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An attorney for Reform Party presidential candidate Patrick J.
Buchanan has warned Theresa LePore, Palm Beach County elections board
supervisor, to halt any further manual recounts of the 425,000 ballots
cast on Election Day because she failed to notify the Buchanan campaign
of the county’s action.
According to a letter sent to LePore by Thomas Buchanan, the Reform
candidate’s brother — of the Winston & Strawn law office in Washington,
D.C. — LePore has not notified the Buchanan campaign officially that a
manual recount of some of his votes is taking place.
Florida state law, under § 102.166(4)(c), says that when a county
canvassing board authorizes a manual recount, “the county canvassing
board shall make a reasonable effort to notify each candidate whose race
is being recounted at the time and place of such recount.”
“It is clear that this statutory provision requires you, or your
representatives, to notify Mr. Buchanan of the manual recount taking
place in your county,” the letter to LePore stated.
Tom Buchanan, in his letter, said the statute was “obviously designed
to provide Mr. Buchanan and the other presidential candidates timely
notice of the recount, so that they can effectively participate in the
However, the letter said, “neither the canvassing board of Palm Beach
… nor your office, nor any other agency or department of the state,
has made any effort to notify Mr. Buchanan, formally or informally, of
“Considering that Mr. Buchanan’s campaign address is on file in Palm
Beach County and is easily accessible,” the letter continued, “there is
no excuse for not notifying him of the decision to initiate a manual
Also, Tom Buchanan wrote, “subsection 7(a) of Fla. State. Ann. §
102.166 provides that the county canvassing board must include, when
possible, members of at least two political parties in the manual
recount process.” Though Republican and Democratic representatives are
in Palm Beach to oversee the recounts, Buchanan, in his letter, said his
Reform Party brother’s ballots “are at issue.”
“By not notifying him of the manual recount he was precluded from
even attempting to have a representative from his party present during
the recount. …”
The letter, he said, was sent to request “a cessation of the recount
in your county until [Patrick Buchanan] receives proper notification and
the opportunity to be heard as to why a representative from the Reform
Party should not be present during the manual recount.”
The letter said if LePore refused to stop recounting ballots “and
allow Mr. Buchanan or a member from the Reform Party to participate in
the process, we will have no choice but to seek injunctive or other
relief to stop the process in its tracks.”
The Buchanan campaign requested “a prompt response,” or threatened to
seek remedy in a court of law.
Tom Buchanan told WorldNetDaily that the Palm Beach letter had also
been sent to Volusia and Broward counties, and that he was considering
sending one to Dade County as well.
“The state statute requires us to be notified” when manual recounts
occur, Buchanan said. “They never notified us or allowed us to
participate in any decision as to which parties should be present”
during the recounts.
As of last night, Buchanan said he had not received any response in
writing from any of the counties.
Some analysts said the Buchanan letter may have been responsible for
the abrupt announcement by Palm Beach county election officials early
yesterday to stop the manual recount that had already gotten under way.
WorldNetDaily could not confirm that analysis with Palm Beach
officials or with officials with the Buchanan campaign before press
Other officials connected with the Buchanan action suggested that it
was likely county election officials also failed to contact Libertarian
Harry Brown and Green Party nominee Ralph Nader, but they could not