New documents claim Sandra Day O'Connor helped George W. Bush win in 2020

May 4, 2023

Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor offered the framework that helped direct the 2000 presidential election, according to newly released documents.

The effort would be used in the decision-making process that helped George W. Bush become president instead of Al Gore.

The details

"The documents opened at the Library of Congress help reveal how the now-retired O’Connor, the first woman on the high court and a justice steeped in politics from her early days in the Arizona legislature, partnered with Justice Anthony Kennedy, effectively squeezing out an argument advanced by then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist," CNN reported.

"That final 5-4 Bush v. Gore decision stopped county recounts for Florida’s decisive presidential electors and gave then-Texas Gov. Bush the victory over then-Vice President Gore," it added.

The background

"The first woman to serve on the high court was appointed by former President Ronald Reagan in 1981 and served until 2006, when she retired to care for her ill husband," Raw Story reported.

"She told The Chicago Tribune’s editorial board in 2013 that she questioned the court’s involvement in the election controversy," it added.

While the story about the 2000 election is not new, some of the details had not been previously released to the public.

The documents offered a look at many other cases as well, including important decisions on abortion from more than two decades ago.

The files were from John Paul Steven's private papers and were released on Tuesday at the Library of Congress.

The timing of the files also comes as the nation faces a new election cycle headed toward the 2024 vote that could see President Joe Biden in a rematch against former President Donald Trump.

Trump continues to argue that the last election was "rigged," showing that the concerns of past elections continue to find a voice in elections taking place more than 20 years later.


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