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Election Open Thread 1.

I've opened a thread for those who want to comment on tonight's election results.

Please be civil.

James Lindgren (mail):
Florida looks better for Obama than the polls; Virginia looks worse.
11.4.2008 8:27pm
FantasiaWHT:
Since when is a police presence "voter suppression"?

For that matter, why is the presence of campaigners (while illegal and to be stopped) considered voter suppression?
11.4.2008 8:28pm
js5 (mail):
I'm still stunned that Indiana became a swing state. Glad to see Mitch stay for another term.
11.4.2008 8:30pm
Xmas (mail) (www):
Irony is...

Obama is going to win New Hampshire because of all of the people that moved from Massachusetts to southern NH so they would pay less in taxes.
11.4.2008 8:33pm
therut (mail):
Xmas---no said liberals were smart>
11.4.2008 8:35pm
Mikey:
I'm really glad absinthe is once again legal in the U.S.
11.4.2008 8:36pm
Constantin:
McCain will have to win in Florida, Ohio, Indiana, VA, NC, Missouri, Colorado (which he gave up on), and Nevada to pull this out.

Somewhat doubtful. Aunt Zeitumi stays.
11.4.2008 8:37pm
tsotha:
I like how the ABC and NBC are calling states with 0 precincts reporting. It's almost like they're trying to get people in the rest of the country can stay home. Did I say people? I meant Republicans.
11.4.2008 8:37pm
Mikey:
Also I think news network calls of Pennsylvania for Obama are premature.
11.4.2008 8:38pm
ofidiofile:
therut:


Xmas---no said liberals were smart>


no said conservatives grammar much. har, har.
11.4.2008 8:39pm
corneille1640 (mail):

I like how the ABC and NBC are calling states with 0 precincts reporting. It's almost like they're trying to get people in the rest of the country can stay home. Did I say people? I meant Republicans.

Couldn't calling the race early also logically have the effect of dissuading Obama supporters from voting?
11.4.2008 8:39pm
Ben P:

I like how the ABC and NBC are calling states with 0 precincts reporting. It's almost like they're trying to get people in the rest of the country can stay home. Did I say people? I meant Republicans.


0% of precincts reporting is not the same as the polls still being open.

Most of the east coast polls have been closed for hours now. Some of the central time polls just closed or will close very soon.

They can't influence voters in those states to stay home if the polls are closed already.
11.4.2008 8:42pm
Aeon J. Skoble (mail):
This irritates me every time: how can they say "with 5% reporting, we can call it for __!" Really? 5%? I'm no statistician, but that seems amazingly counterintuitive. Well, back to grading papers for me.
11.4.2008 8:42pm
Eph:
From the primary CNN article about the election, currently on the website:
"Few predict that the Democrats are in danger of losing their control of either the House or the Senate, but all eyes will be on nearly a dozen close Senate races that are key to whether the Democrats get 60 seats in the Senate."

Few? Is there anyone predicting this?
11.4.2008 8:42pm
js5 (mail):
they're calling it at what, 8;15? and the polls closed at 8? i understand if they're calling it a bit early, but to suggest that they're dissuading people from going out is kinda absurd given that they couldn't vote at that point.
11.4.2008 8:43pm
Mikey:

i understand if they're calling it a bit early, but to suggest that they're dissuading people from going out is kinda absurd given that they couldn't vote at that point.


People in PA can't vote, but people in New Mexico still can.
11.4.2008 8:46pm
tsotha:
Sure, they can't vote in Pennsylvania. What about the other three timezones?
11.4.2008 8:46pm
Ben P:

This irritates me every time: how can they say "with 5% reporting, we can call it for __!" Really? 5%? I'm no statistician, but that seems amazingly counterintuitive. Well, back to grading papers for me.


It blew my mind slightly when they called South Carolina for McCain when precincts reporting showed Obama 55% to Mcain 45% but with 1% reporting.

It made sense in a second, but it illustrates a point. CNN at least seems trying to be more careful about what they're calling this election, however, their projections are based somewhat on exist polling and someone on actual reporting. If the exit polling is showing McCain landslide in a state, and the 1% reporting shows it being close, but those are the most liberal districts in the state, then they usually feel safe calling it.
11.4.2008 8:47pm
Another Cornellian:
1. I don't think at 8:45 any polls have been closed for "hours"

2. I think the point on calling things as soon as polls close is not to dissuade voters from voting in those states but in other states further west where polls are still open. The theory being "why should I vote in CO/NV/NM/Wherever? The election is already over according to NBC/CNN/whoever." It's a dangerous thing to do.
11.4.2008 8:48pm
James Lindgren (mail):
Right now, I think it's unlikely that McCain will win Florida, let alone Colorado (which is still open).
11.4.2008 8:48pm
tsotha:
Couldn't calling the race early also logically have the effect of dissuading Obama supporters from voting?

That is logical. But people aren't logical. Past experience shows people on the "losing" side are much more likely to skip voting altogether. Democrats in California were furious with Carter for conceding before all the polls closed.
11.4.2008 8:49pm
Lior:
News on Prop 8? On prop 97/98 ?
11.4.2008 8:51pm
js5 (mail):
is there a real effect on dissuading people in other time zones to....finally get out and vote? I'll admit i'm new to this, but....really?
11.4.2008 8:52pm
Ben P:

People in PA can't vote, but people in New Mexico still can.


fivethirtyeight has New Mexico in the likely Obama column anyway, and it's not like California, Oregon, and Washington are going to go republican, nor are Arizona and Utah likely to go democrat.

But I think it's also somewhat beyond the point. Reporting usually takes between 30 and 90 minutes after polls close.

No matter how you shake it, there's a pretty significant chance of 90%+ of districts in the east coast states reporting by the time polls close in California.
11.4.2008 8:52pm
Bruce_M (mail) (www):
I sure hope I'm wrong about my predition that McCain wins the election. I put more trust in racism than I do in polls. I'll never be so happy to have been wrong, though.
11.4.2008 8:52pm
Monkey:
I missed the obligatory Lindgren "Democrats might win; Dow tanks" post today. Wonder why.
11.4.2008 8:53pm
nyu law libertarian (www):
@ James Lindgren

I think FL is still in play ... the panhandle is going to be the last counties to report. Unlike Dade and Broward, they're still Dixie.

I'm most surprised at NC. It doesn't look good for McCain
11.4.2008 8:54pm
Lior:
People emotionally like being on the "winning side". Democrats will want to say "I was part of bringing the change" even if their personal vote didn't count for much. In other words, they have an incentive to vote even if the election is called.

Republicans don't have anything to gain from voting in a lost cause. I wonder how many people only come to vote for president, however: surely in states where the races are close, Republicans have a strong incentive to come in and vote for their candidates in the State elections?
11.4.2008 8:54pm
richard cabeza:
I put more trust in racism than I do in polls.

Indeed. What possible reason could there be to vote against Obama beside his skin color?
11.4.2008 8:54pm
newscaper (mail):
Even if a McCain supporter is convinced Obama will win, the only rational thing to do is to vote no matter what -- to possibly tilt *your* state to deny Obama an electoral 'landslide', and if that fail, keep an Obama lead in the popular vote small as possible in order to dent claims of a "mandate".
All those come in to play when he starts trying to ram his crap thru Congress, trying to marginalize any opposition.
11.4.2008 8:59pm
tsotha:
No matter how you shake it, there's a pretty significant chance of 90%+ of districts in the east coast states reporting by the time polls close in California.

This is true. What makes it all very irritating to Republicans is the fact they called PA and Ohio before any precincts at all had reported. Especially after being wrong about Florida in 2000 and being so far off on exit polling in 2004. This isn't just incompetence.

And even if they turn out to be right, it has a big effect on the downticket races. Whether the Senate goes enough Democrat for straight party-line closure votes is a very big deal.
11.4.2008 9:00pm
js5 (mail):
wow. holy jesus. liddy dole just lost her seat. that is nuts...
11.4.2008 9:01pm
Ben P:

wow. holy jesus. liddy dole just lost her seat. that is nuts...


after pissing off half the state by running an ad calling a sunday school teacher "godless?"
11.4.2008 9:03pm
FantasiaWHT:
I don't get these numbers... I just saw Texas with "2% reporting" showing some 4 million popular votes already counted. Since when does Texas have 200 million registered voters?
11.4.2008 9:04pm
Lior:
FantasiaWHT: probably 2% of precincts -- the ones located in large cities.
11.4.2008 9:05pm
underthegun:
Just curious, what news websites are people looking at?
11.4.2008 9:07pm
Ben P:

This is true. What makes it all very irritating to Republicans is the fact they called PA and Ohio before any precincts at all had reported.


and most places have also called North Dakota, Wyoming, and Oklahima for McCain.

They have their "systems" and I'll readily concede their systems can be flawed, but I see very little evidence for underlying partisan animus in their systems for predicting what states go where. I mean, yeah, it's statistically possible that the first 30% of precincts to vote could go 60-40 one way, and the remaining 70% go 60-40 the other, but a shift of that magnitude just isn't likely except in accordance with already known demographic patterns.
11.4.2008 9:07pm
Prof. S. (mail):
Let me get this straight, even though McCain is up by 13,000 votes, they are calling Michigan for Obama.

Seriously, why don't we just have the networks tell us the outcome on the Monday before the election, so we can all avoid the lines.
11.4.2008 9:08pm
pete (mail) (www):

Since when does Texas have 200 million registered voters?


Texas counts early votes right away I think and those are electronic ballots, which might explain the numbers.
11.4.2008 9:09pm
MikeDT (mail):
They've been calling states early for a long time, is there any evidence that this affects the Western states? I know they screwed up in 2000, but that just means to me they should do a better job, not stop calling races.
11.4.2008 9:10pm
tsotha:
I mean, yeah, it's statistically possible that the first 30% of precincts to vote could go 60-40 one way, and the remaining 70% go 60-40 the other, but a shift of that magnitude just isn't likely except in accordance with already known demographic patterns.

Did you read my post? 0% of precincts reporting. In other words, they were calling states based on no actual votes whatsoever.
11.4.2008 9:12pm
Mikey:

No matter how you shake it, there's a pretty significant chance of 90%+ of districts in the east coast states reporting by the time polls close in California.


Perhaps my absinthe-soaked memory is faulty, but wasn't there talk after 2000 of not even reporting the east coast states' results until after the polls closed in California?
11.4.2008 9:15pm
nyu law libertarian (www):
Popular vote is interesting ... Drudge has it at Obama: 11,079,832, McCain: 11,021,184
11.4.2008 9:17pm
Ben P:

Did you read my post? 0% of precincts reporting. In other words, they were calling states based on no actual votes whatsoever.


I admit I'm watching fox and CNN, not NBC, but the only one I've seen them call that early was South Carolina for McCain.


There's an important counter motive here too. What do networks really gain by making inaccurate predictions? An infinitesmal chance of affecting somthing in a different time zone and if they're forced to recall a prediction their political team loses an obscene amount of credibility.

I mean people are still talking about Florida being Miscalled in 2000 when exit polling comes up.
11.4.2008 9:17pm
MikeDT (mail):
Did you read my post? 0% of precincts reporting. In other words, they were calling states based on no actual votes whatsoever.

From what I've read, the networks look at the pre-election polling and the exit polls and if they're consistent and the lead is big enough (> 10% ?) they'll call the state. I was a little surprised they called Penn. so early, but some networks like CNN waited about an hour.
11.4.2008 9:19pm
Cornellian (mail):
I get annoyed when I see judge elections where nearly every candidate is a prosecutor bragging about how tough he is on criminal defendants. One of them even brags about staring down armed gang leaders. They all sound like they've been running for judge roughly since the day they signed up for the LSAT.
11.4.2008 9:20pm
astrangerwithcandy (mail):

I put more trust in racism than I do in polls


so, we have reached the end of racism now that obama has won?
11.4.2008 9:21pm
Asher (mail):
Let me get this straight, even though McCain is up by 13,000 votes, they are calling Michigan for Obama.

Seriously, why don't we just have the networks tell us the outcome on the Monday before the election, so we can all avoid the lines.


I mean, Prof. S, the exit poll says Obama's winning Michigan by 17. Exit polls are crap, I know, but how wrong can one poll be?
11.4.2008 9:21pm
Cornellian (mail):
The other thing that annoys me is the multitude of ballot propositions authorizing the state to issue bonds (i.e. borrow money) for this or that program. I voted "no" on all of them, regardless of the program.
11.4.2008 9:23pm
Mikey:

I think FL is still in play ... the panhandle is going to be the last counties to report. Unlike Dade and Broward, they're still Dixie.


Also heavily military (Pensacola NAS, Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field) who will go overwhelmingly McCain.
11.4.2008 9:23pm
nyu law libertarian (www):
It's over, Ohio is for Obama
11.4.2008 9:24pm
Mikey:

Popular vote is interesting ... Drudge has it at Obama: 11,079,832, McCain: 11,021,184


I predict if Obama loses the popular vote but wins the electoral vote, a whole lot of Democrats will suddenly see great value in the Electoral College system.
11.4.2008 9:26pm
underthegun:
It looks bad for McCain
11.4.2008 9:28pm
astrangerwithcandy (mail):

the other thing that annoys me is the multitude of ballot propositions authorizing the state to issue bonds (i.e. borrow money) for this or that program. I voted "no" on all of them, regardless of the program.



couldn't agree more. in calif it seemed to be a particularly bad year for bond props.
11.4.2008 9:28pm
jviss (mail):
has anyone else noticed that Fox News' website election map goes blank, and shows Obama and McCain both at 0%?

(I'm using FireFox on a MacBook).
11.4.2008 9:29pm
DiversityHire:
Congratulations to President Elect Barack Hussein Obama! Thanks to Senator McCain. And special thanks to President George W. Bush. This was the most interesting presidential election of my life so far.
11.4.2008 9:30pm
underthegun:
Is it just me or is Fox News showing McCain ahead in Michigan?
11.4.2008 9:30pm
Donny:
Yes we did.
11.4.2008 9:33pm
DiversityHire:
Since when does Texas have 200 million registered voters?

They got some special privileges to get them into the union, I think. Plus, everything is big in Texas. Seems unfair they only get 34 electoral votes.
11.4.2008 9:33pm
Ben P:

Congratulations to President Elect Barack Hussein Obama! Thanks to Senator McCain. Johnathan Sidney McCain III And special thanks to President George W. Bush. This was the most interesting presidential election of my life so far.


at least be consistent.
11.4.2008 9:35pm
astrangerwithcandy (mail):

Yes we did.


can we PLEASE promise to bag the dumb slogans at 12:01??
please
11.4.2008 9:35pm
csm:
"I predict if Obama loses the popular vote but wins the electoral vote, a whole lot of Democrats will suddenly see great value in the Electoral College system."

I predict that Republicans will cry foul and demand the EC be abolished.
11.4.2008 9:37pm
Cornellian (mail):
Anyone else miss "The Spin Room?" It was a 2 man show (Tucker Carlson and Bill Press) that ran around the time of the 2000 election. Political commentary from both sides but with a sense of humor instead of spluttering outrage. We could use a show like that right now.
11.4.2008 9:41pm
Syd Henderson (mail):
Obama's 300,000 votes ahead and should be pulling away for the rest of the night.
11.4.2008 9:42pm
Mike& (mail):
I predict that even if the election is close, we will be told that Obama has a "clear mandate" from the people.

That line of thinking was nonsense when Bush was re-elected. But that's what the Republicans said. So....... FEEL THE BURN!
11.4.2008 9:43pm
Mikey:

"I predict if Obama loses the popular vote but wins the electoral vote, a whole lot of Democrats will suddenly see great value in the Electoral College system."

I predict that Republicans will cry foul and demand the EC be abolished.


I respectfully disagree. The EC is too integral to a republican (small-r) form of government.

Also, absinthe gets more and more tasty the more of it one drinks. I can see why that French painter guy went bonkers.
11.4.2008 9:44pm
richard cabeza:
I predict that Republicans will cry foul and demand the EC be abolished.

Of course this ignores that Republicans are generally more in favor of diffusion of power in the form of federalism than are Democrats, but that wouldn't serve any moral equivalency purpose.
11.4.2008 9:44pm
therut (mail):
Nope I would never want to abolish the EC. Never. I hope Obama shows some good sense and does not let the gun grabbers get to him and does not abolish the tax deduction for 401K plans and does not nationalize or socialize my business. Medicine. I do not know what I will do. If we get Medicare for all we will have to close our 7 physician Family Practice Clinic. We barely made our payroll last month. Can NOT keep the door open with Medicare and Medicaid payments. Sigh. I guess I will have to stop seeing the average Joe and take care of the Rich only. I guess that is what some people want. Sorry rural citizens your health care is going to be free but no one will be there to provide the care. Maybe they will get you a PA .gov employee to care for you. Good Luck. Oh the hospital will close also without any physicians. Too bad cause we have a great hospital for a small town.
11.4.2008 9:49pm
Ian Argent (www):
CNN - why call NM for Obama with 4% reporting and McCain in the lead 60%?
11.4.2008 9:51pm
csm:
But the EC concentrates power in the smaller states at the expense of residents of larger ones. A vote in Wyoming has more weight than one in NY. By and large it is an effective way to level the playing field among the states It's sort of an affirmative action program for small states.

And Republicans favor Federalism only insofar as it furthers their agenda. States that want to pass medical marijuana laws get no quarter from the GOP Federalism ideologues.
11.4.2008 9:53pm
Mikey:

But the EC concentrates power in the smaller states at the expense of residents of larger ones. A vote in Wyoming has more weight than one in NY. By and large it is an effective way to level the playing field among the states It's sort of an affirmative action program for small states.

And Republicans favor Federalism only insofar as it furthers their agenda. States that want to pass medical marijuana laws get no quarter from the GOP Federalism ideologues.


Agreed on medical marijuana, but my point was Republicans would tend more toward support for the EC than would Democrats, not that Republicans were entirely consistent Federalists.

I think if the EC system were abolished, the smaller states would simply cease to matter during a Presidential campaign, and I can't see how that would be good at all.
11.4.2008 9:56pm
_quodlibet_:
Why don't the people get rid of the lizards?


"No," said Ford, "The people hate the lizards and the lizards rule the people."

"Odd," said Arthur, "I thought you said it was a democracy."

"I did," said ford. "It is."

"So," said Arthur, hoping he wasn't sounding ridiculously obtuse, "why don't the people get rid of the lizards?"

"It honestly doesn't occur to them," said Ford. "They've all got the vote, so they all pretty much assume that the government they've voted in more or less approximates to the government they want."

"You mean they actually vote for the lizards?"

"Oh yes," said Ford with a shrug, "of course."

"But," said Arthur, going for the big one again, "why?"

"Because if they didn't vote for a lizard," said Ford, "the wrong lizard might get in. Got any gin?"

"What?"

"I said," said Ford, with an increasing air of urgency creeping into his voice, "have you got any gin?"


(This is, of course, from Douglas Adams.)
11.4.2008 9:57pm
richard cabeza:
And Republicans favor Federalism only insofar as it furthers their agenda.

You mean the agenda of keeping keeping populous states from obliterating the vote of other ones?

Damn those federalists. They just couldn't hide their evil plans well enough!
11.4.2008 9:58pm
tsotha:
And Republicans favor Federalism only insofar as it furthers their agenda. States that want to pass medical marijuana laws get no quarter from the GOP Federalism ideologues.

This is not true for the party in general, though it does seem true for elected officials. Of course, one of the reasons Republicans are having trouble getting elected is they aren't in touch with the base on some key issues (like small government).
11.4.2008 9:59pm
George Weiss (mail) (www):
its over. obama already has projected 199 electoral votes and will clearly get CA OR and WA..puts him over
11.4.2008 9:59pm
Asher (mail):
I predict if Obama loses the popular vote but wins the electoral vote, a whole lot of Democrats will suddenly see great value in the Electoral College system.

And I predict if pigs learn how to fly, it will make the front page of the New York Times.

CNN - why call NM for Obama with 4% reporting and McCain in the lead 60%?


Because Obama's up 12 in the exit poll.
11.4.2008 9:59pm
PC:
Let me get this straight, even though McCain is up by 13,000 votes, they are calling Michigan for Obama.

Statistics r hard. Also, there are a number of states that you can easily call for a candidate before voting actually starts. Polls are wonky, but not that wonky.
11.4.2008 9:59pm
Mikey:

"Because if they didn't vote for a lizard," said Ford, "the wrong lizard might get in. Got any gin?"

"What?"

"I said," said Ford, with an increasing air of urgency creeping into his voice, "have you got any gin?"


Substitute "absinthe" for "gin" and I'm in.
11.4.2008 9:59pm
therut (mail):
CSM----blame that one on the damn liberal interpretation of the Commerce clause. You know the one liberals love. It is that liberal reading that gives .gov the power you love so suck it up and quit griping. If the Feds can regulate my firearms b/c of the commerce clause your dope can be regulated also. Not that I a Conservative want either regulated. Can not have your cake and eat it too.
11.4.2008 10:00pm
csm:
"I think if the EC system were abolished, the smaller states would simply cease to matter during a Presidential campaign, and I can't see how that would be good at all."

Absolutely. Candidates would campaign in LA, Chicago and NYC. Nothing else would matter.

I do agree that GOPers favor the EC more than Dems, but I think most Dems favor it, just not as vehemently as Repubs. I, for one, have been on the fence about this in the past and am firmly in the Pro-EC column.
11.4.2008 10:01pm
Asher (mail):
Montana's exit poll just came out and Obama's up 1. These exit polls are a little dubious.
11.4.2008 10:02pm
Hoosier:
Mike&

I now proclaim that you are, officially, behaving like a dick.
11.4.2008 10:02pm
csm:
"You know the one liberals love."

No, I don't. Why don't you explain it to me while you're telling me to stop griping.
11.4.2008 10:03pm
devil's advocate (mail):
Cornellian


The other thing that annoys me is the multitude of ballot propositions authorizing the state to issue bonds (i.e. borrow money) for this or that program. I voted "no" on all of them, regardless of the program.


I'm with you. Every year I request a master lever so I can just vote no on all the ballot issues en masse.

Brian
11.4.2008 10:04pm
PC:
Could someone hand me a burka?
11.4.2008 10:04pm
nyu law libertarian (www):
Somehow I'm actually not that upset after seeing ABC's Kenyan village. They will be happy tonight (or this morning).
11.4.2008 10:06pm
csm:
"You mean the agenda of keeping keeping populous states from obliterating the vote of other ones? "

No. Read my the example I provided and you'll know what I mean.
11.4.2008 10:10pm
JB:
They call states with 0% reporting every year, no matter which state or who wins. To complain about this now is beyond facile.
11.4.2008 10:12pm
jviss (mail):
CNN calls Obama states but not McCain states.
11.4.2008 10:13pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
The vote from New Mexico repudiates the McCain/Republican strategy for capturing the Hispanic vote. Even though McCain went all out for amnesty, he got soundly rejected by the Hispanics. The Republicans will never outbid the Democrats in offering goodies to the illegal aliens and the underclass. But they don't understand that, and cling to false notion that somehow the Hispanics will become just like their base. As a result, they consistently mis-allocate their resources, and turn off people who might vote for them to chase the Will-O-Wisp. The clock is running out and in another 20 years the US will become a one party state like Mexico under the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI). They don't know how to appeal to people prone to magical thinking.
11.4.2008 10:14pm
richard cabeza:
No. Read my the example I provided and you'll know what I mean.

Your example works through that mechanism. So what you mean is "yes".

God, it's like trying new pickup lines at a bar in here.
11.4.2008 10:15pm
egn (mail):
Good work, America.

The best thing that can come out of this is that the GOP does a big ol' purge and restores itself to sanity and principle. Too much to hope for?
11.4.2008 10:16pm
tsotha:
They call states with 0% reporting every year, no matter which state or who wins. To complain about this now is beyond facile.

I've never seen it before.
11.4.2008 10:17pm
Harvey Mosley (mail):
Jim, just wanted to say thanks to you and the rest of the VC'ers for putting up with all the crap you guys have taken from both sides.
Whether I agree or disagree, I find nearly all of the posts too interesting not to read.
11.4.2008 10:18pm
Visitor Again:
The election results appear certain. Here's to President-Elect Obama and Vice-President-Elect Biden. May they serve the country well.
11.4.2008 10:19pm
Volokh Groupie:
Cosign the post by 'Visitor Again'. Obama and the income congress should be given respect and should be looked at with optimism and vigilance. It should be a fun 2 years (at the least).
11.4.2008 10:22pm
Volokh Groupie:
Incoming congress---i'm clearly and idiot.
11.4.2008 10:23pm
Mikey:
"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard." - H. L. Mencken
11.4.2008 10:24pm
csm:
"The Republicans will never outbid the Democrats in offering goodies to the illegal aliens and the underclass."

And, conversely, the Democrats will never outbid the GOP in offering goodies to religious fundamentalists and the wealthiest 0.1% of the electorate.

The GOP didn't need to hand goodies to immigrants. All they needed to do was come up with a rational solution to a long-standing problem that passed the point of no return a long time ago without portraying a huge swath of the population as undesirable criminals, whether they were illegal or not. The GOP never tried to understand what they were dealing with and probably never will get it. McCain, to his credit, tried to be pragmatic about it and was violently swatted down. Now the GOP has probably lost Hispanics for a long, long time.

"The best thing that can come out of this is that the GOP does a big ol' purge and restores itself to sanity and principle. Too much to hope for?"

No. The Democrats will screw this up, guaranteed, just as the GOP screwed up their tenure at the helm. One party rule never works.
11.4.2008 10:26pm
trad and anon (mail):
This is true. What makes it all very irritating to Republicans is the fact they called PA and Ohio before any precincts at all had reported. Especially after being wrong about Florida in 2000 and being so far off on exit polling in 2004. This isn't just incompetence.
I've been looking at the exit polls on the CNN website, which it posts just after the polls close. The media have been instacalling only in the case of very large spreads, as with the 15-point spread in the PA exits.
11.4.2008 10:27pm
DangerMouse:
Heh. All the libs who crowed that "Dissent is patriotic" are now rabidly proclaiming that people have to support their Messiah.

This election puts Colbert, John Stewart, and other comedians out of business. They can't make a joke about THE ONE because they'll be considered RAAAAAACIST.
11.4.2008 10:28pm
Mike& (mail):
No. The Democrats will screw this up, guaranteed, just as the GOP screwed up their tenure at the helm. One party rule never works.

By far, the smartest comment to appear here.
11.4.2008 10:32pm
richard cabeza:
And, conversely, the Democrats will never outbid the GOP in offering goodies to religious fundamentalists and the wealthiest 0.1% of the electorate.

Good thing us poor, gun-and-bible clingy folk exist, and some of us can actually speak economics. Otherwise you might have a point.

On the other hand, everybody loves free money; especially when it's paid for by the tears of ROBBER BARONS!!nine
11.4.2008 10:32pm
Floridan:
America turns a page.
11.4.2008 10:33pm
Cold Warrior:

I missed the obligatory Lindgren "Democrats might win; Dow tanks" post today. Wonder why.


Tomorrow.


holy jesus. liddy dole just lost her seat. that is nuts...


Any chance Bob Dole will finally honor his 1996 promise (on giving up his Senate seat) to either go to the White House or back home to Russell, Kansas? Now he can pop viagras and chase Liddy around the wheatfields till the cows come home.
11.4.2008 10:39pm
second history:
Happy Birthday, Laura Bush!
11.4.2008 10:40pm
Cold Warrior:
Sobering thought on what has been (for me) generally an enjoyable night:

Senator Al Franken
11.4.2008 10:42pm
astrangerwithcandy (mail):

Sobering thought on what has been (for me) generally an enjoyable night:

Senator Al Franken


how does stuart smalley get this close? how? how would someone go about voting for stuart smalley and not feel embarassed?!?!
11.4.2008 10:46pm
csm:

how does stuart smalley get this close? how? how would someone go about voting for stuart smalley and not feel embarassed?!?!


Because he's running against Norm Coleman, a total moron.
11.4.2008 10:52pm
richard cabeza:
how does stuart smalley get this close? how? how would someone go about voting for stuart smalley and not feel embarassed?!?!

Gosh darn it, people like him.
11.4.2008 10:53pm
Cornellian (mail):
[Republicans] cling to false notion that somehow the Hispanics will become just like their base.

Also known as the "Hispanics will vote for Tom Tancredo once they find out he's opposed to abortion" strategy.
11.4.2008 10:56pm
JosephSlater (mail):
To Richad Cabeza, whom I rarely agree with: you get my vote for winning the thread.
11.4.2008 11:02pm
LM (mail):
Obama wins.

For the first time in my life I'm proud of the Volokh Conspiracy.
11.4.2008 11:03pm
Bruce_M (mail) (www):
Yes, I am *so* happy to have been wrong about predicting a McCain victory. I'm truly thrilled that Obama has won and this has renewed my hope, trust, and belief in America and my fellow homo sapiens. Great day not just for America, but for the world.
11.4.2008 11:05pm
Nathan_M (mail):
Congratulations President Obama.
11.4.2008 11:07pm
Gregory Conen (mail):
Well, looks like it's Obama. And with enough of a margin that I probably could have gone with protest vote.

Looks like Republicans will pull enough Senate seats out of the hat to threaten a filibuster, at least.
11.4.2008 11:16pm
Visitor Again:
One of the happiest nights of my life.
11.4.2008 11:18pm
Cornellian (mail):
Candidates would campaign in LA, Chicago and NYC. Nothing else would matter.

You forgot SF, even if they'd go in part because of those lucrative Silicon Valley fundraisers.
11.4.2008 11:23pm
Cornellian (mail):
Anyone care to make predictions about the 2012 Republican nomination? What do you think of Palin's chances?
11.4.2008 11:24pm
richard cabeza:
One of the happiest nights of my life.

If a presidential election can do that, might I suggest there's something wrong with you?

I remember quite a few elections that resembled snail races or gentlemen's wagers, and I liked it that way. There will be more elections, and people are supposed to have critical reasoning facalties.

In any case, my eternal salvation is not tied to this vote.
11.4.2008 11:27pm
Snaphappy:
They finally called AZ for McCain. That's nice of them.
11.4.2008 11:27pm
second history:
Anyone care to make predictions about the 2012 Republican nomination? What do you think of Palin's chances?

Good if Ted Stevens wins tonight, then resigns. Palin should then resign as Governor and run for the seat. If she wins (which shouldn't be a problem), then she gains the necessary national experience and exposure. Staying in Alaska is not an option--too far away.
11.4.2008 11:30pm
Gregory Conen (mail):
Anyone care to make predictions about the 2012 Republican nomination? What do you think of Palin's chance
Palin is out. She was half of a losing ticket, and the experience issue will still be looming (with no countershot against the now-incumbent Obama). And she was a dark horse in the first place.

McCain is also out.

Expect a governor. Maybe Romney, maybe some other guy who lost in the primary. For new faces, I'd look at Mitch Daniels, M. Jodi Rell, and maybe Bobby Jindal if they want Palin v. 2.0.
11.4.2008 11:36pm
csm:

If a presidential election can do that, might I suggest there's something wrong with you?


Did it occur to you that millions of black Americans probably feel that way? There's certainly nothing wrong with them, is there?
11.4.2008 11:37pm
richard cabeza:
Did it occur to you that millions of black Americans probably feel that way? There's certainly nothing wrong with them, is there?

Seems there is. Nothing that a little "deserve to get it good and hard" won't change, I guess.
11.4.2008 11:39pm
A. Zarkov (mail):
csm:

"And, conversely, the Democrats will never outbid the GOP in offering goodies to religious fundamentalists and the wealthiest 0.1% of the electorate."

How can they build a constituent base on 0.1% of the population?
11.4.2008 11:44pm
DiverDan (mail):
Congratulations to President Obama. And, BTW, now that the country has demonstrated that there is not a single opportunity foreclosed to a qualified African-American, isn't that indisputable proof that race-based preferences are no longer "necessary to eliminate the vestiges of discrimination", and therefore unconstitutional under the 14th Amendment? Time to tee up Grutter v. Bolinger, Second Act.
11.4.2008 11:44pm
David Warner:
President Mandela!

Loved McCain's Booker T. reference. Perfect.
11.4.2008 11:45pm
LM (mail):
McCain just gave a gracious and moving speech befitting a great man. I have no doubt he was sincere about doing anything he can to help Obama bring the country together. I only hope the extremists in his own party will let him, as I hope the extremists on the other side won't impede the new President.
11.4.2008 11:46pm
David Warner:
Mikey,

"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard." - H. L. Mencken

Case in point:

"Because he's running against Norm Coleman, a total moron."

- csm
11.4.2008 11:47pm
Cold Warrior:
DiverDan, you say it more, umm, provocatively than I would, but I see the point.

White voters supported Obama in slightly higher percentages than they supported Kerry, and Kerry was (after all) pretty much a white Obama in terms of policy positions and voting record.

I always think of the presidential race, the interviews, the debates, the whole thing, as the world's longest job interview. And when all was said and done, Americans were more than happy to give the African American guy the job.
11.4.2008 11:49pm
Cold Warrior:
Whither Joe the Plumber?
11.4.2008 11:50pm
csm:

Seems there is. Nothing that a little "deserve to get it good and hard" won't change, I guess.


I think I know why your pick-up lines don't work - they suck. Empathy isn't you're strong suit, and that's OK. I guess.
11.4.2008 11:50pm
David Warner:
Cornellian,

"Anyone care to make predictions about the 2012 Republican nomination? What do you think of Palin's chances?"

Petraeus/Volokh in '12!
11.4.2008 11:50pm
richard cabeza:
Empathy isn't you're strong suit

I didn't get any when I posited that government isn't designed for wealth distribution. I guess that means I'm "greedy" as well?
11.4.2008 11:53pm
whit:

How can they build a constituent base on 0.1% of the population?



because (entering leftist mode) the republicans keep to electorate ignorant of the real problems in the world (racism, sexism, heterosexism, the patriarchy, capitalism, imperialism, the military industrial complex, corporate power, creeping fascism, etc....) and get them to "vote against their interests"

that's the meme... "voting against their interests".

fwiw, i don't think it's a good thing to vote based on your interests, but instead to vote on your principles.

if i only voted in my interests, i'd have to find a candidate who intends to give massive govt. handouts to bald 40+ surfer cops from WA state.
11.4.2008 11:54pm
Mark Buehner (mail):
This election has worked out best for the country, thank god it wasnt close either way. A historic day and a good day to be an American, even if you didn't support the winner.

It just occurs to me that now those of us on the other side of the divide are rather beholden to Obama to govern justly and (hopefully) moderately. I think that sentiment is going to occur to many of us. Those of us who have doubted Obama have to hope we have been very wrong.
11.4.2008 11:57pm
csm:

I didn't get any when I posited that government isn't designed for wealth distribution. I guess that means I'm "greedy" as well?


I imagine that is because you are wrong. Government is the embodiment of wealth distribution. It collects our money, pays itself with it and spends it on things - some good, some not.
11.4.2008 11:58pm
Visitor Again:
One of the happiest nights of my life.

If a presidential election can do that, might I suggest there's something wrong with you?




Suggest away, but if that's so, since I'm 65, it's probably too late to fix it. But it wasn't just another presidential election to me, you see, and your comments can't spoil tonight for me, for my African-American partner of 19 years, for my neighbors here in South Los Angeles or for the millions of Americans who share my joy.

I worked in the civil rights movement in the Sixties, I went to Watts as a poverty lawyer right out of law school, and I've worked for racial equality for decades. A long way to go yet, but this is definitely a huge step forward. I am filled with hope and love for my country.
11.4.2008 11:59pm
richard cabeza:
and your comments can't spoil tonight for me

Don't let the man git you down!
11.5.2008 12:03am
JosephSlater (mail):
We won't, richard. Believe me, we won't.
11.5.2008 12:08am
Oddball52:
So now we've elected a socialist that happens to be black. You can't come much farther from the Constitution and the Founding Fathers. Wasn't it Franklin that said "You have a Republic, if you can keep it"? Well obviously over half the electorate isn't interested in keeping it any more—they believe the government exists to take care of them, not to stay out of their way while they pursue happiness and success. I've been a right wing idealogue (sp?) for about 25 years now, and served 20 in the USAF, 8 of that under Clinton—and Obama is my president. Let's watch and see what happens as he and the Congress "transform America"—it will be interesting to see what the taking half of the electorate does when they find out that all those gifts have long strings attached. Good morning, Comrade!!!
11.5.2008 12:11am
David Warner:
Obama's American Ideals:

"Democracy, liberty, opportunity, unyielding hope."

Some socialist.
11.5.2008 12:14am
David Warner:
Oh, he's preaching it now! Apollo, baby!
11.5.2008 12:15am
Oddball52:
Yeah, and the "Ministry of Truth" actually told the truth!! And hope is not a course of action--but you'll find that out soon enough.
11.5.2008 12:19am
first history:
Cold Warrior said:

Whither Joe the Plumber?

He'll call McCain, looking for a job, and McCain will say to his butler:

"Joe? Joe who?--Never heard of the guy."
11.5.2008 12:46am
David Warner:
Oddball,

"Yeah, and the "Ministry of Truth" actually told the truth!! And hope is not a course of action--but you'll find that out soon enough."

And despair is?

So he's lying about his take on American Ideals why? Because equality and fraternity sound too French and he's afraid to lose the Penn Dutch vote? Oh yeah, he already won the whole stinkin election, I forgot.
11.5.2008 1:18am
devil's advocate (mail):
Gregory


predictions about the 2012 Republican nomination?
... maybe Bobby Jindal if they want Palin v. 2.0.


Try if you want Palin with a resume.
11.5.2008 4:21am
Hoosier:
Try if you want Palin with a resume.

But we just established that resumes and experience don't matter when it comes to our president. We just have to like the candidate.
11.5.2008 6:02am
Madrid Expat. (mail):
Anyone else watching the Al Franken race unfold? I find him intolerable.
11.5.2008 7:56am
DiverDan (mail):
Senator Al Franken? Final and conclusive proof that the inmates have taken control of the asylum.
11.5.2008 8:38am
Opher Banarie (mail) (www):
Can we start proposing Cabinet Secretaries?

1) Maxine Waters for Dept of Education. (Maybe she can find one there.)

2) Yvonne Brathwaite Burke for Dept of Health and Human Services. (When Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital in Los Angeles was threatened to be closed for killing patients due to poor care, she said "That hospital will only be closed overy my dead body." The hospital is closed, but she is still alive.)

3) Bill Ayers for Homeland Security. (Obviously!)

Since this is a Law Prof blog, who do you like for AG and Justice? Any thoughts about Treasury?

Come on, folks, there are over 7,000 positions in the Plum Book that our new leader must fill!
11.5.2008 1:32pm
Visitor Again:
richard cabeza:

and your comments can't spoil tonight for me

Don't let the man git you down!

You apparently think you're the man. You delude yourself. I hate to burst your delusion, but Obama is the man, and he definitely doesn't get me down. No, he fires me up and gets me ready to go. I hope you don't consume yourself with bitterness over the next few years.
11.5.2008 3:08pm
richard cabeza:
Projection isn't just a river in Mississippi.
11.5.2008 4:34pm
LM (mail):
Hoosier:

But we just established that resumes and experience don't matter when it comes to our president. We just have to like the candidate.

McCain showed his character last night by turning the page on the election and committing Obama his support. Country first. You're someone I'd have expected to rise to that challenge with something more constructive than this.
11.5.2008 4:47pm