Is a chronicle of the weeks after the 2000 U.S. presidential election and the subsequent recounts in Florida.
Before watching the movie
In groups of two answer these questions:
- What is the Electoral College?
- Why do we have an Electoral College and why was it considered necessary?
- What is the official procedure for presidential elections? Illustrate an approximate timeline of key events in any given presidential election year.
- Is it possible for a president to win the popular vote but lose the election? How?
- Who were the candidates in the 2000 election and what happened?
- How was the Supreme court involved?
While watching answer these questions:
- In every presidential election, the media will announce the new President and Vice President
by the morning after election day; however, when is the President and Vice-President actually
- What does it mean to “concede?”
- Why did Al Gore retract his concession?
- Why would a machine recount of Florida’s ballots tally a slightly different number than the
first time? How was this a threat to the Bush campaign?
- Why did the Democrats initiate a hand recount?
- What trend did the Democrats discover about old voting machines and the neighborhoods they
- What did the Democrats discover about voters being turned away from the polls?
- Did the Republicans actively try to stop a hand recount? Why?
- What issues did officials encounter with the hand recount?
- Why did the Republicans want to count absentee ballots?
- Are absentee ballots usually counted on Election Day?
Our Government and the U.S. Supreme Court Decision
- In which court did James Baker think the Republicans would definitely lose? Which
court did he think they would be more likely to win in the long run?
- What did Baker mean when he suggested that “it’s time to exercise our first amendment
right”? What is the first amendment?
- What were the advisory opinions?
- Who represented Gore during the trials? Why was this lawyer recruited?
- What is the Equal Protection Clause?
- Why did the Bush camp think they had a small victory when they learned the Supreme
Court didn’t set counting standards?
- How do you feel about the fact that many counties did not run their ballots through the
- Do you think Democrats should have begun planning for lawsuits earlier?
- Do you think the Texas voting law signed by Governor Bush helped Gore’s case or was
it irrelevant to Gore winning in the Florida Supreme Court?
Source: Mr. Chazen’s Neighborhood