George W. Bush won.
Sen. John Kerry gave a concession speech, but not until 2 p.m. ET Wednesday did he say, "It is now clear that even when all the provisional ballots are counted -- which they will be -- there won't be enough outstanding votes for us to able to win Ohio, and therefore, we cannot win this election."
What took him so long?
Back in 2000, Al Gore angered some Democrats by ultimately conceding the election. They still feel, despite Bush's Supreme Court victory, that somehow Gore could have and should have fought on. So after whipping his supporters into a white-hot frenzy of Bush hatred, how does Kerry then become magnanimous and statesman-like?
Privately, no doubt, Kerry and his aides saw the inevitable. Publicly, however, the Kerry campaign found itself in a box. Kerry supporters considered the 2000 presidential election stolen, in part through some sort of connivance between the president, his brother Jeb (governor of Florida) and Florida's Republican Secretary of State, Katherine Harris. Many of Kerry's supporters consider Bush a conniving, lying, manipulating, misleading, arrogant, illegitimate occupier of the White House. Now what did you expect Kerry to do? Come out and, in a statesman-like fashion, tell his supporters, "Chill out"?
Meanwhile, the War on Terror continues. But the terrorists are mourning.
One night, driving home, I noticed a rare -- in my area -- Bush/Cheney bumper sticker: "10 Out of 10 Terrorists Agree, Anybody But Bush." I thought about the bumper sticker when I read the transcript of Osama bin Laden's videotape, played on Al Jazeera just days before our presidential election. The media made much out of Osama bin Laden's "first direct admission" of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
But the real emphasis is bin Laden's clear disdain for Bush and, therefore, preference for Kerry. According to a translation, bin Laden said, "It never occurred to us that the commander-in-chief of the American armed forces would leave 50,000 of his citizens in the two towers to face these horrors alone." Bin Laden also said, "It appeared that a little girl's talk about her goat and its butting was more important than the planes and their butting of the skyscrapers, resulting in our having three times the required time to carry out the operations."
Right out of Michael Moore's playbook.
Osama bin Laden also spoke about the ideal way to avoid another Manhattan, about war and its causes and results, and stated that, despite entering the fourth year after Sept. 11, Bush is still deceiving and hiding the truth from Americans. So, on the one hand, bin Laden accuses his enemy, commander-in-chief George W. Bush, of negligence and incompetence. If you felt that way about your enemy, why not keep him around for another four years?
The Arab media, according to translations by the Middle East Media Research Institute, said the following about our elections: "The Palestinians are never satisfied with any president who leaves the White House -- and a month later, they cry because of every new president, and acknowledge that his predecessor was not as bad as he." "With regard to the Syrians, they desire Bush's downfall more than the rest of the Arabs, in hopes that the internal political incitement and external pressure will end. If Bush gets a second term, Syria will, in the opinion of many, be his next target." "Most Arab regimes think that it is in their interest to stick with Bush Jr., even if they are somewhat concerned by his administration. The Arab public, on the other hand, despairs greatly of America in general, and of Bush's administration in particular . . . "
A recent Investor's Business Daily editorial said:
Palestinian Authority leader and sometime terrorist Yasser Arafat endorsed Kerry. Why? Kerry did once call him a "statesman." And, as his foreign minister noted, under Kerry 'several staff members during Clinton's administration would return.' Kerry has also won praise from Kim Jong Il, North Korea's totalitarian dictator, who has murdered millions of his own people. Kim calls Bush "human scum." But he likes Kerry's support of two-way talks between North Korea and the U.S. -- which would give the 'beloved leader' a big negotiating advantage. . . . Don't forget former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. Last year, Mahathir, who is often called "moderate," said Jews "rule this world by proxy." This year, he urged U.S. Muslims to vote for Kerry 'in the name of Islam.'
Gen. Tommy Franks (Ret.), former commander-in-chief of the Central Command, said at the Republican National Convention, "The Global War on Terrorism will be a long fight. But make no mistake -- we are going to fight the terrorists. The question is do we fight them over there -- or do we fight them here? I choose to fight them over there."
So now the world -- and the Democrats -- will have to live with him . . . for four more years.