On January 5, 2001, Congress met to certify the Electoral College vote for the office of President. Al Gore had won the 2000 election’s popular vote by a margin of over 500,000, but lost the Electoral College vote by 271 to 266 (one elector pledged to vote for Gore did not cast a vote).  The deciding state was Florida, where of almost 6 million votes cast there was a margin that wavered between recounts, but one clearly less than 1000 votes (<0.016%).  There were multiple recounts and bitter challenges, and hand recounts were still taking place when the Supreme Court ruled they must stop; George W. Bush was then awarded the win, and with Florida’s electoral votes the presidency, by the slender margin of 537 Floridian votes. In a widely praised speech, Mr. Gore subsequently said “for the sake of our unity as a people and the strength of our democracy, I offer my concession.” As the current Vice President, he then had the unenviable task of presiding over the ceremonial congressional certification that awarded the presidency to his opponent, Mr. Bush. He gaveled down some Democratic House challenges to the Bush victory because no Democratic senator supported the challenges.  Mr. Gore concluded his brief speech documenting the tally (and his loss) with these words: “May God bless our new president and new vice president, and may God bless the United States of America.”  The stark difference could not be more crystal clear.