Election distrust dominates chat rooms

Distrust and dismay surrounding the undecided U.S. presidential elections dominate Internet chat rooms, as Americans debate how they still have no declared winner.

2 min read
Distrust and dismay surrounding the undecided U.S. presidential election dominated Internet chat rooms Wednesday, as Americans debated how it happened that the day after the election, they still had no declared winner.

Chatters questioned news reports about Want election news? Get it herefaulty election ballots, lost ballot boxes and other speculative improprieties. Republicans blamed the Democrats for fouling up the election, and Democrats blamed Republicans. Others faulted Green Party candidate Ralph Nader or took aim at the news media for prematurely calling which candidate won the state of Florida--twice.

Despite partisan perspective or preferred theory, most virtual chatters banded together in agreement on one common theme: The election had been screwed up in one manner or another.

On CNN's Presidential Race 2000 message board, which listed nearly 290,000 entries, several people decried reports about faulty election ballots in Palm Beach County, Florida.

According to reports, some senior citizens in the county were confused by ballots that listed Vice President Al Gore's name second on a list with an arrow pointing to a third hole in the column. Some senior citizens reported that they believed they might have punched the wrong hole.

CNN reader Wayne Moore was outraged by this report, writing, "I wonder if they 'tested' these ballots with a number of elderly to see if they could understand them, or if they bothered to point out how to use them, etc.! Probably not!"

Other readers questioned whether the Florida elections had been tampered with by either party. Those blaming the Republicans had more to work with, questioning the involvement of Florida Gov. Jeb Bush--the candidate's brother--as well as former President George Bush.

On Yahoo's election chat room, several people denounced the electoral college system, bemoaning that a candidate could win the popular vote--as Vice President Al Gore has done--but still lose the election.

"The vote by real human beings should win the election," wrote a Yahoo chatter, identified as I-like-ike2000.

"Pop vote should win," agreed jdpowell33, "although I like gwb."

Some people posting on CNN even called for a re-election. Paul Brian Engelhardt wrote: "A re-vote is absolutely possible...and in my opinion should definitely take place. There are (too) many things that could have gone wrong last night. i.e. Palm Beach-Lost Ballet Boxes-Brother Bush. We need a revote!!!"