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At Any Cost: How Al Gore Tried to Steal the Election Hardcover – April 1, 2001

3.9 out of 5 stars 349 customer reviews

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Amazon.com Review

Washington Times reporter Bill Sammon makes it clear in the opening pages of At Any Cost that he's not a big fan of Al Gore. In this fast-paced account of what happened to Florida's controversial vote, he explains how a defeated Gore desperately fought to turn things around. He starts by suggesting that tens of thousands of voters in the Florida Panhandle--Republican country--decided not to cast ballots when the media wrongly called the state for Gore early in the evening on Election Day, before all the polls had closed in the western part of the state. Without this blunder--which hasn't received nearly the attention heaped on the media for prematurely calling the election for George W. Bush several hours later--Sammon believes Gore would have given up his post-election campaign much sooner. Sammon also believes this had repercussions outside Florida: "If not for the networks' early and erroneous projections, Bush might have easily won the popular vote, and carried a few congressional seats with him."

The bulk of the book zeros in on Gore and his goal of "seizing the presidency." In one nifty bit of reporting, Sammon tracks down a navy lieutenant whose military ballot Gore's lawyers were determined to throw out. Sammon describes the unseemly spectacle of their success:

When the [Duval County] canvassing board announced that the ballots of 149 soldiers, sailors, and airmen had been disqualified, a pair of jubilant Gore lawyers exchanged high-fives. A Republican, visibly shaken by this sight, demanded to know how they could celebrate the disenfranchisement of U.S. military members risking their lives around the world. One of the Gore lawyers glibly replied, "A win's a win."
Sammon also covers all that business about the chads, Gore's "smear campaign" against Secretary of State Katherine Harris, and the Supreme Court's controversial Bush v. Gore ruling. This is by no means the definitive story of what happened in Florida, but it's a useful piece of journalism--and one that Bush's supporters will read with that heady mixture of outrage and excitement that politics uniquely provides. --John J. Miller

From the Inside Flap

Al Gore was furious. He wasn't supposed to lose.

Drawing on exhaustive, on-the-scene reporting and exclusive interviews with the key players – including President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard B. Cheney – Washington Times reporter Bill Sammon has written the definitive account of the most contentious presidential election in U.S. history.

At Any Cost is a breathtaking examination of Vice President Al Gore's audacious and unprecedented effort to overturn the presidential election. Desperate to forestall the spectacular collapse of his political career and determined to inflict as much damage as possible on Bush, Gore pulled out all the stops in an extraordinary, thirty-six day campaign of scorched-earth political warfare that propelled the nation to the brink of a constitutional crisis.

Alternately infuriating and hilarious, At Any Cost provides a compelling, insider's look at this historic standoff. In At Any Cost, you will see:

* Gore lawyers high-fiving each other after disqualifying more than a thousand military ballots on trumped-up hypertechnicalities. "A win's a win," crowed one of the lawyers after tossing out the ballot of Navy Lieutenant John Russell, who at that moment was off the coast of Yemen, where he had just finished rescuing the USS Cole in the wake of a deadly terrorist strike.

* Gore personally orchestrating a smear-and-destroy campaign against Florida's top election official, Katherine Harris, for upholding state laws that got in the way of his desperate quest. Privately calling her "Cruella De Vil," the micromanaging Gore directly engaged in the politics of personal destruction, even as he piously pledged to elevate "the tone of our dialogue."

* Democratic operative Bob Beckel plotting to "kidnap" Bush electors in a secret campaign to foist the election debacle on Congress and plunge the nation into electoral chaos. While Gore publicly distanced himself from Beckel, he privately retained an Electoral College expert to advise him on the possibility of flipping "faithless" electors.

At Any Cost is a gripping, must-read account of the biggest attempted larceny in the history of American politics.

Back Cover:

"You make the decision to run first and then you run with all your heart and soul," Gore told reporters in 1991 as he mulled a campaign for the White House. "You're going to rip the lungs out of anybody else who's in the race. And you're going to do it right."

Gore reaffirmed his scorched-earth philosophy during the 2000 campaign.

"I'm not like George Bush," he told aides. "If he wins or loses, life goes on. I'll do anything to win."

And so on Thursday, November 9, Gore made the most momentous decision of the post-election struggle. He would fight on. There was no turning back. He would seize the presidency at any cost.

* * * * *

Gore had known even before the first ballot was recounted that his odds for success were slim. Having been a professional politician for twenty-four years, he realized that recounts rarely reverse elections. Oh, there was some genuine hope in the Gore camp, especially during those first heady hours, that a new tally would produce a new winner. But there was also a more realistic assessment of the situation. The cold-eyed pros on Team Gore immediately viewed the recount in purely pragmatic terms: It bought them some time. No more than a couple of days, to be sure, but enough time to come up with a Plan B. One thing was certain: They couldn't wait until the conclusion of the recount, which would probably confirm Bush's win, to disabuse the press and public of the expectation of quick closure. If the Gore team didn't come up with a secondary strategy almost immediately, there would be tremendous pressure on the vice president to concede....

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 294 pages
  • Publisher: Regnery Publishing (April 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0895262274
  • ISBN-13: 978-0895262271
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (349 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,166,974 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Although I followed election 2000, I still found information here that was covered up my the media and the Democrats in particular Mr. Gore who said; "Every vote must count" but cheered as mlitary votes were thrown out.As a foreign born but proud American, I find these tactics in poor taste. Win at any cost is not a good strategy and I believe that Mr. Gore and his party are paying dearly for that right now.Al Gore is a disgrace to his state, his political party and his country. It's no wonder that election 2000 made America the laughing stock of the world.
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Format: Paperback
I find it amusing that some folks still think that Al Gore got cheated but will still turn their noses up at this book which offers a credible and accurate account of what really happened and what the media tried (and still tries) to avoid.Not only was G.W. Bush a deserving winner, but he also brought character back to the Presidency. His handling of the events surrounding 911 were genuis and heroic. G.W. Bush's ability to reassemble a military that his predecessor let fall apart is also a testiment that Americans voted for the right man.And what of Al Gore? He apparently remains bitter and unchanged. His recent speeches indicate that he obviously would never make a great President. I find it amusing that Mr. Gore has written a book on values. Especially considering that Gore's "4 ring" places himself first and his country last. When I think of Gore, I think of Mondale and Minnesota; the stupid smirk on Gore's face when the democrats turned a memorial service into a Democratic Rally! How disgusting!And then there is Gore's new book which is obviously not getting much support by Americansvbased on low sales (perhaps Gore will demand a recount!) but getting a lot of flack from unhappy reviewers. How does Mr. Gore handle this? He deletes the bad reviews to make them dissappear and makes it appear as though votes are only from "thrilled" 5 star reviewers. WOW! Does that seem familiar? Sounds a lot like the last Presidential election doesn't it?At Any Cost is a excellent book. I highly recommend it.
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I agree with the reviewer from Melbourne and know many people who where going to vote for Bush but didn't only because of the fiasco in the media announcing Al Gore as the winner and that polls were closed.And how about all of the Military votes, many which would have gone to Bush whch were thrown out!A perfect example of Democratic Misbehavior.
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Format: Hardcover
This book shows just how dirty the democrats were during that lastelection; how they tried every cheap and dirty trick possible; preannouncing a bogus winner; irresponsibly and deceptivefully lying,but even afterall that, the right man came out on top.
It's not surprising to see that Al Gore has dropped out of the election for 2004. If he couldn't win after all the cheating i 2000, what chance would he have now?
The dispictable actions of the democrats in Minnesota last fall further ppproves that democrats are not ready for leadership now or anytime in the immediate future.
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If there was ever any doubt that the media is biased in their reporting, the last Presidential election removed those doubts and this book explains why.As a former democrat who voted for Clinton, I am disgusted with Mr. Gore and ashamed of my former alliance. The recent fiasco in Minnesota with Mondale validates that the Republican party is the only party and that Al Gore deserved to lose that last election.
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I am not surprised to hear than not one southern state voted for Gore or that most states voted for Bush.As a Pennsylvanian, I and many from the Keystone state, particularly those who are anti-abortion voted for Bush as well.Gore acted like a selfish thief during the election and like a crybaby afterwards.And this man wanted to be our leader? No thanks!
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The allegations that George Bush only won small areas is totally false, but predictable by the Gore supporters.It's also true that not one southern state was won by Gore and that includes the great state of Texas, not to mention Gore's own state of Tennessee and Clinton's own Arkansas.Too bad big Al dropped out of election 2004. I seriously doubt if he would have beaten other democrat nominees let alone GWB II.Fool us once Al, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us.
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As if it wasn't bad enough that we had a President lie under oath and take dignity away from the most cherished leadership title in the world, now we have his second in command try to steal what he couldn't legally win.Clinton and Gore are a disgrace to the democratic party and to this country.
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