- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 7, 2000

Vice President Al Gore scored a significant victory early on election night by carrying the key battleground states of Michigan and Florida, but other tossup states remained too close to call.
"Gore held his own," said Alan Secrest, Democratic strategist.
Mr. Secrest credited Mr. Gore's Florida win to the voting strength of the Jewish community and to his message on Social Security and Medicare.
Losing Florida is a "huge blow to [Texas Gov. George W.] Bush," said Merle Black, political science professor at Georgia's Emory University.
"Florida was a state Bush always had in his Electoral College strategy, and Gore has denied him 25 votes in the fourth-largest state in the nation," Mr. Black said.
Early returns showed that Mr. Bush captured the bellwether commonwealth of Kentucky, where 61 percent of the voters are registered Democrats.
Mr. Bush was also expected to carry the heavily Democratic state of West Virginia, which re-elected Republican Presidents Reagan and Eisenhower, but has not elected a first-term Republican since Herbert Hoover in 1928.
"I'm grinning from ear to ear," said David Tyson, chairman of the state Republican Party, who was anticipating a Bush win.
Mr. Tyson said Mr. Bush would carry West Virginia because voters there agree with his pro-life position and support for gun rights.
Exit polls showed Mr. Gore in danger of losing his home state of Tennessee. The last presidential candidate to lose his home state was George S. McGovern, who failed to carry South Dakota in 1972.



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