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jjohn (22)

jjohn
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Perl hack/Linux buff/OSS junkie.

Journal of jjohn (22)

Monday July 12, 2004
07:42 AM

clinging to power

[ #19801 ]

The BBC reports:

«The Bush administration is reported to be investigating the possibility of postponing the presidential election in the event of a terror attack.

US counter-terrorism officials are examining what steps would be needed to permit a delay, Newsweek reports.

Homeland Security chief Tom Ridge last week warned al-Qaeda was planning to attack the US to disrupt the poll but conceded he had no precise information.

A senior Democrat in Congress has said talk of postponement is "excessive".

...

Abraham Lincoln was urged by some aides to suspend the election of 1864 - during the US Civil War - but despite the expectation that he would lose, he refused.

"The election is a necessity," Lincoln said. "We cannot have a free government without elections; and if the rebellion could force us to forgo, or postpone, a national election, it might fairly claim to have already conquered us." »

Remember: stay scared and keep purchasing. With luck, we can defeat Eurasia and Eastasia any day now.

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  • If we had a terrorist attack the week of the election, Bush would be criticized if he DIDN'T postpone the election, because "of course the attack will scare people into voting to keep the incumbent in power."

    I think they absolutely should figure out now what steps would need to be taken to postpone, so that if something does happen and it is deemed to be necessary, it can happen.
    • yeah, but I'll bet some guy in Kandahar in the pub where the CIAs 'man on the ground' got this bit of 'intelligence' is likely laughing his ass off. They don't need to attack since the fear is so cheap and easy it's almost not even sporting anymore.
    • This is why, among other reasons, we should consider moving from one day of elections to an "election weekend". Still, if we had elections during WWII and the civil war, we certainly ought to be able them during a terrorist attack. Let's not lose our heads (or democracy) over Terrorism.
      • Still, if we had elections during WWII and the civil war, we certainly ought to be able them during a terrorist attack. Let's not lose our heads (or democracy) over Terrorism.

        You're comparing two things -- Civil War, WWII -- which were constant states of war to this, which is about changing the date in the event of a specific attack. They're not directly comparable. I am not talking about, and neither is the federal government that I can tell, delaying elections for months, but days.

        I agree we should n
        • What would be the utility of postponing the elections? Terrorrist attacks can be postponed, too.
          • I think the discussion is about postponing the election when an attack happens, not because of fear of an attack.

            I agree that it isn't unreasonable to think about how to deal with the problem -- possibly including postponements -- rather than wait until it happens and then say "Oh, well, I see that hardly anybody in New York City was able to vote because of the terrorist attack. That sucks for the Democrats, but them's the breaks. Better luck next election."

            On the other hand, considering that this adminis
            • Not only was there a terrorist attack in New York on 9/11/2001, there was also a primary!

              From some guy [techguy.org]:

              «9/11/2001 was a primary election day in NY. When I saw the second tower burning I felt the best thing I could do was to go vote. It is afterall the most democratic thing one can do I was deeply disappointed that it was cancelled. »
              • Not only was there a terrorist attack in New York on 9/11/2001, there was also a primary!

                If he says so, I dunno. But I am not saying it should be postponed in case of an attack, but it's wise to discuss the possibility. Like I said, you know damned well that if there is an attack, and Bush wins, the Democrats will complain that they DIDN'T postpone it.
                • Like I said, you know damned well that if there is an attack, and Bush wins, the Democrats will complain that they DIDN'T postpone it.

                  Now, you just know that if you didn't say that, then people would complain! Therefore you must argue this, by the Parallel Universe Anti-Pangloss Conjecture.

              • There was a primary election scheduled. It ended up being postponed by two weeks [state.ny.us].