November
4th 2008
Election Day open thread

Posted under: American history

What’s going on in your neck of the woods, edge of the holler, or side of the crick?  I’ll be posting updates through the day about what I see and hear in Potterville, Colorado (if anyone cares!)  I voted last Thursday, and the traffic at the early vote center was steady and strong.  I prefer to observe the ritual of voting on Election Day itself, but I suppose I was effectively intimidated out of waiting until today to vote by all of the early vote propaganda this year.  Until we make Election Day a day off of work again, then I suppose we’ll have to live with “election season,” such as it is now.  It’s a democratizing improvement over Tuesday-only election days.

Did you vote early or vote by mail?  If not, what were the lines like at your polling place?  (PLEASE VOTE FIRST, then comment at Historiann.com!)  Did you witness or suspect any voter intimidation or voter fraud?  How about fisticuffs or partisan scraps at the polls?  (You can just make something up if you think it will be more entertaining for us to read!)  Stick your head out the window to get a whiff of the fresh breezes of change, slice yourself a nice big piece of Election Cake, and fill us in on what you know.  (Check out Erica’s adventures baking an Election Cake!)

Images by Thomas Nast, of the Dem donkey (above left) and Republican elephant (below right.  This image also includes the Dem donkey dressed in a lion’s coat.)  Maybe we should send Lion costumes to the Congressional dems to make them more intimidating?

UPDATE, 12:15 MST:  Colorado Pols has an interesting commentary on why U.S. Senate Candidate Bob Schaffer may be sitting on a pile of dough instead of spending it:  he’s given up the Senate race to Mark Udall, and is plotting to seize back his former seat in congress from Betsy Markey if she succeeds in beating Marilyn Musgrave tonight.  Good thinking, Bob!  Yeah, if Musgrave loses, it’s because she wasn’t insanely right-wing enough.  Bob, if you lose tonight and Markey wins, just spend that money on a moving van and head on down to Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, or Alabama.  Or, head on back to Ohio.  Maybe, just maybe, Colorado ain’t the same state you moved to 20 years ago.

UPDATE, 3:45 MST:  The headline story on the Rocky Mountain News website now is “So far, so good:  evening voting looking up.”  Come on, people–I’ve got an international readership that wants to see long lines, fisticuffs, and world-class clusterfracks!  Can’t someone report some bad news here for a change?  Who’s going to be the first to report the “hanging chad” of 2008?

UPDATE, 3:50 MST:  CNN’s exit polling (as reported at TalkLeft) looks good for Obama–really good.

UPDATE, 5:15 MST:  The local NPR affiliate (KUNC) is reporting that there were problems in Weld County, Colorado with insufficient numbers of translators at polling places.  Also, KUNC reported that here in Potterville, the Colorado branch of the ACLU is investigating charges that a uniformed Potterville police officer was checking photo I.D.s at the polling station at Moo Moo U.  (Gee, d’you think that the fact that the President of Moo Moo U. is a Republican appointee who was widely rumored to have wanted to run for the 4th CD in 2002, might have something to do with wanting to harrass the college student vote?  I’ll keep an eye on this story, for sure.) 

On the bright side, my local polling place looked like it had a busy parking lot, but no lines out the door.  (I just ran by on my afternoon run.)

UPDATE, 8:00 MST:  I found this video, in which poll watcher Jeff Blum at Trinity Church in Potterville who alleges that a police officer arrived and stood at the door of the polling place.  He says that everything looked to be going smoothly otherwise, and doesn’t say that the police officer was behaving in an intimidating fashion.

UPDATE, 9:02 MST:  Betsy Markey has defeated Marilyn Musgrave.  YESSSS!  And by a humiliating 58 to 42 percent, with 59% of the vote counted.  (That lead won’t hold–but you can see why they’ve stuck a fork in Musgrave–she’s done.)  It’s getting worse:  the Denver Post has this race at 60 to 39.  UPDATE, 4:40 a.m. 11/5/08–the margin has narrowed to a mere 11 points, 55 to 44, with 79% of the vote counted.  What a humiliation for Musgrave. 

UPDATE, 9:09 MST:  Barack Obama was elected the 44th president of the United States.

74 Comments »

74 Responses to “Election Day open thread”

  1. Erica on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:15 pm #

    Our precinct had an incredibly long line — some people had brought chairs, most had books. And then it started to rain, and we noticed everybody also had umbrellas.

    It was very mellow, overall. Nobody grumbled about the line (after all, we were there completely voluntarily), poll workers were busy but cheerful and helpful.

    Now I’m bored because there’s still five hours to go before polls close and we can see results!

  2. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:17 pm #

    And, as you pointed out at your blog, you got bumped to the head of the line because you had a toddler with you! Very civilized. (If any of you are running late to vote, offer to babysit a toddler, and ironically, that may speed up the process. At least, if you live in Erica’s state, it might.)

    I think people are excited about change, which may explain the happy attitudes. (Although, I remember the same cheerfulness 4 years ago, and sense that things were going to change…!)

  3. Martha on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:24 pm #

    In my small town in western Pennsylvania, there was no line and no problems at 8:40 a.m. The ladies volunteering at the poll even provided hot coffee and homemade cookies for voters.

    I’m torn between thinking that everyone in America should be so lucky and thinking that this is one election where I’d have been more than willing to stand in the rain for hours to vote.

  4. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:49 pm #

    Martha–thanks for stopping by to report on W. PA. Nice touch, with the cookies and coffee! I was hoping for stories about thuggery and fraud, not all of the stories of neighborliness reported so far in this thread. Who’s got a story about a scrap? Nose-biting? Eye-gouging? Any violence out there?

  5. neophyte on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:52 pm #

    Philadelphia is hugely Obamafied and has been since before the primary. The polling places near the UPenn campus were filled to bursting early in the morning with jubilant young folks. My more sedate polling place included a longish line, with every person standing in it smiling, sharing doughnuts, and laughing.

    Machines had broken down in the early hours, disgruntled would-be voters reported to have left.

    I read Georges Duby in French as I waited, seeking solace from anxiety in the eleventh century.

    At least five separate children, and one pit bull, told me they were voting for Obama. (The pittie’s papa had trained him to bark three syllables when he heard the word “vote.”)

    Then off I went to wheel some elderly folks to and fro, and get many a congratulatory diatribe of approval about my being young and involved from senior voters.

    Meanwhile the entire police force is on call and SWAT units are on reserve in case the city riots. I don’t know that I have faith that the Philly PD knows the difference between “black people dancing in the streets” and “rioting.” Sobering, that.

  6. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 1:56 pm #

    Thanks, neophyte, for the report from Philly. The ghost of Frank Rizzo still looms large in the Philly PD. (Do you even know who Rizzo was? He was old news even when I lived in Philadelphia, 15-20 years ago!)

    Good to know that Obama has the pit bull vote.

  7. Indyanna on 04 Nov 2008 at 2:35 pm #

    Don’t get me going on Philly and the Rizzo Years. I voted in the huge “Charter Change” referendum thirty years ago, and that one featured backed up lines, machine breakdowns, accusations of fraud and intimidation, and panic attacks. One old guy almost punched out a poll worker at a school at 22nd and Chestnut when a machine malfunctioned. The change proposal was defeated and Big Frank retired. Then he came out of retirement in I think ’92 (remember that, Historiann?) to run for mayor again and had a heart attack in his campaign headquarters and died there.

    I also have to report all quiet in Western Pa. I voted at 7:30 and was the 49th elector in my polling place, which may be up a tad from four years ago, but still no lines or backups. Our campus is buzzing with the Obama kids, too, but a bit less I’d guess than at Penn.

  8. James Stripes on 04 Nov 2008 at 2:51 pm #

    We are now required to vote by mail in my state. Inasmuch as it’s raining today, the mail-in ballots should help the turn-out.

    My ineffective Congresswoman–McMorris-Rodgers–likely will win reelection, but will become even less effective because 1) she opposes pork, and 2) her party is rapidly losing power.

    The Gubernatorial election is a rematch of four years ago, but this time it probably will not require many weeks of court hearings to determine the winner. The Democratic incumbent–Christine Gregoire–should win.

    Another flawed initiative created by Tim Eyman likely will pass, and then be struck down by the courts as unconstitutional.

    My family will be watching the returns this evening with electoral college betting cards in hand. I’ve offered cash to my children if their predictions are better than mine. I have Obama taking twenty-seven states and 339 electoral votes. My prediction breaks with several leading polls in conceding North Carolina to McCain. Although not part of the family bet, I’m anticipating 54% of the popular vote for Obama.

  9. Susan on 04 Nov 2008 at 2:54 pm #

    We voted by mail, as a way to deal with the endless California ballot. The excitement here was the duelling Prop 8 forces. One evening I’d go out, and the main interchanges would have people on each corner with “Yes on 8″ signs. (Very strange, with kind of stick figures.) I’d get super depressed, and even once tried to argue. Then the next day you’d see the “No on 8″ people at the same corners, and you’d be honking away….

  10. Clio Bluestocking on 04 Nov 2008 at 3:01 pm #

    Despite reports from my students that they stood in line for 2-3 hours, I just walked up and voted.

    Then that McCain supporter walked in and shouted some offensive things, but the PTA beat him down with a hail of hot coffee and brownies.

    (That last was a joke, by the way.)

    Seriously, I haven’t been this jazzed/frightened about an election EVER. I almost did a little dance as a I cast my ballot. My students are all up on it, too. Now, just waiting to see what tomorrow brings.

  11. e.j. on 04 Nov 2008 at 3:12 pm #

    Having voted about 2 weeks ago, I’ve found today rather strange. It seems rather ordinary and uneventful so far, though I imagine that will change in the next few hours as polls begin to close.

    Maybe there is something to this whole “voting on election day thing”-though it would be nice if it could happen without super long lines and frustration.

  12. Declan on 04 Nov 2008 at 3:17 pm #

    I’m a foreigner, so this might seem like a naive question as its the first US election I’ve observed so closely – but why do you have to queue so long to vote (I’ve heard on the Irish news of waits up to three hours or more) – is there a problem with the amount of voting centres? Is the wait significant and does it impact on the result?

  13. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 4:22 pm #

    A-ha! Using the hot coffee as a weapon: why didn’t I think of that, Clio B.? That’s such a Batman episode, isn’t it? (As in, the campy 60s TV show starring Adam West.)

    Declan, that’s a great question. Others here may have different opinions, but IMHO the long queues are an artifact of the fact that voting is administered by individual states, counties, and localities. Also, in addition to the many layers of election law operating here, the chief administrators of elections are usually party-affiliated elected officials. Thus, one’s chances for access to a polling station with the proper number of voting machines increases dramatically if one lives in a predominantly white and/or suburban or rural neighborhood. So, not everyone has to line up for hours on end, only people who are perceived to have little or no political pull. Because many states are doing early voting and mail-in ballots, the problem seems to have decreased dramatically since 2004. But, personally, I think it’s a problem that most states designate the Secretary of State office as elected and partisan.

  14. Indyanna on 04 Nov 2008 at 5:07 pm #

    Those reasons for polling place bottlenecks are all true. It shouldn’t be overlooked, however, that the electoral system in America also depends heavily on the uncompensated labor of a demographic of mostly older, mostly female, volunteers staffing the polling places. For various largely-physical reasons, they can’t realistically be expected to maintain twenty-something hedge fund trader standards of process productivity over day long shifts.

    Polls close here in an hour or two. I’m off to eat and then find a flatscreen. Without wireless capability, I guess I’m checking off-thread until we have an outcome. I’m sure there’ll be a lot of debriefing and analysis here tomorrow.

  15. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 5:10 pm #

    Voted without incident here in semi-urban PA. There was a line of about 10 when I got there around 5, which had nearly worked itself through by the time that I left.

    I have to disagree with you – the exit poll numbers reported so far over at TalkLeft do not look either good or really good for Obama, or are they in any way surprising. The small minority of people who felt terrorism was the main issue voted overwhelmingly for McCain, and the small minority of people who felt Iraq was the main issue voted predominantly for Obama. As for the new voters, I do not think anyone expected them to go in any large percentage to McCain. The real question is going to be the TURNOUT of new voters.

  16. Declan on 04 Nov 2008 at 5:19 pm #

    You guys are in the middle of a fraught election process and if its all down to elderly women then so be it…

  17. Erica on 04 Nov 2008 at 5:20 pm #

    We just drove by the polling place that had a 90-minute wait this morning; 1 hour before it closes there’s no outside line at all (so I’d guess ~15 minute wait at most). It looks like everyone went this morning “just in case” and probably clogged things up :)

    We went for dinner to a local restaurant that we’d heard this morning was offering a discount if you were wearing a “I Voted” sticker. There was a sign on the door saying “Sorry Election Offer Is Discontinued” — at 5pm, well before most people probably got dinner. Who starts a cheerful, pro-voting promotion, then calls it off because there are too many voters? That’s just sad.

  18. earl on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:00 pm #

    I think Musgrave is worried about losing. She and her staff harassed me Sunday at the local Wal-Mart where she was holding a meet and greet. I showed up to take photos and was asked if I was from the local paper and I said no I’m a freelancer and they were fine with that. I stood around and shoot some pics here and there and Musgrave started to get paranoid and tell everyone I wasn’t with her group, then one of her handlers started to put his hand in front of my camera, then he started to block me with his body when I tired to take a shot. I warned him off, got my shoot and started to leave when she told one of her handlers to follow me and get my photo and a photo of my car and license plate.

  19. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:10 pm #

    Wow, Earl–although I have to say that I’ve heard that’s her usual M.O., even before this year. In 2006, we heard that she was “afraid” to visit Baa Ram U.’s campus, because she thought students might physically attack her. She has never to my knowledge visited any of the four-year universities in her district. What a jackass. (Can you share your photos with us??)

    Thanks to everyone else for the ongoing reports–I just heard some bad news about voter intimidation and other ickiness right here in Potterville, and on the Moo Moo U. campus!

  20. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:24 pm #

    Profane–I think you’re looking at data that was posted after I saw it. I was commenting on the % of people who said they were most concerned about the economy, which I think is a Democrat winning issue. But, we shall see. I’ve heard that the youth vote is no higher than 2004, but that’s just according to early exit polls. It will be interesting if the big jump was from 2000 to 2004, with little change beyond that this year.

    And Indyanna and Declan: you’re right. We’re running one of the world’s largest and oldest democracies on the volunteer labor of senior citizen ladies. No wonder the Brooks Brothers Rioters of 2000 were so intimidating! (But, they make darn good cookies and coffee, as Clio B. reports.)

  21. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:33 pm #

    First calls in, no surprises, KY to McCain and VT to Obama.

  22. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:38 pm #

    Channel surfing – Fox just called WV for McCain, once again, no surprise.

  23. K.N. on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:40 pm #

    Dispatch from Lehigh Valley, PA:

    No real voting problems reported. Not sure how there could be, since you can’t walk a half a mile without tripping over a polling station. Word is the African-American vote in Easton (a very troubled and ethnically diverse city that has undergone massive demographic change in the last few years) is through the roof and will likely prove decisive in Obama’s winning the area. If the same is true of the minority vote in the Scranton area, PA could become a blowout.

  24. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 6:46 pm #

    MiSogyNyBC calls SC for McCain, another non-surprise.

  25. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:01 pm #

    NPR says Obama wins PA.

  26. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:03 pm #

    ME, NH, CT, MA, PA, DE, IL, MD, NH, DC to Obama
    OK, TN to McCain

    It seems that all the hand-wringing about PA was just that!

  27. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:08 pm #

    Susan Collins, Rino-ME (my home state), re-elected to the Senate.

    WHOOT! WHOOT!

  28. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:15 pm #

    Collins isn’t bad, but I was disappointed by how often she and Snowe have gone along with Bush, even long after he started circling the drain. We’ll see what happens with Elizabeth Dole (not a RINO, I know.) Collins is tough, and has faced down two serious challenges (Chellie Pingree in 2002, and this year’s race against Tom Allen, who I thought had better than a fair shot given that this is a MUCH better year for Dems than 2002 was, to say the least.)

  29. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:24 pm #

    Dole is toast in NC, but her Dem challenger was another woman, so the number of women in the senate is unchanged by this result.

  30. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:24 pm #

    In an interesting turn of events, Chellie Pingree will likely be elected to replace Allen in the 1st district. This would leave a majority of Maine’s five top elected offices in the hands of people without Y chromosomes.

    Several news outlets are now reporting that Dole has lost in NC, and Jeanne Shaheen has won in NH.

  31. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:26 pm #

    Yay for Shaheen! Sweet, sweet revenge…she was the loser against Sununu in 2002, and now she is victorious. So, a net plus of one more woman in the Senate so far.

    I heard that Pingree was back in the game–she’ll do well if she bides her time and waits for Snowe or Collins to retire.

  32. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:34 pm #

    AL and AR to McCain. The Arkansas race is an indication that an Obama electoral landslide is unlikely.

  33. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:37 pm #

    Georgia to McCain. This is a fair clearly confirmation with regards to my comment about Arkansas, as several polls were within the margin of error here.

  34. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:38 pm #

    Strike fair for far. (DOH)

  35. Susan on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:41 pm #

    Actually, I’m intrigued that (as far as I know) the usual language about bodies has not been applied to Dole? (THinking about your other post on women politicians.) Any thoughts on why?
    Couldn’t be happier to see a godless Sunday School teacher in the Senate :)

  36. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:43 pm #

    Yes–good points. Let’s see how Ohio goes. I’ll say Obama by 2 points.

  37. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 7:45 pm #

    Susan, I did a little research on Dole in service of a post on Hillary Clinton I never did. I found some demeaning language on some websites that were leftovers from her brief Presidential run in 1999. I can’t remember if they were specifically focused on her body or appearance, but I can’t say they weren’t. I’d have to look again, but you can see why Dole would be an interesting comparison to Clinton, given her marriage to another important politician and former Presidential candidate.

  38. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:02 pm #

    New Mexico to Obama; not a surprise but the first flip.

    Also to Obama: MI, MN, NY, RI, WI – all safe Dem territory.

  39. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:06 pm #

    McCain wins KS, WY, and ND. The North Dakota result is very much like the Georgia result – it was leaning McCain but polls were within the margin of error.

  40. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:08 pm #

    Ohio will be decisive, as usual.

  41. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:11 pm #

    McConnell wins in the Kentucky Senate race. This ends the possibility of a filibuster-proof majority for the Dems.

  42. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:22 pm #

    Fox just projected OH for Obama; if that holds there is no way back for McCain.

  43. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:31 pm #

    Two more non-surprises for the McCain side – LA and TX.

  44. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:46 pm #

    Yeah, it was over at 7:30 MST when they called Ohio.

  45. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 8:56 pm #

    MS to McCain; the South is still fairly solid. There are really only four interesting states remaining: FL, MO, NC, and VA. These will determine the extent of Obama’s Electoral College victory.

  46. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:01 pm #

    Utah to McCain, Iowa to Obama – another flip.

  47. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:09 pm #

    OMG–McCain took Utah! How will Obama ever recover?!?!

    (Just kidding.)

  48. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:15 pm #

    The Denver Post isn’t waiting at all to call the Presidential and Senate race here–they called it for Obama and Udall at 8:01 p.m.

  49. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:16 pm #

    John Murtha re-elected.

  50. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:19 pm #

    Well, I guess that’s good news. It would really, really stink to be a high-profile Dem incumbent who loses his seat tonight. (I don’t think we’ve seen any of those tonight, have we?)

    You don’t want to be that guy. (The Dem incumbent who manages to lose.) Oh, wait–there’s that jerk in Florida who got caught in an affair–he’s the Dem who won Mark Foley’s seat after his sexcapades were revealed. Anyway, he’s toast tonight, and the way it’s going he might be the only Dem incumbent loser in the USA.

  51. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:24 pm #

    PA District 11 (the Barletta-Kanjorski race I was referring to earlier in the week) is still too close to call, with Barletta currently leading 51% to 49%. Given that Barletta policies embody the worst caricatures of Republicans, a victory for him would be a humiliation all around.

  52. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:37 pm #

    Nebraska to McCain, but as Chuck Todd just pointed out, one of the five electoral votes could go to Obama since three of the five are allocated according to votes in congressional districts – Obama is up 52-48% is one of them.

  53. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:38 pm #

    South Dakota to McCain.

  54. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:42 pm #

    Virginia to Obama.

  55. James Stripes on 04 Nov 2008 at 9:50 pm #

    Polls close here in ten minutes, so the national news should have Washington and California called for Obama in fifteen, pushing him past 270.

  56. James Stripes on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:00 pm #

    OMG, Katie didn’t wait five minutes!

  57. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:00 pm #

    Wow–Virginia is impressive. Big news here is that we’ve dumped Marilyn Musgrave by some impressive numbers: with 59% of the vote counted, it’s Betsy Markey with 58% and Musgrave with 42%. Yee-haw!

  58. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:01 pm #

    Florida goes for Obama. This is just a pointless humiliation for McCain now.

  59. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:01 pm #

    Obama takes CA, WA, and OR; McCain ID, and thats all she wrote. Looks like I can get some sleep tonight!

  60. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:05 pm #

    Yes–sleep well, unless you’re going to stay up to follow the Barletta race.

    James, did they call it so early in Oregon because the votes are pretty much already counted?

  61. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:13 pm #

    Kanjorski 106,798
    Barletta 100,717
    87% reporting

  62. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:14 pm #

    Looks like you’ll be up for another half hour, anyway!

  63. Profane on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:30 pm #

    Kanjorski 119,904
    Barletta 109,936
    93%

    Kanjorski is now projected to win, so in the battle of corruption versus bigotry, corruption triumphs. At least I do not have ANOTHER reason to hold my nose when I cross the Susquehanna on my way to work tomorrow.

  64. James Stripes on 04 Nov 2008 at 10:54 pm #

    Here’s how my predictions stand: every state that CBS has called, I predicted. All of those they haven’t called I predicted for McCain, but Obama leads in four. The difference between CBS’s 338 and my 339 is one vote in Nebraska. I thought Obama would take Omaha.

  65. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 11:27 pm #

    Impressive! Well done, James.

  66. James Stripes on 04 Nov 2008 at 11:45 pm #

    CBS is suggesting Tom Daschle as chief of staff. That will be a mistake. I hope they’re wrong.

  67. nicolec on 04 Nov 2008 at 11:46 pm #

    I’m so excited to see Colorado go oh so blue!

  68. Historiann on 04 Nov 2008 at 11:49 pm #

    Daschle? Well, he’s done a great job of buddying up with Obama, although he was sh*tcanned in 2002. I don’t think Obama wants to track that mess into the house, do you?

    And, Nicole: ain’t it grand?

  69. Erica on 05 Nov 2008 at 12:17 am #

    ….. so happy… so, so happy.

    Except that I’m still stuck with Lindsey Graham.

    But hey, I can move past that. HAHAHAHAHAHA! I am just sooooo happy.

  70. Indyanna on 05 Nov 2008 at 12:27 am #

    Pennsylvania really kicked it some tonight. Philadelphia went by something like 83%. The four inner-ring suburban counties were blowout Obama victories and it looks like the Republicans are damaged goods there for a long time. Out here in the west it was not-so-blue, but Cambria County (Johnstown) came through as usual, and Murtha survived with no major scratches.

    The whole Northeast is looking good, and if Indiana falls the Old Northwest will be a huge sweep. (I thought the West Coast sort of got an easy ride and the implicit credit for putting Obama over the top at 11 p.m. EST, while Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida were waiting to finalize). Good news in the Mountains.

    I was coincidentally showing state by state maps of the elections of 1824-1840 to my U.S. Survey class today, and it made for an interesting teachable moment. Obama’s speech was just right, and things are looking nice for the time being.

  71. Profane on 05 Nov 2008 at 7:58 am #

    Interesting take on the election at Inside Higher Ed:

    http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/11/05/polisci

    “As it turns out, some of the models political scientists have been using for years to predict the outcomes of national elections — taking into account factors like the popularity of the incumbent, party identification and economic indicators — weren’t tossed aside along with the many other fragments of conventional wisdom that were upended during the campaign. In fact, they were validated.”

  72. Sarah on 05 Nov 2008 at 4:57 pm #

    Thank goodness for the defeat of Marilyn Musgrave and the life-begins-at-conception amendment.

  73. Waaaaaahhhhhh! I wanted to be a Congwesswoman again!!! : Historiann : History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present on 09 Nov 2008 at 8:25 pm #

    [...] GOP Congressional representative in the 4th Congressional District, Marilyn Musgrave, who got beaten like a rented mule last weekby her Dem challenger Betsy Markey (by TWELVE POINTS!), has yet to telephone the victor to [...]

  74. haicaitte on 02 Dec 2008 at 6:29 pm #

    I am here at a forum newcomer. Until I read and deal with the forum.
    Let’s learn!

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