The weeks following the 2000 presidential election Bush v. Gore, were very chaotic due to problems caused by the counting of the votes.The film begins with the electionday, November 7. and ends with the supreme court ruling, which stopped the recount of the votes in Florida on December 12.
We watched this film because lately we have been focusing on US and UK election. From watching Recount I learned a lot about how the voting in America works, and how the millions of votes are counted, and if necessary counted again. The film focuses on the system around the voting and the problems that a wrong count may cause. In Recount we see how the two parts of the election argue how the recount should happen and whether a recount really should happen or not. Both parties uses dirty tricks to tip the recount case in their favour. Al Gore’s chief of staff, Ron Klain (played by Kevin Spacey), is the main character and we get to see how he struggled to right the wrongs regarding the votes of the election. The probleme was mainly caused by voters not punching the holes on the ballots clearly enough, making it difficult for the machines to read them. Then a huge discussion began on how the votes should be recounted which ended with, as I mentioned, the supreme court ruled to stop the recount.
The recount was ended because the court meant that “counting every legally cast vote can constitute irreparable harm.”
The people working for Al Gore and a recount opinioned “Counting every legally cast vote cannot constitute irreparable harm… Preventing the recount from being completed will inevitably cast a cloud on the legitimacy of the election.”
The outcome of the ruling made people question whether George Bush jr. really won the election back in 2000. The results from the recount, though stopped, showed that Al Gore got a lot more votes than in the first count. If all the votes in Florida had been counted again, perhaps the election in 2000 would have had another outcome.
I think watching movies like Recount is a great way to learn about American politics and what happens behind the scenes during an election. It isn’t just facts, but also a bit of gossip giving us a better understanding on how politics in America works.