Kind of an interesting article in today’s NYT about how conservative folks in Wyoming, the country’s least populated state, are reacting to the election results. Along with many other conservatives, they appear surprised Obama won.
Some choice quotes:
‘It’s a fundamental shift,’ said Khale Lenhart, 27, a lawyer here. ‘It’s a mind-set change — that government is here to take care of me.’
Republican explanations for Mitt Romney’s loss — that Democrats turned out the urban vote, that the United States is no longer its ‘traditional’ self, or that Mr. Obama had showered ‘gifts’ on women, minorities and young voters — resonated in some conservative political circles here in the state capital.
‘It spooks me,’ said James Yates, 46, a self-made businessman who owns 15 restaurants and employs about 1,000 people. ‘The young vote and certainly the minority vote went toward the perspective of ‘What can I get?’ Where the government runs everything, it’s completely not sustainable. They don’t see that.’
People said their worries about the next four more years had little to do with Mr. Obama’s race, or even Democratic policies on abortion, same-sex marriage and birth control. Wyoming’s conservatism has some strong libertarian hues. What worries conservatives here is that an increasingly diverse and Democratic polity will embrace health care mandates, higher domestic spending and a bigger government role in people’s economic lives.
One of Wyoming’s newly elected officials is M. Lee Hasenauer, who runs a tree-trimming service and just won a two-year seat as a Laramie County commissioner. His views, described as ‘pretty out there’ by fellow conservatives in the state, are that Mr. Obama won through voter fraud, that the country is veering leftward toward fiscal ruin and that something fundamental is now different about American politics.
His friend Bradley Harrington, who publishes a year-old conservative newspaper called Liberty’s Torch and is the host of a radio talk show in Cheyenne, said the election vindicated conservative politicians and commentators who talked about the 47 percent of Americans who pay no income tax, about makers and takers.
‘The parasites now outnumber the producers,’ Mr. Harrington said. ‘That’s why Romney lost, and I think it’s going to get worse.’
Jeff Prince, 42, a financial adviser, invoked John F. Kennedy’s famous inaugural question to describe what he saw as the difference between conservative, self-reliant Wyoming and liberal precincts along the coasts and in cities.
‘They think, ‘What can he do for me?’ as opposed to what Kennedy said in the ’60s, ‘What can I do for my country?’ ’ Mr. Prince said.
Sometimes dead men really do get to vote.
Ty Houston, 48, a home care registered nurse, was toiling on his absentee ballot Monday afternoon when things got strange at township offices on 13 Mile.
“I was filling out the form as were an elderly couple sitting at a nearby table,” said Houston on Tuesday. “His wife, who was helping him fill out the ballot, asked him a couple of questions but he didn’t respond. She screamed for help and I went over to see what I could do.”
Houston laid the victim on the floor and went to work.
“He was dead,” Houston said. “He had no heartbeat and he wasn’t breathing. I started CPR, and after a few minutes, he revived and started breathing again. He knew his name and his wife’s name.”
What happened next astounded Houston and the victim’s wife.
“The first question he asked was ‘Did I vote?’”
Dumbfounded, the man’s wife told him that whether he voted was the least of their concerns.
“She told him ‘Your life is my concern,’” Houston said.
According to Houston, the man — who had a tracheotomy in his throat — gulped down a few more breaths and then told her there are only two things that are important to me: “That I love you and that I finished what I came here to do … vote.”
From The Detroit News: detroitnews.com
A hoax telling voters what to do while in the voting booth is spreading on Facebook; the best thing you can do is ignore it and whatever you do, don’t pass it on.
The post that’s being shared says for those voters who are Democrats to “not select the button ‘all Democrats’ first, because Barack Obama will be excluded from the vote. However, if we choose ‘Barack Obama’ first, and then ‘all Democrats’ he will earn our votes!!!”
The trouble is, this is the opposite of what voters should be doing, at least in certain very specific cases.
In some states, “choosing the party first on a voting machine can lead to all of the candidates of your preferred political party being chosen — including the presidential candiate,” wrote Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos Security, on the company’s Naked Security blog.
“That could mean if you get confused and subsequently make a presidential selection for a second time, you could uncheck your vote for the president.”
A “typical” message Facebook users might see is this one, said Cluley:Facebook voting hoax targeting Obama voters
Despite the stress-inducing all-caps warning — “PLEASE PAY CAREFUL ATTENTION TO THIS!” — voters should in fact pay no attention at all.
Facebook, contacted by NBC News, declined to comment on the ruse.
It’s likely to be only one of many digital attempts to confuse voters on Tuesday, so keep an extra wary eye on any emails or text messages you receive, as well as on the social media sites, like Facebook, that you visit. And when you’re in the voting booth itself, take your time, follow the instructions, and double-check your choices as you go.
We will keep this part short and sweet as there really isn’t that much interesting to report about the races. The Democrats are starting out with 23 seats up for grabs, and it looks like they’re totally safe in 17 of them.
California - Dianne Feinstein will win easily.
Delaware - Tom Carper is up by 40+
Maryland - Ben Cardin Safe
Minnesota - Amy Klobuchar is up by 20+
New York - Kirsten Gillibrand why did the Republicans bother?
Rhode Island - Sheldon Whitehouse is going to win.
Vermont - Bernie Sanders will remain the only Socialist in the Senate.
Florida - Bill Nelson seems to have run away with it
Hawaii - Maizie Hirono seemed vulnerable, but Linda Lingle never could gain ground.
Maine - Angus King is winning easily, and appears to be caucusing with the democrats.
Michigan - Debbie Stabenow is up by about 15
New Jersey - Bod Menendez is doing fine.
New Mexico - Martin Heinrich seems to be doing fin and will hold the seat after Jeff Bingaman retired.
Ohio - Sherrod Brown has had Josh Mandel close the gap, but Sherrod Brown still apears to be safe, barring a very large miss by the polls.
Pennsylvania - Another of the shoulda wouldas for the Republicans, Bob asey is holding a 5 point lead and doesn’t appear to be in any danger.
Washington - Remember when Washington used to be close? not this time, Maria Cantwell is up by 20
West Virginia - Joe Manchin may be one of the last blue dog Democrats, but he’s going to be around for another term. being up by 30 assures that.
In part IV, I will detail the remaining 11 races. These races that aren’t a sure lock for either side. and the races that will decide the control of the Senate for 2013 and 2014.
I know some here don’t like National Review, but I’d ask you to give John Fund a chance. His article is a very good overview of what may happen if provisional and late-arriving absentee ballots come into play in Ohio:
Cincinnati, Ohio — If the presidential election goes into ‘overtime’ — if no winner is known on Wednesday morning after the election — the culprits may be procrastinating absentee voters in Ohio. If it goes on beyond that with no decision, it may be due to lawyers from both parties’ fighting trench warfare over individual ballots in a bloody recount. It could easily happen in other states, but the danger of an ‘overtime’ election is perhaps greatest in Ohio.
This year for the first time, Ohio officials mailed every registered voter in the state an application for an absentee ballot. A total of 1.3 million applications flooded in, and to date some 1.1 million, or 85 percent, have been returned. But many of the rest won’t be mailed before the election. So what if the voters who failed to send in their absentee ballots show up at their polling places on Tuesday asking to vote?
They will be allowed to, but only by provisional ballot in order to make sure they don’t vote twice.
Other people will have to cast provisional ballots — those who have changed their names or moved but not sent in a change of address, or those who have registered just prior to the deadline this year but whose names don’t show up on local precinct lists. There will also be people trying to vote who aren’t eligible — because they didn’t register in time or don’t have even a non-photo form of ID. By law, none of those provisional ballots can be opened and counted for ten days — until November 17. Voters have those ten days to contact their local election board to provide additional information to get their vote counted. In addition to provisional ballots, some 20,000 or more absentee votes that arrive after Election Day will remain uncounted for ten days.
‘Ohio could be close enough that those provisional and other ballots will matter,’ says Tom Burke, the chairman of the Board of Elections in Hamilton County, which contain’s Cincinnati. In 2008, over 207,000 such ballots were cast. Ohio has often been close in presidential contests. Jimmy Carter won the state by only 11,000 votes out of 4.1 million cast in 1976, and in 2004 George W. Bush’s margin of victory was only 119,000. Lawyers for John Kerry, Bush’s opponent, have told me they planned to go to court in Ohio if the margin had been less than 50,000 votes. Kerry did not concede the state — and the presidency — until 11 a.m. on the Wednesday after the election.
A fight over ballots is guaranteed to ensue this year in Ohio if the margin of victory is within one-half of one percentage point of votes cast — or about 25,000 votes. An automatic recount kicks in at that point. Legal challenges could prevent it from beginning until early December. That’s a problem given that December 11 is the deadline by which Congress is required to honor a state’s results. If Ohio misses that deadline, it will have to find some way to deliver its results by December 17, when the Electoral College is scheduled to meet.
The article goes on to discuss the difficulties and controversies experienced in Washington State in 2004. But while it is critical of some the things done there, this isn’t a hit piece or a “Rah-Rah GOP!” piece. Please do read the whole thing then please comment and tell me what you think.
CLEVELAND (AP) — Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney says he may be defeated by President Barack Obama in Tuesday’s presidential contest, but it’s doubtful.
Speaking at an Ohio rally Sunday afternoon, Romney said that it’s possible, but not likely that Obama will win. He was responding to supporters who booed when he speculated on the consequences of an Obama second term.
Polls suggest the race is very close. Both campaigns predict wins.
Romney is campaigning in four battleground states on Sunday, including Pennsylvania. Romney’s visit follows the decision by his campaign and its Republican allies to put millions of dollars in television advertising in Pennsylvania during the race’s final weeks to try to make it competitive.
No Republican presidential candidate has carried the state since 1988.
Hey, there, Taggart (or may I call you Tagg?):
I read that when President Obama observed that your father was less then truthful during the October 17 debate, you wanted to “take a swing at him.”
So here’s my invitation: after you read what follows, you are invited to come by and take a swing at me. (Warning: I will defend myself).
You see, Tagg, your father has based his whole campaign on falsehoods. I’m going to list just some of them - a complete list would take up too much of my time. (I’m indebted to Steve Benen and his weekly series Chronicling Matt’s Mendacity as well as Politifact for the list of untruths uttered by your dad.)
Romney: “President Obama has doubled the deficit.”
Romney: “We have fewer people working today than we had when the president took office.”
Romney: “The president does not have a jobs plan.”
Romney: “The number of new business start-ups per year has dropped by 100,000 per year.”
Romney: “Coal production is not up.”
Romney: “Regulations have quadrupled. The rate of regulations quadrupled under this president.”
Romney: “The president’s policies throughout the Middle East began with an apology tour”
Romney: “It’s known as redistribution. It’s never been a characteristic of America.”
Romney: “Under Obama’s plan (for welfare), you wouldn’t have to work and wouldn’t have to train for a job. They just send you your welfare check.”
Romney: “He gave a speech the other day at his State of the Union address. He didn’t even mention the deficit or the debt,”
Romney: “We’re only inches away from no longer being a free economy.”
Romney: “(People say) ‘Obamacare represents a government takeover of health care, and I don’t like it.’ And I think they’re right.”
While it may be true that people said it, what they said, and which Mr. Romney agreed with, is not true.
Romney: “Right now, the (Congressional Budget Office) says up to 20 million people will lose their insurance as Obamacare goes into effect next year.”
Romney: “Obamacare puts the federal government between you and your doctor.”
So you see, Tagg, it is an unfortunate fact that your father has adopted the strategy of trying to get to the White House by blatant misrepresentation of the facts. And it is another unfortunate fact that a large number of people are either buying his falsehoods, or just don’t care that they will be voting for the most dishonest politician to come down the pike for quite a while. I’m sure it pains you to hear this, but that’s life: sometimes truth hurts.
And about coming by to take a swing. Just give me some contact info (not necessarily your own personal info) in the comments to this posting, and we can set up a time and place.