2008 Election results and discussion: President, U.S. Senate, U.S. House

election-2008 As the election returns come in today for the races for President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House, talk about them here with your fellow Northfield area citizens.

And help us track the results by linking to media coverage elsewhere.


  1. Anne Bretts said:

    Griff, thank goodness it’s over. I just heard Twin Cities analyst Pat Kessler explaining the Franken-Coleman odds. He actually said, “Well, if Obama wins, it obviously helps Franken, but if McCain wins, well that will help Coleman.”
    We have officially run out of any meaningful speculation.
    Close the polls, count the vote…and let’s party.

    November 4, 2008
  2. Scott Oney said:

    If you’re feeling particularly bummed out by the election results, you may be suffering from Post Election Stress and Trauma Syndrome. As described by Rachel Neumann four years ago,

    The symptoms vary region to region and person to person, but the general diagnosis is the same: severe disorientation, melancholy, a need to be around like-minded others and a lingering fear that the country is going to hell in a handbasket.

    The condition can last up to four years, but according to Rachel Neumann,

    Doctor Alan Steinbach, an emergency room physician and professor of public health . . . also sees a bright side to the epidemic. Patients who recover from PESTS often emerge wiser, more energetic, and more politically active than ever before.

    November 5, 2008
  3. Anne Bretts said:

    I can testify that after an 8-year infestation of PESTS, we managed to recover in just one glorious, beautiful night. All you need are freedom, respect, intelligence, enthusiasm, newness, democracy and spirit…
    Yes, FRIENDS seem to be the perfect way to turn PESTS into partners in a new era. Of course, those PESTS who are resistant to friends might just have to go dormant for a while.

    November 5, 2008
  4. Peter Millin said:

    Not even close. The fun has just begun for me as a conservative.
    This election has shown that pandering for independents is not the way to further conservative ideas. The Bush clans time is up and we need to clear the Republicans of the RINO’s.
    If they don’t want to leave, then it’s time to find a new home for the conservative movement.

    Just like the progressives don’t belong to the Democrats, the conservatives don’t belong to the current Republican party.
    Most conservatives held their nose when voting for McCain, because the alternative was a left of center Obama. Which made McCain the lesser of the two evils, though not for me. I “wasted” my presidential vote for Bob Barr.

    November 6, 2008
  5. Holly Cairns said:

    I agree with Peter, the Republican party should clear itself of RINOs. Republican in Name Only = out the door. Clear the way for a new Republican party.

    November 6, 2008
  6. Patrick Enders said:

    I’d be happy to see the RINO’s become independents or even Democrats.

    The narrower the Republican Party gets, the smaller its proportion of the vote will be.

    November 6, 2008
  7. Jane Moline said:

    Peter, the problem with the Republicans is not that they pandered to independents–it is that they pandered to conservative, moderate Republicans–while transferring wealth to their friends and corporate funders, and giving way too much power to the wacko religious right and Neo-cons, all the awhile espousling conservative ideals they obliterated with their failed policies.

    If you throw out the RINO’s there won’t be a Republican party–only Arne Carlson, Colin Powell, Al Quie and Ray Cox will be left. You can barely have a good time with them, let alone a party.

    November 6, 2008
  8. Bright Spencer said:

    Aw, way to reach across the aisle, people! 😉

    November 6, 2008
  9. Patrick Enders said:

    Isn’t Colin Powell a RINO, too?

    November 6, 2008
  10. I’m confused: my read on this election is that the (historically) more-moderate and somewhat-independent McCain lost a lot of moderates and independents by pandering to the Neocons and the fundamentalist conservatives – particularly with his very ill-advised selection of Palin – and with his sudden switch on issues like torture and becoming an ardent supporter of the war where he had been more cautious before.

    Maybe my confusion stems from the term RINO. I have always understood it to be a label Republicans attach to the more moderate or even liberal among their own party. It seems to me that some might think it’s a label that those traditional, Eisenhower Republicans might apply to the hardcore Neocons or Fundamentalists in the GOP. Each group desperately trying to claim to be the ideal and ideological base of the Republican party. That’s the struggle the GOP will have for the next couple years.

    My opinion is that the Republican party will undergo some changes, but I don’t think moderate RINOs are in danger of being ostracized after this election. I think this election signals the further decline of the far right wing of the party. This seemed to start in earnest with the 2006 elections.

    There are many reasons that I feel this way, but I believe one big reason – one dangerous reason – flows from the hard right’s insistence on slamming not just intellectuals, but even intelligence. I think you can only work that angle for so long before people just start to ignore you. Most of the really weak personal attacks slung at Obama in this cycle just didn’t stick, because there was so little thought or evidence behind them.

    Another big reason would have to be that politics remains a cyclical enterprise. More conservative ideals can hold sway for only so long before people start pushing the pendulum the other direction, and more liberal ideals will prevail for a while until people people push back again. And so it goes.

    America is a moderate country. We average each other out. The power is in the center. It’s not as exciting there, but that’s from where we are led.

    November 6, 2008
  11. Bright Spencer said:

    BE, HI! Well, either the two major parties will find common ground or we will finally get a much needed viable party or two.

    Having the Democrats argue amongst themselves now is prolly just a big waste of taxpayer’s time and money. And isn’t that what everyone really wants…that no one do too much too fast?

    November 6, 2008
  12. Holly Cairns said:

    Now we’re ruining the fun. Darn it.

    Bendon Etter said:

    I’m confused: my read on this election is that the (historically) more-moderate and somewhat-independent McCain lost a lot of moderates and independents by pandering to the Neocons and the fundamentalist conservatives – particularly with his very ill-advised selection of Palin – and with his sudden switch on issues like torture and becoming an ardent supporter of the war where he had been more cautious before.

    I agree. McCain had trouble finding his niche. He had no safe place and no one had his back. He was a ‘Maverick’ running against his own party.

    However, it’s interesting you think Palin catered to the neocon vote.

    I thought the intention was for her to be anti-Bush and cater to the ‘maverick’ middle. Later, when I got to know her better, her fundamentalist viewpoint surprised me and left me feeling uneasy.

    I’m curious, did you peg her for the neocon vote right away? You are quick.

    Brendon also said

    Most of the really weak personal attacks slung at Obama in this cycle just didn’t stick, because there was so little thought or evidence behind them.

    Al Franken must have used the same political strategist. Coleman got away with negatives while Franken choked on almost anything negative. Mostly, IMHO, it was because Franken didn’t carefully pick his negatives and he didn’t have his friends running the negative ads. The early ads and scene set the tone for the entire race.

    November 6, 2008
  13. Holly Cairns said:

    And yes, it seems Colin Powell is a moderate Republican. If I were a Republican I wouldn’t call anyone in my party “RINO”. That’s a negative, hurtful term which separates some from others and doesn’t allow for a feeling of comrodery. But shh on that. Of course it’s useful to Democrats…

    November 6, 2008
  14. Jane Moline said:

    Yeah, what he said (Brendon.)

    I was being, in my previous post #9, somewhat, tongue in cheek. The Republicans are imploding and destroying themselves. The radicals are calling the moderates names (RINO), but we know true Republicans are thoughtful conservatives that value personal responsibility and individual freedoms.

    While radical Neocons –really, Palin does not have the intellectual capacity to be a Neocon–she just went with the wind that appealed to her “mavricky” personality–and radical religious (this is where Palin fits in) claimed that their perverted form of Republican ideals were the RIGHT ones and, of course, everyone else was NOT right enough.

    However, there is a long history of nobel (kills me to say it) Republicans like Abraham Lincoln. He, by the way, was a true uniter not a divider.

    Bush never fit in anywhere, but surrounded himself with Neocons and pandered to the religious right while completely leaving out the moderate middle. He is, of course a “divider.”

    I sincerely believe the Republican party is in crisis, infighting over who runs the party–the radical right, or the true conservatives–and I don’t think the true conservatives call liberals “socialists” nor condemn progressive politics–if they don’t take back their party, the party is done for. I just thought my previous post was kind of clever and succinct.

    November 6, 2008
  15. Holly Cairns said:

    Jane said

    While radical Neocons –really, Palin does not have the intellectual capacity to be a Neocon–she just went with the wind that appealed to her “mavricky” personality–and radical religious

    While I usually agree with you, I absolutely disagree about her being dumb. She’s most likely smart. Conservatives nail down their idea of right and wrong– no gray area. IMHO, that doesn’t make them less smart, but less likely to be correct 🙂 Ha ha.

    Her idea that America be a certain kind of global presence fits completely with neocon values…

    My idea is still that we were surprised by fundamentalism and radical right tendancy. People don’t like that kind of shock, and so anything was possible.

    November 6, 2008
  16. Holly said:

    However, it’s interesting you think Palin catered to the neocon vote.

    I thought the intention was for her to be anti-Bush and cater to the ‘maverick’ middle. Later, when I got to know her better, her fundamentalist viewpoint surprised me and left me feeling uneasy.

    Holly, I think my comment was a bit ambiguous. I meant to emphasize that the Palin pick pandered to the fundamentalist right wing of the Republican party, not so much the Neocons. I have to confess that, when Palin was selected, I knew nothing about her. A little digging made it clear that her values were more closely-aligned with the “religious right”, not the warhawk imperialism of the Neocons.

    I don’t think she has the intellectual might – whether by her choice or by her capacity – to be considered a true Neocon, certainly not a leader among Neocons. I disagree with most Neocon ideas and ideals, but they are not dim people in any sense.

    The verdict on Palin will be written over the next couple years. She obviously has political acumen; she obviously knows how to play the system, and she can be inspiring to large groups of people. However, I think the pendulum is swinging away from her breed of Republicanism, and by the time it swings back, there will be new leaders to step in.

    McCain picking her made him appear less of a “maverick” and more impulsive and impetuous. The media rushed in to do the vetting that McCain and his campaign should have done. The time between her selection and the election left too little time for all the background dirt to be “sifted out”; it was too raw and didn’t have time to settle.

    Similarly, Palin had less time to define herself in those two months. The narrative too easily stuck that she was truly unknown, with possible scandals brewing. She and McCain had to play defense the entire time. McCain does not look good playing defense; he gets, well, defensive and shrill.

    Obama, whatever he lacked in national leadership experience, was in the spotlight for twenty months running for the nomination then the office. McCain and his team had plenty of time to sully his reputation, but Obama had time to fight back, and the country had a long time to learn about candidate Obama and take into account both the attacks and the counter maneuvers.

    Palin didn’t do herself any favors with her truly embarrassing interviews. Those few times we saw her answering questions really doomed McCain, perhaps more than anything else. The weakness of her grasp called into doubt the wisdom of McCain’s reach. America was left wondering why she got the nod over much more qualified and gifted leaders, female and male, in the Republican party.

    November 6, 2008
  17. Jane Moline said:

    Sarah Palin may be sly like a fox but she, by no means, is smart, intelligent, or even has much depth. She and McCain were good intellectual matches. (Palin did not know that Africa is a continent or that “South Africa” is a country on that continent–she thought “South Africa” was referring to that portion of Africa. She could not name the participants in NAFTA-NORTH AMERICAN Free Trade Agreement-Canada, the USA, and Mexico. Geez–it took her 6 years to get a 4-year degree in that oh-so-tough major, Journalism.) McCain showed his poor judgment in choosing her. Bet what’s left of the Republican party dumps her real quick.

    We should learn–from our experience with the shrubmeister, that it is important for our leaders to be intelligent-we want them to be smarter than most Americans and especially smarter than our allies AND our enemies.

    November 6, 2008
  18. Paul Zorn said:

    I’ve heard from conservative Republican friends that Palin will be a big Republican player in coming years — and from other Republicans that Palin would just drive the bus off the cliff. My best guess — wholly unsupported by any data or research — is that the latter are correct. The Republicans need to (and, I think, eventually will) regain political and intellectual credibility, and some sense of purpose beyond complaining about taxes and social issues. It’s hard for me to imagine Palin leading such a resurgence.

    November 6, 2008
  19. David Ludescher said:

    C’mon guys. Does anyone remember that Ray Cox, a moderate Republican, strong supporter of education and the environment, experienced politician, and well-known businessman got hammered by Kevin Dahle, who ran for a month and whose strongest asset was “Democrat”?

    If Dahle’s election is any indication, this election was decided a year ago. The Obama/McCain race was closer than the Dahle/Cox race.

    November 6, 2008
  20. I agree, David. Although Dahle’s election can’t be said to be typical of all of America, or even all of Minnesota, there was certainly a strong vein of anti-Republican in most states.

    Nationally, McCain was running the uphill, I’m-Not-Bush battle from the first day, but I also think Obama ran an energetic, inspiring, more optimistic, and very well-organized campaign. Obama made a fair number of accusations and jabs, but kept things more positive than McCain’s campaign did.

    Inasmuch as the election was a referendum on Bush’s presidency, and given that Bush has tended to govern from further right than the American mainstream, further clarifies why McCain’s selection of Palin – a more conservative politician – was ill-advised. I think he would have done better with a more centrist Republican as a running mate. It might have headed off some of the Bush comparisons.

    November 6, 2008
  21. Peter Millin said:

    Bush is no conservative not by a long shot. He is the prototype of a neocon
    McCain thought that by “reaching” across the aisle on social issues he would actually earn favors from the left.
    The opposite has happened. The “maverick” as favored by the left was attacked as soon as it was clear that he was the candidate.
    The NYT who was originally touting him as a great leader turned on him and supported Obama soon as the primaries were over.

    To McCains defense, he did have a hard time running away from Bush. The left has spent the last 8 years slandering Bush. I don’t think there was ever another POTUS that had to endure such a concerted attack from day one. That does excuse his neocon agenda, but it speaks volumes to the mean spirited left fringe that has taken over the Democrats.

    The country hasn’t moved as far to the left as some here might hope.
    When voters are given the chance to vote directly to the “big social and environmental issues” of the day, they usually reject some of the fringe left agendas.

    There is still room for a truly conservative candidate, but neither the Bush neocons or the “moderate McCain’s” present the future of the Republican party.

    The days of the country club republicans are over. They are so fearful of losing their influence that they already started a smear campaign against Palin. She might not be “as smart” as those who are now trying to attack her, but let’s don’t forget who got the Republicans to where they are today.

    I find it strange that they spend so much energy on attacking a little known governor from Alaska, instead of doing some soul searching on their own.

    November 7, 2008
  22. Peter Millin said:

    Palin’s comments on Obama….yeah she really sounds stupid eh?

    “This is an historic moment. Barack Obama has been elected president. Let us, let us—let him be able to kind of savor this moment, one, and not let the pettiness of maybe internal workings of the campaign erode any of the recognition of this historic moment that we’re in.” Palin said, “And God bless Barack Obama and his beautiful family and the new administration coming in.”

    She added, “America is going to reach her destiny” and then reflected on the first African-American being ascending to the American presidency.

    “It says all good things about our country, and the progress that we have made and the barriers that have come down.” Palin said, “I couldn’t be more proud of where we are today, you know, this minority status now being kind of propelled to the forefront, that’s healthy.”

    November 7, 2008
  23. Anthony Pierre said:

    On the subject of Palin. I have a hard time believing all of the stuff that is coming out now (didn’t know africa was a continent, couldn’t name countries in North america).

    I think it is another smear campaign perpetuated by the republican machine. (socialist, communist, muslim, pals around with terrorists) .

    November 7, 2008
  24. Bright Spencer said:

    I have a hard time understanding why a successful businessman and politician wouldn’t be nominated for POTUS during a time when it’s the economy!, and why a woman who is successful politically, beautiful physically, and tuned up spiritually, positive, has a beautiful family, good looking husband who is really happy with his life path, who has loving parents, and is also smart as can be, a fast study, well I think I just named all the reasons why Palin wasn’t accepted more than 57 million people. No one is saying it, but it’s gonna be a hundred more years before a Morman or a Woman becomes POTUS. 🙁

    November 7, 2008
  25. Nick Waterman said:

    Peter, contrary to your comments, bush was not relentlessly attacked from day one, in fact he had quite a free ride, by and large, in the early years, esp after 9/11.
    And no, Palin doesn’t sound stupid when she reads a speech. and she is sly. But I don’t doubt for a minute that she did not know Africa was a continent and not a country — i’ve met other grown up Americans who were similarly ignorant.
    As for the left fringe that has taken over the democrats, also nonsense. To the contrary, the true left have left the democrats in droves as they have watched in disappointment the democrats trying to be centrist. The you’re-not-patriotic post 9/11 atmosphere spelled the end of any real leftist move in the democratic party. Someone like Wellstone would now be WELL to the left of virtually everyone in your supposedly left-fringe democratic party.

    November 7, 2008
  26. Peter Millin said:


    The Dems where whining from day one that GWB had “stolen the election”.

    I hope Obama just receives half of the unjust criticism Bush received.

    November 7, 2008
  27. Anthony Pierre said:

    What do you call what happened in florida in 2000, peter?

    Supreme Court: STOP COUNTING

    a week later


    p.s. this ruling cannot be used as a precedent anywhere else.

    November 7, 2008
  28. Scott Oney said:

    This just in: All Middle and High School Students Sentenced to 50 Hours of Community Service!

    According to the Web site of the Office of the President-Elect,

    Obama and Biden will set a goal that all middle and high school students do 50 hours of community service a year.

    That apparently would apply to all, even those who are actually innocent! That seems a little steep. For the sake of comparison, what would you have to do in Rice County to get hit with 50 hours?

    November 7, 2008
  29. Anne Bretts said:

    Oh, Bright, Palin didn’t lose because she was a woman. In fact, she was chosen mainly because she was a woman. They passed over very qualified women to choose her. The Republicans thought Hillary supporters were dumb enough to vote for any woman without looking at her positions.
    In fact, voters this year were extremely well informed and involved. And instead of winning over Hillary supporters, she alienated them and drove them to Obama (thanks so much for that, Mr. McCain).
    Palin lost because the economy tanked so badly and Bush screwed up so badly that even the best Republican couldn’t win. (And I’m sure Pawlenty now is just tickled that Palin ‘won’ the nomination instead of him). Palin lost because the party conservatives wouldn’t support McCain and the conservatives who did end up supporting Palin were too far to the right of the country.
    Palin lost because McCain didn’t have an organized campaign. Palin lost because the more people got to know her, the more they thought she was unqualified to be president, if needed. Even top GOP officials said she wasn’t qualified. Polls before the elections showed that 2/3 of voters didn’t think she wasn’t ready to be on the ticket.
    They made up their minds on their own. Nobody tricked them.
    As for Romney, it wasn’t just being Mormon. He just doesn’t connect with people or party leaders.
    The Republicans have a lot of work to do to determine what their party really is or should be.
    And Bright, good luck in finding the candidate that meets your criteria in the next election.

    November 7, 2008
  30. Jane Moline said:

    Peter: W did steal the election. He was appointed, not elected. THAT made the USA the laughing-stock of the world–where other countries offered to come in and monitor our elections in the future.

    It is not slander and attack when it is the truth. Bush will go down as the worst President in history, not because liberals proclaim it, but because he earned that title. (Bush is not a Neocon–just happened to have a few Neocon friends.)

    Palin is not very bright, by any measure, though she is clever.

    And Peter, your continual attacks on “liberals” is a continual attack on me. You do not give out facts–just broad statements that reveal your prejudice. This is how the Republican party has operated for the last 8 years–Rovian politics–the politics of fear–and it is not going to work anymore.

    The problem with Republicans is their continual denial of their failed policies–and if you can’t recognize your mistakes you are condemned to repeat them. I have one word for Republicans-REPENT.

    November 7, 2008
  31. Anthony Pierre said:

    a kid I know stole a psp and I think he was sentenced to about 40 hrs

    November 7, 2008
  32. Peter Millin said:


    Jane, here is a pretty accurate description of a neocon.

    Funny you should complain about attacks on liberals. Most of your posts are attacks on republicans and neocons.
    BTW what type of liberal are you? Would you consider yourself a “classic liberal” or a “social liberal”.

    Rove has now been replaced by Axelrod and Emanuel. Same birds different feathers.

    November 7, 2008
  33. Peter Millin said:

    Anthony and Jane….
    Thanks for confirming my point.

    ( Nick I think i just proofed my point)

    November 7, 2008
  34. Anne Bretts said:

    Scott, how sad that anyone would have to be told to do a meager 1 hour a week of service to others.

    November 7, 2008
  35. Nick Waterman said:

    I hope that was a joke about the community service? How about if adults were ENCOURAGING young people to have something to do with their community? How about if we were not so into our own tax breaks and opting out of community life, we were enriching it and taking responsibility for it? You can’t be against the government providing services and against providing them yourself, or can you? It is pathetic that we would compare this to being *sentenced* to community service. God forbid we would have a president who would actually hold us responsible for the quality of our own communities. Hello?

    November 7, 2008
  36. Joe Dokken said:

    The Republican Party is nowhere close to being on life support or splintering. Obama’s win did not even come close to the landslides of Nixon and Reagan. Check your history books. The Democratic Party somehow recovered from Carter and an economy with worse factors than what we live in.
    I don’t know what the misery index is right now, but I ‘m sure it is far below the Carter Presidency. Just what was going on back then that put the nation in such a mess? (No 9/11 and no major war efforts)

    The Republicans lost because they spent taxpayers money like drunk sailors. (By the way, the Democrats were just as culpable; sadly, people expected them to act that way.) Amazingly, Americans are willing to overlook the fundamentals of each political party. If Democrats raise your taxes, well, that is to be expected. If the Republicans spend more money on the Military, well, that’s what they do!
    The Republicans lost because they acted like Democrats.
    Only 1 million more people voted in this year’s election than 4 years ago.
    7 million more people voted for McCain in 2008 than Bush in 2000.
    GWB had 3 million less votes than Obama, sounds like the Independents decided this election just like the last 2.

    November 7, 2008
  37. David Ludescher said:

    As I recall: Gore only contested the election results in a few select counties in Florida where he thought he could pick up votes. The Florida Supreme Court said that was permissible; The United Supreme Court voted 9-0! that such a procedure violated the one-person one-vote rule. Even judges as liberal as Ruth Bader Ginsburg did not agree with Gore.

    Subsequent counts by the Associated Press (not exactly a non-partisan organization) revealed that the vote count was accurate.

    Gore lost the vote twice by counting and once when the Supreme Court said he couldn’t violate the Constitution to try to win the election.

    Folks should also remember that Bush’s approval rating was about 80% after 9/11 and that the Congress has been Democratic for some time. Congress, not the President makes policy.

    I haven’t been a Bush fan lately; but, let’s get the facts right.

    November 7, 2008
  38. Bright Spencer said:

    In all fairness, none of these guys are perfect and none of them get it all right. No one is prepared for many of these things that pop up internally or externally. The first mission of the government is to protect the country from harm, wherever that may come from. And however they can do it best according to the best of their ability.
    If your house is invaded by ten people storming in with guns, knives and gasoline, and you have five kids upstairs sleeping, are you gonna say, gee, how is the most polite way to stop these home invaders? did they just come here to scare me or did they just need a place to stay for a couple of decades?
    No, you are gonna fight tooth and nail with a poker, a lamp, a bowling ball or a civil war sword from the wall. Or you will lose your life, most probably. Same with the President, they take an oath to protect this country. And no one gets it right cuz there is no right. There is only survival or death. Nes pah?

    November 7, 2008
  39. Anthony Pierre said:

    I dont know what the crap you are talking about david


    Deference to other branches and levels of government is a consistent theme of Justice Ginsburg’s jurisprudence, and it featured in one of the Justice’s most famous dissents, her opinion in Bush v. Gore, 531 U.S. 98 (2000). There Justice Ginsburg vehemently disagreed with her colleagues’ decision to halt the presidential election recount ordered by the Florida Supreme Court. She argued that longstanding traditions of deference to state court interpretations of state law precluded intervention on the ground that the Supreme Court disagreed with the Florida court’s interpretation of governing Florida statutes, and that questions regarding the practical possibility of a timely recount or consequences of missed federal deadlines should be left to Florida officials and Congress.


    Bush v. Gore (2000): Wrote a stinging dissent protesting the 5-4 ruling that ended manual recounts in Florida during the 2000 elections and awarded the presidency to George W. Bush.

    the internet is a wonderful thing.

    November 7, 2008
  40. Joe Dokken said:

    It’s amazing when a Supreme Court decision is split 5-4 like Bush v. Gore, the loser (Gore) was “robbed”.
    How many major decisions ended 5-4?
    Lots and lots.
    The makeup of the Supreme Court is a microcosm of the United States.
    Sometimes it leans liberal and sometimes it leans conservative.
    I guarantee everyone reading this blog that at least 2 justices will resign in the next 90 to 180 days. Why? Because they now know that a Liberal will nominate their replacements.
    That’s the game of politics.
    Dave L. is correct the recount proved that Bush did win Florida.

    November 7, 2008
  41. nick waterman said:

    Joe, I agree with you that the GOP is nowhere near life support, etc. I think it will have an interesting and vital re-emergence after all this latest stuff.

    On another note, I disagree about much of what you said about the supreme court. It is not a microcosm of the U.S. nor was it ever intended to be. It does not lean left sometimes and right at other times: rather the legal judgments, which are made as the justices try to apply the law, each with his/her own education and philosophy as backdrop, are INTERPRETED as favorable sometimes by the left and sometimes by the right. That’s an entirely more subtle thing.

    Even if you think Obama is going to appoint “liberal” justices, doing so would most likely only replace the most “liberal” of the justices and not alter the balance of the court.

    November 7, 2008
  42. David Ludescher said:

    Anthony: The first Supreme Court case was 9-0. (which the Florida Supreme Court had approved 7-0). That decision rejected Gore’s requested relief – to recount only the (4?) counties where he thought that he would pick up votes. The Supreme Court sent it back to Florida to decide how to handle Mr. Gore’s request.

    The subsequent decision by the Florida Supreme Court to allow a statewide recount was the basis for the second Supreme Court decision.

    Nevertheless, thank you for pointing out the article which rejects the popular myth that the Supreme Court decided the election.

    November 7, 2008
  43. Anthony Pierre said:

    link me to the 9-0 vote

    November 7, 2008
  44. Bright Spencer said:

    Anne, I know there are more reasons why Barry won and John lost.
    Now if you like President elects that dis former first lady’s beliefs at the first press conference within three minutes, showing a real reversal of all his talk about unity and how he is gonna earn the trust of the people that didn’t vote for him, and how the press is ignoring that comment, whereas Palin is STILL having to defend herself over one or two possibly mispoken words, not aimed at trying to belittle anyone, Like Obama did FIRST THING! Well, like his pal, Oprah says, from Maya Angelou; a person will let you know who they are right away. SO, yeah, thanks for the well wishes, but I am pretty sure we can do better than that.
    Furthermore,Obama won mainly because he had a team that knew how to work the Internet, and people were ready, young people were ready to have someone come around to worship…like the Beatles back in the 60s. His staff followed Clinton’s, as in BIll’s, campaign strategies, and because he had a paid staff of over 200 people and a volunteer in every county where he needed to win the opposition vote. All this will be repeated next time and by then someone will have thought of a new twist, but I’ll give you this, Obama is a good actor who has a good ear for dialects so he can connect that way. But, he’s already complaining about how tired he is…and he’s already being called Clinton III…so yeah, I think we can do better.

    November 8, 2008
  45. David Ludescher said:

    Anthony: I don’t know how to link. It was decided December 12, 2000.

    November 8, 2008
  46. Patrick Enders said:

    David L,
    FYI: The easiest way to link on LGN is just to paste the address of a web site into your message, and not do anything else.

    Like this:

    If it’s a simple address, LGN will automatically turn it into a link.

    Once in a while, a more complex address will cause your message to fail to post entirely. It’s an LGN bug (or at least it was – I’m not sure whether or not I’ve had that problem since the website overhaul).

    November 8, 2008
  47. nick waterman said:

    Bright, it is really absurd to claim that “Obama won mainly because he had a team that knew how to work the Internet, and people were ready, young people were ready to have someone come around to worship”. Obama won because he convinced more people that he was the right leader for the time. In part, his use of the internet was key in this. Your comments show such derision towards others. Why can’t people who voted for him be just as right about his virtues as you believe you are about the virtues of McCain and Palin? These are not mutually exclusive beliefs. It is offensive to deride others as if their decision making processes were somehow vastly ill-informed, pathetic, and misguided. You wouldn’t even stand for a glimmer of this derision from anyone else. Nor should you.

    If you want to believe he tricked us or deceived us, have at it. But don’t even pretend to be fair-minded….you have clear double standards where any mistake Palin makes is a small one for which she’s being too harshly judged, but a little joke about nancy reagan’s seances by a guy who’s had to rein it in for 2 years (lest he make a single mistake which would then be harshly judged) is a huge sign of who he REALLY is REVERSING his talk of unity and blah blah blah. I voted for Obama not because I was tricked and he spoke my dialect, but because i paid attention and I have faith. Don’t mock my faith in him; I don’t mock yours. I am not worshipping him any more than you are worshipping Palin (actually quite less so, judging from your worshipful comments in #26).

    November 8, 2008
  48. David Ludescher said:

    Anthony: I think the case was entitled Bush v. Palm Beach County. I was wrong on the date; the one cited was the final Supreme Court decision.

    I re-read portions of both decisions. The last decision did not “give Bush the victory”, and it is disingenuous to claim so. There is no scenario under which Gore would have won.

    November 8, 2008
  49. Bright Spencer said:

    Hello,Nick. Well, if you mean I have disrespect for the politicians who say one thing, and mean another, who get up the easy way and not through the people, but who claim to be of the people, who leave their church after 20 years, because it doesn’t match the image he wants to project, well then, that’s right.
    If you think I a very impressed by a woman who had a special needs baby and knew he was going to be a special needs baby before he was born,and who refuses to have an abortion, etc, and so forth, well, yes, yes, and I think young women around the world should be as well.
    Do I think your faith in Obama is ill placed, well a month or so ago, and from the beginning, I said none of these candidates are presidential. I was judging them and not you. Hey, I wanted to vote for the guy. He taught at the same school that I taught at, he came up in the same neighborhood I spent my first 12 years and another 10 later on.
    He now lives about two blocks from where I lived. It’s a silly pride thing, and
    I wanted to like him, he’s a mutt like me, but I know that snake oil con man thing he does all too well, cuz in Chicago, guys like him are a $1,000 dollars a dozen…lawyers and politicians galore… and wait til you get to know Emanuel.

    Palin was a VP candidate, and not he President elect, I judge her for who she is, not who she said she was. It’s different.
    I like Clinton, too, because he was smart and he wants to teach us all stuff he knows. That’s so cool, but the Clinton years were not kind to me and a lot of other people I know.
    We had to be satisfied just getting by and paying the rent to the European elite that own a lot of rental buildings in Chicago at that time. Every time we’d get a raise or a break, they’d raise the rent. People had to work two and three part time jobs because there were no good jobs, no health insurance and no foreseeable way out.
    And another thing, while I am at it, GW Bush had a full house of minority people in the White House with him and Obama, so far has one Jew, and the rest are white as snow.
    I have said before that I don’t see race. I was born in a place where we all played together and no one told us not to.

    I don’t mean to smash your faith. But faith gets tested and if you stay with it, you might learn something.

    In the long run, I realize nothing I say amounts to a hill of beans, I just like showing a little of the other side that people don’t see. It’s like coyote teaching. Don’t take offense to anything I say. Questioning me is good though I don’t mind that. In fact, you reminded me of something I needed to remember, so many thanks. It’s all good medicine.!

    November 8, 2008
  50. Scott Oney said:

    David: Here are links to two cases, Bush v. Palm Beach County, 531 U.S. 70, December 4, 2000, and Bush v. Gore, 531 U.S. 98, December 12, 2000. Are these the cases you were discussing? To say that the Supreme Court “gave Bush the victory” is stretching a metaphor a lot farther than it will go, but Gore’s supporters have been stretching it for so long and so loudly that at this point it may sound true, at least to those who want to believe it.

    By the way, there were some statistical anomalies in the recount in Florida that may suggest attempted fraud on the part of Gore’s supporters, which bear a striking resemblance to the patterns emerging in the Franken/Coleman contest.

    November 9, 2008
  51. David Ludescher said:

    Scott: Thanks.

    November 9, 2008
  52. Paul Fried said:

    DavidL and JoeD: The 2000 race was, in fact, stolen. The recount was sponsored by a number of newspapers and/or media. The recount found that Gore would have won, but most TV and newspapers that carried that story in the fall of 2001 buried the lead. Instead, they put in the headline some detail about how in this-or-that country the vote would not have changed, but in fact, if you read the whole story, you found that Gore would have won.

    So the facts are these:
    1. The Supreme court stopped the recount.
    2. Some of the contested votes, recounted, would have given Bush the election.
    3. BUT — ALL the votes, including “overvotes” that could have been read more accurately, would have given the election to Gore. This was found by a joint media funded effort.
    4. The media then buried the lead, supporting the myth that Bush won. He didn’t. He just got the presidency in an illegitimate way. If winning even by illegitimate means or stealing still counts (and in the real world, it does count for something), then Bush won. If legitimacy counts, then Gore won, and Bush’s first term was illegitimate, and he never would have won a second term, had Gore been the hero of 9-11.

    A clip from an article on this:

    Published on Thursday, November 15, 2001 in the Long Island, NY Newsday

    Not That It Was Reported, but Gore Won
    by Jim Naureckas

    IN JOURNALISM, it’s called “burying the lead”: A story starts off with what everyone already knows, while the real news – the most surprising, significant or never-been-told-before information – gets pushed down where people are less likely to see it.
    That’s what happened to the findings of the media study of the uncounted votes from last year’s Florida presidential vote. A consortium of news outlets – including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Tribune Co. (Newsday’s parent company), The Wall Street Journal, Associated Press and CNN – spent nearly a year and $900,000 reexamining every disputed ballot.

    The consortium determined that if the U.S. Supreme Court had allowed the ongoing recount to go through, George W. Bush would still likely have ended up in the White House. That’s because the recount ordered by the Florida Supreme Court – as well as the more limited recount asked for by Democratic candidate Al Gore – only involved so-called undervotes, ballots that when counted mechanically registered no choice for president.

    Gore and the Florida Supreme Court ignored overvotes – votes where mechanical counting registered more than one vote – on the assumption that there would be no way to tell which of the multiple candidates the voter actually intended to pick.

    But as the consortium found when it actually looked at the overvotes, one often could tell what the voter’s intent was. Many of the overvotes involved, for example, a voter punching the hole next to a candidate’s name, and then writing in the same candidate’s name.

    Since the intent of the voter is clear, these are clearly valid votes under Florida law. And Gore picked up enough of such votes that it almost didn’t matter what standard you used when looking at undervotes – whether you counted every dimple or insisted on a fully punched chad, the consortium found that Gore ended up the winner of virtually any full reexamination of rejected ballots.

    So there are two main findings: The Supreme Court’s intervention probably did not affect the outcome of the limited recounts then under way, and more people probably cast valid votes for Gore than for Bush.

    If the first finding was the important news, the consortium was scooped long ago: The Miami Herald and USA Today, working as a separate team, published stories in April that argued persuasively that the particular recounts that were halted by the Supreme Court probably would have produced a Bush victory.

    What’s new is the finding that, since voters are supposed to decide elections rather than lawyers or judges, the state’s electoral votes appear to have gone to the wrong candidate. Given that the outcome in Florida determined the national victor, this is not just news but a critical challenge to the legitimacy of the presidency.

    So how did the media report the results of the ballot reexamination?Overwhelmingly, they chose to lead with the news that was comfortable, uncontroversial – and seven months old. “In Election Review, Bush Wins Without Supreme Court Help,” was The Wall Street Journal’s headline on its story, paralleling The New York Times’ “Study of Disputed Florida Ballots Finds Justices Did Not Cast the Deciding Vote.” That angle would be fine if you believed that the Supreme Court was the most important aspect of the story; but what about the presidency?

    Other members of the consortium emphasized the most Bush-friendly aspects of the story: “Bush Still Had Votes to Win in a Recount, Study Finds,” was the Tribune Co.’s Los Angeles Times’ main headline on its report, matching The Washington Post’s “Florida Recounts Would Have Favored Bush” and CNN.com’s “Florida Recount Study: Bush Still Wins.” The St. Petersburg Times’ Web site put it succinctly: “Recount: Bush.” While some of these outlets tried to convey greater complexity in subheads, all these headlines obscure the fact that the outlets’ most comprehensive recount put Gore ahead of Bush.

    (There’s more to the story, but you get the picture.)

    The truth is that it’s a myth to claim Bush legitimately won the 2000 election. But if you want to go on supporting the myth, you can make that choice. Making that choice may make you a deliberate liar, however. Bush is one of those, and Cheney too. Not that you wouldn’t have company.

    November 9, 2008
  53. Bright Spencer said:

    I tried to read thru those cases a couple of times, but there is too much going on around here today. But, what IF GORE had won the election and taken his place in the White House? I really wonder how effective he would be. Given his rather lack luster vice presidency, and I am speaking here out of
    complete ignorance, just to pose the question.

    November 9, 2008
  54. nick waterman said:

    Bright, “if you mean I have disrespect for the politicians who say one thing, and mean another,…”, no I mean you have disrespect for your fellow voters who SAW all of these so-called discrepancies, just like you SAW all of the discrepancies with Palin, and voted ON PURPOSE the way they voted not because they were DUPED but because they believe different things from what you believe.

    A noun, a verb, and an anecdote from Chicago does not equal greater authority than your fellow citizens.

    That’s fine if you like and are impressed by Palin, but it does not make me wrong to find her pathetically wanting and an insulting candidate thrown out as a cynical attempt to appeal to voters. “If you think I a very impressed by a woman who had a special needs baby and knew he was going to be a special needs baby before he was born,and who refuses to have an abortion,” I love this wording, as if there are people around who were trying to make her have an abortion, or who would have been happier if she had, and she has somehow defeated them and stood up to them.

    ” and wait til you get to know Emanuel.” another comment which hints that you, with connections to Chicago, somehow understand this guy differently, and that people who are not against him somehow don’t get him. I get him. I watched him through the CLinton admin. And you know what, Obama HAS to have someone like him to play the tough cop, because he has to play nice cop….or else. Obama has a box about 1 foot by 1 foot to operate in, all through the campaign and perhaps even now. He did so effectively enough that many people who were initially not disposed to vote for him ended up doing so. But for some — Sean Hannity and yourself, for example, there is nothing this guy can do to earn himself one minute out of your damnation. Because you know better.

    November 9, 2008
  55. Bright Spencer said:

    Hi, Nick. Well, I can see your points. And they are good ones. I can tell you that I don’t damn Obama. I damn the way he is portrayed and the way all of humanity’s expectations are falling upon him. I say no, he will not meet them, just as he said no, he will need a lot of help from us, that night at Grant Park.

    And, yeah, I do have a family member who has worked with RE, so I was just saying, watch him.

    As for Palin…she was playing the fool, and she overdid it, but she was thrust into the position and felt nervous because she wasn;t ready, didn’t have the chance to get ready, like everyone else does, and she was demonized and I say she is a great lady.

    I Never put anyone down for their beliefs, because it’s their path and their beliefs get them the personal insights they need to walk their path. Same for Nancy Reagan, same for Hillary, same for you and same for me.

    As for abortion, yeah I feel like there are alot of people out there who want other people to have abortions and I feel very unhappy about that. And anyone who walks their talk is AMAZING!

    If you infer that I am saying people that don’t agree with me are somehow lesser, no I don’t say that, I say I see this and you see that, in totality we may come to see the whole truth.

    November 9, 2008
  56. Bright Spencer said:

    Oh, and let me add that I accept Barack Obama as my new POTUS and will be glad to back him up on his good work, including helping this country go greener, becoming safer, and helping the helpless and introducing policies that help this country grow financially in a good and hopefully stable way.

    November 9, 2008
  57. nick waterman said:

    Hi Bright, thanks for your helpful clarifications. The one thing I would add — though it’s definite thread creep — is that I do not at all think there are people who WANT other people do have abortions? Who on earth would such people be, and what would be their motivation? Even the most ardent abortion defenders are defending the right of a woman to make that choice (I understand you disagree with the choice, but that’s another matter), not ENCOURAGING them to make that choice, and not happy about it — the abortion divide is a big enough one for us all to work with without adding in imaginary positions, like people who are somehow eager for others to have abortions. There are no such people.

    November 10, 2008
  58. Griff Wigley said:

    [sigh]. Okay, time to close this thread.

    November 10, 2008

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