Thursday, January 06, 2005

Boxer Signs On 

Remember what may have been the most agonizing scene in "Fahrenheit 9/11" where the House members brought the protest of the Florida electoral vote count to the Senate? And came to the podium, one after the other, imploring, demanding, nearly begging a Senator, any Senator, just one Senator, to stand with them so the outrage could at least be exposed if not overturned?

This ain't a-gonna happen this time. First of all it's Ohio this time--and more importantly, we've got ourself a Senator with some backbone. Yeah, I would have said "A Senator with some balls" but by damn, it's Barbara Boxer:

(via AP)
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A small group of Democrats agreed Thursday to force House and Senate debates on Election Day problems in Ohio before letting Congress certify President Bush's win over Sen. John Kerry in November.

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., signed a challenge mounted by House Democrats to Ohio's 20 electoral votes, which put Bush over the top. By law, a challenge signed by members of the House and Senate requires both chambers to meet separately for up to two hours to consider it. Lawmakers are allowed to speak for no more than five minutes each.

While Bush's victory is not in jeopardy, the Democratic challenge will force Congress to interrupt tallying the Electoral College vote, which is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. EST Thursday. It would be only the second time since 1877 that the House and Senate were forced into separate meetings to consider electoral votes.

"I have concluded that objecting to the electoral votes from Ohio is the only immediate way to bring these issues to light by allowing you to have a two-hour debate to let the American people know the facts surrounding Ohio's election," Boxer wrote in a letter to Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones, D-Ohio, a leader of the Democratic effort.

The action seems certain to leave Bush's victory intact because both Republican-controlled chambers would have to uphold the challenge for Ohio's votes to be invalidated. But supporters of the drive hope their move will shine a national spotlight on the Ohio voting problems.

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