Just before midnight on November 7, 2000 I was in a gay bar in Manhattan (it had great beer) with friends from New York's Fashion Institute of Technology. The crowd was in the throes of ecstacy (the lower-case version) as the television announced that Al Gore had won Florida and was set to be president. Two hours later and the scene had changed. Bedraggled transvestites hung their heads as it was declared that George W. Bush had won. Except he hadn't, at least not until December 12, when a Republican-leaning Supreme Court closed the recount and handed the White House to a reformed alcoholic with an IQ in the mid-120s. In Recount (HBO, Saturday at 9pm) Jay Roach, who directed the Ben Stiller comedy Meet the Fokkers, has created a gripping recreation of the days that led to the Baghdad-bombing and busted bankers that will forever define the 43rd presidency. The cast is led by double-Oscar winner Kevin Spacey (below left, with Denis Leary, who plays Democratic strategist Michael Whouley). Spacey plays Ron Klain, Gore's former chief of staff, who led the Democrat's efforts to resolve the anomalies in Florida's 2000 election. Several thousand elderly Jews - mostly Democrats - who, because of problems with the ballot paper, accidentally voted for extreme Conservative Pat Buchanan, and 20,000 voters - mostly African American - were excluded from the polls just prior to the election on the grounds they were convicted felons (80 per cent were not). Spacey is joined by John Hurt (playing former Democratic secretary of state Warren Christopher), Tom Wilkinson (as former Republican secretary of state James Baker III) and Laura Dern, who plays Florida's Republican secretary of state Katherine Harris, who did everything she possibly could to stop the recount. Recount plays like a good thriller but the most telling contrasts are between Hurt's Christopher and Wilkinson's Baker. It reminds us that Christopher, guided by Gore, tried to behave with dignity while Baker, egged on by the Bushes (Jeb Bush, George W's brother, was the governor of Florida), behaved like a street thug. The 2008 presidential election is being held in a different atmosphere. This time the Democrats have a charismatic candidate and a big lead in the polls while the Republicans have a septegenarian who looks like a study in decomposition. The most-entertaining place to watch this drama unfold is on Fox News, especially America's Newsroom (weekdays, 9pm to 11pm). Fox News is 'fair and balanced' (the corporate slogan) in the same way that Amy Winehouse is sane and sober. Megyn Kelly is the station's current harridan supreme. One of her typical interviews goes like this: Megyn: 'When will Obama come clean about his links to terrorists?' Guest: 'Senator Obama doesn't ...' Megyn: 'NOW LISTEN TO ME, OBAMA HAS PALLED AROUND WITH KNOWN TERRORISTS SINCE THE AGE OF 7.' Guest: 'But ...' Megyn: 'That's all we have time for.' Strangely many of my gay friends in Manhattan are deeply smitten with Fox News anchors, especially Bill Hemmer, Kelly and Shephard Smith, the host of Fox Report. Maybe that tells us a lot about the internal conflicts of New York homosexuals. Personal doubt can also be found in Big Love (HBO, Mondays at 11pm), the second series of the drama about a polygamous Mormon family that lives a secretive life in Utah. Bill (Bill Paxton) is married to Barb (Jeanne Tripplehorn), Nicki (Chloe Sevigny) and Margene (Ginnifer Goodwin). In Big Love, there is trouble in paradise. Barb questions her commitment to serial marriage. In the opening episode Bill's family makes a number of what Fox News would call 'liberal-leaning statements' that make one suspect they would be more likely to support Obama than McCain. I wonder what Kelly would think of that? ('IS OBAMA A POLYGAMIST? AND A MUSLIM? More to come after the break').