I hope all of you Americans went out and voted today.
If you haven’t, I hope you intend to do so while there’s still time (assuming there is still time in your state).
As citizens, voting is the only real power you have, miniscule as it may be.
It matters, for many reasons more than simple election results.
Polls are now closed in nine states and it’s still way too early to call this election one way or the other. I’ll update this post as the night progresses, in the meantime you may consider this an open thread to discuss election day and election issues. Please stick to election related subjects.
Discussion Point: Voter ID’s, I’m not ideologically opposed to making voters show photo identification at the polls per se, so long as the required ID is easily available to all and cannot be used to disenfranchise groups of people. I’m not opposed to using taxpayer dollars to ensure everybody gets an ID. How about you? Vehemently opposed to ID requirements, enthusiastically for, or just Meh?
Update: 17:30 Alaskan Time: Went to the store to get supplies for dinner. Random women stopped me and asked: Did you vote? First time that’s ever happened to me.
Election night dinner: Hot pastrami on toasted sourdough with melted Swiss and stoneground mustard. Au jus. Steak fries. Kosher Dills. And a New Castle Werewolf Blood Red Ale.
Discussion Point: Electoral College vs Popular Vote. Time for a change, or do the Framers’ original concerns about the states and the electorate still hold water?
Update: 18:30 Alaskan Time: Looks like Grover Norquist will keep control of the House. No real surprises there.
On the other hand: I bet Mitt Romney could totally pay off his campaign debt by selling his binders full of women to Newt Gingrich on the low low.
Discussion Point: I used to be foursquare against Congressional term limitations, reasoning that voters were the ultimate term limiter and that we’d end up throwing the baby out with the bathwater – i.e. good congressmen would be dumped right along with the bad ones. Over the years I’ve come ‘round 180 degrees. Nobody is that good. I’m of the opinion that voters are largely self-centered idiots who tend to keep a congressman or a Senator long after they should have been sent packing. Voters are all about getting rid of somebody else’s congresscritter, but tend to keep their own due to “Seniority” even if the guy is senile or crooked as a West Virginia road. Alaska’s own Don Young is a case in point. I think a case can be made that the Republic would be improved by term limitations. We term limit the president, why not congress?
On a side note, I’d allow time served as representative, senator, and president to count towards a government retirement, but you’d still need twenty years to qualify for a pension. I.e. 4 years in the military, 8 years as representative or senator, 8 at the post office, you get 40% of your highest paid year’s salary. Seems fair to me.
Update: 18:45 Alaskan Time: Sucks to be Michele Bachmann, Minnesota just went to Obama.
Looks like Ohio is his too. And Maybe Florida. And Wisconsin. It’s going to be a tight race no matter what, I predict this one ends up in court no matter how they call it tonight.
Update: 18:50 Alaskan Time: Sucks to be Todd Akin. Seriously, republican or democrat, nobody should be sorry to see this idiot go.
Update: 19:00 Alaskan Time: They just called Colorado for Obama. Things are getting interesting.
Discussion Point: No line tonight at my polling place (the MatSu Valley College on Trunk, Sarah Palin’s alma mater). How were the lines where you’re at? Any problems? Signs of chicanery? How about you people in the Sandy footprint? Were you able to vote with reasonable access, considering?
Update: 19:15 Alaskan Time: FUCKING A! It’s all over. Barak Obama just won Ohio and 174 Electoral Votes! He’s won a second term.
Update: 19:30 Alaskan Time: Republicans claim Ohio isn’t won. Karl Rove is on Fox disputing Fox’s election call and crying like a spoiled little brat who just discovered that he isn’t going to get his way after all.
Of course, it’s not official but it sure looks like despite the republican state of denial that Obama has won a second term and that Democrats hold the Senate. Sequestration, here we come.
Update: 19:40 Alaskan Time: Donald Trumps calls election a “sham.” I figure the first lawsuits disputing the election results will be filed tomorrow.
Update: 20:20 Alaskan Time: So to recap, it looks like Obama won both Romney’s birth state of Michigan and Massachusetts, the state where Romney was governor. Also, Obama won Wisconsin, Paul Ryan’s home state. Ouch. That’s got to smart.
Update: 21:00 Alaskan Time: And that’s it. Romney conceded. He took the high road in his concession speech. He made a hell of a concession speech. I mean that sincerely. Too bad for him he didn’t take the high road six months ago, he’d be president tonight. He obviously learned nothing from McCain – a guy who also gave a terrific concession speech. Republicans need to do some serious soul searching after tonight, or they’d better get used to giving really good concession speeches.
Thanks for tuning in tonight. Congratulations, President Obama. Congratulations, America. Good night.