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Wednesday, 8 November, 2000, 05:18 GMT
Will the best man win?

In a few hours from now, we'll know who will succeed Bill Clinton in office. The presidential race has been one of the closest in the country's history.

The Democrat Al Gore and his Republican counterpart, George W. Bush, have been campaigning until the very last minute. But despite this and millions of dollars spent on their campaigns, they are still neck-and-neck.

What do you think of the result so far? Will the best man win it?


G.W. would be a big mistake for the US

Christina, USA
G.W. would be a big mistake for the US if he is elected President. I don't think that he knows enough about what the American people want or need. He is very far removed from the world of the average American.
Christina, USA

14 million disabled Americans didn't even bother to register for the vote in 1996, due to very poor access to polling places. Surely a minority, this size, could have a major bearing on the outcome of the election. Absentee voting is no substitute for being able to attend and vote in person and many disabled Americans choose not to register rather than use the absentee vote.
John McGovern, Scotland

I have been following the results very closely thanks to your world-wide coverage, I have been watching the election on TV here. So far the results are in favour of Bush but deep down here in Fiji we get the feeling that Gore just might win. Once again thank you BBC for your excellent coverage.
Rizwan Dean, Fiji Islands

Al Gore all the the White House. For George Bush, its good hustle for the next election.
Dev, USA

It will be funny if Florida decides the presidency. Future generations will say that Micky Mouse decided the issue.
Paranthaman Ramakrishnan, Australia

Both candidates are a thousand times more fit, trained and experienced than any beasts running for the office of the President in 40 years

Walt O'Brien, USA
Both candidates are a thousand times more fit, trained and experienced than any beasts running for the office of the President in 40 years. While there is no appreciable difference between the candidates in either policy nor economic and social philosophy, both have excellent teams to keep them out of trouble, and either is taking over the helm of a Ship of State more finely tuned than it has ever been since WW II. Should either win, the best of luck, though this time out it shan't be luck but competence getting us through. We simply have a short collective memory concerning what a pack of self-aggrandizing buzzards preceded today's comfortably mediocre but well-trained lot. God save us all from the predations of the great, when a normal person with worthwhile job skills can get us by. I rather like mediocrities. I'm one myself, if truth be told. All power to the Grey Suits!
Walt O'Brien, USA

I guess a lot of you people in the rest of the world do not understand American politics. First off. G. W. did not have to talk about his DUI. The records were sealed by the court. Guess no one realize what efforts the Gore campaign had to go through to get it. Two. G.W. is not an idiot. He has done great things in Texas. He was re-elected to term which is not usual in that state. The White House web site praises Texas. Then they go on television and bash the state. Also. Bush has an MBA degree from Harvard. Gore flunked divinity school and also had to struggle in Law School. I think what the rest of the world need to realize that we as Americans value our freedoms. Freedom from an oppressive, big-brother form of Government. The ability of the individual to make it on his/her own and succeed in life. Not having to admit we are week and cannot do things without the federal government.
Keith Ainsley, United States

I hope Bush wins. Gore's whole campaign is based upon dividing people and getting them hooked on government programs. What a change from JFK (whom he likes to compare himself with) who said ask not what your country can do for you...ask what you can do for your country. Al just says here's what I can do to buy your vote with other people's money.
Stacy, USA

I wish them all the best, whoever they choose

Ramakrishnan Paranthaman, Australia
I think this is a somewhat queer, yet interesting election in many ways. Most fascinating to be honest. In general, people have voted for a rightist party/candidate to lift the economy out of the doldrums and a left leaning party/candidate to do a distribution when the economy has been growing for a while. Ironically at the end of the term in office, parties/candidates, are punished if they do the promised job well i.e. strong growth in the case of a rightist party and redistribution of wealth in the case of a left leaning party. Americans have probably enjoyed - with the rest of the world - a period of unprecedented prosperity. Ironically, it was achieved during the term of a left leaning party. How the "American People' vote would have strong implications for both parties of the right and left. As for me, I wish them all the best, whoever they choose.
Ramakrishnan Paranthaman, Australia

Al Gore is the more progressive, trustworthy and stronger leader of the two. Gore should win.
Milan, Singapore

How can we forget "The General" incident? Although foreign policy, and indeed the suitability of the candidate to have the responsibility of running the most powerful nation in the world, doesn't really count for much in these elections, does it? The ability of one candidate to succeed in American politics is dependant on their ability to run an effective negative campaign against their opponent and, more importantly, whether they can overcome voter apathy. We shall find out shortly.
Michael Bloomfield, UK

George W. Bush will win because he is the man who knows the feeling of people and shares their problems. The second most important thing is that he wants to revive the family system which is good for America and its people. I wish him best of luck.
Muddasir Qutb, Pakistan

We are all gathered here around the radio, TV and internet media, listening to the news

Helen Chang, Los Angeles, USA
It's the last hours of voting, everyone in my office is nervous to see the winning results. We all voted for Gore. Between Gore and Bush, Gore is the lesser evil. Bush is truly ignorant and way below competency to be the leader of this world super power nation. We are all gathered here around the radio, TV and internet media, listening to the news. The air here is quite tense, hoping that Gore will become the next President of our country.
Helen Chang, Los Angeles, USA

Bush's campaign is one big contradiction. So we're smart enough to spend our supposed tax rebate, but we aren't smart enough to chose whether or not we want an abortion? How can he reconcile those two stances?
James Weissinger, USA

Campaigning isn't something that can be compared all across the United States. It's done state by state. Remember, it's not the popular vote; it's all about the electoral college. There can be a 51% to 49% split amongst the populace of a state but because of a majority, no matter how meagre, all the electoral votes will go to the candidate who has the majority. States with an those who belong to and undecided majority will see more campaigning in a desperate hope to sway views and capture voters. For example, I live in California, a state that will almost guarantee all 54 electoral votes to Gore. I haven't seen many Gore commercials, but I've seen a slew of Bush commercials attacking Gore's Social Security plan and explaining on how Gore would increase the size of government as a direct result increasing spending. I haven't seen a commercial where Gore offers a rebuttal to these attacks. It seems that Gore is confident he will carry California, seeing no need in spending money to sway any views. In California, Bush campaigned more effectively.
Sameer, USA

I don't know both the candidates very well still I want such a person to be the president who will forward friendly relations with India.
Manoj Wagh, Pune, India

Neither of these guys are above average in any way

Lizzy, New Mexico, USA
Sometimes I don't think that many people understand what each candidate stands for. Whoever "wins", it is just a sickening thought. Americans really need a new, open-minded leader, and unfortunately neither of these guys are above average in any way!
Lizzy, New Mexico, USA

Ralph Nader ran the best campaign. He's the only one who actually campaigned on the issues. The powers that be ignored him and then attacked him, but the Greens will have the last laugh.
Nina, USA

To quote the ex-Governor of Massachusetts, "Understanding the American political system has never been easy." Well, there's going to be a lot of people all over the world who won't be able to understand the American political system tomorrow if neither candidate gains that oh-so-crucial 270 electoral college votes. What hardly hasn't been focused on at all, in my opinion, is what will happen if no-one achieves this. The election of the President will fall to the House of Representatives and the election of the Vice-President will fall to the Senate, and they will have until March to cast their decision. Of course, if in the event this did happen, all hell will break loose as it will finally become apparent that what an undemocractic system this is - what can possibly justify electing a President for the most powerful country on earth through a group of only around 600 people?
JD, England

George Bush is not perfect, but he doesn't claim to be

Walter Jones, USA
Al Gore, I thought early on would easily capture the presidency because he has a gift for cramming a bunch of facts in his head before a public appearance. He also has a gift for segmenting the population against itself (rich vs. poor, corporations vs. individual, i.e. divide and conquer) and makes himself and big government sound like the savior. I figured he had the charisma to pull it off or change his personality enough to take the majority. I think his downfall was the first debate, when he could not restrain his real self. He was cocky, rude and did not subject himself to the rules of the debate. I don't want a president that will not subject himself to the laws of the land. I feel that if he is given the most important job in the world, his cockiness, rudeness, inability to tell the truth will cause our fair land much harm. He does not have the charisma to win hearts overseas like Clinton--he will come off as a rude American. On the other hand George Bush is not perfect, but he doesn't claim to be. I feel he has respect for America, loves America and is not condescending. I feel I can trust Bush more. Trust and loyalty combined with the issues make his campaign better.
Walter Jones, USA

In my view neither candidate has run an effective campaign. If the percentage of votes won compared to amount of campaign money raised and media coverage given relative to his opponents, Ralph Nader has by far run the most effective and sincere race for president.
Karl Meek, Texas

Ralph Nader is the only choice there is. He is the only person running who is capable of holding this position. He is completely brilliant. His stance on foreign policy, the environment and big business is the best I have heard so far. To me Gore and Bush are the same except Gore is more intelligent. Bush makes up words when he is confused (which is often!).
Zoe, Uk living in US

Gore's strategists did rather a poor job of making the issues out to the people

Rajiv Mahajan, USA
I voted for Al Gore because of the various plans such as social security reform and healthcare concern me very much. Even though Al Gore represents my views and the views shared by a large percentage of Americans, Al Gore's strategists did rather a poor job of making the issues out to the people. The Republicans had a very organised campaign and of course had the vast financial backing of the shady organisations such as insurance companies, tabacco industries, the Christian Right and the National Rifle Association. Despite the Democratic campaign's short comings, Ralph Nader (whose real motives for running are suspect) really helped to hurt the Democrats' popularity by using tirades and vague critiques of Clinton and Gore.
Rajiv Mahajan, USA

And hey, he can add up...

Kenny, USA
If by "best campaign" you mean "least riddled with hypocrisy, vapidity, and bile," I'd have to say Al Gore. It turns my stomach to vote for him, but at least he pays lip service to environmental issues and doesn't claim to be a paragon of virtue. And hey, he can add up....
Kenny, USA

The issue at stake is who ran the best campaign for president, not are their policies up to much, or are politics in the US in a deplorable state. The only answer can be that Bush ran the better campaign. Gore has everything on his side: proven track record, experience, the backing of a party seen to be responsible for one of the most buoyant economies of recent years. He is clearly in-touch with the issues at stake, and has an understanding of foreign policy that at the very least surpasses Bush. Yet he failed to convince the electorate. The idea that Bush could win the election is laughable. Gore lost this fight. His campaign was simply inadequate.
Steven Spencer,UK

Whoever wins the presidency would have ran the best campaign. Al Gore may not be the liveliest candidate but he is a better choice over Bush. Watching the debates and following the campaign, it's obvious that GWB knows nothing about the issues and knows even less about how to resolve them. GWB doesn't even know that Social Security IS a federal program!!! His stand on education, social security, and foreign policy will unravel all the positive reforms achieved thus far. Vote him for president and expect recession...and that's only the beginning.
Farah, New York, USA

Gore intelligent? Who flunked out of graduate school? - Gore. Who got an MBA at Harvard? - Bush
Dennis, USA

Another year of political mediocrity in the USA

Falcon, Texas, USA
Another year of political mediocrity in the USA. I guess it's too great a request for both Democrats and Republicans to produce a candidate that will actually make a good leader. I'm still waiting for the person that appreciates and respects the wonderful diversity found in the USA, and also respects the sensibilities of all world cultures. I suppose I will be waiting another millennium.
Falcon, Texas, USA

Bush has clearly run the best presidential campaign. However, I am amazed how many Americans are debating which candidate is the least bad. Nobody wants either. Gore is considered dull and a control freak. Bush is not 'unintelligent' but just appears uninterested in the details of policy - not very promising either. The best option is for Bush to win and to follow his own example of appointing strong characters like Dick Cheney, who will have to get on with running the country on a day-to-day basis.
Ewan Parry, UK and US

From what I can see, the majority of comments from my countrymen show Bush to have run the better campaign, be more honest, credible, and have better leadership qualities. On the other hand, most comments from outside the U.S. say that Gore is the man for the job. Maybe that's exactly why Bush is the best man to lead our nation. After all, the former Soviet Union would happily have chosen Carter over Reagan.
Barry, USA

Who cares? We're doomed.
Morgan O'Conner, USA

We're going back to the pyjama suit presidency

Pat Cafferty, UK
The Bush campaign is about empty slogans and avoidance of the issues. Amazingly it looks like we're going back to the pyjama suit presidency and laughing stock that was Ronald Reagan. Gore lacks charisma but he is a worker and a thinker.
Pat Cafferty, UK

Your question was not who will win the election, but instead it was who ran the best campaign. The simple answer is Ralph Nader - great turnout with a limited budget, creative adverts (take-offs of Mastercard ads) and the development of what may turn out to be a real third party movement in the USA.
Graham, USA

The question is which ran a better campaign...Bush did. He presented a very simple message to very simple people...He is "in the majority."
David, Japan

I was under the impression that 'campaigns' were about political candidates bringing their issues to the fore in an intellectual, honourable and fair way. I did not realise that in the context of the US elections "campaign" means a mud-slinging, money-wasting, you-say-black-and-I'll-say-white fa´┐Żade. I didn't realise it was possible to become the leader of the free world by only working 5 hours a day. I must be terribly ignorant to think that there is still such a thing called "democracy".
Tjeerd Blackford, British (living in Belgium)

More people drink Coke than vote anyway

Bob McDuff, Canada
Is it really relevant who gets to tinker with the policies of corporate USA for the next four years? More people drink Coke than vote anyway, so why not make the president of Coca-cola Corporation US leader and save the ridiculous money spent on campaigning. At least the guy may have some genuine power.
Bob McDuff, Canada

It would appear that Al Gore's greatest mistake was distancing himself from President Clinton. All the ratings suggest that he remains highly popular with the American people. It seems that Gore's expert advisers have chosen not to use their greatest asset. As for George W. Bush, one gets the feeling that as Ronald Reagan proved a decade ago, the less intellectually gifted can often make some inspired appointments. We can only hope that the Texas Governor will follow suit if he's elected.
Bruce Ingram, United Kingdom

Propose two brands of washing powder, with lots of TV ads and ask people to vote. You may have the same 45,9 to 45.8 in opinion polls and 8.3% undecided... election or soap?
Henri Vanoverbeke, Belgium

George Bush is running the smarter campaign. Liberals just don't get "it". Everybody said he couldn't beat Ann Richards for governor, but he did. The liberals went mad. Said he was dumb. Said he was an idiot. Said he couldn't lead. Now we have Democrats supporting him in Texas. Our economy is second to none. Our schools have improved dramatically. Now all the snobs say he's an idiot and dumb, even from around the world. We will see tomorrow who the idiot is. It will be the one that said Clinton was the best president we've ever had...right after he was impeached.
Chuck Evans, Texas

What is this, a racetrack?

Ben Mansik, Wisconsin, US
"Who ran the best campaign?" What is this, a racetrack? A game? No way. The political process in the United States is a controlled process. But this year, an insurgent campaign is beginning to dismantle that control. Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke are the voices of the Green insurgency in the U.S. Votes for Bush or Gore are votes for continued corporate domination, and an abdication of political responsibility.
Ben Manski, Wisconsin, US

Our long and difficult campaigns reveal a trait most people don't even notice: the staffing and oversight skills of the candidate. A well-staffed campaign points to a well-staffed White House, and THAT is far more important than many realize. Cases in point are Carter - a very bright man with poor staffing and delegating skills - versus Reagan - a genial but not overwhelmingly skilled man who put together a very effective staff. Well-run campaigns are indicators of well-run political offices.
Will, USA

The answer to who ran the best campaign cannot be answered until sometime tomorrow night. The guy who wins the election is the one who ran the best campaign. That's what politics is about - winning the election. I hope Bush wins because I think he is the best man all around. We'll just have to wait and see.
Jim Hubbell, Texas

Ralph Nader of the Green Party has been speaking to packed houses of 10,000 or more across the United States and received more and more U.S. press time in recent weeks. He has given liberal voters who have been dismayed at the right leaning Liberal Party a viable option to vote for, at the same time as putting the Green party on the map. He has not only proven himself to be the most intellectual of the candidates, he has, effectively, turned the USA election into a three party system.
Derek Martin, Canada

Whatever happened to personality, integrity or even real people?

Sharif, Bahrain
I can only agree with many others. The fact that these unimpressive candidates are the best that America can produce for selection is a truly depressing fact. Whatever happened to personality, integrity or even real people?
Sharif, Bahrain

Two insipid men are canvassing for the most powerful seat in the world. How I wish the charismatic Clinton was in the fray - he would win (hands down or pants down).
Priya Ramanujan, India

It seems like it's one big game show.
Dan, UK

The thought of the blundering Texan taking the most power job in the world is too frightening to contemplate. I have yet to hear him talk about the issues, probably because he has no clue what they are!
Nicky M, USA

Do we wish to continue with the failed experimentation of the Clinton - Gore administration?

Drew Merkel, USA
The major issue before the American people is one of direction: Do we wish to continue with the failed experimentation of the Clinton - Gore administration, or do we wish to start afresh with zeal in upholding the nation's best interests and the spirit and letter of our founding fathers?
Drew Merkel, USA

Who ran the best campaign? Well let's give credit where credit is due. It was Oprah, Regis, Leno, and Letterman. Whenever, either candidate lagged in the polls, amazing what an appearance on these shows did to shore up their fortunes. The campaign staff on both sides are the real heroes. The genius of their intellect identified early on that the American people are for the most part, least interested in the issues. Instead, it is celebrity appeal that sells.
Anonymous, USA

George W. Bush represents a return to the values and patriotism that were once the foundation of this country. Clinton has sought to destroy all that is noble and good about Americans and we are ready to return to the principles set forth by the founding fathers. After nearly eight years of having to live in the sewer of lies, deception, destruction of our military, deviancy, and dirty tricks, we finally have a chance to elect a man who has integrity and truly cares about his country - George W. Bush.
Linda, USA

Is Al Gore even alive or is he a puppet?

Dave Coldiron, USA
Is Al Gore even alive or is he a puppet? The man has no personality which does not bode well for approval within the country, much less for foreign relations. I refuse to vote for any man who doesn't have any guts. Gore can only get through an election based on scare tactics rather than reflecting on his own merit, or lack thereof.
Dave Coldiron, USA

Both campaigns were much of a muchness really, though I prefer Bush's style - he actually looks at people when he speaks to them. Gore avoids eye contact and when he is shouting, I swear if you put a Bible in his hand, he'd make a great preacher.
Di Stewart, USA

I would vote Gore-Lieberman just because I consider Bush-Cheney as "the day before yesterday" men. If Bush loses, the Republicans can blame only themselves because of their choice of a mediocre "big oil" person instead of a war hero such as Senator John McCain who could have a landslide victory.
Ilya Girin, USA

It's not the best election I've witnessed in my life

Tavis, USA
It's not the best election I've witnessed in my life. I will vote GOP regardless, because Al Gore will say anything and do anything to gain votes. It's scary how much he wants to be president; I just could never trust a man like that.
Tavis, USA

Bush has got the support of powerful lobbies who have finally been challenged by someone in the USA. The list starts with the gun lobby, the tobacco companies and giant corporations like Microsoft. They've thrown all they could behind the Bush campaign. Let's hope it doesn't pay back.
Ian, Malta

I feel for the past eight years, I have been living in a country with no shame or integrity because it has continued to condone a man who has done so much corruption and lies. The fact that people would even think of voting in his Vice-President amazes me. Bill Clinton has rubbed off on Al Gore a little too much for me to even consider choosing him for president.
Kathy, USA

Bush is clearly the winner

John Cullen, USA
Bush is clearly the winner. Al gore should be winning by a landslide with all the major news agencies on his side, the economy up, unemployment, crime, homelessness etc. down. However, his dishonesty will be his downfall. With "no legal controlling authority", Buddhist temples, and inventing the Internet, Gore has proven himself to be as big a liar as Clinton. At least with Bush we can put Monica behind us.
John Cullen, USA

It's interesting how people are still supporting Bush. No doubt he has run a smarter campaign but it's all a part of what money can do. He has hired some of the best brains to run his campaign. But it'll be a sad day for US if he gets elected. He has already broken the very platform he's campaigning on... Restoring integrity to the White House. How can he restore integrity to the WH when he has already proven that he will not be honest by totally not being up front about his past. On the other hand Gore has a very clean character and history behind him... so is it such a big decision... shouldn't it be obvious the Gore is a better candidate.

The fact that the race is so close proves that Bush is running the better campaign

Prasanna, India
Al Gore should be leading by a landslide. The fact that the race is so close proves that Bush is running the better campaign. Who could have imagined he would have made the race this close?
Prasanna, India

Governor Bush will win this election, if only by the narrowest of margins because he appears to most people to be a breath of fresh air after the constant wrangling of the last eight years. He is far from perfect, but then again, judging by the electorate's behaviour in the last two Presidential years neither are they. What our British and European friends don't quite understand is that personal freedom, and lack of interference from the state is still just enough of a value to Americans (especially in the south and mid-west) as it was 224 years ago. The idea that Gore and the Democrats may restrict Constitutional freedoms is JUST prevalent enough to deny Gore the election.
David O., Dayton, Ohio USA

Reading through these comments has been horribly distressing. It is obvious that those living outside the U.S. have been thoroughly deceived and manipulated by the likes of the BBC and CNN. This race was over immediately after the first debate and when all the votes are tallied it is going to be crystal clear to a lot people how they have been victimised by the Leftist media. It's Bush by at least 6 points. World citizens: We do not want your socialism over here!
Jim, U.S.

Bush won because he was superior in all 3 debates

Nan, USA
Bush won because he was superior in all 3 debates and the country saw Gore for the fool he is each and every debate.
Nan, USA

Gov. Bush has run the best campaign by far. He has had to run against the media and the Democrat Party.
Kanell, USA

Al Gore ran a very poor campaign. The only smart thing he did was choose Joe Lieberman as his running mate, but it was all downhill from there. He ran to the left of the Clinton-Gore tickets of 1996, giving ample room for Bush to take reformist issues on educational choice and private social security accounts. Finally, the rude behavior Gore showed in the first debate (the sighing, the interrupting) was death for Gore. He has been behind in virtually all of the polls since the day after that debate.
William F. Tell, USA

I believe Gov. Bush ran the best campaign. He was straight forward and did not hide his shortcomings. I went to rallies for Gov. Bush and Vice-President Gore and I found Bush to be uplifting and a healing figure after the smarm of the last 8 years. Gore was devisive and ranting. With Bush I felt he was saying to me that working together we can improve America and the world. With Gore I felt he wanted to make all the decisions for me. Bush will strengthen America's freedom, Gore will reduce it.
Ben Puchi, USA

It's unfortunate enough to have another Bush in the White House for another four years. Both of their foreign policies regarding European-US ties are rather frustrating.
Faheem, Germany

The only reason that the race has been so close this year is the fact that the candidates are so outstandingly average

Philip Durrant, New Zealand
Dear (deity of your choice), the "future of the free World" comes down to Al Gore and George Bush. The only reason that the race has been so close this year is the fact that the candidates are so outstandingly average. What impact is the result of this election going to have on the United States' international standing? Like him or hate him, at least Clinton was a statesman - could such a thing be said of either Gore or Bush?
Philip Durrant, New Zealand

Bush obviously has run a smart, effective campaign. My turnaround point of the race, however, was when Al Gore approached "W" during the debate in some odd "in your face" stance and "W" just gave him the "nod".
Dave, USA

The African American and Hispanics have the opportunity to actually decide who will get into the White House but they are been completely ignored as usual in these and all elections. The candidates are trying to get their votes but are really doing nothing to improve the standard of living for these people. As usual big business will determine who wins and the usual pay-off will take place. How sad that the average American person still does not understand what is happening to them or do they really care? The World's greatest power (sic) should not have as much poverty as is seen there. If this is Democracy they can keep it. I prefer to live in a country where the right to bear arms is not given. Anyway the Democrats will give the election to the Republicans as they are the one who are the major swing voters. The Republicans usually will not swing even if they do not like what their man has to offer.
Clarke L Jones, Bermuda

Bush has stayed above the fray, unlike the administration he will replace

Alan J, USA
As I read some of these quotes I am struck by so many of them who say that Gore is smart and Bush is dumb. I must assume that they are so biased or unaware that they don't know or won't acknowledge that Gore had flunked out of school and that Bush has an advanced degree from an Ivy League school. My guess is that reality is trumped by partisan politics. But then liberals have always warned us against "dumb" candidates who later went on to become our best Presidents. Bush is not dumb, but that is not why he will be one of our best Presidents. He as well as Truman, Ike, and RR has an aura of adherence. Bush has stayed above the fray, unlike the administration he will replace.
Alan J, USA

As a distant observer in Africa, I am amazed how Bush overtook Gore in opinion polls and has held on to it up till now, even though I hear he is 'unintelligent, lazy and riding on his father's glory'. How come he is leading then? He has certainly campaigned well. And to Wilfred Winn, you should be more concerned how Mr Charles Taylor runs Liberia, than expecting an American president to work for you.
Pascal Bessong, South Africa/Cameroonian

I have been very objective evaluating Bush and Gore. I do not seem to have seen the qualities of a president in Bush. The only identity Bush has is the trade name 'Bush'. I am very disappointed with the Americans for choosing such a person for the highest office on earth. I am concerned that people of his stuff could only excel creating crisis and wars in the world. There does not seem to be any difference between him and a multinationals such as tobacco companies who do not care as long as they make profit and wield power.
Charles, Kuwait

Bush has obviously run the best campaign! And yes we all want to be rid of the Clinton factor and Gore only stays as a reminder.
Pat, USA

The campaign was mundane and insincere, so thank God I don't have to vote

Ed, Italy
Gore or Bush? What a fantastic choice! The fact that only these two candidates are an option in a country of hundreds of millions of people worries me. The campaign was mundane and insincere, so thank God I don't have to vote!
Ed, Brit in Italy

The most powerful man in the world , G. Bush - that sends a shiver down your spine. Al Gore is the only choice for the country. Both have run a glitzy but no-substance campaign .
Robert Ward, England

George Bush can't get his grammar correct never mind one of the most powerful country's politics right, to me Al Gore seems the best choice for the American citizens.
Chris, England

As a political undergraduate with years of experience I think that both seem to be no different. However, it all depends on the issue of morality. If you are greedy and uncaring, vote for Bush. If you care about others as much as your family, vote for Gore. Why, you might ask? Gore is not an idealist, nor the best we can ever hope to have. But he is the best limited choice we have. Bush will drill for oil and wreck the environment. Gore will not. Bush will throw money away like it was yesterday. Gore will decide the best area, and spend. Bush will work a 9-5 day. Gore will work until his job is done, THEN spend time with his family. Think about it. That voice inside that thinks "yeah, he must be better".
Michael Wing, Durham University, England, UK

I have felt for a long time that it was time for a 3rd Party

Dave Williams, USA
I have felt for a long time that it was time for a 3rd Party. I was leaning toward Ralph Nader. I will not vote for George Bush. After the disclosure that he had been arrested for drunk driving once and never disclosed this, I am wondering about his credibility. Also Dick Cheney and his DWI arrests. I think Dick Cheney is a fine individual, But my vote goes to Al Gore now, simply because a vote for Ralph Nader is a vote for George Bush. Bush has not clarified his stand on abortion and other issues.
Dave Williams, USA

I'm appalled at the way Ralph Nader has been ignored by the American media except for the insistence of everyone that he is a spoiler for Al Gore and the repetition of the phrase "A vote for Nader is a vote for Bush." Vote Green! Vote for Nader!
Carolyn Zaremba, San Francisco, USA

Al Gore has run the most diabolical campaign in recent memory

Stephen Kenney, USA
Al Gore has run the most diabolical campaign in recent memory. The icing on the cake is today, when a Al Gore ally released the news that 25 years ago George Bush was busted for drunk driving. Al Gore claims he knew nothing of it. Right, just about how Al Gore didn't know that his Buddhist temple visit wasn't a fundraiser? There are no coincidences in election politics.
Stephen Kenney, USA

George W. Bush, Jr. is probably one of the worst choices that the GOP could have ever come up with. Al Gore is one of the best men in the Democratic Party. He has integrity, concern, compassion, and is extremely intelligent. All you have to do is to listen to what each candidate has to say. Bush is all show and no content. Gore knows the issues and has the experience. And, Gore never got arrested while driving his car drunk.
Dave Adams, USA

Neither candidate has run a good campaign, nor have they spelt out a vision for America. Bush communicates in soundbites, slogans and smart remarks. Gore rambles on with long lists of facts, figures and statistics, putting voters to sleep.
The ultimate test of how good a presidential campaign is whether or not the candidate wins.
Jeff, USA

Ralph Nader has run a great campaign and his ideas make sense

Dean, USA
Ralph Nader has run a great campaign and his ideas make sense. It's too bad most people in this country are too narrow-minded to listen to him.
Smoking on commercial airline flights has been banned, we have seatbelts and airbags in cars because of the work of Ralph Nader. His goals are to save the environment and help the average person, not take "soft money" from large corporations.
Dean, USA

Both Gore and Bush are equally responsible for this terrible charade. It's very sad to see these two men battling for the right to serve their corporate sponsors whilst claiming to want to serve the electorate.
If I could vote I'd go for Ralph Nader because he's the only one who is interested in democracy and also the only one who would take the major steps necessary to tackle the world's environmental problems, in particular, global warming.
Joe Charnock, USA (English)

I believe that Governor Bush has run a clean and respectable campaign. Which only reflects the kind of person he is. Everyone brings up the experience issue; Must I remind people of the Governor of Arkansas, a man named Bill Clinton, who NEVER dealt with international crisis.
Joshua Rittenberry, USA

Both of them, with their negative campaigns, are disgraceful

Don, USA
It really takes some digging to turn up decent coverage of any of the "other" presidential candidates. Less than a week to go and one thing I know for sure is that the two puppets (Mr G and Mr B) do not get my vote. Gore is especially practised and polished to shine on TV. Bush is riding his father's coattails to some degree. Both of them, with their negative campaigns, are disgraceful.
Don, USA

Both candidates are blind to the world like most Americans (unfortunately) are. The Federal government's job should focus on global issues like the Palestinian plight, the problems in Afghanistan, Turkmenistan's extravagant leadership at the expense of his people, Turkey's human right issues, the starving people of Iraq due to our sanctions, the issue of oil under the Caspian, and other problems which will haunt us in the future if we don't focus on them now.
Leave the domestic issues (that are never addressed anyway) up to the state and local governments, that's what they're there for. Our country is the most diverse country on the planet, so sweeping international federal agendas will never work! They never have. My vote will be cast with a heavy heart.
Stephen, USA

Who had a better campaign? The Texas millionaire, or the guy that "invented the internet"... I'd rather defect than make that choice!
Sal, USA

George W. Bush will win and lead the USA back to our Constitution

Joe Young, USA
George W. Bush will win and lead the USA back to our Constitution and away from the Socialistic Communism instituted by the Democrats and disgracefully encouraged by Clinton.
Joe Young, USA

Governor Bush has provided the most logical, ethical and economically feasible plan for the future. As a resident of Houston, Texas, I can say that our state has become a better place because of his compassionate conservatism and sound fiscal policies. I would be proud to have him as my President.
Terry Waldo, USA

It's unfortunate we're left to choose the less bland of the two.
David, USA

Gore had the brains to make good policies, Bush has the brains to make a Lego model.
Alex White, UK

Do let us know how many votes "Mickey Mouse" gets this time?
Richard N, UK

I think that both campaigns are so slick it's hard to choose between the two. But if I were to make a choice then it would have to be Al Gore because of his obvious intelligence. The world needs a man of vision in the White House.
Ajay, India

There is very little difference between Al Gore and Bush

Shaq, France
There is very little difference between Al Gore and Bush. Ralph Nader is definitely the best candidate. The problem is that most Americans have never heard of him.
Shaq, France

I reckon Bush ran a good campaign to grab the voters in key states such as Texas and Florida. However, the fact that both used dirty tricks, shows that both of them possess a dark side and thus neither can be trusted.
Adam, UK

As a new citizen and first time voter it seems to me that as long as we have a Republican President with a Democratic House, or vice versa, it matters not who is President. The campaigns, with all the money spent on them, are pathetic! Still, so is their audience, who are generally more interested in beer, sport and movies than issues which affect their future!
Charles Porter, USA

Al Gore has run a terrible campaign. He an economy second to none, low crime, low unemployment, and peace and prosperity. All this yet the man is going to lose. I think he misjudged the American public. Beginning with Reagan, the public in American has moved to the right economically. Look at Clinton, the only way he could win was to run as a New Democrat. He turned his back on the far-left of the Democratic party and supported welfare reform, market superiority and free-trade.
Martin Von, USA

Both GW and Gore are one and the same. Just different names and faces

MI Shafi, USA
Both GW and Gore are one and the same. Just different names and faces. Both will have double standards when it will come to world politics. None of them will be honest. Look at the records of both. GW's father and Dick Cheney will run the government the same way as they did before, if Gore wins then you have his current record in front ... same thing ... double standards on world politics and the media ... WOW ... how credible!
MI Shafi, USA

Al Gore is as credible as you can get. Good family man and more than fit for the presidency. He will keep the economy going. He is also the next president.
Ernest Abunaw, Toledo, Ohio USA

The ability of the American people to discern between the better candidate has unfortunately dwindled to an all-time low. Gore has the most inclusive approach to the future, Bush as a true oil and businessman, is out for oil and business benefits. Bush says he is not of the government lot, hello, his father was the embodiment of government, as well as his governorship being the embodiment of state power. With all this being said, Bush is leading in the polls, and the better candidate Gore may stand to lose to a crooked smiled, not-that charismatic, nor intelligent heir to the throne!
Sergio Medina, NYC, USA

The Democrats seem to be trying to do a Blair re-vamp of the party for the up-coming elections but un-like New Labour their commitments are jarred horribly

Will O'Malley, England
Although I'd rather see a Democrat occupied White House I get the impression (after countless hours of watching CNN and BBC) that the Democrat party doesn't quite know what it stands for. Ok, the UK's Labour party has come under similar attack in its move to the centre ground, but in truth hasn't, in any measurable sense, lost it's core values.
The Democrats seem to be trying to do a Blair re-vamp of the party for the up-coming elections but un-like New Labour their commitments are jarred horribly. I can certainly understand the exceptionally low voter turn-outs predicted!
Will O'Malley, England

The party that has waged the best campaign has be the American media convincing the ordinary man/woman that Bush is the best school boy for job. The British government doesn't know what media bias is until they submit themselves to the American news channels, particularly Fox TV.
Jacqui, UK living in USA

Bush has run the better campaign, but he could have done a much better job. Gore has got away with claiming credit for the economy (not sure how?!), yet distancing himself from everything else that has gone wrong, or promises that remained unfulfilled over the last 8 years. Bush should have attacked him much more vigorously for the inconsistency in this credit claiming.
Nigel Huddleston, USA

It is so hard to say who ran the best campaign when both were so negative. Neither really focused on their own issues, but on what was wrong with the opponents's platform. I am voting for Bush, however. I hope that I am not the only American concerned about Gore's national health plan tendencies.
Mary, USA

I think Bush is simply a puppet, telling the American people what the Republican Party wants him to say

Sharon Smith, USA
I believe that Vice President Gore has been the most forthcoming in his campaign. I think Bush is simply a puppet, telling the American people what the Republican Party wants him to say. Republicans are so desperate to get one of their own into the presidency that they are settling for this guy. I'm really surprised at how they have apparently "fooled" many Americans into thinking he's capable. The defining moment for me was the first time GW opened his mouth to speak and out came - nothing.
Sharon Smith, USA

Distressingly it must be concluded that Bush has run the better campaign. A man who is patently not fit or ready to lead a company let alone a nation has dumbed down expectations so greatly he's perceived as a winner. Why anyone would think he was capable of setting the pace on global issues is bewildering.

I hope to God Al Gore wins. If the American people vote Bush into office then they deserve everything they get. In every society its the same, people cast their votes based on personalities and who can tell the best jokes etc. Its stupid. GWB is a man of low intelligence, no experience, and has openly admitted that he doesn't believe in working more than 4 or 5 hours a day! The most powerful man in the world needs to be on call 24/7, never mind just 4 or 5 hours a day.
B Maguire, UK

I think the assumption that Bush is not very bright is incorrect and has been played by the media to further their candidate (Al Gore)

Mike, USA
George Bush has run the better campaign; of the two he is the only one that has told the same story from the beginning. Al Gore is no different then Clinton. I think the assumption that Bush is not very bright is incorrect and has been played by the media to further their candidate (Al Gore). The best way to decide who to vote for is to look at the candidates past. As vice president Gore has had an opportunity to direct change for the things he is campaigning on.
Mike, USA

Well, Wilfred, as a permanent resident {like myself} you can't vote anyway, and if you were a citizen and became an American {as opposed to a hyphenated, parochial opportunist} I would hope your "priority" would be America first and foremost anyway.
Matthew, USA

Being a University student, I am disgusted and saddened that the two realistic contenders for President are neither believable in their sincerity or trust worthy through their continual refusal to address real facts. Ralph Nader strikes me as a person willing to make change and address real issues yet he has received little to no media attention here in the states. What a sad state of modern politics in our country.
Jessica Ness, USA (Bellingham, WA)

Gore and Bush are the same person with the same message

Daniel Elmes, UK
Gore and Bush are the same person with the same message. The US lost track of what 'democratic' means a long time ago. They say you get the government you deserve... well in the case of the US that is certainly the case.
Daniel Elmes, UK (living in Canada)

Does anybody really trust George W Bush? I get a strange feeling when I look at him on TV. Is it intuition? I have heard it said that Gore is 'wooden'. Is that because he doesn't fit the Hollywood image? What he says makes sense to me!
Brett, Malaysia

Strikes me Bush is just riding the band wagon of his Dad's name to leapfrog into the White House, Bush has shown his not that up with Foreign affairs, and like father like son, George Bush ex CIA etc...Better the devil you know with Gore I say.
Eric Clark, UK

I really think it is sad that both candidates play the role they are expected to play and some people are happy this way

Dominique Bikindou, France
From my European and more precisely French viewpoint, none of the two candidates are running a good electoral campaign. I think that they only try to please the American public opinion. In other words, I do not think that they pay to much attention to politics as the American people seem to forget that this contest is a simple game of which stake is to guess who is going to win. It is about the future of America.
I read in the French quality newspaper, Le Monde, that American people are not interested in a political contest if there is no doubt about the final result (those were roughly the words of an acclaimed American writer but I cannot remember his name). I really think it is sad that both candidates play the role they are expected to play and some people are happy this way
Dominique Bikindou, France

Gore was handed the Presidency. Low unemployment, a booming economy, a growing number of citizens with flush portfolio gains, and relative peace in the world. Nevertheless, Gore has completely squandered it. His weekly personality changes have revealed that he is an empty suit. Anti-corporate demagoguery has repelled voters who now hold equities in those same corporations.
Bush, on the other hand, has deftly appealed to an electorate, who appears largely interested in only new entitlements, without giving away the farm. Funny how the media has designated one as a bumbling fool, and the other bright and issue-oriented. So far it looks like the voters have made their own decision on which one is the brighter.
Andrew, Texas

Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke of the Green Party ran the best campaigns for federal offices in the USA. They conducted themselves ethically, their platforms were socially inclusive, all of the issues facing Americans and the world community were addressed, and a vision for a hopeful and progressive America was introduced to mainstream society.
Reverend James C. Lovette-Black, USA

Al Gore should be leading by a landslide - The fact that the race is so close proves that Bush is running the better campaign

Angelle, USA
Al Gore should be leading by a landslide. The fact that the race is so close proves that Bush is running the better campaign. Who could have imagined he would have made the race this close?
Angelle, USA

People in Russia and Ukraine, which were stricken by IMF and Clinton's policy of double standards and hypocrisy, were deeply moved and rejoiced to hear Mr Bush criticising Gore and Chernomyrdin. This was the best move in this campaign. I am praying every day for George Bush to win and do hope that he will break this vicious circle.
Victor Mishenko, Ukraine

Well it's election time here in Canada like in the States and considering the choices for Prime Minister and President the citizens of both Canada and US seem to feel cheated. Now more than ever democratic reform is needed.
David, Canada

In three different debates we saw three different Al Gores

Sean Stack, France
Who ran the best campaign? That would be 'Dubya'. Obviously, he's not smart enough to dissimulate and just smart enough to acknowledge (and trade on) his limitations. In three different debates we saw three different Al Gores, and sadly none of them was too appealing. Bush would probably make the best president too - too dumb to meddle and too rich to steal. He truly is the second Reagan, and on the whole the first one proved ok...
Sean Stack, France

The most disturbing part of this whole campaign for me is the impression I get that not a single word that either of the candidates says is unscripted and that even their gestures have been meticulously planned and rehearsed beforehand. I cannot shake off the fear that behind both of these faceless politicians there is an army of speechwriters, dirt diggers and opportunists pulling the strings. How can the American people know who they are really voting for?
David Kay, Belgium

Al Gore ran a very truthful and convincing campaign compared to his opponent, GW. I don't believe in opinion polls. In New York City, where I go to school, most of the residents here do not believe that GW will be a president for all. I am a Liberian - a permanent resident. Bush's "priorities" do not include Africa, this is one of several points he's using in his campaign. So, he is not getting the votes of most minorities and poor people.
Wilfred Winn, USA

Vote for "non of the above".
Gerry, Scotland

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