Extremely close election a time to be thankful …

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 8, 2000

Bush leads. Gore leads. Bush leads. Gore leads. Election night coverage sounded more like a play-by-play broadcast of a tennis match than the typical political drama.

The race was neck-and-neck into the early morning hours as political experts and pundits attempted to forecast and project a possible winner.

While most folks were left frustrated by back-and-forth horse race toward the electoral college victory, the debate should serve as a lesson in what American government is all about — freedom to choose.

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In such a close race, the debate over the validity of our method of electing a president based on the electoral college versus the popular vote is bound to come up. Regardless of where you stand on the issue, the fact remains that we as Americans should feel lucky — even blessed — that we live in a country in which we have the right to choose.

It’s fitting that election day comes a few days before the celebration of Veterans Day — the national holiday honoring the men and women who have dedicated their lives to fighting to keep our country free.

The American political process, no matter how imperfect it may be, should be precious to each of us. And, even more than 200 years after our forefathers penned the U.S. Constitution our system remains the best system we have and one that is the envy of dozens of countries.

Regardless of which candidate ultimately wins the tennis match, we should all cherish the freedom which allows us to cast a vote and offer an opinion on how our country should be governed.