories from service members, which she used to denounce Gore at a rally.
- FEC Disclosure
Failure to disclose how the $8 million the Bush campaign raised for its Florida recount effort
- IRS Disclosure
Failure to disclose the occupation and employer of thousands of recount donors
Governor Jeb Bush
- Absentee Ballot Law
Letter sent by Florida Republican Party with Jeb's signature and the Florida state seal urged Florida Republicans to vote by absentee ballot, regardless of whether they had a valid legal reason for doing so.
- Abuse of State Seal
Letter sent by Florida Republican party with Jeb's signature and the Florida state seal urging Florida Republicans to vote by absentee ballots
- Abuse of Office for Partisan Purposes; Interference with Administration of Elections
Jeb and his staff made 95 phone calls made to Bush/Cheney Presidential campaign after Jeb said he'd recused himself; he visited the Bush/GOP headquarters in Tallahassee; he participated in at least 1 Bush strategy conference call; 6 of the 95 calls were on the day GOP thugs stopped the Miami-Dade recount
- Abuse of Office for Partisan Purposes
Called special session of legislature to intimidate county officials and judges
- 14th Amendment (Florida Legislature)
2001 Election Reform law perpetuates the election problems that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to be in violation of the 14th Amendment.
Secretary of State Katherine Harris
- Voting Rights Act Section 5 (Bucky Mitchell, Michael Cochran, Elaine Baxter)
Misrepresentation of the felons list statute, failure to provide available documents directly relevant to the pre-clearance review
- Voting Rights Act Section 5 (Clay Roberts, Bucky Mitchell)
Knowing failure to obtain pre-clearance for significant changes in policies and procedures pursuant to the implementation of the felons list law which resulted in the removal of legal voters from the registration rolls in at least one of 5 pre-clearance counties in Florida
- Disenfranchisement of Legal Voters
Knowingly purged felons from states where voting rights were automatically restored upon release, contrary to clear court rulings. Knowingly included non-felons in its purge through its "wide net" policy (accepting a 90% name-match in 1999, and an 80% match in 2000).
- Ballot Design Law
Sent out a sample ballot design to county elections supervisors that split the 10 Presidential candidates on the ballots onto 2 pages
- Uniform Administration of Election Law: Assistance to Voters
Failure to oversee training of poll workers to ensure proper assistance to voters
- Americans with Disabilities Act (Jeb Bush, Counties)
Failure to make voting machines fully accessible to the handicapped
- Mandatory Machine Recount Law
20 counties never did the mandatory machine recount as required by state election law.
- Overseas Absentee Ballot Law
Allowed illegal overseas absentee ballots to be counted and included in the certified total
- Uniform Administration of Election Law
Coordination (conspiracy) between Harris lawyers and Bush/GOP lawyers; Deliberate misinterpretation of the law for partisan purposes
- Uniform Administration of Elections: Hand Recount Law
Inconsistent application of hand count law: accepted manual recounts from some counties, but denied Palm Beach permission to conduct hand count
- Use of Government Office for Politics
Allowed Republican operatives Andrew Goodman and J.M. Stipanovich to use her state computers and offices during the recount; Communications Director Donald Tighe admitted writing partisan speeches during the campaign.
These political activities were found on Harris' computer. 1) On 1/29/00, a speech written for a Republican meeting that declared: "We are READY TO LEAD!" 2) On 3/14/00, a set of campaign talking points for George W. Bush. 3) On 11/14/00, an examination of the campaign finances of FL Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente - who was reviewing important election cases. 4) A list of contributors to Harris' 1998 Democratic opponent, Karen Gievers (undated).
Harris claims Stipanovich and Goodman were "volunteers," but Goodman billed Harris $12,000 for his work, and Harris initially approved the bill (Palm Beach Post, 8/23/01)
- Abuse of Discretion in Violation of Florida Supreme Court Order
The Florida Supreme Court ordered Harris to accept the Palm Beach recount until 9 a.m. on 11/27; she refused to accept them after 5 p.m. on 11/26
- Conflict of Interest; Use of Office for Political Gain
While overseeing the recount, Harris expressed interest in appointment as Ambassador under Bush
- Public Records
Reinstalled Windows and erased files on state computers used by Republican operatives Andrew Goodman and J.M Stipanovich
County Election Officials
- Voter Registration Law and Voting Rights Act
Failure to process thousands of voter registration forms before the election, including many from historically black colleges
- Absentee Ballot Law (Okaloosa)
Sent hundreds or thousands of absentee ballots to voters who did NOT request one
- Absentee Ballot Law (Bay)
Republicans turned in "handfuls" and in one case a suitcase-full of absentee ballots in defiance of a law that provides people may submit no more than two absentee ballots other than their own or that of a family member
- Ballot design law (Palm Beach)
- Sample ballot law (Duval)
Sample ballot differed significantly from actual ballot - sample ballot listed 10 candidates on 1 page, while actual ballot spread candidates over 2 pages
- Voting Rights Act
Substandard voting machinery in predominantly minority precincts that produced ballot spoilage up to 40%; Failure to provide voter assistance in Spanish (Osceola County) and Creole (Miami-Dade); reports of intimidation of minority voters
- Voting machine law (Punch Card)
Failure to properly maintain machines, including misalignment and accumulation of chads
- Election Day law
Closed polling places without notice; Turned away voters who were on line at 7 pm when polls closed
- Voting machine law (Miami-Dade)
Use of malfunctioning voting machines
- Voting Machine Law (Optiscan)
Failure to provide machine-readable pens
- Voting Machine Law (Palm Beach)
Misaligned ballots, as described by Rabbi Yellin; Use of malfunctioning voting machines in county elections office
- Miami Herald 8/28/01: Democratic State Representative Calls for Criminal Investigation of Teresa Lepore
- Negligence (Palm Beach)
Failure to respond to complaints about confusing ballot and voting mistakes
- Intent of the voter
Nearly all counties failed to count machine-unreadable votes where the intent of the voter was clear. This includes "write-in overvotes" that must specifically be counted by law.
- Mandatory machine recount law
20 counties never did the mandatory machine recount as required by state election law.
- Racial Discrimination (Escambia)
Disabled optiscan technology that prevents errors on poll-cast votes, but "duplicated" (fixed) absentee votes with errors.
- Different Treatment of Machine-Unreadable Ballots
Various Republican counties hand-counted absentee ballots that could not be machine-read (thus favoring Republicans), but refused to hand-count poll-cast ballots that could not be machine-read (thus harming Democrats)
- Ballot tampering fraud (Escambia and other Northern counties)
Estimated 7,100 ballots were destroyed in 11 counties
- Ballot tampering; Open meetings law (Optiscan)
Secret duplication of 10,000 optiscan-unreadable absentee ballots in 26 heavily Republican counties in central and north Florida. These ballots favored George W. Bush by more than 2 to 1.
- Fraud (Duval)
Republican elections supervisor John Stafford lied about the number of under and overvotes to the Gore campaign during the 72-hour window for requesting a recount, telling the Gore campaign there were only 2-300 votes disqualified, when there were actually 27,000.
- Recount law (Miami-Dade)
Refusal to conduct hand count
- Absentee Ballot Law (Orange)
Refused to count stateside absentees postmarked before Election Day, while counting overseas absentees with no postmark or date
- Public Records Law (Palm Beach)
Destruction of computer records of 2000 Presidential vote
U.S. Supreme Court
- Conflict of Interest
Four members of the Supreme Court majority in Bush v. Gore had conflicts and should have recused themselves: O'Connor, Thomas, Scalia, and Rehnquist. In August 2001, three Justices recused themselves from the case of Napoleon Beazley, who was sentenced to death for the murder of the father of J. Michael Luttig, a well-connected federal appeals court judge.
- US Law on Emergency Injunctive Relief
Granted emergency relief to George W. Bush to stop the manual 4. Count of 60,000 uncounted votes as ordered by the Florida Supreme Court, on the theory that counting all of the votes would cause "irreparable harm" to Bush.
- 14th Amendment
In Bush v. Gore, the Supreme Court declared the the 14th Amendment prohibited variations in vote counting by county officials, contrary to all precedents - and explicitly refused to set a precedent for future cases. In the same ruling, the Court accepted 2,490 overseas absentee ballots that were counted without any consistent standard and produced a net gain of 630 votes for Bush - greater than his 537-vote margin of victory.
- Presidential Elections; Appointment of Electors (3 USC Chapter 1 Section 5)
On December 12, 2000, the Supreme Court intentionally misrepresented the law as saying that Electors had to be chosen by December 12, when the true deadline was December 18.
- Corporate Contribution to Federal Campaign (FOX)
George W. Bush spoke by phone with his cousin John Ellis at FOX News shortly before FOX incorrectly projected Bush as the winner at 2 a.m. on Election Night, which prompted Al Gore to temporarily concede and defined him as the presumptive loser.
- Corporate Contributions to Federal Campaign; Broadcast License Requirement to Serve the Public Interest (FOX, NBC, ABC, CBS)
The broadcast networks consistenly ignored Bush's flaws and inconsistencies, while scrutinizing Gore's flaws and inconsistencies
- Corporate Contribution to Federal Campaign; Violation of Broadcast License (NBC/Jack Welch)
On Election Night, GE CEO Jack Welch reportedly ordered the network to call Florida for Bush, even though the results were too close to call.
- Rep. Henry Waxman's Repeated Requests for Videotapes Promised by NBC News President Andrew Lack
Attorney General John Ashcroft
- Failure to Investigate
DoJ has received THOUSANDS of complaints, but is investigating only 12. Complaints include serious allegations of fraud, such as pre-punched ballots in heavily African American and Democratic precincts in Miami/Dade and Broward Counties