The American public voted on Tuesday (4 November) in one of the most unpredictable and probably closest Presidential elections in modern times.
SV INTERIOR President Carter and wife Rosalynn voting Carter shakes hands with waiting voters
SV Mr. Carter and wife leaving polling station, Carter walks over to newsmen and comments
GV AND SV People queuing to vote in New York stations, and voting (6 shots)
SV Governor Reagan and wife Nancy voting in Los Angeles
SV EXTERIOR Mr. Reagan making statement to newsmen outside polling station
SV INTERIOR Governor Reagan and wife arriving at last rally in San Diego, California, as crowd cheers (4 shots)
SV Mr. Reagan speaking to rally
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 2: CARTER: "The one I consider to be the best candidate."
REPORTER:"And who was that?"
CARTER:"That was myself."
REPORTER: "What are your prospects, Mr. President?"
CARTER: "I think good. It depends on the turnout and how well our organisation works. It's a very close election. But I have confidence in the American people, "always have. And they've never disappointed me so far."
REPORTER: "What do you think you would do if you lost this election today?"
CARTER: "Well, I obviously would abide by the American people's judgement, whether I won or lost."
REPORTER: "And then in your future plans?"
CARTER: "Oh well, I'm counting on winning."
BELL: "The climax of a 21-month campaign. Voters and even one or two non-voters crowded into the polling stations and the high early turnout on the east coast could be good news for the Carter camp which has been short of good news lately. Anything less than a 55 percent turnout would mean that too many Democrats were staying at home for Mr. Carter's comfort, and he would almost certainly lose. Voting is electronic of course. No one puts crosses on ballot papers here. And voters are pulling the levers for candidates for Congress and a variety of State offices, as well as for the next President of the United States.
Governor Reagan, his campaign over, voted with his wife Nancy near his home in Los Angeles. No more speech making, but he did have this to say."
SEQ. 5: REAGAN: "Yes, I feel good, but of course have my fingers crossed. It's going to be a long day."
BELL: Now this report from Gavin Hewitt in Los Angeles (as heard)."
HEWITT: "San Diego was Ronald Reagan's very last vote-seeking rally. For even if he wins, he has promised not to seek re-election. So it was an emotional end to the quest for the presidency that began 12 years ago. The posters proclaimed Reagan country, and there was an element of homecoming for the former Californian governor."
SEQ: 7: REAGAN: "Yes, I solicit your vote. I ask your support, for George Bush and myself. Not because I think that by some magic from the Oval Office I can solve all these problems we've talked about today. But because in eight years here as your Governor I learned to have faith in you, in the people. And I envision leadership as President, a leadership in taking government off your backs and turning you loose to do what you can do so well. Thank you very much. Thank you."
REPORTERS: MARTIN BELL/GAVIN HEWITT
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The American public voted on Tuesday (4 November) in one of the most unpredictable and probably closest Presidential elections in modern times. President Carter made a final desperate plea Monday night (3 November) for a big turnout at the polls. Voters will also be choosing congressmen, senators and various State officials. But there was no doubt about the two Presidential candidates exercising their voting rights.
SYNOPSIS: Opinion polls were showing Governor Reagan holding a narrow edge as President Carter and his wife Rosalynn went to the polls in their hometown of Plains Georgia.
Mr. Carter, plagued by a lagging economy, was seeking to become the first U.S. President to complete two full terms since Dwight Eisenhower,
Newsmen waiting outside the polling station asked the President about his prospects, and for whom he voted.