America's Dirty Elections

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Trash can as ballot box

[djwudi / Flickr]

Last night we dissected the 2004 Ohio presidential election (what went wrong and why), and tonight we’ll use that same Ohio election as a kind of launching point both forwards and backward in time. Backwards to learn whether it and Florida in 2000 were particularly egregious failures — or whether they were basically business-as-usual in a two-party system that’s not eager for voting reform. And forwards to try to understand whether Ohio is any kind of indicator of our country’s electoral health.

Andrew Gumbel, U.S. correspondent for Britain’s Independent newspaper and author of Steal This Vote, will lead the charge — with an outsider’s perspective on how we, the self-proclaimed model of democracy, actually match up to our Founding Fathers’ ideals…and to the rest of the democratic world.

Andrew Gumbel

U.S. correspondent, Independent

Author, Steal This Vote

Shelley McConnell

Senior Associate Director, Americas Program, Carter Center

Ion Sancho

Supervisor of Elections, Leon County, Florida

Extra Credit Reading

Andrew Gumbel, Steal This Vote, Nation Books, August 2005.

Thomas Crampton, Not a simple election, global vote monitors say, International Herald Tribune, November 3, 2004.

Also keep an eye out for Andrew Gumbel’s article in next week’s The Nation.

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