US ELECTIONS SEEN THROUGH EYES OF INTERNATIONAL PRESS. AS THE USA HAS A SEVERE ATTACK OF POLITICAL EPILEPSY, IN PUBLIC, THE WORLD’S PRESS COMMENTS ON THIS TRAGEDY…OR FARSE? - 1 January, 2001
THE DAILY MIRROR, UNITED KINGDOM – “Banana Republic” “ This is the sort of thing to be expected from a Banana Republic and it could leave America in chaos for weeks…The best thing would be for President Bill Clinton to stay in office for another four years”.
PUBLICO, PORTUGAL – “Is the perfect democracy so perfect?” “ Al Gore won the American elections. But he may not be the President. Because, when they drew up the rules of their new democracy, the “Founding Fathers” (of the USA) decided that the Head of State should be chosen by an electoral college. While they proceed with the recounting of the votes in what is the most surprising and disputed election in history, the citizens ask whether the electoral system has legitimacy. Is the perfect democracy so perfect?”
THE GUARDIAN, UNITED KINGDOM – “suspense film” “ This is America at its best – it never lets us down. It is as if it was orchestrated by a divine scriptwriter who is trying to produce a suspense film with implausible alterations. The USA continues to be the best story of all”.
DIE WELT – GERMANY – slower than Uzbekistan "What a macabre spectacle – a rich giant sent 280 million to the ballot and two citizens continue at an impasse even after the elections in Uzbekistan are resolved". EL MUNDO – SPAIN – dead man elected to the Senate, but no President yet “The Americans managed to elect a dead man to the Senate (the Senator for Missouri) but they didn’t manage to elect a president for the nation. For a country that is so proud of its institutions, so in love with its Constitution, the elections of 2000 stain the supposed image of a perfect democracy”.
LґHUMANITE – FRANCE “This relic from the time of the Far West” Without this relic from the time of the Far West , Buffalo Bill and the steam engine, (the electoral system), the President of the United States would already be known : Al Gore.
THE TIMES – UNITED KINGDOM – “a parody of democracy” “Apart from these bizarre elections having provided high emotions, they have been a parody of democracy. It may take days or even weeks before a result is known, especially if some members of the Electoral College decide that it would be improper to elevate George Bush to the Oval Office with a minority of votes….The United States may be on the verge of a political crisis more serious than any other since Watergate and in constitutional terms, it will be more worrying”. There is an old Portuguese adage which says “Put your own house in order before you start throwing rocks at others, especially if your roof is made of glass”.
Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey The correspondent of PRAVDA.Ru Lisbon 2000-11-10