Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Bloody Tuesday

Right now, we're less than a quarter hour away from the first poll closing in so-called "Super Tuesday". I will post an update later in the night, but for now just a couple of preliminary thoughts.

One, it will be quite difficult, especially on the Democratic side (because there are few if any winner-take-all contests) to decide realistically who "won". Indeed, perhaps neither candidate will really "win", meaning they roughly split the delegates and even the popular vote; right now, that looks like a very possible end result.

Second, and only barely peripheral, this from Massachusetts:

Outraged parents at a Randolph school where a little second-grader was run down by an elderly voter’s SUV today are calling for schools to be closed permanently as polling stations.
Say what? The driver was 86 years old. Whatever in the world is this man doing on the public roads at the helm of tons of deadly metal? Don't blame polling-place locators: blame an America where the "right" to operate an automobile is more precious than the right to live.

More later . . . .

[1st add]

I forgot to mention earlier that we need to keep an eye out for defects and problems in the voting process, especially of machines, with six states being at "high risk" for problemsw. Well, we'll see . . . .

The Georgia results look very favorable for Obama. Of course he was going to win, but the margins by which he is winning within various demographic blocks has to be encouraging to his campaign.

More later . . . .

[2nd add]

It's now after 7 pm Pacific Time. Nothing remarkable so far, but if there is a "developing story", it is the insistence of the media in steamroller-flattening out the complexities into a "call X fo" mentality; that may sot of work on the Republican side, but it hopelessly misrepresents the Democratic side. Popular votes don't decide these contests, delegates do, and the delegate counts are scarcely being mentioned (and, when they are, with few or no nyumbers).

Despite the vote splits, on the Republican side, the delegate counts seem to be suggesting that McCain is on the march, however much the Rush-Limbaugh wing despises him.

More later . . . .

[3rd add]

Still no California, or Missouri. It still looks like McCain will ultimately be unstoppable. It also looks, though, like Huckabee will have negotiating power; it would be interesting to see an outspoken advocate of creationism running for a major national office.

In delegate counts, though we still need to see if California does what is expected, it looks as if Clinton and Obama will neither of them have a dominance in delegate count, and each will be arguing the case for "momentum". Obama's campaign didn't do itself any favors by setting expectations high for tonight; by just doing well, they appear to have not done well.

Let's see if California goes as expected . . .

[4th add]

OK, California went, and--critical--went big for Clinton and McCain. Now?

McCain is in: that's that.

Delegate-wise , the Democrats are split. Both candidates will be spinning it. Here are two thouughts:

One, the big "trend" toward Obama, that shows Clinton poll leads in even double digits coming down tonight to close calls, depended heavily on a series of one-time factors, specifically major endoresments. Those boosts are not repeatable: there are few or no more big guns out there not already commited.

Second, and this was news of interest to me, Clinton won across the board as to demographic groups with voters under $50,000 a year income, while Obama wins in those with voters with incomes over $50m000--and especially with the very high income levels.

That can be read in various ways. To me, it confirms my impression of Obama supporters as those accustomed to attacking major poroblems by joining hands around the campfilre and singing Kumbaya. That is the classic attitude of the collegiate professional who rarely is in close tough with the electorate, whose median income is roughly $35,000 a year.

That's me for tonight. Hope we all had fun . . . .

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