Down for the count on Election Day '04'
Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN)
I REMEMBER FIELDING TELEPHONE CALLS on Election Day 2004 from friends and colleagues anxious to talk about the exit polls, which seemed to show that John Kerry was beating George W. Bush and would be the next president. As the afternoon faded into evening, reports started coming in that the Bush camp was dispirited, maybe even despondent, and that the Kerry crowd was set to celebrate. (In an article in the current issue of Rolling Stone, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. writes, "In London, Prime Minister Tony Blair went to bed contemplating his relationship with President-elect Kerry."). I was skeptical.
The election was bound to be close, and I knew that Kerry couldn't win Florida. I had been monitoring the efforts to suppress Democratic votes there and had reported on the thuggish practice (by the Jeb Bush administration) of sending armed state police officers into the homes of elderly black voters in Orlando to "investigate" allegations of voter fraud.
As far as I was concerned, Florida was safe for the GOP. That left Ohio.
Republicans, and even a surprising number of Democrats, have been anxious to leave the 2004 Ohio election debacle behind. But Kennedy, in his long, heavily footnoted article ("Was the 2004 Election Stolen?"), leaves no doubt that the democratic process was trampled and left for dead in the Buckeye State. ...