> The last "official" vote-tally I heard was 288 (on CBS, from <?>), > Bush's lead down from 325 (reported by AP). Here are some future > estimates I consider reasonable: Gore gains 1500 from manual counts > in Palm Beach County, and Bush gains 900 in Duvall County and another > 300 from absentee ballots, and that puts the total near to ZERO -- at > competition to the New Mexico margin which I last heard as 17.
Be careful about the absentee ballots. Florida's electorate has been skewing Democratic over the last decade. Also, there are two large groups among the absentees--people voting from Israel, who tend to favor the Democrats, and the military. It has been assumed the military tend to vote Republican. Not surprising, especially for the last election which pitted a Democrat with no service against a Republican war hero. This time around, it's a Democrat who served in Vietnam against a Republican whose military service has not been viewed as favorably in some quarters.
> Someone reported that MA (Massachusetts) quit using punched cards > after a disputed election.
That was me. It was the congressional race that eventually led to the election of William Delahunt after the judges hand counted the disputed votes themselves and reversed the initial outcome.