Date: November 28, 2000

Pollster Says Early Networks Projection May Have Cost Bush Thousands Of Votes In Florida

A report by a Republican pollster found 187,000 voters did not cast a ballot in the Florida Panhandle due to the fact that counties in the Western region of the state were told Al Gore was the winner, according to exit polling projections.

The pollster said Bush may have lost anywhere from five to twenty-thousand votes because the networks’ early call occurred while some of Florida's Western counties were still voting--because of their location in the Central Time Zone.

Fifteen percent of those contacted said they did not vote due to the early Gore projection. Those counties voted overwhelmingly for George W. Bush by a margin of 63% to 37%.

Republicans are also criticizing the NBC Network for deciding to broadcast George Bush’s Sunday evening address to the nation on a taped delay basis and not in its entirety. NBC did, however, air Al Gore’s Monday night speech to the nation live and in prime time. All of the nation’s other major network news divisions carried both the Gore and Bush speeches live. NBC management was not available for comment on the issue as of noon on Tuesday.




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