OT: Equal protection hogwash

0 views
Skip to first unread message

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 10:59:18 AM12/13/00
to
Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull. Why?
It's simple. Different counties and even different precincts within the same
county all use different voting methods. The florida state supreme court set
a single standard for counting punch card ballots. You simply cannot use
that same standard for other types of ballots. There are no "dimples" on
optical scanner cards. If not being able to count different types of ballots
differently is an equal protection violation, then *cast* different types of
ballots is also an equal protection violation. Until and unless there is a
single, uniform method of casting votes, you cannot expect there to be a
single, uniform method for counting them. Look at it this way: the punch
card readers clearly missed a lot of votes where the "chads" were still
partially attached. OTOH, optical scanners can read cards where the circles
are only partially filled in. Why is that not an equal protection violation?

The only legit equal protection issue here is that the Florida state supreme
court did not mandate state-wide recounts. They simply authorized them.
Thus, only 13 counties in addition to Dade, Broward and Palm Beach chose to
undertake recounts. That is definitely an equal protection issue. But it is
easy to solve: mandate a state-wide recount. The US Supreme Court has the
ability to extend the "safe-harbor" deadline if they want. Since they have
not actually mandated a stop to recounts (they yet again sent it back to the
Florida supreme court), they can extend the deadline to the 18th (or even
beyond) in order to allow a full and fair count to be performed. They
should. But they won't.

That said: Gore needs to concede. But all of us who care about fairness need
to remember how the repubs orchestrated this "coup" and sank this country
down to the level of a Banana Republic. We have congressionals in 2 years.
Get the bastards out of office.
--
"He trusts government. I trust people."
-Saddam Bush

"Feelings mean a lot in elections."
-Alan Wilson

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 11:38:13 AM12/13/00
to
I am not disagreeing with much else that you wrote, but on this point,
I do not believe the Supreme Court of the United States (as an equal
branch of government with Congress) can change Congress' safe harbor
law. They cannot write law.

However, since Article II states that Congress shall choose the day on
which Electors are to vote (and does not say anything about some
arbitrary day they are to be "appointed"), I believe the Supreme Court
had the right to throw out the "safe harbor" altogether. Congress may
not have the right to make that law, it may be repugnant to the
Constitution, and anything repugnant to the Constitution is not law
(Marbury v. Madison).

Therefore, if Gore had asked for this relief in the brief, perhaps it
might have been granted. However, there is no evidence in the brief's
or the record that Gore asked for this relief. I still feel it is
probably not law. Congress can not tell the states how to exercise
their plenary power, right? All they are asked to do is set a uniform
voting date (plainly so that no states "hold out" and cast deciding
votes).

While the Supreme Court can not move the Dec. 18th date set by federal
law in accordance with the U.S. Constitution, Congress, in its interest
to promote the United States, could move it to any damn day it chooses,
and allow Florida to properly settle it with a statewide recount that
would abide by the U.S. Supreme Court's wishes.

Chris Gomez

In article <B65D0705.4479%dewe...@netzero.net>,


Branden Wolner <dewe...@netzero.net> wrote:
>The US Supreme Court has the
> ability to extend the "safe-harbor" deadline if they want. Since they
have
> not actually mandated a stop to recounts (they yet again sent it back
to the
> Florida supreme court), they can extend the deadline to the 18th (or
even
> beyond) in order to allow a full and fair count to be performed. They
> should. But they won't.


Sent via Deja.com
http://www.deja.com/

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 12:28:19 PM12/13/00
to
I take it back, I guess Congress has sole authority to determine the
day Electors shall be chosen, too. I dunno... seemed like a
possibility, but now I dunno after rereading Title 3 and Article II

Chris Gomez

Rick

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 1:11:49 PM12/13/00
to
<<Branden Wolner >>

wrote:

<<Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull. Why?
It's simple. Different counties and even different precincts within the same
county all use different voting methods. >>


I'm guessing they are concerned about identical style ballots being counted
with different methods, which would seem to be unfair to the voters.

But couldn't the Florida Supreme Court have set up a specific standard for each
style of ballot in the recount from the very beginning? Instead of the vague
"voter intent" idea? Or could that be "writing new law".

I guess the Gore team was really between a rock and a hard spot, too bad the
initial counts/recounts didn't go their way or the shoe would've been on the
other foot.

cppman

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 1:19:46 PM12/13/00
to
The equal protection comes into question when the same type of ballot
is counted differently in different counties. You know that's not fair.

Also, the Supreme Court cannot touch the safe harbor deadline because
the Florida Supreme Court stated that deadline was the legislator's
intent - that is, you must abide by it because that was the law before
the election. Neither court can touch that date.

The reality is, the Florida Supreme Court screwed up by extending the
original deadline. Otherwise, there was plenty of time to go back and
do a statewide (with a standard) recount.

This was not a coup - stop reacting on emotions. I'm not happy that
there was not a full recount either, but I blame the Florida Boobs for
that.


In article <B65D0705.4479%dewe...@netzero.net>,
Branden Wolner <dewe...@netzero.net> wrote:

beauzaq

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 1:25:18 PM12/13/00
to
In article <918ejn$vq9$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>,

cppman <cpp...@my-deja.com> wrote:
> This was not a coup

sorry but it was... a president elected by bogus supreme court
judges and not the people...

--
bea...@onebox.com | (213) 401-2100 x1826

cppman

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 1:42:00 PM12/13/00
to
The only bogus court was in Florida and you know it. And besides, the
real bogus thing would be for Gore to win on dimples. What a joke.
There were not enough votes for Gore in Florida. Do the math. Now you
can cry all day about the butterfly ballot and all that crap, but
there's nothing that can be done for voter mistakes.


In article <918eu1$2l$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>,

beauzaq

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 1:47:37 PM12/13/00
to
In article <918ftm$12e$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>,

cppman <cpp...@my-deja.com> wrote:
> The only bogus court was in Florida and you know it. And besides, the
> real bogus thing would be for Gore to win on dimples. What a joke.
> There were not enough votes for Gore in Florida. Do the math. Now
you
> can cry all day about the butterfly ballot and all that crap, but
> there's nothing that can be done for voter mistakes.

spin spin spin like a good republican er anti-democracy party member...
over sixty thousand undervotes were never counted...
and they did not want them count it... you can spin this shit until
your head falls off and you wont fool me...

cppman

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 2:01:58 PM12/13/00
to
I am stating facts from the decision. You are in denial. You haven't
responded to the issues yet. Just rhetoric.

Have fun in dreamland.


In article <918g86$18v$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>,

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 2:29:36 PM12/13/00
to
in article 20001213131149...@ng-cm1.aol.com, Rick at
casab...@aol.comblock wrote on 12/13/00 1:11 PM:

> <<Branden Wolner >>
>
> wrote:
>
> <<Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull. Why?
> It's simple. Different counties and even different precincts within the same
> county all use different voting methods. >>
>
>
> I'm guessing they are concerned about identical style ballots being counted
> with different methods, which would seem to be unfair to the voters.
>

But this is a non-issue. FSC adopted a stadard in their ruling. As far as I
can see, the only thing that comes close to equal protection is the fact
that not all counties in Fla chose to recount.

> But couldn't the Florida Supreme Court have set up a specific standard for
> each
> style of ballot in the recount from the very beginning? Instead of the vague
> "voter intent" idea? Or could that be "writing new law".
>

It would be "writing new law."

> I guess the Gore team was really between a rock and a hard spot, too bad the
> initial counts/recounts didn't go their way or the shoe would've been on the
> other foot.

You can thank Jebbie and Katie for that.

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 2:31:43 PM12/13/00
to
in article 918ftm$12e$1...@nnrp1.deja.com, cppman at cpp...@my-deja.com wrote
on 12/13/00 1:42 PM:

> The only bogus court was in Florida and you know it.

No, bozak does not know this. Neither do I. You try to veil yourself as some
kind of liberal (or at least a moderate) on this but you are so clearly a
devout repub. Give it up JBS - you fooled me for a little while by posting
things that sounded like you had given them some real thought. But here you
are back to mouthing repub platitudes.

Unabogie

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 4:39:23 PM12/13/00
to

"Branden Wolner" <dewe...@netzero.net> wrote in message
news:B65D3850.44DF%dewe...@netzero.net...

> in article 20001213131149...@ng-cm1.aol.com, Rick at
> casab...@aol.comblock wrote on 12/13/00 1:11 PM:
>
> > <<Branden Wolner >>
> >
> > wrote:
> >
> > <<Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull.
Why?
> > It's simple. Different counties and even different precincts within the
same
> > county all use different voting methods. >>

Not to mention that if it is not equal protection to count the votes
differently, the how can it be equal to CAST them differently? Are the
Republicoups saying that the whole election was unfair because some people
voted by absentee, and some by machine, and some by computer? Of course
not. Scalia simply latched onto something that got him his result. Florida
law specifically describes a contest period, complete with hand recounts in
any county a candidate wishes. He is not required to recount all the
counties, only the ones he thinks have problems. This is entirely fair and
Bush should have simply demanded a statewide recount. But strangely, Baker
immediately began to use the word "mischief", and the 'Coups strategy became
clear. They had fibbed the results and were now going to fight to cover
this up. If Bush won in Florida, all he had to do was demand a certain
standard, covering the whole state, and he'd be looking like a statesman.
What an utter travesty.


beauzaq

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 5:06:17 PM12/13/00
to
In article <f0SZ5.302396$3E6.3...@news1.alsv1.occa.home.com>,

thats why i read this joint... there are people in here who
actually know whats going on...

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 5:21:43 PM12/13/00
to
Wait a second. Isn't there fair disagreement about what to count as a
vote and what not to count? Some people believe you can tell if you
see an impression or partial detachment. Others say you can't, or
perhaps that voters should follow instructions, or that it should be at
least two corners to know for sure. Aren't all these arguable under
the written Florida law?

They are all reasonable construction. I think Justice Ginsburg would
agree with that. It sounds like Souter, Breyer, Stevens, and at least
O'Connor and Kennedy would, too (maybe even the other three but I won't
say for sure when it comes to them). They just disagree on the
timeline or who gets to make the construction or when it should be made
(before or after Election Day or what).

Chris Gomez

In article <B65D38CF.44E0%dewe...@netzero.net>,


Branden Wolner <dewe...@netzero.net> wrote:
> No, bozak does not know this. Neither do I. You try to veil yourself
as some
> kind of liberal (or at least a moderate) on this but you are so
clearly a
> devout repub. Give it up JBS - you fooled me for a little while by
posting
> things that sounded like you had given them some real thought. But
here you
> are back to mouthing repub platitudes.

Unabogie

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 5:47:30 PM12/13/00
to
I only wish I could be wrong here. If we let the Republicoups piss on even
one vote, then maybe next time it will be my vote, or my civil rights. I am
first and foremost a civil libertarian. The people's right to vote should
be protected at all costs. Even the cost of being late, or nitpicky, or
even vindictive, as Bob Dornan was. I don't recall Loretta Sanchez going to
the SCOTUS to block that recount. And now look at how silly B1 Bob looks.
The votes should be counted, then recounted, then counted again, until we
all puke from recounts. All sides should fight, and the winner will be
clear. This way merely means that we'll all say "Dumya, Selected, not
ELECTED!"


"beauzaq" <bea...@my-deja.com> wrote in message
news:918rsk$ce8$1...@nnrp1.deja.com...

Rick

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 6:08:58 PM12/13/00
to
<<Branden Wolner>>

wrote:

<<But this is a non-issue. FSC adopted a stadard in their ruling. As far as I
can see, the only thing that comes close to equal protection is the fact
that not all counties in Fla chose to recount.>>


The only standard I heard from the FSC was the vague "discernable voter intent"
quote from the Florida statute. Was there another standard that I missed?

cppman

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 6:06:55 PM12/13/00
to
If Gore won with selective dimpled recounts, he'd have been "selected,
not elected" too. That was not right either and you can't deny it.
Only a FULL recount with a STANDARD (i.e., palm beach). No that dimple
shit.


In article <60TZ5.302839$3E6.3...@news1.alsv1.occa.home.com>,

Terraholm

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 4:16:16 PM12/13/00
to

"Rick" <casab...@aol.comblock> wrote in message
news:20001213131149...@ng-cm1.aol.com...

> <<Branden Wolner >>
>
> wrote:
>
> <<Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull.
Why?
> It's simple. Different counties and even different precincts within the
same
> county all use different voting methods. >>
>
>
> I'm guessing they are concerned about identical style ballots being
counted
> with different methods, which would seem to be unfair to the voters.
>

QAs aposed to the protect the vorers get by having a machine not count them
at all...=)

> But couldn't the Florida Supreme Court have set up a specific standard for
each
> style of ballot in the recount from the very beginning? Instead of the
vague
> "voter intent" idea? Or could that be "writing new law".

Yes that was their exact point, the law read intent of the voter and it
would have been thrown out either way, not fair or not set out in statute.
catch 22

============
When we were discussing if it came to that Gore recusing himself from voting
as the tie breaker in the senate. Turns out it has happened before. The vice
president voted for himself to win the disputed vote. Guy by the name of
Thomas Jefferson.

--
Laurel T
"If you can't say anything nice, sit next to me."
Alice Roosevelt Longworth (1884-1980)

beauzaq

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 6:59:13 PM12/13/00
to
In article <918vea$fhf$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>,

cppman <cpp...@my-deja.com> wrote:
> If Gore won with selective dimpled recounts, he'd have been "selected,
> not elected" too. That was not right either and you can't deny it.
> Only a FULL recount with a STANDARD (i.e., palm beach). No that
dimple
> shit.

do us all a favor and take your anti-democracy propaganda and
shove it up your colin bowel...

Rick

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 7:19:33 PM12/13/00
to
<<Terraholm>>

wrote:

<<QAs aposed to the protect the vorers get by having a machine not count them
at all...=)>>


"As opposed to the protection the voters get...."? One of the dogs must've been
stepping on the keyboard. :-)

I do think that that un-fully-punched ballots should be thrown out, because I
see no way to be certain what the real vote was/is, it will always boil down to
needing an interpretation. I would very much prefer a voting method whereby
100% of ballots would result in a true vote, but that is not the case in this
election, and retroactively interpreting ballots in subjectively (in)correct
ways will not fix that.

I also would have preferred that the rejected ballots had been hand searched to
see if acceptable ballots were mixed in there by machine error, I don't think
that was ever done. It seems, to me, this should have been done statewide,
along with hand recounting the good ballots in the other counties.

The one thing we will all learn from this is that the voting process and
legislation is quagmire in many states, and hopefully that will be fixed.

<<Yes that was their exact point, the law read intent of the voter and it
would have been thrown out either way, not fair or not set out in statute.
catch 22>>

Yeah, bummer for us. Even a better written law in Florida wouldn't have
prevented all the anger on the side of whoever lost this election, but it
would've helped.

Rick

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 7:21:35 PM12/13/00
to
<<Terraholm>>

wrote:

<<When we were discussing if it came to that Gore recusing himself from voting
as the tie breaker in the senate. Turns out it has happened before. The vice
president voted for himself to win the disputed vote. Guy by the name of
Thomas Jefferson.>>


Interesting, thanks.

Jeff Mayner

unread,
Dec 13, 2000, 8:51:46 PM12/13/00
to
Spin-spin-spin, you ass-hole 'publikin.
Rest yer neck, junior.

Jeff

"cppman" <cpp...@my-deja.com> wrote in message
news:918vea$fhf$1...@nnrp1.deja.com...

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 12:41:33 PM12/14/00
to
in article 918rsk$ce8$1...@nnrp1.deja.com, beauzaq at bea...@my-deja.com wrote
on 12/13/00 5:06 PM:

And others who are so completely clueless...

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 12:42:22 PM12/14/00
to
in article 918spf$da5$1...@nnrp1.deja.com, chris...@my-deja.com at
chris...@my-deja.com wrote on 12/13/00 5:21 PM:

> Wait a second. Isn't there fair disagreement about what to count as a
> vote and what not to count? Some people believe you can tell if you
> see an impression or partial detachment. Others say you can't, or
> perhaps that voters should follow instructions, or that it should be at
> least two corners to know for sure. Aren't all these arguable under
> the written Florida law?
>

Apparently not.

> They are all reasonable construction. I think Justice Ginsburg would
> agree with that. It sounds like Souter, Breyer, Stevens, and at least
> O'Connor and Kennedy would, too (maybe even the other three but I won't
> say for sure when it comes to them). They just disagree on the
> timeline or who gets to make the construction or when it should be made
> (before or after Election Day or what).
>

Sure.

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 12:46:58 PM12/14/00
to
in article 20001213180858...@ng-fp1.aol.com, Rick at
casab...@aol.comblock wrote on 12/13/00 6:08 PM:

They referred to Palm Beach's standard for counting chads which, IIRC, is
this: any chad attached at only two adjacent corners (swinging chad) is a
vote, and chad attached at three corners is a vote if there is a clear
pattern of other chads similarly attached, any chad not full punched through
(ie "dimpled") is a vote only if there are at least 3 other such "dimpled"
chads on the same ballot and in categories where there is not another, more
clear vote cast.

Sounds fair to me. If there is a pattern of not being able to fully punch
through the chads that, to me, would indicate that the voter attempted to
punch them out but couldn't. I do not buy the line that a voter "allowed
their stylus to rest" in multiple slots and then chose not to vote at all in
all those categories.

Rick

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 2:24:10 PM12/14/00
to
<<Branden Wolner>>

wrote:

<<They referred to Palm Beach's standard>>


I didn't realize they had declared the Palm Beach standard as a standard to be
used in the rest of the state. Every report I heard had them stating the vague
language from the statute as the proper use.

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 2:21:50 PM12/14/00
to
in article 20001214142410...@ng-cm1.aol.com, Rick at
casab...@aol.comblock wrote on 12/14/00 2:24 PM:

There are 2 issues as I understand it (and my understanding can easily be
wrong): 1) the Palm Beach "standard" was adopted to be applied to all
punch-card type ballots. 2) The FSC authorized state-wide recounts and
precincts all over Fla use different voting methods - you cannot establish a
single standard that applies to punch-cards *and* scantrons *and* voting
machines, etc. The methods are so disparate that you can unify the counting
under one standard. Scantrons simply do not have chads so a "chad standard"
is not applicable.

Rick

unread,
Dec 14, 2000, 4:19:51 PM12/14/00
to
<<Branden Wolner >>

wrote:

<<There are 2 issues as I understand it (and my understanding can easily be
wrong): 1) the Palm Beach "standard" was adopted to be applied to all
punch-card type ballots>>

I just read through the Florida courts opinion, and your understanding is
wrong. They definitely instruct for the usage of the vague "voter intent", and
do not go into any more specific standards. They even make reference to "any
mark on a ballot can be considered a vote" from another case. I can see why
some viewed this decision as partisan, too, at the end of their decision they
say that any vote than can be found for Gore should be added to the total. It
would appear to be more non-partisan if they had said "any vote that can be
found for either candidate should be added to the total."

They did think it was proper to hand count every county, and to search through
all the undervotes for any legal votes that were missed. I agree with that (it
may or may not be legal under Florida law, but it would've been the right thing
to do). But they did not offer up any standards for determining what was a
legal vote and what was not, which I disagree with (and was the ultimate
undoing of Gore, because it violates the Constitution according the the USSC.)

http://www.flcourts.org/

Its an interesting read, its right on the front page (one of the blue links,
with the december 8 date), you'll need Acrobat as it is in PDF format.
Basically, it says Gore had to prove that there were enough legal ballots in
the undervotes to cast the election results in doubt (which he proved), and
that a statewide recount of undervotes was proper because the one set of
undervotes asked for was too small of a sample, in this case, to determine a
true winner. Sounds reasonable to me, too bad that poorly written, conflicting
statutes stopped it all.


<<2) The FSC authorized state-wide recounts and
precincts all over Fla use different voting methods - you cannot establish a
single standard that applies to punch-cards *and* scantrons *and* voting
machines, etc. The methods are so disparate that you can unify the counting
under one standard. Scantrons simply do not have chads so a "chad standard"
is not applicable.>>


Yes, but it seems a different and exact standard for each different type of
ballot would've worked. No? If different ballots are legal, then different
standards to view them have to be legal too. Maybe that will be one of the
reforms that comes out of all of this... one style of ballot for everybody.

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 15, 2000, 8:54:29 AM12/15/00
to
In article <20001214161951...@ng-bj1.aol.com>,
casab...@aol.comblock says...

>
>
><<Branden Wolner >>
>
>wrote:
>
><<There are 2 issues as I understand it (and my understanding can easily be
>wrong): 1) the Palm Beach "standard" was adopted to be applied to all
>punch-card type ballots>>
>
>
>
>I just read through the Florida courts opinion, and your understanding is
>wrong. They definitely instruct for the usage of the vague "voter intent", and
>do not go into any more specific standards. They even make reference to "any
>mark on a ballot can be considered a vote" from another case. I can see why
>some viewed this decision as partisan, too, at the end of their decision they
>say that any vote than can be found for Gore should be added to the total. It
>would appear to be more non-partisan if they had said "any vote that can be
>found for either candidate should be added to the total."
>
How does "any mark on a ballot can be considered a vote" translate into ""any
mark on a ballot can be considered a vote for Gore"?

>They did think it was proper to hand count every county, and to search through
>all the undervotes for any legal votes that were missed. I agree with that (it
>may or may not be legal under Florida law, but it would've been the right
thing
>to do). But they did not offer up any standards for determining what was a
>legal vote and what was not, which I disagree with (and was the ultimate
>undoing of Gore, because it violates the Constitution according the the USSC.)
>

As said elsewhere, they were put in a no-win situation. If they make up a new
law, then they are "changing the rules" - so they stuck with the law as
written, no? "Intent of the voter" and "clear intent of the voter" both appear
exactly as this in the statutes.

And it is clear that while there may have been equal protection issues, it was
neither Saddam's place to ask for redress, not the SCOTUS' place to grant it.
If the People of Florida had filed suit against their state SC, that would be
different. As it stands, the final decision is *also* an equal protection
violation: 1) every ballot that wasn't counted by machine represents a voter
not granted equal protection. 2) My vote goes for naught because the SCOTUS
usurped democracy and threw the Constitution in the toilet.


>http://www.flcourts.org/
>
>Its an interesting read, its right on the front page (one of the blue links,
>with the december 8 date), you'll need Acrobat as it is in PDF format.
>Basically, it says Gore had to prove that there were enough legal ballots in
>the undervotes to cast the election results in doubt (which he proved), and
>that a statewide recount of undervotes was proper because the one set of
>undervotes asked for was too small of a sample, in this case, to determine a
>true winner. Sounds reasonable to me, too bad that poorly written, conflicting
>statutes stopped it all.
>
>
><<2) The FSC authorized state-wide recounts and
>precincts all over Fla use different voting methods - you cannot establish a
>single standard that applies to punch-cards *and* scantrons *and* voting
>machines, etc. The methods are so disparate that you can unify the counting
>under one standard. Scantrons simply do not have chads so a "chad standard"
>is not applicable.>>
>
>
>Yes, but it seems a different and exact standard for each different type of
>ballot would've worked. No? If different ballots are legal, then different
>standards to view them have to be legal too. Maybe that will be one of the
>reforms that comes out of all of this... one style of ballot for everybody.

Each county and precinct is entitled to choose its own method of casting votes,
The choice of how to count those votes should then be theirs as well. This was
the original "standard" used. Bush appealed it in the 11th circuit and he lost.
He appealed to the SCOTUS and they "vacated" the ruling. You can't have it both
ways - unless you are a dictator, no?
--
Branden Wolner
dewey...@netzero.net
UMass Medical Center
Worcester, Mass.
--
Go Yanks!! 26 and Counting!!!!!!!!!
On the World Champion Lakers Basketball Network!!

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 15, 2000, 1:43:25 PM12/15/00
to
You do know that the case was a writ of certiorari of Gore v. Harris,
which was Gore's contest proceeding in Florida. Gore was a proper
party, and so was Harris. The decision injured Bush, so he is a proper
appellant to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Chris Gomez

p.s. I agree with most everything else you are saying. I think we
agree on alot. Someone at some point had to make a statewide standard,
and it was not necessarily right for the Supreme Court to say Florida
could not go beyond Congress' deadline in order to make that standard
and have a recount. Hey, if Florida wants to risk problems with its
electors, that's between Florida and Congress, that's what Article II
says. The Supreme Court could not extend a constitutional deadline
(Congress could have but we have discussed that), but they can't go in
and tell Florida to obey it. It says the state legislatures have
authority, doesn't it?

In article <91d7qi$3s8g5$1...@ID-40633.news.dfncis.de>,


dewe...@netzero.net (Branden Wolner) wrote:
> And it is clear that while there may have been equal protection
issues, it was
> neither Saddam's place to ask for redress, not the SCOTUS' place to
grant it.
> If the People of Florida had filed suit against their state SC, that
would be
> different. As it stands, the final decision is *also* an equal
protection
> violation: 1) every ballot that wasn't counted by machine represents
a voter
> not granted equal protection. 2) My vote goes for naught because the
SCOTUS
> usurped democracy and threw the Constitution in the toilet.

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 15, 2000, 2:06:34 PM12/15/00
to
In article <91doob$b5u$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, chris...@my-deja.com says...

>
>
>You do know that the case was a writ of certiorari of Gore v. Harris,
>which was Gore's contest proceeding in Florida. Gore was a proper
>party, and so was Harris. The decision injured Bush, so he is a proper
>appellant to the U.S. Supreme Court.
>
*NOT* on the grounds of "equal protection" as ruled by the SCROTUS (Supreme
Court Repuli'bots of the US - I like this one b/c if you know Latin then you
know what the accusative form of this noun is). The "equal protection" was for
the voters of florida. Theoretically, if votes are counted differently from
coutnty to county, then some voters are not afforded the same "protection" as
others. Bush can appeal whatever he wants, but bringing in equal protection is
raising a new issue.

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 15, 2000, 3:57:22 PM12/15/00
to
But aren't you allowed to bring in new federal issues in an appeal to
the Supreme Court from state court? Isn't that how things like Roe v.
Wade were created in the first place?

Also, if we want to talk about standing, isn't it true that any person
in the United States could bring suit? If a voter in any state felt
the process in Florida was in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment,
then perhaps the injury would be that our mythical voter would not be
participating in an equal or fair election to a federal office? I'm
actually not sure if that argument holds or not... I'm really just
throwing it out there. I'm searching around for some document that
provides the standing to sue, but maybe its something that was assumed
(like a lawyer would automatically know so they didn't spell it out).
If I find it I will post it.

But I do know that Supreme Court Rule 10(c) provides review in of cases
that "decided an important question of federal law that has not been,
but should be, settled by this Court..."

Chris Gomez

In article <91dq3p$3p40j$4...@ID-40633.news.dfncis.de>,

Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 16, 2000, 9:37:02 AM12/16/00
to
In article <91e0jd$ili$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, chris...@my-deja.com says...

>
>
>But aren't you allowed to bring in new federal issues in an appeal to
>the Supreme Court from state court? Isn't that how things like Roe v.
>Wade were created in the first place?
>
But Roe v Wade was *ROE* v. Wade. "Jane Roe's" own rights were at issue. The
law established by the SCOTUS in that case simply has broader application. If
the People of Florida had sued and the SCROTUS had ruled in their favor, *that*
decision would have applied to *all* election recounts. But Saddam simply was
not the one injured by "unequal" protection. Yeah, maybe he would have lost the
election, tough. As it stands now, Gore is the one who is injured. As are the
thousands in Florida whose votes were *NEVER* counted. I would love to see a
lawyer file a class-action lawsuit on behalf of people in punch-card precincts
who feel that they were deprived of equal-protection under law. That would at
least be a real case.

>Also, if we want to talk about standing, isn't it true that any person
>in the United States could bring suit? If a voter in any state felt
>the process in Florida was in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment,
>then perhaps the injury would be that our mythical voter would not be
>participating in an equal or fair election to a federal office? I'm
>actually not sure if that argument holds or not... I'm really just
>throwing it out there. I'm searching around for some document that
>provides the standing to sue, but maybe its something that was assumed
>(like a lawyer would automatically know so they didn't spell it out).
>If I find it I will post it.
>

I think that voter could file on their own behalf. As an individual. What the
relief would be, I don't know. If that individual could collect other voters,
esp. if they came from several states, then that would be a real good case,
IMO. I'd like to see it and right away.


>But I do know that Supreme Court Rule 10(c) provides review in of cases
>that "decided an important question of federal law that has not been,
>but should be, settled by this Court..."
>

BUt is it "federal law"? I don't think so. It's not an interstate issue, it is
entirely contained within Florida (at least as far as this particula suit goes
- clearly the broader issues do span state borders). Also, who's rights were
really being affected? The SCOTUS has jurisdiction if a state government or
judiciary is broaching an individual's (or class') rights. But the individuals
whose rights were theoretically being broached did not file the suit. If the
case in the SCROTUS is Bush v. Gore then the equal protection of Florida's
voters is not within the jurisdiction of that case.

This seems clear to me. I'm not a constitutional lawyer. Neither are you. I
believe the argument that was made by a constitutional lawyer. Even many repubs
I've seen on TV the past few days are echoing this now - now that it's "safe"
to do so. I think even the SCROTUS knew they were overstepping by qualifying
this ruling so that it can not be used as a precedent in the future.

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 18, 2000, 5:05:34 PM12/18/00
to
In article <91fumd$40det$2...@ID-40633.news.dfncis.de>,
dewe...@netzero.net (Branden Wolner) wrote:

Chris wrote:
> >But I do know that Supreme Court Rule 10(c) provides review in of
cases
> >that "decided an important question of federal law that has not been,
> >but should be, settled by this Court..."
> >

Branden wrote:
> BUt is it "federal law"? I don't think so. It's not an interstate
issue, it is
> entirely contained within Florida (at least as far as this particula
suit goes
> - clearly the broader issues do span state borders).

It doesn't matter if it is a federal law, right? The Fourteenth
Amendment says all states shall protect all citizens equally under the
laws (Yes I paraphrased it). The Supreme Court inteprets the law, so
who else is going to make rules affecting their selection of cases
(besides Congress, according to the Constitution). But Congress does
not giveth jurisdiction (under current law), it only taketh away... and
it did not remove SCOTUS appelate jurisdiction on election contests.

Branden wrote:
> Also, who's rights were
> really being affected? The SCOTUS has jurisdiction if a state
government or
> judiciary is broaching an individual's (or class') rights. But the
individuals
> whose rights were theoretically being broached did not file the suit.
If the
> case in the SCROTUS is Bush v. Gore then the equal protection of
Florida's
> voters is not within the jurisdiction of that case.

I think the "standing to sue" argument carries a lot of weight. I
think the question we have to answer is: If Gore brings a contest
(apparently his right in Gore v. Harris) suit and wins it, then doesn't
the loser of the contest (now the injured) have the right to appeal
that contest?

I'm sure we'd both concede that must be the case. Gore lost the
contest suit and appealed to the state supreme court.

Now the $64,000 question is what are the grounds that the appeal can
cross the state and federal boundaries to go to SCOTUS.

You know I'm pretty big on states' rights, and my opinion is Florida
should have been able to conduct a recount. However, I think the 14th
Amendment does require a single objective standard to be chosen to
count ballots, and its up to Florida to decide on that. Even the Miami
Herald is counting ballots with what they are labeling as "Broward"
and "1990 Palm Beach" standards, expecting different results. Since
the 14th Amendment is part of the Constitution, and it says the states
must give equal protection under the law, then perhaps this matter is
justiciable (forget Rule 10, the authority comes from the Const.) in
SCOTUS.

Branden wrote:
> This seems clear to me. I'm not a constitutional lawyer. Neither are
you. I
> believe the argument that was made by a constitutional lawyer.

So what? You are an intelligent person. I like to bring a balanced
perspective to things. Believe me, if you were arguing the other way
I'd probably be using the standing to sue argument on you. I learn
more from a complete and balanced discussion than from a robotic one.
Don't automatically assume I am dismissing your arguments just because
I rebut them. You've been in this group long enough to know me
better... I just don't think we have to be lawyers to be an authority
on anything or to discuss law. We can both read and the Constitution
is intentionally a simple document.

Chris Gomez

chris...@my-deja.com

unread,
Dec 18, 2000, 5:05:42 PM12/18/00
to
In article <91fumd$40det$2...@ID-40633.news.dfncis.de>,
dewe...@netzero.net (Branden Wolner) wrote:

Chris wrote:
> >But I do know that Supreme Court Rule 10(c) provides review in of
cases
> >that "decided an important question of federal law that has not been,
> >but should be, settled by this Court..."
> >

Branden wrote:
> BUt is it "federal law"? I don't think so. It's not an interstate
issue, it is
> entirely contained within Florida (at least as far as this particula
suit goes
> - clearly the broader issues do span state borders).

It doesn't matter if it is a federal law, right? The Fourteenth


Amendment says all states shall protect all citizens equally under the
laws (Yes I paraphrased it). The Supreme Court inteprets the law, so
who else is going to make rules affecting their selection of cases
(besides Congress, according to the Constitution). But Congress does
not giveth jurisdiction (under current law), it only taketh away... and
it did not remove SCOTUS appelate jurisdiction on election contests.

Branden wrote:
> Also, who's rights were
> really being affected? The SCOTUS has jurisdiction if a state
government or
> judiciary is broaching an individual's (or class') rights. But the
individuals
> whose rights were theoretically being broached did not file the suit.
If the
> case in the SCROTUS is Bush v. Gore then the equal protection of
Florida's
> voters is not within the jurisdiction of that case.

I think the "standing to sue" argument carries a lot of weight. I


think the question we have to answer is: If Gore brings a contest
(apparently his right in Gore v. Harris) suit and wins it, then doesn't
the loser of the contest (now the injured) have the right to appeal
that contest?

I'm sure we'd both concede that must be the case. Gore lost the
contest suit and appealed to the state supreme court.

Now the $64,000 question is what are the grounds that the appeal can
cross the state and federal boundaries to go to SCOTUS.

You know I'm pretty big on states' rights, and my opinion is Florida
should have been able to conduct a recount. However, I think the 14th
Amendment does require a single objective standard to be chosen to
count ballots, and its up to Florida to decide on that. Even the Miami
Herald is counting ballots with what they are labeling as "Broward"
and "1990 Palm Beach" standards, expecting different results. Since
the 14th Amendment is part of the Constitution, and it says the states
must give equal protection under the law, then perhaps this matter is
justiciable (forget Rule 10, the authority comes from the Const.) in
SCOTUS.

Branden wrote:
> This seems clear to me. I'm not a constitutional lawyer. Neither are
you. I
> believe the argument that was made by a constitutional lawyer.

So what? You are an intelligent person. I like to bring a balanced


perspective to things. Believe me, if you were arguing the other way
I'd probably be using the standing to sue argument on you. I learn
more from a complete and balanced discussion than from a robotic one.
Don't automatically assume I am dismissing your arguments just because
I rebut them. You've been in this group long enough to know me
better... I just don't think we have to be lawyers to be an authority
on anything or to discuss law. We can both read and the Constitution
is intentionally a simple document.

Chris Gomez


Branden Wolner

unread,
Dec 19, 2000, 10:15:34 AM12/19/00
to
in article 91m1n2$erc$1...@nnrp1.deja.com, chris...@my-deja.com at
chris...@my-deja.com wrote on 12/18/00 5:05 PM:

[snip]

So, to summarize, your main concern is that you "think the 14th


Amendment does require a single objective standard to be chosen to
count ballots, and its up to Florida to decide on that."

I disagree. Here's why: in Florida alone, there is no single standard for
the form of the ballot, casting of ballots, collection of ballots nor, yes,
the initial election-night counting of ballots. Each of these is completely
at the discretion of the counties and even individual precincts within
counties. If there is no single standard for these steps in the process, why
must there be a single standard for recounting ballots? The recount process
must follow the rules set out prior to election day - this is repub spin and
I agree with it. The rules on 11/7/00 had no single standard for any of
these steps in the process. Should there be set standards? Of course. I
favor a nation-wide, standardized voting system. But we don't have that
today. And as the repubs screamed for 5 weeks: you cannot change the rules
after the election. No, you can't change the rules, but you can throw out
legally cast ballots.


--
"He trusts government. I trust people."

-"Precedent" Bush

JRStern

unread,
Dec 19, 2000, 11:37:05 PM12/19/00
to
On Wed, 13 Dec 2000 10:59:18 -0500, Branden Wolner
<dewe...@netzero.net> wrote:
>Let me be as concise as I can be. This "equal protect" line is bull.

True.

It was a polite way of saying that the Florida Supreme Court should
act as a court of law, not a court of equity, and should not try to
decide these issues on the spur of the moment, especially as the U.S.
Constitution explicitly gives all such duties to the legislature.

J.

Reply all
Reply to author
Forward
0 new messages