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The Skinny

A Bush-Lieberman Administration?

OK, it's a long shot, but here's how it could happen.

Let's say the mess in Florida does not get cleared up by Dec. 18, and the Electoral College is unable to pick a winner in the presidential race. In that case, it falls to Congress to decide who the next president and vice president will be. The House of Representatives picks the president, with each state getting one vote. Bush would be heavily favored to win because Republicans control 28 of the 50 state delegations.

The Senate is charged with picking the vice president, and that's where it could get interesting. If Democrat Maria Cantwell manages to unseat Republican Sen. Slade Gorton in the Senate race in Washington state – the race is still too close to call – the Senate would be split 50-50. Assuming every Republican Senator votes for Dick Cheney and every Democrat votes for Joseph Lieberman, it may well fall to the president of the Senate to cast the tie-breaking vote. That man: Vice President Al Gore.

Of course, it's unclear whether Gore would wish that upon his running mate.

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