Nov. 8, 2000“The extraordinary battle for the White House continued today, with a full recount coming in Florida to determine whether Texas Gov. George W. Bush or Vice President Gore becomes the next president.” So began The Washington Post’s front-page account of what became a 35-day-longsaga that delivered what this year’s Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump, promised at his final debate against Democrat Hillary Clinton: suspense. The following day, The Post’s David Von Drehle described Gore and Bush’s bizarre conversation in the hours after the election was initially called for Bush, and Gore conceded.
“ ‘Circumstances have changed dramatically since I first called you,’ Gore told Bush. ...
“ ‘The state of Florida is too close to call.’...
“ ‘Are you saying what I think you’re saying?’ Bush asked. ... “You’re calling back to retract that concession?’ ”
“ ‘Don’t get snippy about it!’ Gore spat back.”
On Dec. 12, a 5-4 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court secured victory for Bush, marking the first time in 112 years that a candidate won the presidency without winning the popular vote.