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The Fix's Election Night Viewer's Guide

The big day is here! Voters are voting!

We'll be providing updates throughout the night on The Fix -- news! analysis! insight! you'll laugh! you'll cry! -- but in the long dark tea time between now and when the polls start to close, check out our election viewer's guide.

We've broken down the key states, congressional districts and counties you need to watch on an hour by hour basis. Enjoy and remember to tune into The Fix tonight for all the news you need to know on Election 2008.

(Want even more election night coverage? Make sure to check out the live webcast featuring the combined talents of the Washington Post, washingtonpost.com and Newsweek magazine. It starts at 6 p.m. ET.)

6 p.m. ET

Kentucky's 2nd district: When Republican Rep. Ron Lewis (R) announced his retirement from this strongly conservative west-central Kentucky district, few national political observers paid much attention. But, Democrats have poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into the race and polling suggests state Sens. Brett Guthrie (R) and David Boswell (D) are in a dead heat. If Democrats win this district, it is going to be a VERY long night for House Republicans.

Indiana's Lake County: For those inveterate political junkies, you may well remember Lake County from the Indiana Democratic presidential primary when its late reporting of results kept the world in suspense about whether Obama or Clinton had won the state. (Clinton won the state with 50.5 percent although Obama carried Lake County with 56.5 percent of the vote.) Watch Lake County again tonight; one in every four residents of the county, which includes the city of Gary, are black and if Barack Obama is going to pull off an upset in the Hoosier State, he needs a BIG margin out of Lake.

7 p.m. ET

Georgia Senate: One of the most intriguing late-breaking stories of this election is the ever-increasing vulnerability of Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R) who, as recently as a few months ago, was considered safe. Polling suggests the race is extremely close between Chambliss and former state Rep. Jim Martin (D) and with the Libertarian party candidate Allen Buckley taking mid-single digits, there is a real possibility that no candidate will get 50 percent of the vote. If that scenario comes to pass, Chambliss and Martin would square off in a Dec. 2 runoff election. The key stat to watch in this race: how big a percentage of the overall vote is black? Of the nearly two million who voted early, 36 percent were African American; if that number holds, Martin will be a senator.

Virginia's 5th district: Over the past decade, this Southside Virginia district has grown increasingly Republican despite the presence of Charlottesville (home to the University of Virginia) within its boundaries. Rep. Virgil Goode has moved with the district -- switching from the Democratic Party to independent status in late 2000 and then to the Republican side two years later. But Goode faces a very tough reelection bid against Democrat Tom Periello. If Goode loses and Obama wins (or even narrowly loses) this district, it spells major problems for John McCain statewide.

Florida's I-4 Corridor: The twelve counties that stretch from Tampa Bay on the Gulf of Mexico to Dayton Beach on the Atlantic Ocean have become THE critical battleground in recent Florida elections. It's no accident that all six of Florida's statewide elected officials hail from the I-4 corridor and that both McCain and Obama have spent millions of dollars and thousands of man hours trying to persuade and turn out voters along the corridor. The key county may well be Pinellas, which went for Al Gore by 16,000 votes in 2000 and then four years later was carried by George W. Bush by 226 votes.

7:30 p.m. ET

Ohio's 1st, 2nd, 15th and 16th districts: All four of these congressional seats are held by Republicans and all four could be takeovers for Democrats. Ohio's 16th, an open seat, is almost sure to go. A good night for House Democrats (and Obama) would also put Ohio's 1st -- a Cincinnati-area seat with a large black population -- and the 15th into their column. A great night would hand them the 2nd district with its strong GOP lean.

North Carolina Senate: At the start of the 2008 election, Democrats insisted to anyone who would listen that Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R) could be beaten. After a series of high-profile candidates turned them down, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee settled on little known state Sen. Kay Hagan. Hagan has proven to be a remarkably strong candidate, and has benefited by Dole's listless campaign and the millions the DSCC has spent to knock around the incumbent. Dole entered election day as a considerable underdog; if she comes back to win, it would provided an early bright spot for downcast Senate Republicans.

8 p.m. ET

Connecticut's 4th district: Rep. Chris Shays is the last of a dying breed: a northeastern Republican. Shays has survived serious reelection challenges in 2004 and 2006 but has never faced a political environment this bad. Shays's longtime ace in the hole has been his strong showings in Bridgeport -- a Democratic city where more than three in ten residents are black. But, this time around Obama has taped a radio ad in support of Democrat Jim Himes designed to push African American voters out to the polls. If Himes win, Obama's coattails deserve credit.

Pennsylvania: This is the only state Sen. John Kerry (Mass.) won in 2004 where McCain's campaign has played aggressively in the final weeks of the campaign. Looking for a bellwether county? Look no further than Chester County in the southeast corner of the state. In 2000, Bush beat Al Gore there 53 percent to 44 percent -- a winning margin of 18,000 votes; four year later Bush's margin was nearly cut and half and he carried Chester 52 percent to 48 percent. In 2006, Bob Casey (D) carried Chester 55 percent to 45 percent over Sen. Rick Santorum (R) while Gov. Ed Rendell (D) walloped Lynn Swann (R) 65 percent to 35 percent. To win Pennsylvania, McCain must find a way to win Chester.

New Hampshire Senate: Sen. John Sununu (R) is one of the well-liked (and respected) by even the most committed of Democratic partisans. But, New Hampshire was the epicenter of the anti-war, anti-Bush movement that swept the country in 2006 and the environment hasn't gotten much better since then. Sununu has trailed former Gov. Jeanne Shaheen (D) in nearly every survey taken over the last 18 months, and incumbents who trail for that long almost never win. Another factor hampering Sununu? The erosion of McCain's standing in a state he was once expected to run stronger than the average GOP nominee.

9 p.m. ET

Arizona: Although polling shows a tight race in the Grand Canyon State and Obama is now on television statewide, most operatives of both partisan stripes expect McCain to win his home state. But, margins matter. Does McCain squeak by with a margin of three or four points? Or does he win by high single digits or low double digits? Arizona is one of a handful of key western states -- Colorado and New Mexico are the others -- whose polls close at 9 p.m. ET. The closer McCain's winning margin in his home state, the worse his prospects in the rest of the west.

Minnesota Senate: Ask any politico which race's outcome -- aside from the presidential -- they are most interested in seeing and nine times out of then they will cite this contest between Sen. Norm Coleman (R), comedian Al Franken (D) and independent Dean Barkley. This race has it all -- huge personalities, allegations galore and even guest appearances by John Ratzenberger AND Stephen Baldwin! This could be the closest Senate election of the night. It certainly has been the nastiest.

Nebraska's 2nd district: Is it possible that this district, based in Omaha (you know, it's somewhere in the middle of America), could provide a dot of blue in the otherwise ruby red plains states? Absolutely. Nebraska doles out a single electoral vote to the winner of each of its three congressional districts, and Obama has made a concerted push in this seat. And, it appears to have worked as private polling gave the Illinois senator a lead as late as last week. Obama could well pull Democrat Jim Esch across the line as well. Esch is running close to dead even with Rep. Lee Terry (R).

10 p.m. ET

Iowa: For months, polling has seemed to show that Iowa, which went narrowly for Bush in 2004, is unwinnable for McCain. J. Ann Selzer, the preeminent Iowa pollster, released a survey over the weekend that had Obama ahead 54 percent to 37 percent. As late as Friday, McCain senior advisers claimed that private polling showed them within striking range in the Hawkeye State. Do they know something no one else does?

Nevada's 3rd district: One of the most closely divided congressional districts in the country by party, this one in suburban Las Vegas has seen millions of dollars spent in it. Rep. Jon Porter (R) and Dina Titus, the Democratic nominee for governor in 2006, have been beating one another up on television for weeks and a variety of outside groups have weighed in on the race as well. One intriguing storyline in this race: Porter, if he can eke out a win, is an almost-certain candidate against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) in 2010.

11 p.m. ET

Proposition 8: There aren't any competitive statewide races in California this year but the proposition, which would ban same-sex couples from marrying, is a hugely important and high profile fight that has seen tens of millions spent on both sides of it. (Andrew Sullivan has been following the for/against Prop. 8 campaign closely on his blog -- if you want more information on either or both. California does tend to set the cultural pace for the rest of the country in terms of politics so it's hard to underestimate the impact of the outcome of Prop. 8.

Washington Governor: The marquee gubernatorial race on the ballot is on the left coast where Gov. Chris Gregoire (D) and former state Sen. Dino Rossi (R) are squaring off in a rematch of their controversial (and much-recounted) 2004 race. This is a rare race that is defined almost entirely outside of presidential politics. While Obama is expected to win the state easily, Rossi has run as an outsider in this race -- slamming Gregoire as a defender of the status quo. Due to the vote-by-mail system in Washington, don't expect to know who the next governor of Washington is tonight. Or tomorrow. Or even this week.

Midnight

Alaska House and Senate: Rep. Don Young (R) and Sen. Ted Stevens (R) have represented the Last Frontier for a combined 65 years. And yet, both are in very serious electoral jeopardy -- brought low by a scandal that has ripped apart the state Republican party. Stevens, convicted of seven federal felony charges last week, went on television last night with a two-minute appeal to voters in hopes of saving his job although internal polling suggests he is likely to come up short against Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich (D). Young, too, looks likely to lose.

By Chris Cillizza  |  November 4, 2008; 1:15 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008 , Governors , House , Senate  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Thank You (And Two Notes on the Future of The Fix)
Next: Reading the National Exit Poll

Comments

Zouk wrote:


Last thought:

-------------------

Oh, you tease, you!

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Was Obama expected to win KY?

I haven't been paying attention to the polls, (or the blogs) is it shaping up as you thought?

Posted by: thegreatpotatospamof2003 | November 4, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Hi Chris

Thanks for the updates - multi-tasking tonight and The Fix is one of the main resources :-)

Posted by: cooday | November 4, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Last thought:

I would like nothing more than to see that fat old B*stard Murtha kicked to the curb. this alone would bring me joy in an otherwise difficult night.

tomorrows headline:

Pollsters are uncany

OR

Pollsters were so wrong. how did the press get so fooled.

Easy answer to that last one you know.

good Luck all, may all your dreams of avarice and greed come to early fruition.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Those are very bad signs for McCain.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN


Repubs don't talk to pollsters or haven't you heard. but we do vote silently.

Interesting that Libs are so loud and proud of being such losers.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Intrade now has Mccain trailing Obama 94 to 6

Are you F'n kidding me?
Anyone heading over there to bid on Mccain? Better go make that easy money.

Posted by: popasmoke | November 4, 2008 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Moonbat flash

Martians invade

Obambi is one of them. Radios them to wait until after the election.

I see we have our share of kooks too. imagine a republican drindl.

TTFN.

I would not be surprised to see the counting going into tomorrow - especially in CO, NM, OH, FL and VA

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

From the early national exit poll data disclosed so far by MSNBC and CNN, it appears as though Obama is winning handily among those who considered the Economy the most important issue. 62% of voters nationwide indicating that the Economy is the top issue. The issue getting the second-highest mention as most important issue is the Iraq War at 10%. Obama winning among those who see Iraq as the top issue.


Those are very bad signs for McCain.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | November 4, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

McCain's hero, Joe the Plumber--another Republican fiction--gets spanked by CNN. Hysterical.

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=8MjvOeT8Hu8

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

.


.


.

.


BREAKING NEWS FLASH


THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS FLASH


McCain is winning Virginia, Florida and Ohio - the fate of the nation hangs in Pennsylvania -

Obama campaign is in panic.


McCain could win the election without Pennsylvania with Colorado and Nevada or New Hampshire. McCain is looking great at 5:58 am Eastern Time.

Breaking News Flash

Breaking News Flash


.

.

.


.

Posted by: DorchesterAndCongress | November 4, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

My predictions for VA:

It is clear that Warner will win easily, just as he did before by ignoring the fact he is a Democrat and never letting the evil words leave his lips.

too bad my Rep Jim Moron will also win.

I think Eric Cantor is not going to waltz into power and glory as he may believe after not even delivering his home state (pending).

the vote in Va will be very close with NoVa (aka southern DC) going overwhelmingly for the socialist party. It will all come down to turn out by the military which votes overwhelmingly for Mac (70-80% Repub). the law suit over the overseas ballots may become the hanging chad of 2008.

Like the Fonz, I simply can't pronounce the words (in his case "I was Wron......."

In my case "Mac wins VA by razor thin margin"

It seems my state will determine the election beacause OH, FL, MO will go to Mac and the messiah will steal NM, CO.

all else the same as the last time a goofy Lib tried to take over in 2004.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:52 PM | Report abuse

the vietnamese commies thought they could beat Mac. they didn't.

the Lib/Dem commies are pretty much from the same mould.

I can't wait for Vice-President Palin to gavel the Senate into order and tell that old spineless jellyfish Reid to sit down and mind his manners.

which brings up an interesting point - can a jellyfish actually sit down?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse
---------REPLY
I TEND TO DISSAGREE

JOHN MCCAIN, TRAITOR TO HIS COUNTRY, COLLABORATOR WITH THE ENEMY, MILITARY DISGRACE.
Ted Sampley, a Vietnam Veteran and former Green Beret, issued a CHALLENGE to John McCain "If you can show us that the information presented in our mailer is untruthful . . . we will Stand Down" This CHALLENGE was issued during an interview with INSIDE EDITION on January 17, 2008.
John, family members of Vietnam POW/MIA(s) have been waiting for more then 14 years for you to have the courage to face them eye to eye in front of the American Public - Here is your opportunity for some "STRAIGHT TALK." Stop hiding behind your fabricated "War Hero" persona. You know we can prove your collaborations with declassified government documents . . . It is time for the American people to get to know the REAL John McCain - the John McCain that the POW/MIA families witnessed during the 1991-93 US Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs .
Bring It On John! HERE IS OUR NUMBER 252-527-0442
*********** ************* ************** *********** ***********
Activists accused McCain of stonewalling the release of POW records because they contained evidence he had collaborated with the North Vietnamese.

BEFOTE YOU VOTE YOU MUST WATCH THIS DOCUMENTARY

http://www.mccainbetrayspows.com/

Posted by: popasmoke | November 4, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

PUBLIC FINANCING

STATEMENT: “If I am the Democratic nominee, I will aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election.” Also, a Common Cause questionnaire dated November 27, 2007, asked “If you are nominated for President in 2008 and your major opponents agree to forgo private funding in the general election campaign, will you participate in the presidential public financing system?”, Obama checked, “Yes.”

EXPIRATION DATE: June 19, 2008: Obama announced he would not participate in the presidential public financing system.

WORKING OUT A DEAL ON PUBLIC FINANCING

STATEMENT: “What I’ve said is, at the point where I'm the nominee, at the point where it's appropriate, I will sit down with John McCain and make sure that we have a system that works for everybody.”Obama to Tim Russert, Febuary 27.

EXPIRATION DATE: When Obama announced his decision to break his public financing pledge June 19, no meeting between the Democratic nominee and McCain had occurred.


Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse
--------------

REPLY

MCCAIN JUST SCREWED UP

The McCain campaign wasn't drawing donations from the public well,in the brutal Primaries and McCain figured he needed a boost. The Romney Campaign, in particular, was well-heeled, and was beating McCain's brains out. So, McCain chose to use his "future" public financing for the National Elections as collateral. BAD choice.

Later, donations picked up, and McCain wanted to opt out of accepting "public financing". OOPS. The Federal Election Commission ruled that since McCain used his public financing as collateral, he was now OBLIGATED to accept public financing for the National Elections. Thus, the truth is, McCain did not really "choose" public financing. The FEC would not let him "abort" his earlier choice.

Now, we understand that McCain has chosen to finance a final advertising push which will is causing him to curtail spending on Election Day ground forces to help usher his supporters to the polls.

Thus, McCain's "depleted" ground forces are gonna have to face the finest ground troops we've ever seen in over 40 years in politics. These Obama folk are the same ones that fought and demolished the Clinton Machine's ground forces in the Primaries. Look out Florida, here they come. And, they're bring the Clintons with them, this time. And, Al Gore, and Tipper, coming for "payback" for 2000.

The decision by McCain to mortgage his future, with that loan, during the Primaries, is exceeded in dumbheadedness, only by his selection of the Vice Presidential candidate that he made.

Choices can be brutal, in their effect.

Posted by: popasmoke | November 4, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Yes. What is happening in the world of three-toed sloths?

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

the vietnamese commies thought they could beat Mac. they didn't.

the Lib/Dem commies are pretty much from the same mould.

I can't wait for Vice-President Palin to gavel the Senate into order and tell that old spineless jellyfish Reid to sit down and mind his manners.

which brings up an interesting point - can a jellyfish actually sit down?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Zouk-meister:

What are your predictions for your home state races?

Posted by: Bondosan | November 4, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

PUBLIC FINANCING

STATEMENT: “If I am the Democratic nominee, I will aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election.” Also, a Common Cause questionnaire dated November 27, 2007, asked “If you are nominated for President in 2008 and your major opponents agree to forgo private funding in the general election campaign, will you participate in the presidential public financing system?”, Obama checked, “Yes.”

EXPIRATION DATE: June 19, 2008: Obama announced he would not participate in the presidential public financing system.

WORKING OUT A DEAL ON PUBLIC FINANCING

STATEMENT: “What I’ve said is, at the point where I'm the nominee, at the point where it's appropriate, I will sit down with John McCain and make sure that we have a system that works for everybody.”Obama to Tim Russert, Febuary 27.

EXPIRATION DATE: When Obama announced his decision to break his public financing pledge June 19, no meeting between the Democratic nominee and McCain had occurred.

WELFARE REFORM

STATEMENT: “I probably would not have supported the federal legislation [to overhaul welfare], because I think it had some problems." Obama on the floor of the Illinois Senate, May 31, 1997

EXPIRATION DATE: April 11, 2008: Asked if he would have vetoed the 1996 law, Mr. Obama said, “I won’t second guess President Clinton for signing” it. Obama to the New York Times.


I give the tax cuts a life expectancy of about a month - same as clinton.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

DEBATES

STATEMENT: May 16, 2008: "If John McCain wants to meet me, anywhere, anytime to have a debate about our respective policies in Iraq, Iran, the Middle East or around the world that is a conversation I’m happy to have."

EXPIRATION DATE: June 13, 2008: Obama campaign manager David Plouffe: “Barack Obama offered to meet John McCain at five joint appearances between now and Election Day—the three traditional debates plus a joint town hall on the economy in July [on the Fourth of July] and an in-depth debate on foreign policy in August.”

IRAN

STATEMENT: “We can, then, more effectively deal with what I consider to be one of the greatest threats to the United States, to Israel, and world peace, and that is Iran,” Obama speaking to American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Chicago, March 5, 2007

EXPIRATION DATE: “Iran, Cuba, Venezuela, these countries are tiny...They don’t pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us.” – May 20, 2008

STATEMENT: Question at the YouTube debate, as the video depicted leaders of the countries, including Mahmoud Ahmadinejad: "Would you be willing to meet separately, without precondition, during the first year of your administration, in Washington or anywhere else, with the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea?....."

"I would," Obama answered. July 27, 2007

EXPIRATION DATE: May 10, 2008: Susan E. Rice, a former State Department and National Security Council official who is a foreign policy adviser to the Democratic candidate: “But nobody said he would initiate contacts at the presidential level; that requires due preparation and advance work.”

JEREMIAH WRIGHT/TRINITY UNITED

STATEMENT: "I could no more disown Jeremiah Wright than I could disown my own grandmother."

—Barack Obama, March 18, 2008

EXPIRATION DATE: on April 28, 2008, cut all ties to Wright, declaring, “based on his remarks yesterday, well, I may not know him as well as I thought.”

STATEMENT: Obama said that his church, “Trinity United "embodies the black community in its entirety" and that his church was being caricatured on March 18, 2008.

EXPIRATION DATE: On May 31, 2008, Obama resigned his membership at Trinity United Church.

JIM JOHNSON

STATEMENT: Criticism of running mate vetter Jim Johnson loan from Countrywide was "a game" and that his vice-presidential vetting team “aren’t folks who are working for me.” June 10, 2008

EXPIRATION DATE: June 11, 2008, when Obama accepted Johnson's resignation.

FISA

STATEMENT: Obama spokesman Bill Burton on October 24, 2007: “To be clear: Barack will support a filibuster of any bill that includes retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies.”

EXPIRATION DATE: June 20, 2008: “Given the legitimate threats we face, providing effective intelligence collection tools with appropriate safeguards is too important to delay. So I support the compromise, but do so with a firm pledge that as president, I will carefully monitor the program.”

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

is zouk on suicide watch?

On the contrary, if Obambi wins, it will be a slow kool-aid induced suicide for the Lib congress over two years, until the voters wake up and realize the lies they have been told:

IRAQ

STATEMENT: “Based on the conversations we’ve had internally as well as external reports, we believe that you can get one to two brigades out a month. At that pace, the forces would be out in approximately 16 months from the time that we began. That would be the time frame that I would be setting up,” Obama to the New York Times, November 1, 2007

EXPIRATION DATE: March 7, 2008: Obama foreign policy adviser Samantha Power, to the BBC: “You can’t make a commitment in whatever month we’re in now, in March of 2008 about what circumstances are gonna be like in Jan. 2009. We can’t even tell what Bush is up to in terms of troop pauses and so forth. He will of course not rely upon some plan that he’s crafted as a presidential candidate or as a US senator.”

Also: July 3, 2008: "My 16-month timeline, if you examine everything I've said, was always premised on making sure our troops were safe," Obama told reporters as his campaign plane landed in North Dakota. "And my guiding approach continues to be that we've got to make sure that our troops are safe, and that Iraq is stable. And I'm going to continue to gather information to find out whether those conditions still hold."

STATEMENT: On June 14, Obama foreign policy adviser Susan Rice called the RNC’s argument that Obama needed to go to Iraq to get a firsthand look "complete garbage."

EXPIRATION DATE: On June 16, Obama announced he would go to Iraq and Afghanistan “so he can see first hand the progress of the wars he would inherit if he's elected president.”

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Liberal poster boy Tim Robbins, partner of movie star Susan Sarandon, caused a ruckus at a Manhattan polling center this morning when he learned his name was removed from the voting rolls. Robbins, an actor and director, reportedly started screaming when a poll worker asked him to move over to make more room for other voters.

couldn't happen to a moonbattier guy.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:28 PM | Report abuse

A few comments about John McCain:

I, like many others, have always had a measure of respect for the man. His appearance on Saturday Night Live this weekend reminded me of his genuine humor. (The appearance was unique. I've never seen a candidate mock his running mate like that...it was, in essence, an admission of how terrible a pick she's been, and also a concession that the race is lost).

John McCain's recent book, HARD CALL, written by his consigliere, Mark Salter, is about tough decisions made by extraordinary people in difficult circumstances.

John McCain is in love with the IDEA of making tough decisions. I don't think this is a quality Americans want in a president. We want someone who is comfortable making difficult decisions, and someone who is certainly WILLING to make them. But I don't think we want someone overly eager to show everyone how good they are at making "tough calls."

It reminds me of the current president, prancing around declaring that he's a "war president" because he read somewhere that only war presidents get remembered by history.

John McCain had six months to put together a general election campaign and pick a running mate. In all that time, he wasn't able to come up with any compelling reasons why he should be president other than that he had been a POW. In all that time, he should have been able to carefully vet all serious vice presidential contenders.

And yet, he seems to have chosen Sarah Palin in a rushed and irresponsible way.

The "suspending of the campaign" shenanigans were all about showing everyone that he could make "tough calls."

In any case, John McCain is, I believe, a decent enough man who really liked the idea of becoming president, but didn't really know what he wanted to do if he got there.

I wish him well in his future endeavors, and perhaps President Obama could find a bipartisan role for him at some future time.

Posted by: Bondosan | November 4, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

poor loser zouk. just like last election. wrong until the end - the last rat on a sinking ship.

Posted by: drindlx | November 4, 2008 5:14 PM

is zouk on suicide watch?


prediction time
obama 386 electoral votes
McCain 163 electoral votes

suprise wins in montana,north dakota, and in indiana. sorry georgia,and arizona, maybe in 2012? expected wins in virgina,north carolina, iowa,missouri and ohio.

senate-8 dem wins,1 run off and 0 gop gains.

house-35 seat pick up, 2 dem losses,(mahoney of florida, and my secret wish that peolsi is bounced off.)

real winners-the american voting public 65% voting on election day!

Posted by: jayspartan | November 4, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

I got a growler of "election ale" from Capitol city brew pub for my celebration.

dribbl - don't tell me they let you out of your cage to vote. ACORN is very effective I see.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

bsimon -- what's your choice of celebratory brew?

Posted by: drindlx | November 4, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

poor loser zouk. just like last election. wrong until the end - the last rat on a sinking ship.

Posted by: drindlx | November 4, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

poor loser zouk. just like last election. the last rat on a sinking ship.

Posted by: drindlx | November 4, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

"the worst case scenario -aka the Obama depression, was priced in weeks ago. did you forget?"

Its beer:30 for this guy, see you tomorrow. Go easy on the whiskey tonight, or tomorrow will hurt more than it has to.

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 4, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Today's markets seem to be looking forward to his service.

Posted by: bsimon1


the worst case scenario -aka the Obama depression, was priced in weeks ago. did you forget?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

the silent majority re-emerges. not yet willing to end capitalism. not interested in spreading it around, the money nor the bull. not ready to surrender overseas. Certainly not prepared for the three headed charibda of PeLousy/Reid/Obambi. not ready for truth squads. not ready for buying elections. not willing to kill babies. not liking insulting the military. not prepared to spend more and more, mostly on lib friends. not willing to gamble on inexperience. not wishing for a VP who babbles incessently. not wanting a racist view of things. not accepting of election theft by ACORN and other Obamabots. not listening to the angry left media. not thinking of punishing success. not expanding the welfare state.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

"May the best man win, and short of that, may he actually be a moderate instead of a socialist."

Today's markets seem to be looking forward to his service.

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 4, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Great List

Prediction time:
Electoral Votes for Obama 354
Dem Senate Pickups +8
Dem House Pickups +27
Obama Popular Vote 53.4%

Posted by: mmtopny | November 4, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

McCain certainly went all out. The incendiary Rev. Wright was all over my TV screen all evening last night screaming the usual invectives we have seen many times before. I also got a phone call from the McCain campaign warning me that my Social Security and my pension was at risk if I voted for Obama. I suspect that these calls were directed at people like me, I'm 74 years old! Luckily I managed to keep my cool and hung up on the b*tch who was low enough to make such calls. I lost a lot of respect in the past 24 hours for McCain, the senator from my home state.

Posted by: Opa2 | November 4, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

"I don't believe Lake County closes at 6 PM. It's in the westernmost part of the state where polls stay open until 7 PM."

***

As a native son of The Region, I hope that Lake County has a large role in turning Indiana blue!

Posted by: castanea | November 4, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

I will be dancing tonight - bad back and all. Thankfully the American people have finally shown some intelligence after all.

Posted by: adrienne_najjar | November 4, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Most important numbers will be how the undecideds from the last battleground polls break. Rumor has it that they are going for Obama by under 5 points. So far...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | November 4, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

I voted in Salem, NH this morning. The line was about 25 minutes long. Not a bad wait compared to what other parts of the country are experiencing, but I found it remarkable because I have never had to wait in line to vote in Salem before.

Senator John Sununu's father, the former White House Chief of Staff, was there holding a sign in support of his son. I predict he will lose to former Gov. Jeanne Shaheen.

Why did NH turn away from McCain after supporting him in the primary? Palin is a factor. The typical NH voter doesn't like the aggressive conservative social agenda. They want to be left alone to live their personal lives as they see fit, and let their neighbors do the same. Also, the negative tone of McCain's campaign was a big turnoff. Combine those factors with McCain's weak response to global economic meltdown, and you get a victory for Obama.

Dixville Notch, NH voted at midnight, and they went for Obama in a landslide (17 votes). It's a big deal here, because The Notch hasn't voted Democrat since Hubert Humphrey.

I'll be staying up late to watch the victory and concession speeches.

Posted by: newengland1 | November 4, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

May the best man win, and short of that, may he actually be a moderate instead of a socialist.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | November 4, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Here's an article to help you track the election online: http://blog.findingdulcinea.com/2008/11/how-to-track-the-election-online.html

Posted by: eep77dc | November 4, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

It is awesome that some hard core republicans are tired of... REPUBLICANS!!!

http://www.greenfaucet.com/politics/win-back-the-party-by-losing-the-election/81372

Posted by: macebruce | November 4, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

"Of the nearly two million who voted early, 36 percent were African American; if that number holds, Martin will be a senator"
===

If that number holds, Obama could flip GA (depending on how well Barr does in his home state). Doubt it will though, but GA is going to be a squeeker for the Republicans nonetheless.

Posted by: CohtR | November 4, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Chris, maybe for comic relief, you could watch Cambria County, PA ?

Posted by: truthhurts | November 4, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

John Mccain spoke just a few minutes and I have to say it was the prelude to a concession speech. He thanked a lot of people, had his mother with him. He only spoke for maybe 12 minutes with mostly his usual talking points, but fewer of them. It looked cold where ever he was and he coughed a few times while he spoke.

The most telling thing in the speech was at no point did he ever mention Obama's name of take any kind of shot at him. He sounded weak and spent as he spoke mostly in a low steady voice even when he got tho the "Fight" segment of his speech. He is through with the attacks he was probably never comfortable with in the first place. He just looked old and tired and not at all presidential.

Anyone on the fence who watched what I just watched would have to conclude he is just is not up to the job. The campaign may have all but finished him off. The job ahead is just to great for him. You just have to picture the young strong Obama bounding down the steps of his plane as we have seen so many times and the contrast is striking.

Posted by: popasmoke | November 4, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Chris, we've discussed your notion of "objectivity" before.

You are a romantic, often confusing sentiment for sense...as Chris Matthews remarked when you made that comment about the negligible effect of racism.

Voting is an obligation and duty of every citizen.

Putting yourself above everyone else is just narcissism. So is imagining that by not voting you somehow gain absolute objectivity.

Foolishness.


The ballot is stronger than the bullet.
--Abraham Lincoln

Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country.
--Franklin D. Roosevelt


In a world that might say one vote doesn't matter..., it does matter because each person is of infinite worth and value to God... Your vote is a declaration of importance as a person and a citizen.
--Billy Graham

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

My predictions:

NH, PA, VA, NC, FL, OH, CO, NM, NV all go blue.

GA, WV, IN, MO stay red (we’ll get em next time).

I’m puzzled by the claims of a large popular vote for Mac. What with huge Democratic registration, and responsiveness to the candidates as evidenced by turnout at rallies (a subjective metric, I know), I don’t see McC as getting more than 43%. I’m guessing he pulls closer to 41%.

Posted by: Ichristian | November 4, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

at-a-time:

I suggest going to cnn.com and setting up their "your races" election tracker.

You can choose any state's federal elections, governor's races, and important ballot initiatives.

Posted by: cam8 | November 4, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

What about the South Dakota ballot question concerning abortion? When will we find out how that fared, and where will be the best place to see the results?

Posted by: at-a-time | November 4, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't get it - how come you can't vote because of "objectivity", but David Broder's response on whether he will vote is, "of course"? I think you should take Broder's lead - since you have a slow work day until 7 pm, get to the polls!

Posted by: Traveler8 | November 4, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Final prediction time:

Obama will win the popular vote with a larger percentage and by a larger margin than Bush beat Kerry in 2004 (3.5%), though by less than 6%. Generic prediction: Obama 51.5, McCain 46.5, Others 1.0

In the Electoral College, McCain will win IN and MO. Obama will win NH, PA, OH, FL, CO, NM, NV, VA, and because of the weather today and his lead in early voting, NC.

Obama 353, McCain 185.

Posted by: cam8 | November 4, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Time to sweep out the criminals from office!

:D

GO TO YOUR POLLING PLACE AND VOTE!

If you are voting absentee and are handing in your ballot, make sure that there isn't a republican poll monitor challenging your ballot.

Already today three republican poll monitors have had their credentials stripped because they were only challenging DEMOCRATIC party member ballots. One of the criminal scum actually fled the scene upon being challenged.

If your absentee ballot is challenged DEMAND that a polling supervisor check to see that the monitor is not simply challenging all absentee ballots of a particular party. Then, call the police.

Posted by: onestring | November 4, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

If you want to know what people in different parts of the world think of, expect of, and comment about today's elections, visit the live blog at:

http://www.reflectivepundit.com

Posted by: bn1123 | November 4, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

"The Borgen Project has some good info on the cost of addressing global poverty.
$30 billion: Annual shortfall to end world hunger.


$40 Billion: one month in the Iraqi War.

Posted by: DrWho2 | November 4, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Chris,

Shame on you for not voting. It is not a right, it is national duty. Go vote ! Don't be lazy and don't give that "objectivity" crape to us.

Posted by: yeda924 | November 4, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

wow. 40% of VA registered voters had voted by 10AM.

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Biden was down here in eastern Henrico VA this morning...heading to Chicago. Palin is flying to Arizona.

Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Lake County, IN is in CST, not EST. Those polls won't close until 6 pm CST, or 7 pm EST. They are expected to have long lines, and people probably won't finish voting until late into the night. If you are in line before 6 pm local time, you WILL be able to cast your vote.

Posted by: mom22 | November 4, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Republicans desperately trying to hijack election in Virginia. One of several:

A George Mason University student forwards over a pair of emails that went out to the student body of the Virginia school:

First:

-----Original Message-----
From: ANNOUNCE04-L on behalf of Office of the Provost
Sent: Tue 11/4/2008 1:16 AM
To: ANNOUNCE04-L@mail04.gmu.edu
Subject: Election Day Update

To the Mason Community:

Please note that election day has been moved to November 5th. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.

Peter N. Stearns
Provost

And then:

-----Original Message-----
From: Office of the Provost on behalf of Office of the Provost
Sent: Tue 11/4/2008 8:08 AM
To: PROVOSTOFFICE-L@mail04.gmu.edu
Subject: Urgent Voting Information

Dear Colleagues,

It has come to my attention early this morning that a message was hacked into the system fraudulently stating that election day has been moved. I am sure everybody realizes this is a hoax, it is also a serious offense and we are looking into it. Please be reminded that election day is today, November 4th.

Peter N. Stearns
Provost


Posted by: wpost4112 | November 4, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

I don't believe Lake County closes at 6 PM. It's in the westernmost part of the state where polls stay open until 7 PM.

Posted by: DAZNY | November 4, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Chris. That was the best rundown of poll-closing times and what to watch for out of all the similar pieces I've read on the web. I think you did a great job tying together some of the more portending races along with the regions they fall in.

Posted by: jdunph1 | November 4, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Another question: where are Biden and Palin? Biden is running a Senate race as well - is he planning to attend a party for that race in Delaware or is he in Chicago? Likewise for Gov Palin - I understand she went home to vote, does she plan to stay there, or return to AZ to watch election returns with her running-mate?

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 4, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

The MN Senate race has been nasty, certainly by Minnesota standards, but still has nothing on the final days of Dole v Hagan.

For more insight on the MN races, check out the MN Post: http://www.minnpost.com/ - Eric Black has a good writeup on where MN really sits in terms of Red or Blue makeup.

Posted by: bsimon1 | November 4, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

"The Borgen Project has some good info on the cost of addressing global poverty.
$30 billion: Annual shortfall to end world hunger.
$540 billion: Annual U.S. Defense Budget."

Posted by: diana9 | November 4, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Long lines in my corner of WA this morning - 2 hour wait at a polling place where over the last 8 years 30+ people could be expected all day long. The Governor race is the hottest item on the ballot, driving turnout more than the Obama/McCain race.

Posted by: bondjedi | November 4, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget to track your pres, senate and gov races on your election bingo card(s): http://urbzen.com/2008/11/03/election-bingo/

And while you're watching returns, might I recommend a delicious Hot Chuck Toddy: http://urbzen.com/2008/11/03/election-cocktail-special-hot-chuck-toddy/

Cheers!

Posted by: StephanieInCA | November 4, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I love how the McCain campaign cites "private polling" as evidence that they are winning certain states, like they have some secret information that nobody else has access to. It would be laughable if it wasn't for proprietary electronic voting machines. Did Diebold promise to deliver Iowa for McCain this time?

Posted by: g99999 | November 4, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

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