Save me from tomorrow / I don't want to sail with this ship of fools
November 9, 2018 8:54 PM   Subscribe

The 2018 US elections have gone into overtime.

Delays in a final count are common especially in states with heavy use of vote by mail. But with a host of razor-close races, all eyes are on the counting.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
For the moment, the Democrats hold a 226-198 lead, reflecting a gain of 31 seats. They look likely to end up with a gain of 38-40, based on the current standing in races that are not complete:
* CA-10: Dem Josh Harder pulled into the lead today over GOP incumbent Jeff Denham by 1.8%.
* CA-39: Republican Young Kim clings to a narrow lead of 2.2% over Dem Gil Cisneros.
* CA-45: GOP incumbent Mimi Walters has seen her Election Day lead over Dem Katie Porter decline sharply, now at 2.0%.
*CA-48: Dem Harley Rouda has expanded his early lead over GOP incumbent Dana Rohrabacher, now up by 2.4%.
* GA-07: After confusion Election Night led to an apparent victory by Dem Carolyn Bourdeaux, GOP incumbent Rob Woodall leads by 890 votes. There are about 1,600 provisional ballots outstanding, though.
* ME-02: GOP incumbent Bruce Poliquin led Dem Jared Golden by about 0.6%. However, since no candidate broke 50%, Maine's ranked choice voting will come into play, and voters' second choice will be allocated. Most observers believe this should put Golden over the top. Poliquin has intimated he may pursue legal action if that occurs.
* NJ-03: Dem Andy Kim had declared victory here over GOP incumbent Tom McArthur with a lead of about 3400 votes. However, there are some outstanding mail ballots, and about 2k provisional ballots still to be evaluated.
* NY-23: Dem Anthony Brindisi appeared to have won Tuesday night over GOP incumbent Claudia Tenney, but an error was discovered, narrowing his margin to about 1300 votes. 17,000 absentee ballots remain to be counted.
* NY-27: GOP incumbent Chris Collins leads Dem Nate McMurray by 1.1%, but McMurray is pursuing a recount.
* TX-23: After much confusion Election Night, GOP incumbent Will Hurd is in the lead by about 1000 votes, but Dem Gina Ortiz Jones is not conceding yet.
* UT-04: So far, Dem Ben McAdams leads GOP incumbent Mia Love by about 2.3%, but a fair portion of the count is outstanding due to mail ballots, and apparently some incompetence by electoral officials.
SENATE
This is where the controversy kicks in. Three Senate races are still outstanding.

* In Mississippi, as expected, no candidate broke 50% in the three-way race, so there will be a runoff election on November 27th. Democrats may have had a shot at a Roy Moore redux if far right firebrand Chris McDaniel placed, but he finished a distant third. GOP incumbent Cindy Hyde-Smith faces off with Dem Mike Espy; barring some surprise scandal, Hyde-Smith is likely to retain the seat.

* In Arizona, the state's heavy reliance on vote by mail and a slow process of signature validation mean that there are still some 360,000 votes yet to be counted. After trailing Tuesday night, Dem Kyrsten Sinema has broken into the lead, currently by about 20,000. Analysis of the outstanding votes is tricky - Maricopa County is big, and has red and blue patches - but most observers believe that Republican Martha McSally will probably not pull it out. This race has remained fairly calm, despite efforts by Trump to spread conspiracy theories.

* Speaking of which...Florida. Sparking nasty flashbacks in those of us who remember the 2000 recount, we once again have a wafer-thin lead and controversy in Broward County. Dem incumbent Senator Bill Nelson trailed by nearly a point Tuesday night, but has watched that slowly to decrease to 0.182%, well within the margin for a manual recount. Incredibly slow counting in Broward has led Trump to make baseless accusations of fraud. Meanwhile, a mysterious undervote for Senator in Broward has led to speculation of bad ballot design or perhaps a machine problem. Are crates of ballots going uncounted in Miami-Dade? Is Broward processing bad provisionals? What is with Florida, man?

GOVERNOR
Two outstanding governor races:

* In Florida, Andrew Gillum is still not technically dead, but it's hard to see how he comes back. Currently trailing by 0.44%, he's within the range of a machine recount, but those rarely change things materially.

* In Georgia, Dem Stacey Abrams is trailing by several points. However, GOPer Kemp is only at 50.3%. If she can get that down below 50%, there will be a runoff. Outstanding votes and provisionals may be just enough to do the trick. Kemp resigned from the SOS position, possibly in response to a lawsuit seeking to bar him from the counting process.

DOWNBALLOT
A few other races are still outstanding, as well. In Arizona, Dems lead narrowly for Superintendent of Public Instruction and trail narrowly for Secretary of State - a big win, if it happens, as GOP SOS candidate Steve Gaynor is firmly in the Kobach/Kemp vote suppressor mold.

In Florida, Dem Nikki Fried has a narrow lead for Agriculture Commissioner. And in Georgia, John Barrow has forced a December 4 runoff for Secretary of State, a critical office if Kemp prevails as governor.

FURTHER READING
* 538 is still doing daily updates on the uncalled races.

* Vox explainer on the counts and recounts.

* Things seem to have gone very poorly in Porter County, Indiana on Election Day.

==
Previous Election Day thread.

Please consider MeFi chat and the unofficial PoliticsFilter Slack for serious chatting, the current regular politics thread for non-election items, the current MetaTalk venting thread for catharsis and sympathizing, and funding the site if you're able. Also, for the sake of our beleaguered mods, please keep in mind the MetaTalk on expectations about U.S. political discussion on MetaFilter.
posted by Chrysostom (922 comments total) 76 users marked this as a favorite
 
Reposting from the end of the prior thread:

Can any Congress-watchers comment on what dangers the lame-duck session might hold for healthcare law? I seem to recall speculation during the various ACA repeal pushes that the Republicans could potentially revive their efforts after the election. This is an even bigger concern with McCain out of the picture. OTOH, I thought they blew their shots at reconciliation on the failed repeal and the tax bill. Is ACA repeal via reconciliation something they can still force through in the next two months, and how likely is it to happen?
posted by Rhaomi at 8:56 PM on November 9 [6 favorites]


If Dems win all of the outstanding California races, the CA delegation will be 45D - 8R.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:57 PM on November 9 [21 favorites]


Can any Congress-watchers comment on what dangers the lame-duck session might hold for healthcare law? I seem to recall speculation during the various ACA repeal pushes that the Republicans could potentially revive their efforts after the election.

The Dems crushed it on healthcare. There will be no appetite for this and Trump would veto. He will tack left.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:01 PM on November 9 [1 favorite]


American Prospect: Positive signs from the election on the voting rights front.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:01 PM on November 9 [3 favorites]


He will tack left.

Dude has been doubling down on authoritarian election fraud conspiracy since the elections. I think the odds of him tacking anywhere but crazytown are nil.
posted by Justinian at 9:05 PM on November 9 [104 favorites]


Can any Congress-watchers comment on what dangers the lame-duck session might hold for healthcare law? I seem to recall speculation during the various ACA repeal pushes that the Republicans could potentially revive their efforts after the election. This is an even bigger concern with McCain out of the picture. OTOH, I thought they blew their shots at reconciliation on the failed repeal and the tax bill. Is ACA repeal via reconciliation something they can still force through in the next two months, and how likely is it to happen?

You only get one shot at budget reconciliation per year (the whole point is to make sure that a budget gets passed and doesn't get held up by a filibuster) and Republicans used it to pass their tax cuts. So reviving ACA repeal would involve using the nuclear option to eliminate the filibuster entirely for all legislation, a move which any two Republican Senators could block. (And there are a lot of potential defectors: Collins, Murkowski, Corker and Flake just off the top of my head).

So not completely out of the realm of possibility, but I don't see any evidence that McConnell and the Republican caucus have the stomach for a fight of this magnitude in the next month or two, as evidenced by various 2018 incumbents trying to claim that they have always loved provisions of the ACA like pre-existing condition protections.
posted by firechicago at 9:09 PM on November 9 [3 favorites]


Can any Congress-watchers comment on what dangers the lame-duck session might hold for healthcare law? I seem to recall speculation during the various ACA repeal pushes that the Republicans could potentially revive their efforts after the election.

ACA Repeal Before January Not Seen as Likely
"Give that one up; it's not a winning strategy," expert says

posted by joedan at 9:13 PM on November 9


Daniel Nichanian has been highlighting good outcomes from downballot:
Texas: Stanart, the GOP official who runs elections in Harris Co. (Houston), fear-mongered about registration being too easy & featured pictures of George Soros on his website. He lost on Tuesday, amidst TX Dems' surge.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:14 PM on November 9 [37 favorites]


Ironmouth: "The Dems crushed it on healthcare. There will be no appetite for this and Trump would veto. He will tack left."

I'd love to believe this, but the AHCA/skinny repeal BS already had at least one surprise revival from the dead after a very public implosion. The push to strip power from Democratic governors in NC and now Wisconsin shows modern Republicans aren't afraid to pull heinous shit in the lame duck, and immediately after an election (and during the holidays) would be the best time to do so. Plus it would force House Democrats to negotiate with Republicans on some kind of replacement. I'd feel better if this was something they legally could not do, because norms aren't cutting it rn.

firechicago: "You only get one shot at budget reconciliation per year (the whole point is to make sure that a budget gets passed and doesn't get held up by a filibuster) and Republicans used it to pass their tax cuts. So reviving ACA repeal would involve using the nuclear option to eliminate the filibuster entirely for all legislation, a move which any two Republican Senators could block."

I asked because of these two National Review pieces, which suggest that reviving repeal for a third time is still possible, specifically by passing a new budget reconciliation bill for 2020 (and potentially finagling even more budget cuts out of it). I'm no parliamentarian, though, so no clue how crazycakes such a tactic might be.
posted by Rhaomi at 9:22 PM on November 9 [1 favorite]


Dude has been doubling down on authoritarian election fraud conspiracy since the elections. I think the odds of him tacking anywhere but crazytown are nil.

There are still seats to be fought over and a legend of being wronged to write for his emotional junkie supporters. Then he will tack left in offer but not style. Will continue as his jerky self but will deal on pre-existing conditions, which you may have noticed is the new name for Obamacare. They ran a brilliant campaign. The ads were about health care and did not mention Trump. Of course they talked Trump on the stump, but making the campaign about health care. They hung them by that ACA vote which got them nothing.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:26 PM on November 9 [2 favorites]


I'd love to believe this, but the AHCA/skinny repeal BS already had at least one surprise revival from the dead after a very public implosion.

Dems should not give him anything. He must have no victories. He is utterly unfit. If he agrees to totally reinstate Obamacare, sure.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:28 PM on November 9 [13 favorites]


I asked because of these two National Review pieces, which suggest that reviving repeal for a third time is still possible, specifically by passing a new budget reconciliation bill for 2020 (and potentially finagling even more budget cuts out of it). I'm no parliamentarian, though, so no clue how crazycakes such a tactic might be.

It's possible they're right, I'm no parliamentarian either, but the other critical point is that the Senate math on repeal hasn't improved for them since the summer of 2018. Yes, Kyl would probably vote for repeal, but the current Senate has one more Dem (Doug Jones-AL) than it did then. So they still need to get Collins or Murkowski not only on board, but willing to work through Christmas in order to get it done.
posted by firechicago at 9:29 PM on November 9


Or to put it another way, I could well be wrong about the parliamentary maneuvers necessary, but I wouldn't particularly trust a couple of National Review columnists who aren't able to count to 51 to be more right than I am.
posted by firechicago at 9:32 PM on November 9 [1 favorite]


Thank you for the World Party reference in the title. Such a great band.
posted by ouke at 9:52 PM on November 9 [20 favorites]


Looking at the Arizona results, one thing that I’ve noticed is that Sandra Kennedy has slipped its second place in the Corporation Commission race. Top 2 win seats. The ACC handles a lot of things relating to corporation, but most importantly, they set the rules for utilities. In the last election, utility backed candidates (all republicans) won and as a result, the utilities were granted permission to hike rates. In addition, they killed net metering for solar. While one Dem on the board isn’t going to be able to stop the four Republicans from continuing to help to utilities, it’s a start.

But there’s a bonus here. Kennedy is now ahead of Republican Rodney Glassman. If that name rings a bell to anyone familiar with Arizona politics, that’s because Glassman ran for Senate in 2010... as a Democrat. He now proclaims himself as a proud conservative who is pro-second amendment (because that certainly has everything to do with regulating utilities) when he ran as a pro-worker working class hero back then. Go get him, Sandra.
posted by azpenguin at 10:24 PM on November 9 [12 favorites]


Can I just say kudos to the NYT results webpage? So clean, so much information yet easy to read. That's how graphics should work.
posted by zardoz at 10:28 PM on November 9 [3 favorites]


Alaska Legislature: in what was probably the most important state senate race, Pete Kelly (R) leads Scott Kawasaki (D) by 11 votes. In AK House District 1, Bart LeBon (R) is up 79 over Kathryn Dodge (D); this race determines if Republicans will control the house. Absentee and questioned ballots still need to be counted.
posted by leahwrenn at 10:34 PM on November 9 [10 favorites]


...speculation of bad ballot design...

That article makes no sense to me based on the copy of the ballot embedded in the article. If people missed the senate block thinking it was instructions and headed straight over to the governor block in the next column, then is there also a discrepancy in the district 20 rep votes??
posted by romakimmy at 11:17 PM on November 9


I wondered about that too, but I read earlier somewhere the district race wasn't present on all Broward County ballots.
posted by M-x shell at 11:34 PM on November 9 [1 favorite]


Yes, in some precincts the Senate race was the only one in the first column. That said, in precincts using the paper ballot, the machine should have initially rejected the ballot as undervoted. Where I voted, there is a sign explaining this, but if those weren't present I could totally see someone not realizing that was happening and running it through a second time assuming the machine was just not working very well.

Also, that issue about the "illegally counted" provisional ballots are total bullshit. The only reason the voters were forced to use provisionals in the first place was because of broken IT. The voter's IDs were verified at the precinct, so tossing them for a bad signature is simple voter suppression.
posted by wierdo at 11:50 PM on November 9 [13 favorites]




Re Porter County- maybe your ballots are a bit bigger than ours (AUS) (all the down ballot positions)- but we have a rule that if you run out of ballot papers you can write up a ballot, and initial it, and it counts.

Having worked for the AEC and VEC (Australian and Victorian Electoral Commissions) - those poor poll workers. I really feel for them!
posted by freethefeet at 1:50 AM on November 10 [3 favorites]


So, here's something that pisses me off.

The Democrats are likely to get to 233-235 seats in the House, right? Great.

Thing is, 57% of the House isn't 233-235. It's 248. Thirteen to fifteen seats more than what we got.

The broken structure of the Senate aside (which, along with the broken Electoral College, is a whole 'nother issue), the gerrymander wasn't broken, even by a wave. Voter suppression wasn't overcome, even by massive turnout. They successfully reduced a 53 seat wave down to a 38-40 seat wave.

Democracy in the U.S. is broken. The Republican party has broken it, deliberately. They are right now trying their hardest to make sure it stays broken in Florida and Georgia. Republican party leaders are currently *angry* at Martha McSally because they DON'T THINK SHE IS TRYING HARD ENOUGH TO CHEAT in Arizona.

Until the system is fixed, anyone in the U.S. who believes in democracy is fighting an uphill battle.
posted by kyrademon at 1:57 AM on November 10 [58 favorites]


Thing is, 57% of the House isn't 233-235. It's 248. Thirteen to fifteen seats more than what we got.

I don't disagree with your main thrust about gerrymandering but we didn't get 57% of votes. We got more like 53.5% of votes. The number of seats the Dems will control is actually fairly proportional to the votes we got this cycle... it's just that usually the side which wins the generic ballot ends up with more seats than the proportional-with-their-vote-share number.
posted by Justinian at 2:35 AM on November 10 [21 favorites]


Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

The first tweet in reply is, in totality, "Thoughts and prayers." Which is perfect.
posted by Justinian at 2:39 AM on November 10 [68 favorites]


> "I don't disagree with your main thrust about gerrymandering but we didn't get 57% of votes. We got more like 53.5% of votes."

After checking, you are correct. I was misinformed. Apologies.
posted by kyrademon at 2:47 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


No biggie. Gerrymandering absolutely reduced the number of seats the Democrats will hold so your main thrust was unaffected.
posted by Justinian at 2:57 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


Yes, I forgot to add, this is one instance that one should definitely read the responses to Costello (who voted with Trump 95% of the time).

Re ME-02, the Bangor Daily News thinks Golden (D) will pull ahead but that is based on exit polls. If you look at the two Independents whose votes are up for grab thanks to Ranked Choice Voting, they both seem like they appealed to more liberal vs conservative voters, and that's a pool of 27000 votes. He only needs 1500.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 3:08 AM on November 10


This is something I'm compelled to be pedantic about: remove gerrymandering from the picture entirely and you're not guaranteed proportionality, both because the fixed number of seats in the House needs to be apportioned (so small states are overrepresented) and because a FPTP system doesn't get you proportionality (if people are naturally clumped, they're naturally clumped). If proportionality is your goal, you basically need a constitutional amendment.
posted by hoyland at 3:40 AM on November 10 [8 favorites]


Daniel Nichanian wrote in The Appeal on victories over ICE-friendly law enforcement officers. Excerpt:
Voters around the country put ICE on notice on Tuesday, restricting the federal agency’s law enforcement reach in several states and counties.

“People showed up yesterday because they want their local communities to revolve [around] their values, even if what happens in Washington does not for the foreseeable future,” Elizabeth Alex, the senior director of community organizing at CASA, an immigration advocacy organization, told The Appeal about elections she was tracking in Maryland.

ICE relies on the cooperation and assistance of local law enforcement officials, many of which enter into formal partnerships with the agency. One of the strongest relationships that a jurisdiction can have with ICE is a 287(g) deal, which deputizes local officers to directly investigate the status of the people they detain. As of today, ICE reports that 78 law enforcement agencies are part of 287(g) agreements. That’s a small number relative to the nation’s thousands of counties—and it is likely to drop once officials elected on Tuesday take office.

In at least three populous counties, voters elected candidates who pledged to withdraw from the 287(g) program.
posted by Kattullus at 3:41 AM on November 10 [8 favorites]


Kemp resigned from the SOS position, possibly in response to a lawsuit seeking to bar him from the counting process.

In court, the judge said "It's hard to see the merits of your argument if you're counting your own votes" and Kemp's lawyer resigned right then.

According to the Associated Press, a member of Georgia’s attorney general office announced Kemp’s resignation in federal court Thursday morning.

And then of course he immediately lied about it because.

In a press conference, Kemp said that his resignation was not due to the lawsuit but was him simply preparing for his transition to governor

LIAR.
posted by petebest at 3:46 AM on November 10 [35 favorites]


TWinbrook8: "Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter..."

Costello's district will now be represented by Chrissy Houlahan, one of the four women that PA is sending to congress, a group that called itself, The Fab Four during the campaign(YouTube). Houlahan has degrees from Stanford and MIT, was an Air Force officer, high-school science teacher and business person. I think that Pennsylvania will be OK without Mr. Costello.
posted by octothorpe at 5:14 AM on November 10 [32 favorites]


Postcards to Voters is running a campaign on behalf of Espy in MS. They didn't have an Espy postcard campaign in the general, so if your hand is feeling too rested for the last week or so, have at it.
posted by kimberussell at 5:38 AM on November 10 [15 favorites]


Question on concessions:
(a) Does that actually mean anything beyond publicly announcing that you're giving up on pursuing the job? Like...
(b) If someone concedes, does that mean everyone stops counting the ballots?
posted by jenfullmoon at 6:03 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


Concession is performative, not legally enforceable. Roy Moore has never conceded to Doug Jones.
posted by fluttering hellfire at 6:06 AM on November 10 [20 favorites]


In further hyperlocal news, the state assembly GOP (majority) leadership is threatening to not seat the Dem winner because there's a rule that you have to live in PA for 4 years prior to serving in the legislature, and that deadline is pretty close for the winner. She was in the process of moving here, there are pictures of her here, she'd accepted a job here, but she early voted in Maryland because there hadn't been time to register in PA before the election, so they're taking that to mean she wasn't really a resident. A judge already threw this challenge out during the race, but due to filling deadlines, not the merits, which the Rs are taking to mean that they should go on ahead and continue to be dicks about this.
posted by soren_lorensen at 6:27 AM on November 10 [21 favorites]


Newsweek: Barack Obama Crushed Donald Trump in the Midterms With Endorsements Winning Far More Races

Shot: "Obama endorsed 74 candidates in House and Senate races around the country ahead of Tuesday’s midterms and 39 of them, or 52.7 percent, won their respective races. In contrast, only 21 of the 75 candidates endorsed by Trump claimed victory, according to an analysis by The Brookings Institution."

Chaser: "Trump registered a success rate of only 28 percent, lower than his second in command, Vice President Mike Pence. The former Indiana governor endorsed 61 candidates and 27, or just over 44 percent, won."
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:56 AM on November 10 [32 favorites]


In more good down-ballot election news... I previously posted on how Rs were wiped out in Dallas and Harris (Houston) County judicial races. Even better, in Harris country, 17 of the winning new judges were black women.
posted by chris24 at 7:11 AM on November 10 [27 favorites]


> and because a FPTP system doesn't get you proportionality (if people are naturally clumped, they're naturally clumped). If proportionality is your goal, you basically need a constitutional amendment.

I don’t understand this argument, and not in the rhetorical sense where people say “I don’t understand why people think [x]” when they mean to say “[x] is wrong.” I actually don’t understand it.

Like, I prefer genuine proportional representation systems to FPTP systems, but it seems like it’s possible to draw FPTP district boundaries that approximate proportionality regardless of geographical concentration. The simplest method that comes to mind is drawing districts as pie slices out from city centers, such that every district has a proportion of city voters, suburban voters, and rural voters that approximates the proportions of same in the region as a whole.

Why isn’t this at least a semi-solution? It’s not ideal, certainly, but it has the advantage over PR that it can be implemented without constitutional amendments.
posted by Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon at 7:39 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


(note: I know that Republicans would hate that because it would give rural conservatives and reactionaries influence proportional to their percentage of the population, rather than influence vastly out of proportion to their percentage of the population. But, well, Republicans can go suck an egg.)
posted by Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon at 7:44 AM on November 10 [6 favorites]


The simplest method that comes to mind is drawing districts as pie slices out from city centers, such that every district has a proportion of city voters, suburban voters, and rural voters that approximates the proportions of same in the region as a whole.
From what I understand, this is almost exactly what's been done in/around Austin, Texas. But it was done in a (very successful) effort to overwhelm the city voters with the rural ones. That is, the Republicans love it, rather than hate it.
posted by cardioid at 7:48 AM on November 10 [7 favorites]


Potentially stupid question: how did it work in the Texas elections, such that Beto lost, but all these down-ballot candidates won? Is it because lots of Republicans voted for Cruz, but selected no one else on the ballot? Or is it that Democrats showed up to vote because they liked Beto, and they wouldn't have voted otherwise?
posted by unknowncommand at 7:50 AM on November 10 [3 favorites]


Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon: Proportional representation means parties hold a % of seats close to their total % of votes in the election (edit: sorry, I think you already know this...). That is fundamentally incompatible with a district-based voting system where each district is winner-takes-all. Actually, the best way to simulate it with a district-based system would be to have 100% R and 100% D districts of equal population, were such a thing possible. If every district were a perfect microcosm of the party split in the country as a whole, then a wave would produce a one-party Congress.
posted by aws17576 at 7:53 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


To deal w harassment & filth spewed at GOP MOC’s in tough seats every day for 2 yrs, bc of POTUS; to bite ur lip more times you’d care to; to disagree & separate from POTUS on principle & civility in ur campaign; to lose bc of POTUS & have him piss on u. Angers me to my core.

If you were really so upset by 45's demeanor, maybe instead of biting your lip you should have come out and publicly allied yourself with the people trying to fight him. Then maybe people would like you more.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:55 AM on November 10 [17 favorites]




Pie slice districts would violate several court-supported traditional redistricting principles such as geographic compactness and respecting municipal boundaries. These are somewhat chosen to combat gerrymandering, but more importantly they support local representation and self-determination. A pie slice doesn’t represent a natural constituency, and SCOTUS has already explicitly rejected proportional representation in past redistricting decisions.
posted by migurski at 8:01 AM on November 10 [5 favorites]


> rom what I understand, this is almost exactly what's been done in/around Austin, Texas.

Yeah, I was thinking of describing it as “the deweaponized version of what Texas does to Austin.”

I guess the crux of my quibble is that FPTP yields disproportionate results because FPTP is inherently disproportionate, but that geographical concentration doesn’t actually matter — you can draw relatively fair districts (or wildly unfair districts, if you prefer) regardless of geographical distribution of party supporters.
posted by Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon at 8:03 AM on November 10


Potentially stupid question: how did it work in the Texas elections, such that Beto lost, but all these down-ballot candidates won? Is it because lots of Republicans voted for Cruz, but selected no one else on the ballot? Or is it that Democrats showed up to vote because they liked Beto, and they wouldn't have voted otherwise?

Modern gerrymandering works by both "packing" and "cracking". You first try to pack all of the other party into a few districts so that the whole of their vote goes to a few candidates, while the rest of the districts have small numbers of other-party voters. This works well where the party you want to restrict is geographically clustered. But in a place like Texas, gerry-mandering also "cracks", where you try to spread *your* voters across a number of districts (say populous suburbs) where, under normal conditions, they will always have a slim but reliable majority. However, in a wave election, where opponent party turnout is much higher than normal, cracking makes you very vulnerable, since you only have a slim majority in those districts. And so it means that you can lose a bunch of seats that you gerrymandered as safe in a normal election year. Beto did much better than any democrat has ever done in Texas for a long long time, certainly since the districts were last redrawn, so the democrats were able to pick up a bunch of house seats that are normally impossible for them, even without Beto winning the state-wide majority.
posted by dis_integration at 8:05 AM on November 10 [29 favorites]


A Mysterious ‘Undervote’ Could End Up Settling the Florida Senate Race

Ballot design in Broward County is one possible cause of votes cast for one contest but apparently not another.
posted by bluesky43 at 8:10 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


CA-48 Update:
@HarleyRouda. As of this morning, my campaign is ahead by 7,328 votes. After careful consideration of the data provided by the fantastic team at the Orange County Registrar, my staff and I are now confident that we have won the Congressional race in California's 48th district.
So long, Dana!
posted by notyou at 8:16 AM on November 10 [46 favorites]


Got it, thank you!
posted by unknowncommand at 8:23 AM on November 10


And I suppose Rouda’s announcement means stoner-surfer GOP Representative Dana Rohrabacher got tossed by a Blue Wave?
posted by notyou at 8:25 AM on November 10 [6 favorites]


that geographical concentration doesn’t actually matter — you can draw relatively fair districts (or wildly unfair districts, if you prefer) regardless of geographical distribution of party supporters.

At the end of the day, you have to give Vermont and Wyoming seats. If you had a variable number of representatives or did not require districts be located wholly within a single state, it's much easier to achieve proportionality.
posted by hoyland at 8:32 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


But I was really thinking about the Lib Dems in Britain--their voters tend to be more uniformly distributed than the other parties (or were--the Lib Dems are rather less fashionable than they were), which makes it harder for them to win seats.
posted by hoyland at 8:38 AM on November 10


> Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

Interesting piece in The New Yorker about Costello: The Demise of the Moderate Republican: Ryan Costello, a centrist wonk, ran for Congress to solve problems—but his colleagues fell in line with Trump’s parade of resentment.
posted by homunculus at 8:49 AM on November 10


Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

A response to that tweet:
@4thfloorview:
Replying to @RyanCostello
Your live town halls were few & you gave little notice for your telephone town halls. You complained about the size of your district & called constituents a “potential threat”. You accused an opponent of sending people to trespass at your home yet police found no crime. We urged you to be part of the solution to help temper tRump’s rhetoric & reach across the aisle. Instead you voted 95% with tRump. You turned your back on your constituents. And now, you want to cry for sympathy. We have none.

posted by zarq at 8:59 AM on November 10 [52 favorites]


Also:
@brooklynmarie
Replying to @RyanCostello
That's such a bummer Ryan! Do you know anyone who might have been in a position to speak out against him??

posted by zarq at 9:02 AM on November 10 [54 favorites]


Dan Feehan, Democratic candidate for MN-01, hasn't conceded yet either. With a margin of 1,300 votes, he's waiting for results from the official vote canvass at the end of the month.
posted by Theiform at 9:10 AM on November 10 [3 favorites]


At the end of the day, you have to give Vermont and Wyoming seats. If you had a variable number of representatives or did not require districts be located wholly within a single state, it's much easier to achieve proportionality.

The disproportionality of the Senate is quite different than the House. In the Senate Wyoming gets 2 seats out of 100. In the House Wyoming gets 1 seat out of 438. The Senate case is almost 10 times worse. We could get by in the House without splitting states.
posted by JackFlash at 9:19 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


...speculation of bad ballot design...

I don't understand why everyone is headlining the ballot design. I heard an entire NPR/APR story on it too. I mean, sure that is one possibility. How about we go ahead and rule out other causes for this large statistical anomaly? "Manual Recount Needed in Broward County Due To Voting Anomaly, Dems Say." How about that headline? It's weird how everyone is rushing to conclude "oh, it's probably nothing" and carrying out in-depth analysis of that possibility while not looking into, say, a sensor failure on a vote-counting machine or whatever other causes might plausibly exist. Once we confirm the numbers' validity -- that is the appropriate time to ponder how it happened. Right now, we don't know if it really did or didn't happen.
posted by salvia at 9:21 AM on November 10 [5 favorites]


Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

By far the most replies I have ever read on for a Twitter post. They are all spot on, and so many different ways to say it.
posted by M-x shell at 9:34 AM on November 10 [8 favorites]


I don't understand why everyone is headlining the ballot design.

(I mean, in the media, etc. I'm not criticizing people here for passing along articles.)
posted by salvia at 9:42 AM on November 10


More on the blue-ing of Nevada, from Megan Messerly at the Nevada Independent: Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto raises more than two million dollars for election:
Rebecca Lambe, a longtime Democratic operative in the state responsible for building the Reid machine, drew parallels between Reid and Cortez Masto in a statement.

“Like Senator Reid, Senator Cortez Masto understands that Democrats’ long-term success depends on robust investments in field operations and diverse staffing as well as engaging first-time voters and voters of color,” Lambe said. “She’s worked closely with candidates, donors, and allies to achieve that vision.”
So proud of my neighbor Nevada, and its senior senator, the first Latina Senator elected to Congress. I'd love to see Beto, or someone, build a machine like that in Texas. Arizona could use a Reid Machine, too. It seems like the Southwest is growing more and more Democratic.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 9:49 AM on November 10 [8 favorites]


Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon: I guess the crux of my quibble is that FPTP yields disproportionate results because FPTP is inherently disproportionate, but that geographical concentration doesn’t actually matter — you can draw relatively fair districts (or wildly unfair districts, if you prefer) regardless of geographical distribution of party supporters."

There's a map out there which I can't track down at the moment that gerrymanders New York into 100% Dem districts by slivering out from NYC all the way up state so it looks like a layer cake.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:54 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


leahwrenn: "Alaska Legislature: in what was probably the most important state senate race, Pete Kelly (R) leads Scott Kawasaki (D) by 11 votes. In AK House District 1, Bart LeBon (R) is up 79 over Kathryn Dodge (D); this race determines if Republicans will control the house. Absentee and questioned ballots still need to be counted."

From what I heard, even if LeBon is seated, there's a lot of division in the GOP caucus. They only have a one seat margin, so we might hope for intra-party strife blocking some things.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:55 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


Agree that the media shouldn't decide it's the ballot design before we look at it more closely. That said, the way that the rate is *much* higher in the one congressional district than in the rest of the county (and which had the different design) seems like a strong indicator that is the issue.

Also, Florida: Not listing races, even if they are unopposed, is really dumb. Please stop doing that.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:59 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


unknowncommand: "Potentially stupid question: how did it work in the Texas elections, such that Beto lost, but all these down-ballot candidates won? Is it because lots of Republicans voted for Cruz, but selected no one else on the ballot? Or is it that Democrats showed up to vote because they liked Beto, and they wouldn't have voted otherwise?"

It's the latter. He juiced turnout to the point where gerrymanders in many areas were ineffective. The GOP was lucky not to have lost several more US House seats, as well.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:12 AM on November 10 [14 favorites]


Interesting Reddit post on how the GOP has basically lost the last of the big cities.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:15 AM on November 10 [6 favorites]


We urged you to be part of the solution to help temper tRump’s rhetoric & reach across the aisle. Instead you voted 95% with tRump. You turned your back on your constituents.

I haven't seen this capitalization before. Is it just calling Trump a "Rump," i.e. an ass? Or is there some other significance?
posted by kingjoeshmoe at 10:20 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


The controversy surrounding unaccounted for ballots in Broward continues as provisional ballots were found unattended in a the Tamarac Lakes Community Center.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:24 AM on November 10 [6 favorites]


clearly the first priority of the new Congress must be a massive infrastructure plan to construct more big cities
posted by murphy slaw at 10:25 AM on November 10 [4 favorites]


Is [tRump] just calling Trump a "Rump," i.e. an ass? Or is there some other significance?

Partially that, partially to emphasize what he’s done to the Republican Party. Some people also use “tRUmp” to emphasize the Russia connection.
posted by Etrigan at 10:29 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


Josh Harder has widened his lead a bit in CA-10, though the counting continues. Given where the remaining uncounted ballots are from, I'm anticipating that he will stay ahead, looking like another flipped district!

I have long thought that this weird, huge Central Valley is way more purple-to-blue than has been realized, and that's finally showing. Thank goodness.

For real, Jeff Denham is the worst.

posted by LooseFilter at 10:31 AM on November 10 [6 favorites]


I think in the end we pick up eight of the outstanding House races: CA-10, CA-39, CA-45, CA-48, ME-02, NJ-03, NY-23, UT-04.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:38 AM on November 10 [11 favorites]


Is [tRump] just calling Trump a "Rump," i.e. an ass? Or is there some other significance?

Partially that, partially to emphasize what he’s done to the Republican Party. Some people also use “tRUmp” to emphasize the Russia connection.


I still don't like those sorts of nicknames. Just like I get annoyed when some Republican says "Obummer". It's seems childish. I like making names funny. I was just talking with a friend about how I like to doodle all over my sample ballot and make the names funnier. But if I'm actually talking to someone about someone I'll use their name.

Unless I was actually talking to Trump. Then I'd just call him Danny and pretend I didn't know his real name. I think he'd hate that.
posted by downtohisturtles at 10:47 AM on November 10 [25 favorites]


how did it work in the Texas elections, such that Beto lost, but all these down-ballot candidates won? Is it because lots of Republicans voted for Cruz, but selected no one else on the ballot? Or is it that Democrats showed up to vote because they liked Beto, and they wouldn't have voted otherwise?

A lot is that latter - Beto inspired people who otherwise may not have voted, to show up. Why that worked because of gerrymandering.

Not all of Texas flipped, but in the districts where the R majority was slim during previous elections, only a few extra D votes took the seat. As mentioned, this is the vulnerability of gerrymandering - if you've rigged a dozen districts to have a 2% majority of your side, and half a dozen more with 90% of the opponent's voters, you win control of the legislative branch. However, if 4% more opponents vote that year... that 2% majority is wiped out and you lose everything. Gerrymandering absolutely relies on a stable, non-growing voting populace, which is why they try so hard to suppress votes and discourage young voters.

And as much as it'd be simple to just chop a state into squares or pie slices or some other geometric shapes, the courts (and common understanding of fairness) say that's not how it should be done. A district should be a community, and those don't come in identifiable shapes. The people stretched out in a five-mile strip along a riverfront could be one community, sharing social contact and business ties, while a town just two miles inland from them is remote, having most of its contact with communities farther inland. Drawing fair and reasonable districts is not a simple matter - but we have good algorithms to do a lot of the work now, and there are people trained in cleaning up the edges. Republicans just don't want those people rezoning in a way that actually allows the majority of the populace to select the legislature they want.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 10:51 AM on November 10 [14 favorites]


Chrysostom, do you mean NY-22? NY-23 is Reed/Mitrano, while NY-22 is Brindisi/Tenney, unless I'm confused.
posted by ragtag at 10:53 AM on November 10 [1 favorite]


The controversy surrounding unaccounted for ballots in Broward continues as provisional ballots were found unattended in a the Tamarac Lakes Community Center.

Discussion of sealing procedures aside and the reasons this might not be the showstopper issue it may appear, this is another example of spending more on political advertising than elections procedures. I understand that at 10pm on election's night, getting the sealed envelopes with the signed results and data from the scanners is a priority, but there's no reason any election's materials should remain in the polling places > 24 hours if we make spending on running elections correctly a priority.
posted by mikelieman at 10:58 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


Yes, sorry, that was a typo. Brindisi/Tenney.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:02 AM on November 10


Heh, a bunch of mail ballots were found in a USPS warehouse in Miami (Opa Locka, actually) also. Sadly, when they were mailed is irrelevant under Florida law. The fact that they weren't delivered on Tuesday by 5pm controls, even if the error that caused several thousand ballots to not be delivered on time was entirely the fault of the post office or even an intentional act by a Republican-leaning manager.
posted by wierdo at 11:41 AM on November 10 [18 favorites]


Also, my ballot would have been one of those just now found provisionals if I hadn't moved 3 years ago. (I don't have and obstinately refuse to get a photo ID because fuck them, that's why)

It's bad enough usually not having your ballot counted on purpose and having to be subject to some asshole's opinion as to whether my signature looks enough like the one I provided years ago or not. Adding another level of "maybe we won't bother to do anything at all with your ballot" is just infuriating.
posted by wierdo at 11:46 AM on November 10 [2 favorites]


Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

The first tweet in reply is, in totality, "Thoughts and prayers." Which is perfect.


I like this one.
posted by homunculus at 12:04 PM on November 10 [2 favorites]


Andrew Gillum is giving a press conference right now.
posted by homunculus at 12:07 PM on November 10


homunculus: "> Former Congressman Ryan Costello PA-06 is bitter...

Interesting piece in The New Yorker about Costello: The Demise of the Moderate Republican: Ryan Costello, a centrist wonk, ran for Congress to solve problems—but his colleagues fell in line with Trump’s parade of resentment.
"

I read the whole thing and don't have a milliliter of sympathy for him. Exactly what problems did he think he was going to Washington to solve as a Republican? The problem of people having too much healthcare? Or the problem of old people not starving to death? It's like Republican policies really changed under Trump; if he didn't want to cut Obamacare, why did he run a Republican? He knew exactly what kind of party he was representing when he ran in 2014 and it hasn't changed a bit since then.
posted by octothorpe at 12:08 PM on November 10 [25 favorites]


From the previous thread: I know someone here is from Colorado - Dems now control both houses of the legislature and every constitutional office for the first time since 1939.
It's so exciting!! We had a Dem governor, but Republican SOS, Treasurer, and Attorney General and Rs had control of the Senate; I can't wait to see how this changes things.

Colorado also seems have elected our first transgender legislator to the state house. Feels good, but even better is that there is sustained forward-looking energy and planning--there are several meet and greets with a candidate exploring running against Cory Gardner (R, he's up for re-election in 2020) this month, and people are already talking about how to hold Polis to his promises around education.
posted by danielleh at 12:20 PM on November 10 [22 favorites]


The 2018 US elections have gone into overtime.

I don't want to nitpick, but I'm gonna nitpick. The elections are not in "overtime." They have already happened. All we're doing now is finding out what happened on Tuesday and earlier.
posted by escabeche at 12:48 PM on November 10 [14 favorites]


I will nitpick back - at least two races are going to runoff, which is literally overtime.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:50 PM on November 10 [31 favorites]


Like, I prefer genuine proportional representation systems to FPTP systems, but it seems like it’s possible to draw FPTP district boundaries that approximate proportionality regardless of geographical concentration. The simplest method that comes to mind is drawing districts as pie slices out from city centers, such that every district has a proportion of city voters, suburban voters, and rural voters that approximates the proportions of same in the region as a whole.

Just to be clear about this point: if every district has a population which contains various kinds of voters roughly in the same proportion as does the entire state, then the proportion of seats a party holds in the legislature will typically be very far from the proportion of voters in the state who support that party.

You can't really have both kinds of "proportionality" in a first-past-the-post system.
posted by escabeche at 12:52 PM on November 10 [3 favorites]


The whole freakin' system is out of order!
posted by petebest at 12:53 PM on November 10 [3 favorites]


@Redistrict: #CA45 Rep. Mimi Walters (R) lead over Katie Porter (D) has shrunk again from 2.0% to 1.0% w/ ~10k more ballots counted. The way this is going, Walters is on track to lose & it may not even be close.
in #CA39, Young Kim (R)'s lead over Gil Cisneros (D) has shrunk from 2.2% to 1.6% w/ ~5k more ballots counted. Dems are on track for a pickup & this may not be close either.
Two years after Trump became the first R to lose Orange County since 1936, House Dems are on track for a *total shutout* of the GOP in the OC.
posted by zachlipton at 1:00 PM on November 10 [17 favorites]


The broken structure of the Senate aside (which, along with the broken Electoral College, is a whole 'nother issue), the gerrymander wasn't broken, even by a wave.

Barring a Supreme Court reversal, which seems very unlikely now, there are only two ways to fight Republican anti-democratic (and anti-Democratic) gerrymandering:
1) electing Democrats to state governor, secretary of state and legislative offices;
2) state laws banning gerrymandering or setting up independent non-partisan redistricting processes.

I know that there was progress on both fronts in this election. Does anyone have a count of how many states are still subject to Republican gerrymandering, ie where Republicans are in charge of a partisan redistricting process?

There is still one election left in 2020 to pre-empt gerrymandering in the next round, and there is demonstrated bipartisan opposition to it. This should be a top priority for non-partisan as well as Democratic groups.
posted by msalt at 1:08 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]




Cisneros (Dem candidate for CA-39) is seeking volunteers who can help do ballot chase or act as an observer, if you're in or near Orange County and can help out.

California has a generously long period of time for voters to verify their signatures if they don't match, so there's an opportunity to track these people down and get their ballots counted.
posted by zachlipton at 1:20 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]


NY-23: Dem Anthony Brindisi appeared to have won Tuesday night over GOP incumbent Claudia Tenney, but an error was discovered, narrowing his margin to about 1300 votes. 17,000 absentee ballots remain to be counted.

Brindisi vs Tenney is NY22, and we're all still waiting....
posted by bluesky43 at 1:21 PM on November 10


Let me say clearly: I am replacing my words of concession with an uncompromised, and unapologetic call that we count every single vote.

The election night, or shortly thereafter, concession speech is a custom that needs to die. There should be no talk about an outcome to an election until all the votes are counted. Once that is re-established as the expectation there will be less room for bullshit. Democrats should always demand all votes be counted as a matter of constant practice and not acknowledging an election is decided until every vote has been counted is a part of that. Election night parties aren't as important as democracy, find new traditions.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:32 PM on November 10 [90 favorites]




Just to be clear about this point: if every district has a population which contains various kinds of voters roughly in the same proportion as does the entire state, then the proportion of seats a party holds in the legislature will typically be very far from the proportion of voters in the state who support that party.

You can't really have both kinds of "proportionality" in a first-past-the-post system.


You have the proportionality argument exactly backwards -- and first past the post has absolutely nothing to do with it.

First is this statement: "if every district has a population which contains various kinds of voters roughly in the same proportion as does the entire state ..."

But that is exactly the intent of Republican gerrymandering and exactly what you don't want to do in a fair districting plan. Republicans try to spread out the opposition so that every district has just a slight advantage to the Republicans so they can win almost every district. If a state is 53% Republicans, they try to make every district 53% Republicans and win every district.

So what you are proposing is exactly what Democrats are complaining about and it has nothing to do with first past the post. A fair districting plan has an equal number of fairly safe Democratic and Republican seats and the rest are competitive at the margins.
posted by JackFlash at 1:48 PM on November 10 [1 favorite]


The election night, or shortly thereafter, concession speech is a custom that needs to die. There should be no talk about an outcome to an election until all the votes are counted.

Yes, this. Getting rid of pre-count concession speeches would also help morale among people who cast provisional or election-day mail-in ballots, who might otherwise think, "eh, why bother to vote; my ballot never gets counted." I can maybe see exceptions if the outstanding ballots are fewer than could change the results, but in many places, they have no way of knowing that on election night.

"if every district has a population which contains various kinds of voters roughly in the same proportion as does the entire state ..."

That removes most of the point of having districts. I mean, I suppose you still have to divide the land and find someone who lives in that area to be the majority party representative from that area, but if the state and district are designed to (almost) always have the same electoral percentage, you're voting for a party, not a person.

...Should Austin be chopped into districts that include enough rural voters that they're majority-Republican?

I firmly believe that election districts should be designed without consideration to party memberships. Laws require districting to take notice of race (so you don't wind up with gerrymandered white majority districts), but party affiliation shouldn't be part of the data given to the people making the maps. Require the maps to be drawn based on commercial and social connections, not political ones.

Redistricting Game - online game that shows how gerrymandering works, and how complex it can be to create a fair map.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 2:06 PM on November 10 [14 favorites]


If a state is 53% Republicans, they try to make every district 53% Republicans and win every district.

Well, no. That's not exactly how gerrymandering works. And we can easily tell that isn't how it works since it's not the way it's done anywhere.

You don't evenly spread out the vote. You stick as many of the 47% of Democrats as you can in 1-2 districts and then portion out the rest to make a whole lot of, say, 58-42 Republican districts. The exact ratio depends on whether you want as many districts as possible in a relatively safe year or if you want to withstand wave years of various sizes.

One reason the Republican gerrymander bent in this wave but didn't completely collapse is that with modern computer modeling you can do wave-resistant gerrymandering by drawing the maps on a street by street or even house by house level to achieve the level of wave-resistance you deem acceptable.
posted by Justinian at 2:14 PM on November 10 [12 favorites]


There’s a bit of debate on what makes a fair districting plan, but here are three good metrics:
  • Efficiency gap counts plan-wide “wasted” votes and compares them between two leading parties
  • Mean-median difference looks at the median district vote share to intuit whether any pressure has been applied to influence the winning party; declination is a visual way to think about the same idea
  • Partisan bias is a way to quantify whether one party or another shows a pronounced advantage in a 50/50 balanced election
Excluding partisan data from redistricting is a requirement in some states, but party identity is such a durable and consequential voter attribute that there’s an emerging idea that past partisan vote counts should be used to score new district plans. A few of the winning independent commission measures call for this this specifically.
posted by migurski at 2:15 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]


Using party affiliation as a final check to ensure the as-applied fairness of a districting proposal is fine. It's not OK to use party ID as input for drawing the map that is then tested.
posted by wierdo at 2:18 PM on November 10 [3 favorites]


Well, no. That's not exactly how gerrymandering works.

There are two components to gerrymandering -- packing and splitting. You are referring to packing. The other half, splitting, is where you design each district to have just a slight edge. If you put 53% Republicans in each of those remaining districts, you win them all. I was responding to the incorrect suggestion that Democrats favored splitting.
posted by JackFlash at 2:24 PM on November 10 [5 favorites]


'Gerrymandered no more: Michigan approves redistricting reform.

and next week I can legally carry weed
posted by clavdivs at 3:07 PM on November 10 [26 favorites]


Dave Wasserman points out that, assuming the remaining races break as expected, the Democrat's incoming class of 61 freshmen would include only 19 white men (31%) while the Republican's incoming class of 31 would include 29 white men (94%).
posted by Justinian at 3:19 PM on November 10 [36 favorites]


I heard an interview on Pod Save with the woman that campaigned to get redistricting reform on Michigan's ballot. It was one of the more inspirational interviews I heard all this year. She was just an average citizen with no connections that started a Facebook campaign after Trump's election. This was entirely a volunteer movement with no funding that managed to collect tens of thousands of signatures. They made their own clipboards! Amazing!
posted by xammerboy at 3:23 PM on November 10 [30 favorites]


Arizona SoS reports that Sinema's lead has increased to almost 25,000 votes after today's counts.

Stick a fork in McSally, she's done.
posted by Justinian at 3:26 PM on November 10 [27 favorites]


#CA45 Rep. Mimi Walters (R) lead over Katie Porter (D) has shrunk again from 2.0% to 1.0% w/ ~10k more ballots counted. The way this is going, Walters is on track to lose & it may not even be close.

My dad, who lives in the 45th, kept telling me that his registration had lapsed sometime in the 90's whenever I reminded him the election was coming and he really needed to vote this year. (Can your voter registration lapse if you don't move?)

When I saw a tweet from the LA Times in late October saying it was the last day to register to vote in California, just to be safe, I took a vacation day and personally visited him to make sure he registered online at the state website and requested a mail-in ballot. He called me the following weekend to say he had received his ballot and was ready to mail it in. So his vote for Katie Porter should be in there somewhere.
posted by bunbury at 3:51 PM on November 10 [27 favorites]


> "Arizona SoS reports that Sinema's lead has increased to almost 25,000 votes after today's counts."

That was before the count from Maricopa County came in, and included a lot from the very blue Pima County.

After Maricopa County came in ... Sinema's lead went up to more than 28,000.

(I don't want to tempt fate by declaring victory when there are still hundreds of thousands of votes left outstanding, though.)
posted by kyrademon at 4:13 PM on November 10 [3 favorites]


Stick a fork in McSally, she's done.

On to her campaign for re-election as Arizona’s junior senator in 2020...
posted by chimpsonfilm at 4:15 PM on November 10 [2 favorites]


I don't understand why everyone is headlining the ballot design

Trauma from Palm Beach and the butterfly?
posted by corb at 4:18 PM on November 10 [5 favorites]


JackFlashL:A fair districting plan has an equal number of fairly safe Democratic and Republican seats and the rest are competitive at the margins.

Not equal, otherwise you're disproportionately rewarding whichever party happens to be second-most-popular.

There are clearly a lot of challenges in drawing the regions. Unlike e.g the Electoral College, this is something of a worldwide issue and not "USA being USA", because single-member districts are how most countries populate their lower chambers despite the problems. Borders that ensure a broadly representative body will guarantee "solid" districts in which individual voters may as well stay home, and vice versa.

I'm strongly in favor of either mixed-member or the wonderful quasi-proportional system that is single-transferable-vote. My understanding is that Canada, for one, has been debating those and dragging its feet on implementing either.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 4:42 PM on November 10 [2 favorites]


It looks like Arizona is *just* going to miss having an even split in one of the legislative chambers. That would have put the GOP agenda to a screeching halt. However, the worst legislation will have a tough time passing since all they need to get is one "no" vote from a Republican.

On the "more important than people think" Arizona Corporation Commission, Sandra Kennedy has pulled into the outright lead over both Republicans; she had passed Rodney Glassman yesterday (he's still in third place, so there's a good chance he's going to be denied a chance to win an elected office again, which warms the cackles of my cold, cold heart) but now she's straight up leading. The other Dem, Kiana Sears, is far enough behind that she's out of it.

Also, Gaynor's lead for SoS has dropped to 3100. This one will go down to the wire, and I would find it hilarious if he were done in by provisionals.
posted by azpenguin at 5:18 PM on November 10 [10 favorites]


Not equal, otherwise you're disproportionately rewarding whichever party happens to be second-most-popular.

I don't know what type of gerrymandering you are referring to, but here is an example from North Carolina in the U.S.

Republicans got 51% of the votes vs. the Democrats 49%. Yet the Republicans claimed 10 out of 13 seats -- 77%.

If you get 77% of the seats with 51% of the votes in a two-party contest, that is extreme gerrymandering at work. It's no accident. It is the result of very careful computer aided gerrymandering to draw the lines of districts. The 49% of Democrats are unfairly under-represented. Since the vote is 51/49, in a fair districting plan, each party would get close to a fairly equal number of seats with some flux at the margin -- 7/6 or 8/5, but no way is 10/3 representative of the state.

One or two extra seats in, say, 20 states and you have an nearly insurmountable margin barring a Big Blue Wave.
posted by JackFlash at 5:35 PM on November 10 [6 favorites]


@AP_Politics

BREAKING: Democrat Harley Rouda wins election to U.S. House in California's 48th congressional district. #APracecall at 5:36 p.m. PST
posted by bluesky43 at 5:52 PM on November 10 [38 favorites]


In CA-45, Mimi Walter 's (R) lead over Katie Porter (D) is down to 2009 votes (0.95%) (for comparison: 11/7 6074, 11/8 4637, 11/9 2020). Orange County does not count votes on Sunday, so the next update will not be until 5 PM PST on Monday.
posted by RichardP at 5:56 PM on November 10 [5 favorites]


I don't know what type of gerrymandering you are referring to, but here is an example from North Carolina in the U.S.
N.C. is a good example of a state with roughly equal voters on either side where you would expect a more balanced number of seats than 10/3; this is the argument made by Gelman & King with Partisan Bias. As a state gets further from 50/50 voter support there are competing ideas for how the number of seats should change. “Proportional representation” implies that the percentage of votes and seats remains similar, but we don’t do that here in the U.S. Instead it’s typical to see a faster rise in the number of seats than the number of votes: when 55% of votes go to one party you’ll typically see about 60% of seats go to that party under some models. “Seats-votes curves” are the analytical tools used for this (Vox explainer, and a Wisconsin report).

The one thing everyone agrees on is that the curves need to be symmetrical. If that 55/45 state with 60/40 seats sees a 10-point swing to 45/55, the delegation should swing to 40/60 under a balanced plan.
posted by migurski at 5:56 PM on November 10 [12 favorites]


As a state gets further from 50/50 voter support there are competing ideas for how the number of seats should change. “Proportional representation” implies that the percentage of votes and seats remains similar, but we don’t do that here in the U.S. Instead it’s typical to see a faster rise in the number of seats than the number of votes: when 55% of votes go to one party you’ll typically see about 60% of seats go to that party under some models. “Seats-votes curves” are the analytical tools used for this

Thanks for the explainer and to the social scientists for figuring this out. This is really brilliant.
posted by bluesky43 at 6:14 PM on November 10 [1 favorite]


The one thing everyone agrees on is that the curves need to be symmetrical.

Well, everyone except the lawyers with the thankless job of defending the current maps in court.
posted by escabeche at 6:53 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]


msalt: "Barring a Supreme Court reversal, which seems very unlikely now, there are only two ways to fight Republican anti-democratic (and anti-Democratic) gerrymandering:
1) electing Democrats to state governor, secretary of state and legislative offices;
2) state laws banning gerrymandering or setting up independent non-partisan redistricting processes.


These independent redistricting commissions are endangered, though, at least the ones established by ballot initiative. Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission was only decided 5-4, with Kennedy the deciding vote. It's entirely possible that they get ruled unconstitutional. Legislature-created commissions would be fine, but then you're relying on norms to prevent GOP governments from just throwing them out, and, well.

There is also the avenue of litigation based on state constitutions, which is what got the PA gerrymander thrown out. 49 states have similar language in their constitution. Obviously, you need a sympathetic state Supreme Court.

I know that there was progress on both fronts in this election. Does anyone have a count of how many states are still subject to Republican gerrymandering, ie where Republicans are in charge of a partisan redistricting process?

I'd really have to dig into it - it will not surprise you that every state does things their own way. Sometimes the governor has a role, sometimes not, etc. I can say that, currently 22 states have a GOP trifecta (GA left off, FL included): AK, ID, UT, AZ, ND, SD, NE, TX, OK, IA, MO, AR, IN, OH, WV, KY, TN, AL, MS, SC, FL, WY.

IA has a non-partisan commission, but it is statutory, and could be thrown out. UT had a commission on the ballot, looks like it will likely not pass. MO just passed a commission. AZ has a commission. OH has something of a commission, not a great one. I think everywhere else we need to flip a chamber or governor.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:22 PM on November 10 [2 favorites]


GA: Kemp % down to 50.28%. Abrams needs to net about 21k more votes to force a runoff.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:30 PM on November 10 [12 favorites]


An interesting twist on the high turnout in CA: @rpyers: If there are 12.3M votes in the CA governor's race, the signature threshold for future ballot initiatives would rise from 365,880 to 615,000 for statutes and from 585,407 to 984,000 for constitutional amendments, making efforts to qualify future props considerably more expensive.

Given the state of many of our initiatives, I'm not convinced it's inherently a bad thing to make them harder to get on the ballot, but this will hurt the less-well-funded efforts, which are often better.
posted by zachlipton at 7:36 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]


Latest AZ numbers:

* Senate: Sinema [D] +29,832 (1.443%)
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D] +43,563 (2.133%)
* Sec of State: Gaynor [R] +2,008 (0.097%) => This is now in the recount zone.


Apparently 264k ballots outstanding, 198K from Maricopa.

Also a very close legislative race:

* SD28: McGee [R] +617 (0.748%)
posted by Chrysostom at 7:38 PM on November 10 [7 favorites]


Latest count in California races:

CA-10: Harder [D] +3,307
CA-39: Kim [R] +2,672
CA-45: Walters [R] +2,020
posted by Chrysostom at 7:44 PM on November 10 [2 favorites]


@ElectProject: Voter turnout update: now up to an estimated 115.2 million people voted for a turnout rate of 48.9%. If this holds, 2018 will beat 1966's 48.7% and will be the highest midterm turnout rate since 1914's 50.4%
posted by Chrysostom at 7:47 PM on November 10 [27 favorites]


You know, I'm not sure we've talked enough about Rohrabacher's loss. The guy was a flat-out Russian agent.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:59 PM on November 10 [69 favorites]


My understanding is that Canada, for one, has been debating those and dragging its feet on implementing either.

It was one of Trudeau Jr's key campaigning points - but once he won, he rushed through an abysmal study to show that of course Canadians weren't interested. There was a similar thing in Ontario about a decade ago: the hand-picked citizens' assembly meant to promote the idea was hugely skewed to those who would support the status quo, so that's what we've still got.
posted by scruss at 8:00 PM on November 10


538 has moved AZ Senate to Likely D and FL Senate to Likely R, which strikes me as correct according to my in depth study of the situation (ie my gut).
posted by Justinian at 8:24 PM on November 10 [4 favorites]


You know, I'm not sure we've talked enough about Rohrabacher's loss. The guy was a flat-out Russian agent.

Is it really and truly official? Like, mathematically impossible for Rohrabacher to win now? I know AP has called it, but I don't think I can really go off about this until it's officially official. My mom and sister live in that district. If Dana "I Was Into Treason Before It Was Cool" Rohrabacher is really and truly gone, I will be incandescent with joy.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 8:44 PM on November 10 [13 favorites]


Well, it's not *official* until the state certifies the ballots, which I think is 38 days after Election Day? But I feel pretty safe saying this one is done.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:47 PM on November 10 [5 favorites]


I just came here to say FUCK DANA ROHRABACHER and I haven't even lived near to that part of the world in almost 10 years.
posted by loquacious at 11:09 PM on November 10 [22 favorites]


Some reliable sources here in CA-10 are saying that Denham is finished, that it's nearly impossible for him at this point to pull out enough votes to recover his lead. The San Joaquin Registrar of Voters (who by the way is a terrific public servant and we're fortunate to have her) told me yesterday morning that the next release of vote counts will be out on Tuesday, and I imagine that Stanislaus County will follow suit. So we should have a better picture then.
posted by ogooglebar at 11:22 PM on November 10 [3 favorites]


Rohrabacher lost! That means the one person other than Donald Trump that McCarthy and Ryan said was on Putin's payroll is out! And Paul Ryan himself is out!

And Dave Brat is out! Bannon's pet candidate, the same year Cambridge Analytica stole 87 million Facebook profiles and the Internet Research Agency started targeting American elections!

And even though I think Whitaker is an obstruction of justice tool, I still can't shake the feeling that Sessions was too close to Kislyak and to Bannon/Cambridge Analytica to have been uninvolved. So part of me is glad he is out too, though now we have this Whitaker crisis to deal with...

And Flynn and Bannon left a long time ago.

And Wilbur Ross is rumored to be on the chopping block!

You guys realize that's almost my whole personal list of "suspected Russian agents in the US government"? Only Ross and DeVos are left, in the executive branch. (Well, and Trump.) And only Nunes (plus his cronies Gaetz and Gohmert) in the House... and McConnell himself in the Senate. And I really think those guys are just more "generally corrupt" and willing to go along with anything for power, than loyal to Russia in particular. (Lindsey Graham I think better of, so I tend to assume he is being blackmailed rather than being corrupt. I feel like this is the charitable interpretation of his actions.)

I mean... I appreciate that we are still short on evidence of any of those guys being actual Russian agents rather than just giant dickweeds. (Though it's not like there's ZERO evidence.) But whether they made any knowing corrupt bargains or not, Rohrabacher, Ryan, Brat, Sessions, Flynn, and Bannon were certainly furthering Putin's interests. They are all are now OUT of government, and that makes me feel safer.
posted by OnceUponATime at 4:42 AM on November 11 [53 favorites]


Kansas: Davis Hammet reflects on the last five years of work on LGBTQ activism and voter registration and turnout.

California: One of the elections on Tuesday was for Trustee Area 5 in my old school district, Lodi Unified School District in northern/central California. The entire race was missing from 545 ballots; voters did not have the opportunity to vote for any candidate.
“It’s not a common error, but it does happen,” [San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters Melinda] Dubroff said Wednesday. “Usually we find out about it well before Election Day. Voters receive their voter ballot and voter information pamphlet in late September, early October. So errors like this are usually brought to the attention of the registrar prior to Election Day. But it was our mistake.”

In a written statement, Dubroff added, “We sincerely apologize to the 545 people who were not able to vote on this particular race and are now diligently working to see how the problem can be resolved and prevented in the future.”
posted by brainwane at 7:48 AM on November 11 [8 favorites]


ogooglebar, I spent many years living in Stockton (I cut my teeth with the Peace & Justice Network folks) and it is just jawdroppingly amazing to me that Harder might win CA-10. Your work has made a huge difference and thank you.

And in case you have more info about how the San Joaquin Registrar of Voters is responding to the LUSD ballot mistake, I'd welcome it. How does a Registrar make up for something like this? Since the margin between the winning and losing candidates was much larger than the number of misprinted ballots, does that preclude a do-over special election?
posted by brainwane at 7:54 AM on November 11 [9 favorites]


I’m in CA-48, and as you can imagine all the energy has been on the Dem side, first during the tight primary, and especially during the general. I was door knocked half a dozen times, got plenty of calls and texts. Signs everywhere, lots of mail. Rouda was all over meeting people, getting himself seen, motivating his staff and volunteers. Strong social media presence. Etc.

Still, despite such massive disparity in energy and enthusiasm, the final result is going to be a spread of 10-15k votes to Rouda, a couple of percentage points. I don’t know what it means, except that inertia is a powerful force.
posted by notyou at 8:30 AM on November 11 [5 favorites]


I'd link to the NYT piece about how the midterms did not "decide" if the progressive-or-centrist approach works for Dems vis-á-vis the 2020 POTUS election, because y'know what, fuck the NYT.

But it's a fair topic in that it's mathematically arguable. It isn't actually arguable IMO because Trump broke everything and GRAR, but also because I've seen decades and decades where milquetoast banker-friendly, maybe-the-R's-will-defect candidates get humiliatingly crushed. Those days are over. Protect the vote. Promote women. Save the Earth. No waffles. Fiat justitia ruat cælum!

Fresh / Funky 2020. Let's get it.
posted by petebest at 8:35 AM on November 11 [5 favorites]


@Taniel
**If** every county's remaining ballots comes in as the county has so far (and if anything they've tended to be Dem leaning), Sinema would win the Senate seat *and* Katie Hobbs (D) would overtake Steve Gaynor (R) in the SoS race.
posted by chris24 at 9:07 AM on November 11 [9 favorites]


Voters receive their voter ballot and voter information pamphlet in late September, early October.

Wait. What is this? People are supposed to mail you a pamphlet with ballot information?
posted by ragtag at 9:48 AM on November 11 [1 favorite]


I am so hoping for Katie. She’s my state senator and she is super smart. I’ve no doubt she’d make a kickass Secretary of State. Not to mention the pleasure of keeping that vote-suppressing Kobach Klone Gaynor out.
posted by Superplin at 9:51 AM on November 11 [8 favorites]


People are supposed to mail you a pamphlet with ballot information?

CA does that because CA has way more elective offices than NY does and also every election there are approximately ninety baskrillion ballot propositions.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 9:55 AM on November 11 [5 favorites]


ragtag I know I get a booklet that has voting information in it (locations, dates, times, etc.) along with a sample ballot in English and Spanish.
posted by sperose at 9:56 AM on November 11


Thanks, GCU and sperose.

I wish they did that here. It's damn near impossible to find out who's on the ballot and, even if I manage to, to find out anything about any candidates at the local or county level. :(
posted by ragtag at 9:58 AM on November 11


From Think Progress: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) seems to believe that Democrats’ insistence that all votes be counted is a sign of them trying to “steal” the election in Florida. “They are trying to steal this election,” Graham said on Fox News’ Hannity Friday evening. “It’s not going to work.”

I read this on Twitter and my heart almost skipped a beat. I had an actual, physical response. I keep thinking we cannot get anymore Brave New World, anymore 1994 and here we fucking well are. Time to pull up my socks, and get back to fighting tomorrow. Still plenty to fight.
posted by Bella Donna at 10:11 AM on November 11 [14 favorites]


People are supposed to mail you a pamphlet with ballot information?

Pennsylvania doesn't even bother to send you a note telling you where your polling place is. Usually the democrats send me a sample ballot with their endorsed choices but you have to dig around online to find the official ballot beforehand.
posted by octothorpe at 10:28 AM on November 11 [3 favorites]




Interesting thing for a candidate in MS to say. Like "cotton-picking" and "monkey around", the dogwhistles are bullhorns these days.

Lamar White, Jr. (Bayou Brief)
"If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row"- Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith says in Tupelo, MS after Colin Hutchinson, cattle rancher, praises her.

Hyde-Smith is in a runoff on Nov 27th against Mike Espy.

VIDEO
posted by chris24 at 11:37 AM on November 11 [5 favorites]


lynching symbolism aside, what the hell does that even mean?
posted by murphy slaw at 12:04 PM on November 11 [15 favorites]


I am glad I placed all my bets for the 2020 US Presidential election before these mid-terms, as the odds have considerably shortened on desired choices. Am reckoning on needing a new laptop by the end of 2020 so if either Amy (Klobuchar) or Beto (O'Rourke) are the Democrat candidates, then I'll win enough for a decent Windows laptop - and if Amy wins the presidency, then I'll win enough to quite possibly get a top of the range MacBook Pro.

(though I'm hoping that only the latter part of my prediction of a year and a half ago becomes true)
posted by Wordshore at 12:14 PM on November 11 [1 favorite]


Daniel [@Taniel] Nichanian, Voting rights and wrongs: There's progress around the country, but not in progressive New York, in which New York is now controlled by Democrats, and should fix its horrible election system.
posted by zachlipton at 12:37 PM on November 11 [7 favorites]


lynching symbolism aside, what the hell does that even mean?

I think it means 'I'd do anything for this charmer, even go to a *wink wink* horrible thing.'
posted by chris24 at 12:44 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Lindsey Graham I think better of, so I tend to assume he is being blackmailed rather than being corrupt. I feel like this is the charitable interpretation of his actions.

Very charitable!

Graham used to be McCain's lickspittle, which held him to a certain minimum level of decency. But now he's Trump's lickspittle and anything goes.
posted by nnethercote at 12:50 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Wait. What is this? People are supposed to mail you a pamphlet with ballot information?

Depends on where you live. Add this to the "We need national standards for elections" pile.
posted by mikelieman at 1:03 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Graham's up in 2020.

*cracks metaphorical knuckles*
posted by petebest at 1:26 PM on November 11 [11 favorites]


Wait... People are supposed to mail you a pamphlet with ballot information?

We get ours at the library, courtesy of the Maine chapter of the League of Women Voters. It's also available online, including in Somali and Arabic.

You should see if the LWV does that for your area as well.
posted by LeLiLo at 1:59 PM on November 11


It's damn near impossible to find out who's on the ballot and, even if I manage to, to find out anything about any candidates at the local or county level.

I think this is pretty true for local races all over, even here in California where we get a sample ballot and an official guide with statements from candidates. Most of the local offices are "apolitical" and the candidates calibrate their statements and campaign lit to be as anodyne and widely appealing as possible, making it hard to distinguish platform differences.

It really should change all over, but in the meantime I see this as a major untapped opportunity for progressive groups. For a couple cycles I'd been posting my own ballot recommendations on social media for friends to crib from, but this year I coordinated with my local DSA to put together a comprehensive guide for the whole area. If you can get a bunch of volunteers together it actually makes the research part pretty easy, since everyone can just take on a couple races, and then you wind up with a recommendation for everything on the ballot, with a description of the logic leading to it, that people can use indiscriminately or as a jumping off point for their own research. Ours was very well received, and in terms of labor exerted to political influence gained I feel like it worked out favorably to the time we spent canvassing. The League of Women Voters usually has something and I know some Indivisibles are doing it, but I really think voter guides should just be a standard part of running a local-level progressive group. The more there are, the better, but every town should have at least one. You can bet the Republicans are doing it.
posted by contraption at 2:00 PM on November 11 [9 favorites]


One fun thing to do is to track down the personal social media accounts of people running for local office, their retweets and FB likes often tell a markedly different story than their official info.
posted by contraption at 2:08 PM on November 11 [18 favorites]


CNN: 'It's impossible' to finish recount by deadline, Palm Beach county election supervisor says
posted by Chrysostom at 2:43 PM on November 11 [1 favorite]


Porter County, IN repercussions:
In light of a lengthy list of election woes for Porter County’s midterm election, including a preliminary tally of results that wasn’t complete until Friday, the Porter County Board of Commissioners and two members of the County Council are asking for the immediate resignation of Clerk Karen Martin.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:47 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Today in Florida, the Republican mirror reared its ugly head once again as our corrupt (and craven) AG is now threatening election officials in Broward and Palm Beach counties because they are counting votes as required by law. It would be shocking how blatantly political (and likely illegal) it is for the AG to make any statement at all given the lack of any evidence of wrongdoing in the canvassing process, but it's pretty much par for the course for the corrupt gang that has been running the state for the past 8 years.

Also, our delightful Governor Skeletor has sued to have agencies under his control and loyal to him take custody of the ballots and machinery when any time counting is not actively ongoing. No, that's not creating a situation ripe for abuse and the clear appearance of impropriety. Not in the least. /s
posted by wierdo at 3:25 PM on November 11 [6 favorites]


You probably can’t have an actual “tie goes to the runner” election law, but the idea that a state government can manage an election so badly that it becomes impossible to determine a winner at all, and that becomes the basis of their victory, is just totally obscene.
posted by gerryblog at 4:00 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Arizona update: Sinema lead now at 32K+. More importantly, Hobbs now leads SoS by 150.
posted by azpenguin at 4:10 PM on November 11 [17 favorites]


AZ SoS has been called for Republicans by AP...did AP make an unusual amount of premature calls this year or am I just seeing the same few over and over again?
posted by lalex at 4:17 PM on November 11


Considering that Katie Hobbs is currently up--sure, only by 150 votes, but up--that does seem premature.

(Oops, quasi-jinx, azpenguin!)
posted by Superplin at 4:20 PM on November 11


AP called that race on election night, I believe. They may have been a little premature.
posted by azpenguin at 4:21 PM on November 11 [2 favorites]


Re: Arizona. This was on a day when Pima County, one of the bluest parts of the state with a few tens of thousands of votes still outstanding, didn't post any additional counting.

SoS is still definitely up in the air if the red parts of Maricopa County are getting counted late (there's a theory that they are). However, in the Senate race, it's hard for me to believe that McSally has a ~14% advantage in the remaining ~230,000 ballots still outstanding statewide.

Even if the remaining votes in Pima and Pinal end up mostly canceling each other out, then McSally would have to win the remaining votes in Maricopa something like 95,000 to 65,000 to even get within range of pulling this one out.
posted by kyrademon at 4:23 PM on November 11 [3 favorites]


It seems like the media and a whole slew of election night traditions are adapting poorly to elections with huge levels of both absentee/postal participation and early voting. I’m sure that historical levels of turnout exacerbated the above, too.
posted by murphy slaw at 4:25 PM on November 11 [22 favorites]


Latest AZ numbers:

* Senate: Sinema [D] +32,640 (1.552%)
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D] +47,126 (2.268%)
* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +150 (0.097%) => First Hobbs lead

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +643 (0.763%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +1462 (0.89%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district
posted by Chrysostom at 4:30 PM on November 11 [1 favorite]


If these leads hold, I believe these would be the first statewide Dem wins in Arizona since 2008.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:30 PM on November 11 [7 favorites]


Dave Wasserman from Cook has just called it for Sinema.
posted by chris24 at 4:40 PM on November 11 [12 favorites]


Hyde-Smith is overwhelmingly favored in the MS runoff because she’s expected to pull most of the votes that went to McDaniel on election night, right?

Maybe she’s dogfoghorning just to make sure that the most racist wing of the party knows where she’s coming from.
posted by murphy slaw at 4:41 PM on November 11 [10 favorites]


dogfoghorning

I'm stealing this. It is perfect.
posted by Uncle at 4:46 PM on November 11 [13 favorites]


Yeah. Basically, MS Dems (normally) get like 45%. It's really inelastic, each party gets the same every time.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:46 PM on November 11 [1 favorite]


Remaining ballots to be counted in AZ appear to be as follows:

Pima (very blue): ~36,300
Coconino (very blue): ~6,100

Pinal (very red): ~21,600 -- likely to update again today
Various other counties (very red): ~1,000

Maricopa (weirdly purple): ~162,000

My guesstimate would be that Sinema will add around 5000 more votes to her lead in the blue counties and lose around 2750 more votes from her lead in the red counties, which would raise her current lead to somewhere around 34,000 before the remainder of Maricopa is taken into account. McSally would basically need to win quite close to 100,000 of the remaining votes in Maricopa to win, around 60% of the vote.
posted by kyrademon at 4:56 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


Some more ballots came in on the AZ election, not sure from where. They reduced Sinema's lead by about 350 votes and also put Gaynor back into the lead by 259. (Edit: looks like the ballots came from Pinal. McSally gained 350 votes from a batch of 6800. That is a very bad batch for her this late in the game.)
posted by azpenguin at 5:15 PM on November 11 [4 favorites]


That was Pinal County, reporting as expected. That was 6879 more votes, leaving somewhere around 15,000 left to count in Pinal.

Honestly, although it's hard to watch Hobbs drop back down, that is *not* a good result for the Republicans. That's a super-red county.
posted by kyrademon at 5:19 PM on November 11 [6 favorites]


JINX! (And I love it!)
posted by azpenguin at 5:19 PM on November 11


@rpyers:
🚨A late update today from Kern County has #CA21 Republican @RepDavidValadao's lead taking a substantial hit, tightening by 3,552 votes and shrinking from 5,378 down to 1,826 votes. Of the 11,540 votes from the heavily Democratic Kern portion, 65.4% went to Dem TJ Cox.
posted by lalex at 7:06 PM on November 11 [3 favorites]


Valadao would be a stunner.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:22 PM on November 11


538 is moving CA-21 from called to "likely R" while they, as Trump would say, try to figure out what the hell is going on and where the remaining ballots are.

Wasserman thinks Valadao will pickup a larger lead again as more ballots are counted.
posted by zachlipton at 7:36 PM on November 11 [1 favorite]


Interesting finding - Dems most overperformed vs 2016 in really red districts. Less so in purpler districts, not at all in blue.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:53 PM on November 11 [15 favorites]


The legacy of Greg Orman's independent campaign for Kansas

As many of you might remember, Greg Orman was the centrist potential spoiler in the Laura Kelly v. Kobach fight. Many of us in Kansas were panicked that Orman was going to guarantee a Kobach victory. This great article by Chris Reeves, Kansas DNC member, gives the details on how the Kelly campaign responded, how they turned Orman from a liability into an asset which led to Kobach running a lazy, ineffectual campaign, and the negative fallout from Orman's run.
posted by Teegeeack AV Club Secretary at 8:50 PM on November 11 [16 favorites]


Democrats Who Voted to Deregulate Wall Street Got Wiped Out in a Setback for Bank Lobbyists: "The most high-profile bipartisan legislation of the Trump era turned out to be electoral poison — or at least, not a prophylactic — for the Senate Democrats who decided to support it, which could serve as a lesson for party leaders wishing to join with the president on other bills next year."
posted by homunculus at 8:55 PM on November 11 [12 favorites]


everything coming out of kansas these days indicates that kris kobach lost because he thought there was no possible way he could lose.

white supremacist patriarchy is a hell of a drug,
posted by murphy slaw at 9:20 PM on November 11 [11 favorites]


I mean...maybe? I think the problem is that everyone likes to interpret every victory (or defeat) as endorsing their own policy positions, or strategic preferences. "Hillary did X, and she lost, therefore we must not do X!" But really, everything has a 1,000 causes.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:21 PM on November 11 [16 favorites]


Why It’s a Big Deal That Four Black Candidates Won Their State Attorney General Races: "The candidates have made strong pledges on criminal justice reform, protection of immigrant families, and much more."
posted by homunculus at 9:44 PM on November 11 [10 favorites]


But really, everything has a 1,000 causes.

Yeah there's a reason why "Our loss/win/draw in X shows that we should adopt all of my preferred policy positions" is a running joke on Twitter.
posted by Justinian at 10:13 PM on November 11


Democrats Who Voted to Deregulate Wall Street Got Wiped Out in a Setback for Bank Lobbyists:

Some, though not all; Stabenow, Tester, Manchin, and Kaine were all reelected.
posted by Jpfed at 10:23 PM on November 11


I did a bit of volunteering for Beto so I was sent a copy of the message; if anybody wants to host/post it elsewhere I'll forward the text to them if they promise to post the URL here.

@lauraolin “While there is loss, I also feel intense gratitude, waves of it every day. How was I so lucky to be part of something so amazing?”

Beto’s thank-you email is one for the ages.
[full text in images follows]
posted by scalefree at 11:42 PM on November 11 [9 favorites]


Beto O’Rourke helped turn Texas courts blue: "Despite the Texas Democratic representative’s narrow loss to Republican incumbent Ted Cruz in his bid for the US Senate, the long-shot candidate’s campaign efforts brought change to local courts at the trial and appellate levels."
posted by homunculus at 12:10 AM on November 12 [22 favorites]




Tweet from David Wasserman:
Interesting: former Olympic gold medal cyclist Marty "The Blade" Nothstein (R) leads Susan Wild (D) by *58 votes* for #PA15 Rep. Charlie Dent (R)'s unexpired term (Wild easily beat Nothstein in the redrawn #PA07 for the full term).

The reason this is so fascinating: we don't usually get to answer "What would've happened had the old lines remained in place?" But in PA, we had two races taking place *simultaneously* under two maps. Old lines: Dems won #PA07, lost #PA15. New lines, Dems won both.
I mean, it’s news to no one that redistricting affects the outcome of a race, but it’s rare to see such a stark demonstration of that.
posted by Kattullus at 12:28 AM on November 12 [15 favorites]


Lawrence Lessig: Beto O'Rourke's biggest blind spot cost him Texas. Democrats, take note: Progressive ideas may be in vogue, but the lesson of 2018 is that what the party needs most is a movement of reformers

There's lots of other paths Beto could have taken & maybe some of them would have won.
But none of them would have been Beto. From his email:
We were doing this for one another, doing this the right way, doing this for our country at what we all know to be a defining moment of truth.

The loss is bitter, and I don’t know that I’ve been able to fully understand it. I try not to ask what I could have done differently because I don’t know that there is an end to those questions or thoughts. There are a million different decisions I could have made, paths I could have taken, things I could have said or not said, said better or differently. I did my best, everyone did. For our democracy to work, for us to be able to continue to work together, it’s important to be at peace with the outcome.

But what remains is this: I’m the luckiest guy in the world to have had the chance to do this with you. To bring power and joy to politics. People instead of PACs. Communities instead of corporations. Polls and consultants left to the wind and hopefully to the past. To have the confidence to move with the courage of our convictions. To open our hearts to one another. To not allow our differences (of party, of geography, of race or anything else) to divide us. To not know how it would end but to know that we had to give it everything.
“I pass the test”, he said. “I will diminish, and go into the West and remain Beto.”
posted by scalefree at 12:55 AM on November 12 [40 favorites]


Didn't Lawrence Lessig fuck off already?
posted by fullerine at 1:02 AM on November 12 [21 favorites]


I think Lawrence Lessig is a very smart man with a lot of good things to say about technology, democracy, and privacy, but that article is ill-informed from start to finish.

He begins with the assumption that Texas's senatorial seat would naturally have gone to Beto O'Rourke, if only he hadn't avoided the subject of "campaign finance." He then contrasts this to a better-performing midterm loser, Billie Sutton, who ran for governor of South Dakota as a Democrat on a "let's clean up corruption in our state capital" platform. The glaring but unspoken difference is that "fixing dirty money in our government" is a reasonable thing to expect from a governor, but not from one voice among 50 (or 435 if you count both houses) way off in Washington.

He also assumes that Texas conservatives entered into the election with a fair mind toward both their crusading hero Ted Cruz, and a representative from the party that would "let NASTY PELOSHIT destroy our faith, freedom, and family."

I think he's operating from an assumption that most Americans think like him, just with variations along a political spectrum. (He also really needs to read God Save Texas by Lawrence Wright.)
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 1:09 AM on November 12 [18 favorites]


Yeah all of that. But more than anything Lessig doesn't get Beto. Last week I was all over Lessig's reform idea, that contrasting his platform with Cruz, the GOP & Trump's corruption would be a winning move. And maybe it would have. But here's the thing Lessig doesn't (& I didn't fully) get: Beto's a lot like Jesus, but nicer. For him to go negative would be denying himself. He'd rather lose. And so he did.
posted by scalefree at 1:33 AM on November 12 [9 favorites]


"Beto's a lot like Jesus, but nicer." There were moments that I was hoping that he was going to be ass-kicking Jesus at the Temple or exorcize demons in a herd of swine guy, but you know, he came not to destroy but fulfill and what he did was not too bad at all. Maybe this first political defeat is the necessary time he needs in the wilderness to hone himself into a sharper instrument.

I still hope he stays in the fray. We need as many shoulders to the stone as possible and he made a heck of a case. I wonder if there will be Cruz regrets amongst the voters when yet again, he will amble off to DC and comeback like the locusts in a few years time.
posted by jadepearl at 1:55 AM on November 12 [6 favorites]


The other thing about South Dakota is they very recently had a huge statewide corruption scandal involving Republicans. The voters passed a huge anti-corruption referendum in 2016 and the SD GOP immediately used "emergency" powers to repeal it and keep it from going into effect. And prevent the state from voting on a future referendum. Their public reasons was the voters didn't know what they were doing.

And SD is corrupt as hell. In 2015, the Center for Public Integrity gave South Dakota an "F" grade in its "state integrity investigation." It ranked 47th overall and 49th in transparency of "lobbying disclosure."

So yeah, corruption is a bit more of a public and personal issue in SD than TX.
posted by chris24 at 5:20 AM on November 12 [23 favorites]


Yeah, if Lessig understood what to do politically then his Mayday Pac might have been more effective and Lessig's own campaign for president would have had more meaningful and lasting results. He is super smart and I admire many of the things he fights for. Campaign reform is important. But Lessig doesn't know what he is talking about here. Beto did as good a job as anyone could have possibly done. It is simply bullshit to pretend Beto could have won "if only". Nope. Beto was tilling the field for down ballot races and future elections, and may the universe bless him for that. He and everyone who supported him, MeFites included, did an amazing and worthy job.
posted by Bella Donna at 5:38 AM on November 12 [20 favorites]


I really don't like the idea of hero-worshipping politicians, but the more I read about the local successes of Democrats in Texas in the 2018 mid-terms, the more I think O'Rourke is a genuine god-damned hero.

Not to mention that before the election the general consensus was there was no way he could win, so for anyone now to say that he lost because of this one weird thing is... just useless.
posted by maggiemaggie at 5:47 AM on November 12 [20 favorites]




the more I think O'Rourke is a genuine god-damned hero

O’Rourke/Gillum 2020

Literally the only choice that excites people without triggering 2016 PTSD
posted by schadenfrau at 7:12 AM on November 12 [5 favorites]


O’Rourke/Gillum 2020

Beto's said in no uncertain terms that he's not running. Says he's missed enough of his kids' lives, wants to be there to raise them. (I am not his spokesman)
posted by scalefree at 7:21 AM on November 12 [9 favorites]


It seems like the media and a whole slew of election night traditions are adapting poorly to elections with huge levels of both absentee/postal participation and early voting.

This is where I cherish the British model of one declaration (with all the candidates sharing a stage) when the votes are counted.

Yes, it's easier when constituencies have around 55,000 voters each election. Yes, there are geographical and legal difficulties. Yes, there is the political challenge of crooks attempting to declare victory or spread conspiracy theories about fraud. But elections shouldn't operate in a zone of uncertainty defined by the narrative demands of election night television and third parties making calls based on precedents that might not apply. It's shabby.
posted by holgate at 8:04 AM on November 12 [5 favorites]


Oooh, McGovern is my MIL's rep. He's a good egg.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:13 AM on November 12 [1 favorite]


Grijalva as Natural Resources chair... yes! I'm in his district and I shall definitely be in his staff's ear about a couple of things related to the committee.
posted by azpenguin at 8:20 AM on November 12 [6 favorites]


brainwane, funny you should ask. I was in a meeting with the San Joaquin Registrar Friday morning, when the 545 LUSD ballots came up. Bottom line, they’re going to finish counting votes before anything else. If it turns out 545 votes would have affected the outcome, then they’ll figure out what to do next. If you like, I can MeMail you when I learn more.
posted by ogooglebar at 9:49 AM on November 12 [1 favorite]


The Republican position on elections is to count the votes only until you get the result you want. In Bush v. Gore and again today in Florida, they want to stop short, because they liked the current results. For Al Franken in 2008, they kept counting for eight months because they didn't like the current results. Franken was prevented from voting in the Senate until the following July.

Whenever Republicans say the count is taking too long, just remind them of Franken.
posted by JackFlash at 10:05 AM on November 12 [61 favorites]


McSally doesn't have a leg to stand on when she complains about how long the count is taking. She won her first term by 167 votes. That took 8 days before she claimed victory in that one, and it wasn't official until a month later due to a recount.
posted by azpenguin at 10:53 AM on November 12 [9 favorites]


McSally doesn't have a leg to stand on when she complains about how long the count is taking.

is McSally actually complaining about the delay? she seems to be the only republican who isn't. (probably because she's likely to get a seat in the senate regardless of the outcome of the election)
posted by murphy slaw at 11:20 AM on November 12 [4 favorites]


No, ever since they settled the lawsuit, AZ Republicans have simmered down, for the most part. Ducey and Flake have come out with statements that every vote counts and there’s no one “cooking the books”.
posted by Weeping_angel at 11:28 AM on November 12 [8 favorites]


"See you down the road."

Read Beto O'Rourke's really good thank you letter to his supporters.
posted by bz at 11:48 AM on November 12 [7 favorites]


Broward Judge Will NOT Issue Injuction In Rick Scott Motion To Impound Broward Election Equipment & Records
FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Injunction denied. That’s the decision Monday from a Broward Circuit Court judge at an emergency hearing involving a lawsuit filed by Florida Governor Rick Scott, asking to impound ballots and machines at the Broward Election office.

Instead of granting the injunction, Judge Jack Tuter suggested the addition of three additional armed Broward Sheriff’s Deputies at election headquarters who do not report directly to Elections Supervisor Dr. Brenda Snipes, like other deputies do.

Judge Tuter allowed the attorneys to meet privately and come up with a plan that everyone could agree on and when court reconvened, all sides agreed to the suggested plan of three additional deputies. One will monitor cameras, one will monitors USB drives that contain votes and the third will be a supervisor who the other two report to. They will not report to the supervisor’s office.
posted by murphy slaw at 11:55 AM on November 12 [11 favorites]


These independent redistricting commissions are endangered, though, at least the ones established by ballot initiative. Arizona State Legislature v. Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission was only decided 5-4, with Kennedy the deciding vote. It's entirely possible that they get ruled unconstitutional. Legislature-created commissions would be fine, but then you're relying on norms to prevent GOP governments from just throwing them out, and, well.

After what happened in Wisconsin (Dems got 54% of the votes and 36% of the seats) I've wondered about how WI could adopt a fairer redistricting process. It's a little tricky, because the Roberts objection to independent redistricting commissions may end up torpedoing any redistricting body separate from a legislature.

Currently, WI districts are defined in the statutes; the state constitution mandates that new ones be drawn up after the census. Any statutory fix can simply be overridden by the legislature; the judiciary is not interested in policing whether the legislature complies with laws. So if we want to constrain how the legislature makes districts, it has to be by a state constitutional amendment. Once it's in the constitution the courts would be able to help enforce it.

Such an amendment could propose an explicit procedure for the generation of boundaries, but it's hard to make a non-gameable procedure (and yes, I-cut-you-freeze is gameable). My guess is that, instead, it should probably just extend the existing criteria laid out in the state constitution regarding district boundaries to say something about proportionality, competitiveness, or avoiding excessive wasted votes, etc.

WI state constitutional amendments are initiated by the legislature, not the citizenry. That means that, if Evers can force the adoption of a fairer 2020 map, the legislature after those maps were adopted (presumably bluer than the current legislature) would be the first that would realistically consider taking up a fair redistricting amendment. That feels like a long time from now; the interim is the time to hash out what criteria would be most important or effective, spread the idea of a fair redistricting amendment, and eventually organize a campaign to contact the next blue class of legislators to ask for the introduction of the amendment.
posted by Jpfed at 12:23 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]




That's fantastic! He's still a serial groper.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 12:58 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


Everybody who called Scott's fraud accusations projection, step up and collect your prize: heavily Republican counties in the panhandle allowed at least hundreds of people to vote by email, in violation of state law.
posted by Rhaomi at 1:04 PM on November 12 [21 favorites]


Miami Herald: After Hurricane Michael devastated the Florida Panhandle in October, the top elections official in Bay County allowed about 150 displaced voters to cast ballots by email, even though there is no provision that allows for it in state law.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:04 PM on November 12 [7 favorites]


Human error forces Manatee elections officials to start over with recount

They forgot to push a button and will start over.
posted by zachlipton at 1:06 PM on November 12 [5 favorites]


Pinal County is now all in except for provisionals; they have about 6,000 of those. This has cut Sinema's lead by about 1,000 since yesterday afternoon. McSally already had to thread a pretty fine needle to have a path to victory, but these numbers mean it's going to be even harder. On the downside, Gaynor is up by 1,111 right now. However, Pima and Maricopa haven't reported today.
posted by azpenguin at 1:06 PM on November 12 [2 favorites]


Human error forces Manatee elections officials to start over with recount

Disappointingly, it turns out there's a county named Manatee.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 1:14 PM on November 12 [101 favorites]


Question:

Internet favorite The Bloggess just tweeted a picture of a letter sent out to some voters (names and personal information obscured), which claimed to be a list of "some of your neighbors" along with information on whether they voted in previous years. "After the November 6th election we plan to mail an updated chart," the letter continues; "you and your neighbors will know who voted and who did not."

Is that....even legal?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:20 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


Is that....even legal?

Yes. Voting history -- as in whether you voted, obviously not for whom -- is public record.

I worked with a data guy a few years back who, after we lost largely due to shitty midterm turnout, said he was going to compare the voting rolls to all the people we called who said "I already voted!" and personally call every fucking one of them who lied; I doubt he did, but it is eminently possible.
posted by Etrigan at 1:30 PM on November 12 [9 favorites]


Is that....even legal?

I think this got discussed last election, but that's basically all open information.

We get something similar around her, though ours is a "neighborhood average" we get compared to. Interestingly, my wife (who tends to not vote in primaries and midterms) seems to get them more frequently than I do. We have open primaries here (you pick a party on the ballot, no need to register with one) so I don't think the ones I see have any relation to party - that is, they'd have to be contacting people across the board and not trying to get a larger turnout for one specific party.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 1:31 PM on November 12


Is that....even legal?

It depends on the state, I think; the collection of the bare information is, certainly; it's basically what a voter file is: a list of all the times you voted and all the times there was an election you were registered to vote in but did not vote. Whether or not its legal in a given state to use a voter file for a mailing like this, I don't know. It's legal in some states for some uses similar to this -- I've received two or three of mailers like this in the last few years.

And, from talking to some data folks, guilt-tripping people by sending them a list of their own voting record actually tends to make them more likely to vote in successive elections rather than less likely (although it might make some individuals less likely to vote). Conversely, I've seen examples of mailers sent out suggesting but not quite saying that people will know who you voted for (which they won't) as an attempt to suppress votes, but I don't know how successful that is or isn't.

These letters aren't always accurate, because voter files aren't perfectly accurate, which makes it hella creepy to be outing and shaming you to your neighbors and vice/versa -- sent to an individual about their own record, they'll at least know whether it was right or wrong. This runs a real risk of essentially libeling you (or libeling your neighbors) because it's not necessarily correct.

Unless there's some odd twist with state laws or how they obtained the data (which is public but not necessarily easy to get access to, in some states), 'creepy but legal.'
posted by cjelli at 1:32 PM on November 12



Question:

Internet favorite The Bloggess just tweeted a picture of a letter sent out to some voters (names and personal information obscured), which claimed to be a list of "some of your neighbors" along with information on whether they voted in previous years. "After the November 6th election we plan to mail an updated chart," the letter continues; "you and your neighbors will know who voted and who did not."

Is that....even legal?


We got these here. Much uproar about them but it's public record. Local friends have said that theirs were inaccurate, too.
posted by dilettante at 1:34 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


These letters aren't always accurate, because voter files aren't perfectly accurate

Also presumably because some of the organizations sending them out don't care about being accurate and are just making stuff up.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 1:35 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


These letters aren't always accurate, because voter files aren't perfectly accurate

We got a similar one addressed to my father-in-law, who died last year. The envelope said "[Father-in-law's name], where have you been?" Fortunately I was able to throw it away before my husband saw it
posted by the turtle's teeth at 1:39 PM on November 12 [9 favorites]


It was interesting getting the local town's registration info (for canvassing purposes) to find out who was a Dem and who was GOP, not always who you would think.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:47 PM on November 12


I worked with a data guy a few years back who, after we lost largely due to shitty midterm turnout, said he was going to compare the voting rolls to all the people we called who said "I already voted!" and personally call every fucking one of them who lied; I doubt he did, but it is eminently possible.

A friend and I have an ongoing "parser contest", where the goal is to suck up the entire 16M record NYS voter file in the lowest clock time. You can do a FOIA request online. ( Yeah, we're pathetic and sad ).
posted by mikelieman at 2:04 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


So could one get their own voting record - as in, who they voted for? Just to check that it isn't straight-ticket evil, for example.
posted by petebest at 2:05 PM on November 12


No, you can't get info about *what* your votes were. Just that you did, indeed, vote. You can also get your party affiliation. Some states make this super easy to do online, others require you to go through more hoops to get the data files.
posted by odinsdream at 2:09 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


In Wisconsin at least, who you voted for is not in these databases; just what elections you voted in, your address, and if they believe you are "inactive" (and why they think that, e.g. you're dead). But other states also remember more stuff like your party registration.
posted by Jpfed at 2:10 PM on November 12


The state doesn't *know* who you voted for, that's the point of the secret ballot.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:11 PM on November 12 [16 favorites]


The VoteWithMe app made that information more wildly available for the first time so you could see your contacts' voting records (warning: you may not want to know). It's your party affiliation, which elections you voted in, and for some states, what party's ballot you voted in the primaries. Who you actually voted for is unknowable, and it would be an enormous problem if that wasn't the case.
posted by zachlipton at 2:18 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]


There's been some political science research showing that a sense of peer pressure inspired by messages including the fact that your voting record is public information can boost turnout. I just worked a campagin where we were encouraged to mention this fact on phone calls and at the door.
posted by Theiform at 2:33 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


In San Diego county, knowing address (house number and ZIP) and birthdate returns the voter's name, ID #, registration date, and party affiliation from the registrar of voters; the site also tracks mail ballots.
posted by Iris Gambol at 2:34 PM on November 12


More from Arizona! Pima just reported a batch of votes. Sinema has increased her lead to almost 36,000. And Hobbs has now taken a 3600 vote lead in the SoS race.
posted by azpenguin at 2:45 PM on November 12 [19 favorites]


Whoa on Hobbs. How do we stand on remaining vote being more D or R?
posted by chris24 at 2:52 PM on November 12


According to AZ political gurus on Twitter, the last big GOP area was already counted, so this looks good for Hobbs.
posted by zombieflanders at 2:58 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


@marceelias: As the lead recount lawyer for Senator Nelson, I need your help! If you are a lawyer, please sign up. Otherwise, please share.

Elias is the real deal, if you're a lawyer or know a lawyer who fancies a trip to Florida right about now.
posted by zachlipton at 3:07 PM on November 12 [5 favorites]


I makes no sense to me that Republicans are going all-in on this fraud bullshit over recounts that they are virtually certain to win.
posted by Justinian at 3:09 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


It's a double win for them. If they "prove" that fraud exists, they'll have further reason to make it harder to vote, and they'll show that Democrats really are evil conniving monsters who cannot be trusted and are stealing the nation away from the good people.
posted by Miko at 3:14 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


I makes no sense to me that Republicans are going all-in on this fraud bullshit over recounts that they are virtually certain to win.

Because it's not about winning, it's about destroying faith in elections and democracy. Trump wants to destroy any institution that can possibly constrain him. It's a preview for 2020. With a side helping of giving Trump something to assuage his ego at the blue wave. 'See, they cheated, I didn't really get my ass kicked.'
posted by chris24 at 3:17 PM on November 12 [24 favorites]


> "According to AZ political gurus on Twitter, the last big GOP area was already counted, so this looks good for Hobbs."

As far as I can tell, not quite, but:

1) The last deeply red county with a significant number of votes out (Pinal) is down to 6,000 provisional ballots. Provisional ballots tend to be favorable to Democrats compared to the vote as a whole, and the counts of mail-in and drop-off ballots from Pinal (and everywhere else in AZ) have already been proving to be more favorable to Democrats than the election day count by a considerable margin.

2) There are still two deeply blue counties (Pima and Coconino) with somewhere around 25,000 votes still left uncounted.

3) That leaves 162,000 votes in Maricopa. Maricopa has some deeply blue parts and some deeply red parts -- and it's such a populous county that as goes Maricopa, as goes the state, in general. It's tended to go red overall in the past, but the opposite seems to be happening this year. McSally, in my opinion, has no chance anymore.

Hobbs, now leading, will win if the remaining vote in Maricopa breaks either for the Democrats (as has been happening with all the late-counted votes thus far), breaks even, or even at this point leans slightly to the Republicans but not enough to overcome the remaining vote advantage in Pima and Coconino. It is still possible that the bluer parts of Maricopa got counted first and the bulk of the outstanding votes are from the redder portion. But Republican claims that this is going to happen have started to take on an "it'll happen any day now!" lack of credibility. That being said, 162,000 is a lot of votes considering the margin in the SoS race.

Oddly, the next batch from Maricopa (due to be reported in about half an hour) will only, apparently, be around 19,000 more votes, much less than they've been doing each day thus far. Not sure why, possibly the holiday?
posted by kyrademon at 3:29 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


Georgia's brand spanking new Sec of State Robin Crittenden told county election officials to count absentee ballots even if they lack a voter’s date of birth, as long as the voter’s identity can be verified.

This could possibly affect the governor's race but it will almost definitely affect the GA-7 congressional race where incumbent Rob Woodall (R) leads challenger Carolyn Bourdeaux (D) by ~900 votes in Atlanta's northern suburbs, which were until very recently considered a safe R area.
posted by hydropsyche at 3:34 PM on November 12 [27 favorites]


AZ update:

Current lead for Sinema: 38,197
Current lead for Hobbs: 5667
posted by kyrademon at 4:15 PM on November 12 [7 favorites]


Forgot to close the loop for those not familiar with all 159 counties in Georgia: The GA-7 includes most of Gwinnett County, a now majority-minority county which made headlines because more than 1/3 of the absentee ballots were rejected for no particular reason.
posted by hydropsyche at 4:17 PM on November 12 [10 favorites]


Latest AZ numbers:

* Senate: Sinema [D] +38,197 (1.771%)
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D] +54,057 (2.539%)
* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +5,667 (0.262%)

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +549 (0.644%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +1,030 (0.61%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district

Also, it turns out the threshold for recount in Arizona races with over 25K votes is a discrepancy of *200* votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:31 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]


I makes no sense to me that Republicans are going all-in on this fraud bullshit over recounts that they are virtually certain to win.

Because it's not about winning, it's about destroying faith in elections and democracy.


Also, for a particular sort of asshole (and yes, Trump is absolutely in this sort), winning isn't nearly as much fun as winning while rubbing the other guy's face in how much you cheated to win.
posted by Etrigan at 4:33 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


Here's a fun factoid. Californians represented by the same party in Assembly, State Senate, and US House:

* All Democrats: 12,803,441

* All Republicans: 2,147,712
posted by Chrysostom at 4:36 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


Latest count in CA House races:

CA-10: Harder [D] +3,363
CA-21: Valadao [R] +2,079
CA-39: Kim [R] +2,423
CA-45: Walters [R] +2,009

I believe several counties took today off.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:43 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]


@AP_Politics: BREAKING: Democrat Kyrsten Sinema wins election to U.S. Senate from Arizona. #APracecall at 5:41 p.m.

!!!
posted by zachlipton at 4:45 PM on November 12 [27 favorites]


AP calls AZ Sen for Sinema.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:46 PM on November 12 [16 favorites]


McSally posted a video announcing her concession.

For all the many problems with her, she's managed to not go entirely conspiracy theorist unlike her Florida co-partisans, and while that's an extremely low bar, I guess it's somehow worthy of praise here in 2018.
posted by zachlipton at 4:52 PM on November 12 [27 favorites]


Justinian: I makes no sense to me that Republicans are going all-in on this fraud bullshit over recounts that they are virtually certain to win.

Which "recounts" specifically? For Florida, the message from potus is "Must go with Election Night!" The desire is still to prevent any addition to the initial count and win "by default".

The calculus is: do absolutely nothing and probably/maybe win. Or: fight for a halt and "Eh, this is a good place to stop" and, if successful, definitely win. I see no downside for them giving this assault on democracy a try, unless there's a situation I'm not aware of where they're campaigning to recount on an officially-already-counted-and-won contest.

Or is the risk that calling anything fraudulent casts an air of illegitimacy, so keeping their mouths shut would put them in a better position once the result is certified? That's a possible concern but I think they have the whole narrative worked out. It goes like: Votes happen "in order", and the earlier-counted ones are real, but the later-counted ones are fake/illegal/etc. They're not in much danger from "Wait! You were decrying the process!" because so few people anywhere treat notions of "fraud" as sincere concerns rather than instrumental, so long as a plausible narrative is available to them.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 4:53 PM on November 12 [2 favorites]


HD-06: Thorpe [R] +1,030 (0.61%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district

I'm interested to know how Arizona gets away with multimember districts, given that they've historically been a means of ensuring only white people are elected, so don't survive court challenges. Vermont has them as well, but Vermont is so white that you'd end up with majority-white districts pretty much no matter how you drew the map. I suppose I may naively be assuming white supremacy plays out the same in Arizona as it does on the east coast, despite different history and demographics.
posted by hoyland at 5:07 PM on November 12


Any other Californians have some insight as to why the 36th district is so much more Democratic than the 42nd? I would have thought Corona in the 42nd would have a decent number of Democratic votes but clearly not. Is the Coachella Valley (36) super full of hippies? Liberal richies in Palm Springs?
posted by Justinian at 5:24 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


Well, the fact that Palm Springs has an all LGBT city council might be a clue. The biggest recent scandal was allegations that a woman running for council who was married to a man was only pretending to be bi-sexual to get elected.
posted by JackFlash at 5:39 PM on November 12 [14 favorites]


CNN: What Donald Trump's fact-free claims about elections in Florida and Arizona tell us about 2020
In Arizona, it's similarly hard to figure out what Trump is even talking about. I believe his "SIGNATURES DON'T MATCH" claim is related to potential discrepancies between the signatures on mail-in ballots and those the state has on file for voters. In those instances where a clear discrepancy is found, a call is placed to the voter to ascertain if they were, in fact, the person who had voted. (This is a good explainer on the real story in Arizona.)

The point here is that in both circumstances, Trump is yelling "FRAUD" despite a decided lack of evidence to that end. What appears to be happening -- in both Florida and Arizona -- is that the election law is being followed. Is it a cumbersome process in both places? Absolutely! But that doesn't mean an election is being stolen from anyone. In fact, both Scott and DeSantis are still very likely to win -- as machine recounts very rarely produce huge vote flips, the sort of flips Democrats need to win those states. In Arizona, Sinema appears to be headed to a narrow but not razor-thin win...

Trump's approach is fact-free, yes. But that's nothing new. What IS important, though, is what Trump's baseless claims about the Florida and Arizona races tell us about how he will approach his own re-election race in 2020.
posted by homunculus at 5:42 PM on November 12 [10 favorites]


Well, the fact that Palm Springs has an all LGBT city council might be a clue.

I forgot how much of a LGBT mecca Palm Springs is. Have you seen that New Yorker cover with Manhattan and then... basically nothing but wasteland past the Hudson? Yeah that's me and the 710.
posted by Justinian at 5:44 PM on November 12 [2 favorites]


As for the 42nd, that whole stretch along/between the 15 and the 215 is like so many other rural parts of the state: a mish mash of Ag, exurban enclaves, and threatened wilderness. IOW, coal rollers live there.
posted by notyou at 5:48 PM on November 12


Have you seen that New Yorker cover with Manhattan and then... basically nothing but wasteland past the Hudson?

In Wikipedia, even!
posted by rhizome at 5:55 PM on November 12 [2 favorites]


hoyland: "I'm interested to know how Arizona gets away with multimember districts, given that they've historically been a means of ensuring only white people are elected, so don't survive court challenges. "

Ten states use multi-member districts, at least in part.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:47 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


What IS important, though, is what Trump's baseless claims about the Florida and Arizona races tell us about how he will approach his own re-election race in 2020. From jail.*

* It's the new "in bed".
posted by petebest at 6:59 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]


Is it too early to think about who the Democrats will run for Senate from Iowa in 2020? No, no it is not.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:02 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


i like scholten but putting up a Senate candidate whose only political experience is a (well-run) losing House race seems premature in the extreme? i know that democrats are bemoaning the shallowness of their candidate bench but the way to fix that is to support up-and-comers in races at all levels, not to throw the most promising ones into the fray before they’re ready.
posted by murphy slaw at 7:09 PM on November 12


Another factoid - this is the first time Arizona has had a Dem-majority Congressional delegation since 1967.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:13 PM on November 12 [12 favorites]


What IS important, though, is what Trump's baseless claims about the Florida and Arizona races tell us about how he will approach his own re-election race in 2020.
Maybe it's just me, but all of a sudden I seem to be seeing the phrase "baseless claims" all over the place, as I commented in the (other) mega-thread (based on two articles, from different sources, whose headlines begin "Trump makes a baseless claim..")

I'm not sure but feel as if we're seeing some slight progress towards the press directly confronting the untruthfulness of Trump's statements instead of presenting every issue as "Trump says X, opponents disagree."
posted by Nerd of the North at 7:13 PM on November 12 [6 favorites]


Ten states use multi-member districts, at least in part.

NH doesn't just use multimember districts, they also use floterial districts that sit on top of supersets of other normal districts BECAUSE OF COURSE THEY DO. I swear they failed a sanity check a while back.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 7:17 PM on November 12 [5 favorites]


They also don't number, they give them all names.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:18 PM on November 12


Is it too early to think about who the Democrats will run for Senate from Iowa in 2020? No, no it is not.

Heh, they mention Steve Warnstadt in the end of that - I know him through work, and I always completely forget that he's like, A Name in Iowa politics.

i like scholten but putting up a Senate candidate whose only political experience is a (well-run) losing House race seems premature in the extreme?

Yeah I'm fully on board the Scholten train, but I don't think that would be a good idea. Also, I don't think he would think that, so probably not much of a risk of it happening. I'd bet on seeing him stay involved with IA-4 politics and maybe helping train other red state Dem hopefuls for the next couple of years before going for King's seat again.

What I'm really curious to see is when or if Chris Hall will make a move for higher office, he's super likable and great at retail politics.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:22 PM on November 12 [4 favorites]






AP also called the Superintendent of Public Instruction race for Democrat Kathy Hoffman. They haven't held this office in about 20 years.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:22 PM on November 12 [14 favorites]


Superintendent of Public Instruction

Just an aside to remark on the weird nomenclature in some states.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 8:39 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


That's one of the things I love about this stuff, all the weirdo things that the different states do!
posted by Chrysostom at 8:43 PM on November 12 [10 favorites]


Well, here in Wisconsin, the last Superintendent of Public Instruction race got a fair amount of attention, maybe because we hold them in odd-numbered years. In this decidedly purple state, the Democrat-supported candidate (it's officially a nonpartisan race) thumped his conservative opponent 70-30.

That 2017 winner, Tony Evers, will be our next governor.

So I guess I'm saying -- maybe do pay attention to who wins those SPI elections....
posted by escabeche at 9:00 PM on November 12 [22 favorites]


Speaking of Superintendent of Public Instruction races, state assembly member Tony Thurmond just took the slimmest of leads over charter school COO Marshall Tuck in California, with millions of ballots left to be counted. Updates.
posted by donatella at 9:21 PM on November 12 [18 favorites]


Thanks for that update, donatella, my teacher friends have been sick about the idea of Tuck in that seat.
posted by contraption at 9:35 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


How great is voting in California? Well, let me tell you. You can go to voterstatus.sos.ca.gov and see if your vote-by-mail ballot has been accepted. If you didn’t sign your ballot envelope, it will say that you need to complete an “Unsigned Ballot Statement” and return it to your Registrar’s office so that it is received by 5 pm Wednesday. In San Joaquin County, you can download the form from their website and return it by mail (kind of late for that now), at the Registrar’s office during business hours, in the drop box outside the building housing the Registrar’s office, by fax or by email. The State of California really wants to count our votes.
posted by ogooglebar at 9:48 PM on November 12 [8 favorites]


Our gubernatorial candidate this year, David Garcia, ran for Superintendent of Public Instruction in 2014.

He lost both, unfortunately. I like him, and enough other people do that he beat Steve Farley in the primary, but he can't quite seem to close the deal.

I'm so happy for Kathy! And still holding out hope that Katie Hobbs takes Secretary of State. That would be such a game changer.
posted by Superplin at 9:50 PM on November 12 [2 favorites]


Eh, unseating an incumbent is tough and Ducey had like 20x more money than Garcia.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:54 PM on November 12 [1 favorite]


True. A lot of us were hoping the Red for Ed momentum would carry him across, but it's hard to beat all that sweet Koch Bros. cash.
posted by Superplin at 9:55 PM on November 12 [3 favorites]


ChurchHatesTucker: "Superintendent of Public Instruction

Just an aside to remark on the weird nomenclature in some states.
"

Well also that it's an elected role.
posted by octothorpe at 3:37 AM on November 13


So apparently Fox is peddling more conspiracy theories despite their hiatus from Twitter.

In this case, they allowed a guest to claim that Democrats are trying to steal an election by "letting" people who are in jail and are legally eligible to vote register. In the instant case, as a Republican. Never mind that said guest claims "they didn't pull it off because they didn't send the ballots in time." Or that they published evidence that they or their guest committed at least one criminal act by accessing another person's registration information on Florida's website. (Which would also be a felony violation of federal law)

Such bright people there. They're literally too stupid to report upon criminal activity by their political fellow travelers without also publishing evidence of the crime itself. Sometimes I wonder if a good number of their staff are in fact working against the network. How can they get so many viewers when they are so clearly incompetent?
posted by wierdo at 5:39 AM on November 13 [3 favorites]


Whoa. Federal judge just brought Kemp’s victory lap to a screeching halt. No certifications until Friday—was supposed to be tomorrow—& every clerk must set up a system for voters to find out the status of their provisional ballots.

The ruling is pretty damning of Kemp. When explaining the grounds for considering all provisional ballots, Judge Totenberg specifically cites the evidence (from another case she is also hearing) that the state voter database was unsecured for years and that ex-Sec of State Kemp knew and did nothing about it. The plaintiffs called in a statistician who provided analysis showing a statistically significant increase in the number of provisional ballots this election (compared with 2014 and 2016). The counties must go back to pre-purge election records and look to see if voters who say they were unjustly purged were previously registered to vote at their current address and purged for no good reason and if so then their provisional ballot must be accepted. She has asked for an accounting of every single provisional ballot in the state and why it was rejected and proof that the voters were informed and provided an opportunity (this week, if necessary) to fix the problem if it is fixable.
posted by hydropsyche at 6:12 AM on November 13 [54 favorites]


I should say that Judge Totenberg makes no judgement about whether voters who have disappeared from the database were purged by Kemp or by hackers. She doesn't care. She wants them to have their right to vote.
posted by hydropsyche at 6:13 AM on November 13 [24 favorites]


Judge Totenberg

Because people are stupid, I imagine Nina Totenberg's mentions are a trash fire right now.
posted by zombieflanders at 6:30 AM on November 13 [7 favorites]


Judge Amy Totenberg is NPR reporter Nina Totenberg's sister. The conspiracy theories practically write themselves.

(Gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has a sister, Leslie Abrams, who is a US District Judge in South Georgia. They are outraged.)
posted by hydropsyche at 6:36 AM on November 13 [22 favorites]


Speaking of Superintendent of Public Instruction races, state assembly member Tony Thurmond just took the slimmest of leads over charter school COO Marshall Tuck in California, with millions of ballots left to be counted. Updates.

This news has absolutely made my morning. Thank you.
posted by elsietheeel at 7:24 AM on November 13 [9 favorites]


Something that just occurred to me about yesterday's news of certain Republican-governed counties accepting votes by email. Now, any purely-electronic transmission system definitely bothers me in itself, whether it happens in Florida or California, although I respect the desire to accommodate hurricane victims. But my new thought is: conservatives have so well claimed the narratives about "fraud!" that it wouldn't surprise me if many of them are using "And now there are votes by email! What madness will those scurrilous Democrats perpetrate next?!" as a stop-all-counting-now talking point.

(It's kind of like part of what made Swift Boating so successful: All you had to do was mumble "Republican Democrat something something Vietnam" and you've primed a huge amount of America to accept that Kerry was some sort of draft dodger while Dubya was somehow a war hero, because ~ everyone knows ~ what the parties are like. And it's why Trump can continue to get away with his contempt for the troops.)

This is exactly what we're seeing with respect to all the piles of ballots showing up in unexpected places. Your Townhalls and Daily Callers are painting them as "ballots from nowhere" with the implication that it casts all the more suspicion on things and we should get on with the coronation of our only rightful leaders-by-default. But of course the simplest explanation by far is that they are legitimate provisional ballots that were either misplaced accidentally (because the Broward operation is generally slipshod) or deliberately (to disenfranchise either likely Republican or Democratic votes, I don't know which). Hence, to discount them because they showed up in an airport would be to reward that incompetence and/or malice.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 7:40 AM on November 13 [4 favorites]


The counties must go back to pre-purge election records and look to see if voters who say they were unjustly purged were previously registered to vote at their current address and purged for no good reason and if so then their provisional ballot must be accepted. She has asked for an accounting of every single provisional ballot in the state and why it was rejected and proof that the voters were informed and provided an opportunity (this week, if necessary) to fix the problem if it is fixable.

So weird, the whole building I'm in briefly filled with harp trills and trumpet blasts. Maybe I've suffered a joystroke.

Impeach Kavanaugh and replace him with Totenberg!
posted by Don Pepino at 7:56 AM on November 13 [16 favorites]


ME-02: GOP incumbent Bruce Poliquin led Dem Jared Golden by about 0.6%. However, since no candidate broke 50%, Maine's ranked choice voting will come into play, and voters' second choice will be allocated. Most observers believe this should put Golden over the top. Poliquin has intimated he may pursue legal action if that occurs.
And, surprising no one, he has filed a lawsuit.
posted by Tabitha Someday at 8:03 AM on November 13 [9 favorites]


According to the complaint by Poliquin, “The RCV Act also violates Art. I, § 2 of the United States Constitution, which sets a plurality vote as the qualification for election to the U.S. House of Representatives,” reads the complaint.

I'm not a law-talking guy but I don't see anything in Article 1 Section 2 that indicates that plurality voting must be used...?
posted by Jpfed at 8:14 AM on November 13 [1 favorite]


It doesn't. His case only holds up if you already assume, somewhat circularly, that plurality is the only legitimate means of "choosing". This has been a common argument from opponents of any electoral reform -- it's how the founders did elections, it's the only valid system, end of story.

I think a better case could be made that plurality is what violates this principle, because when it comes to reflecting the people's will it's manifestly inferior to almost every other voting system ever devised. Anyway, if he were correct, then Maine isn't the only state doing it wrong -- every locality with a top-two runoff, of which there are quite a few, would also be in supposed violation.

But more significantly, the people of the state chose ranked choice by referendum! So it doesn't even matter what actual system was then used. If there had been a referendum to decide the next election on a coin flip, then (although it may be legally dicey on Constitutional grounds) that would be the people "choosing" their next representative.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 8:16 AM on November 13 [4 favorites]


On Tuck-Thurmond: I have recently moved to CA and registered to get my ballot in the mail. I did my research and carefully filled it in. Just before sealing the enevelope I went over it with my SO to compare notes and just do a quick double check. Turned out that for some reason I’d made the line for Tuck when I meant to do it for Thurmond. So I had to ask for a new ballot at the polls on E day so I could do it right. If it ends up that Thurmond wins with a super small margin, I will be extra pleased that I took the time to re-do it (I mean, of course, but I won’t say I wasn’t tempted to just leave it be and drop it in the mail...)
posted by AwkwardPause at 8:24 AM on November 13 [10 favorites]




Cool, let's bring the circular firing squad along to the House. All of the Republican House members you could protest and you pick a Democrat? Cool cool cool

How we found 30,823 additional Georgia votes … and why we’re still counting
posted by schroedinger at 9:50 AM on November 13 [28 favorites]


i'm surprisingly okay with AOC being a giant pain in the ass of estabishment democrats as long as she votes with the caucus when it really matters
posted by murphy slaw at 10:03 AM on November 13 [25 favorites]


Democrats furious as one of them finally acts like climate change actually is an emergency.
posted by gerryblog at 10:05 AM on November 13 [31 favorites]


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stages climate protest at Nancy Pelosi's office

This is disingenuous wording: she joined a protest already in progress. She didn't stage the protest.
posted by scrump at 10:06 AM on November 13 [17 favorites]


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stages climate protest at Nancy Pelosi's office

This is disingenuous wording: she joined a protest already in progress. She didn't stage the protest.


Speaking of disingenuous, "stages" can imply insincerity. A staged event has a connotation of phoniness about it.

"Holds climate protest," "joins climate protest," or "protests climate change" are all perfectly cromulent and neutral wordings.
posted by Gelatin at 10:11 AM on November 13 [16 favorites]


You know, one of the things I like best about the Democratic party is that when our people get into office, we still give them crap. We give them crap about their positions, about their conduct, about their actions while in office.

And we should.

Unquestioning loyalty to a leader is anti-democratic. Criticism of a leader, done in good faith regarding matters that actually impact their ability to govern, is our obligation as citizens.

Acting as if simply taking office gives our officials the right to say and do whatever they want, well... that would make us Republicans.

I hope Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez keeps giving everybody hell. They all need it.
posted by MrVisible at 10:12 AM on November 13 [22 favorites]


The point being that Pelosi actually got a climate change bill passed last time she was in charge. It was politically perilous and she had to do everything possible to get it passed. She's also already said the House will be establishing a special climate change committee. You do not need to convince Nancy Pelosi that climate change is important.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:13 AM on November 13 [54 favorites]


Related MeFi post: Reds on the Rise
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 10:13 AM on November 13


Btw, we're supposed to have more UT-04 numbers coming out today. McAdams still looks pretty likely to win, plus we should know more about whether Proposition 4 (non-partisan redistricting) passed.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:41 AM on November 13 [1 favorite]


[I have deleted basically the entire Pelosi fight because GOOD LORD do we not need 472 more rounds on Pelosi: Progressive Slugger or Evil Centrist? and we are short-staffed today so I cannot ride herd on that fight for the next two hours.]
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 10:42 AM on November 13 [57 favorites]


Dems picked up legislative supermajorities this year, looking to use them to add early voting, previously blocked by the GOP.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:53 AM on November 13 [7 favorites]


More good news from Georgia:

AP: Judge: GA County Must Count Absentee Ballots With Wrong Or Missing Birth Year
ATLANTA (AP) — A federal judge has ordered a populous Georgia county not to reject absentee ballots because the voter’s birth year is missing or wrong.

The order issued Tuesday by U.S. Judge Leigh May says rejecting absentee ballots solely because of a missing or incorrect birth year violates the Civil Rights Act.

She ordered Gwinnett County election officials not to reject those ballots and to count any that were cast in the Nov. 6 midterm election. She also ordered Gwinnett County to delay certification of its election results until those ballots have been counted.
(note, this is a different judge and ruling from the one posted last night)
posted by murphy slaw at 11:10 AM on November 13 [24 favorites]


[I have deleted basically the entire Pelosi fight because GOOD LORD do we not need 472 more rounds on Pelosi: Progressive Slugger or Evil Centrist? and we are short-staffed today so I cannot ride herd on that fight for the next two hours.]

posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 10:42 AM on November 13 [20 favorites −] Favorite added! [!]


Eyebrows, you're my hero.
posted by Mental Wimp at 11:12 AM on November 13 [21 favorites]


Dems picked up legislative supermajorities this year,

In *Delaware*, I meant to say. This is a good thing, though - the northeast in general, and Delaware in particular, have been lagging on voting rights.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:16 AM on November 13 [3 favorites]


More good news from Georgia:

Feels like Dems have been winning pretty much all of the court fights in FL and GA, just not sure if it will be enough.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:16 AM on November 13 [5 favorites]


Interesting thread on whither Arizona? (tl;dr: Certainly possible to see it heading the way of CA, but not yet clear)
posted by Chrysostom at 11:22 AM on November 13


Marc Elias: BREAKING: We have filed a new lawsuit challenges the 2017 redistricting plans for the legislative maps for the North Carolina General Assembly as violating the North Carolina Constitution and seeks to establish new. We seek fair state House and Senate maps for the 2020 elections.

Note that that is based on the *state* constitution (the same kind of suit that worked in PA), and that the NC Supreme Court has a 5-2 Dem majority.

This would be really big, the NC legislature is hideously gerrymandered.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:26 AM on November 13 [16 favorites]


Jpfed: "I'm not a law-talking guy but I don't see anything in Article 1 Section 2 that indicates that plurality voting must be used...?"

FWIW, Legal Twitter is quite skeptical of Poliquin's suit and rationale.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:42 AM on November 13 [1 favorite]


...Poliquin's suit and rationale.

According to a Politico article this afternoon, “Rob Richie, president of FairVote, a group that supports ranked-choice voting[, says that] ‘Their tactic is throwing a lot of mud, and hoping something might stick. It’s not like we haven’t had sore losers try and sue it in the past, and it didn’t work then,’ Richie added.”
posted by LeLiLo at 12:04 PM on November 13 [2 favorites]


UT-04: McAdams [D] +1020 after big tranche of Utah County (red) votes. Still on track to win, more votes expected today.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:06 PM on November 13 [11 favorites]


- I hope Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez keeps giving everybody hell. They all need it.

AOC a week ago, giving her victory speech, when the crowd begins booing in reaction to the live-feed news of Beto's loss (SLTheIntercept):
It took a beat before Ocasio-Cortez realized what had happened. She had been about to hit one of her more popular points — highlighting the gap between America’s unprecedented wealth and the paltry support offered to the poorest among us — when groans escaped from the crowd.

“Right now, in the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, our greatest scarcity is not a lack of resources —” Ocasio-Cortez paused and repeated the line before realizing that the dispirited crowd wasn’t reacting to her words, but to the screen above their heads. “Oh, sorry guys. I was like, ‘Whoa! Room turned fast!’”

The crowd laughed, grateful, it seemed, for some levity in the face of a hard-felt defeat. “But, you know what?” improvised Ocasio-Cortez, sensitive to the fact that the crowd needed comforting before she continued with her prepared remarks. “What we need to do as well is realize that these short-term losses do not mean that we have lost in the long run. It does not. In 2018, we turned the state of Texas purple. That’s what we did this year.” The crowd rallied.

“We are going to flip that state in our generation, I’ll tell you that much right now. We will flip Texas; it’s just a matter of time. We should never be scared. There is never any fight that is too big for us to pick. We proved that this year.” She went on. “When we advocate and champion the causes of our neighbors and our economic dignity, and come with innovative and ambitious plans for our future, there is no state beyond our grasp, and no community beyond victory. We just need to keep at it.”

With that, she slipped back into her victory speech more seamlessly than politicians who have been giving speeches for as long as Ocasio-Cortez has been alive.
I don't want her to keep giving Dems hell, however necessary — at least not publically. I want her treated as the absolute bonanza to the party that she is: a young, talented, energetic, and incredibly hard-working Latina progressive. But the last thing I read about her last week was about her supposed rent struggles in D.C., and now today's story is this climate-change protest at another Dem politician's office?

The Democratic Party needs mechanisms for attracting and guiding promising young people, and, eventually, mentoring younger politicians. I don't know if it's the attitude of the current old guard or if this has always been a problem. The Republican Party has multiple pipelines to get the sort of people they want early (prep schools, colleges, law schools, the Federalist Society and other organizations, etc.) and methods to mold them even more — and this is when Republicans aren't simply promoting the scions of political families.

Why isn't there a secure Dem forum or something for the new people, so Ocasio-Cortez, if she is experiencing financial difficulties, could find a roommate or two in similar straits for a house share? The incoming class is heavily female, notably POC, and not especially monied; DC housing in January, especially after one's been effectively unemployed/unsalaried for months, may be a real challenge.

And I know she's a Democratic Socialist, and that protesting is extremely important. But where was any kind of seasoned Dem politician to suggest releasing a statement (or making the patented "off the cuff," yet instantly-quotable, response to a reporter's "question"), rather than physically joining the protest? It's highlighting divisiveness within the ranks, when today is the first day of orientation week for newly-elected House Democrats. (SLNYT).

The Democratic Party lacks cohesiveness and long-term planning ability, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a windfall we're poised to squander.
posted by Iris Gambol at 1:49 PM on November 13 [23 favorites]


GA: A reminder that the runoff election is scheduled for December 4. The office of Secretary of State, responsible for overseeing the 2019 and 2020 election cycle will be decided then. Maybe the Governor's office will be decided then as well. Please help with extended campaigh and GOTV work for Dec. 4.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 1:50 PM on November 13 [6 favorites]


Thank you, Chapo Trap House, for alerting me to the story that newly-unemployed former congressman and Putin stooge Dana Rohrabacher is a nasty little filth pig.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 1:58 PM on November 13 [11 favorites]


I used to work in construction litigation in Orange County & LA, which often involved going into high-priced homes to check out their flooring. Turns out even people who can afford expensive homes and high rent can be horrific slobs. Not common, but it happens. This being a thing for a dirtbag like Rohrabacher doesn’t surprise me at all.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 2:06 PM on November 13 [3 favorites]


Put me firmly in the camp that thinks there's nothing wrong or negative in the least about Ocasio-Cortez commenting about the financial realities that face a working class person headed into a House seat or coming around and speaking to likeminded folks holding a non-violent protest just because it's at a fellow member's office.
posted by phearlez at 2:11 PM on November 13 [24 favorites]


phearlez, I don't think there's anything wrong with her commenting on financial realities, I was struck by how the Democratic Party machine is dropping the ball yet again (and she's one of the best things going for it right now).

We'll have to disagree about the second matter.
posted by Iris Gambol at 2:24 PM on November 13


The Republican Party has the "unity" it has because it reinforces structural privilege: Republicans in government are largely upper-class and white and male, and they tend to promote and favor other People Like Them, which makes those pipelines function.

The Democratic Party is attempting to diversify itself and that is involving a lot of reckonings with things like structural privilege, economic insecurity, structural racism and sexism, and so forth. That the party is doing this learning in public is a strength, not a weakness, because it provides an active signal to people who fall into those categories that there are in fact people like them in power.
posted by scrump at 2:48 PM on November 13 [39 favorites]


Dave Wasserman points out that, assuming the remaining races break as expected, the Democrat's incoming class of 61 freshmen would include only 19 white men (31%) while the Republican's incoming class of 31 would include 29 white men (94%).

After a historic election, white men are more likely to be represented in the House by a white man (WaPo):
The percentage of whites represented by a white person in Congress fell slightly, and the percentage of men represented by men dropped even further. Despite that, the percentage of white men represented by white men went up.

Why? In part because the Republican delegation became even more heavily made up of white men. Cook Political Report estimates that the Republican caucus will go from 86 percent white men to 90 percent in the new session. The difference in diversity between the two parties is stark.

Republican districts are home to nearly 60 percent of the white men in the country, making up the bulk of that 73 percent representation by white men.

This, really, is one of the main stories of the 2018 election: The divide represented by racial and gender splits in the U.S. became sharper in the House than they were before.
posted by peeedro at 3:32 PM on November 13 [11 favorites]


Katie Porter (D) takes the lead in CA-45 over Mimi Walters (R) with the least batch of votes from Orange County. She's now ahead by 261 votes.
posted by zachlipton at 5:02 PM on November 13 [18 favorites]


In CA-45, Mimi Walter's (R) lead over Katie Porter (D) has continued to collapse. For the first time, Porter now has a lead of 261 votes (0.11%) (for comparison: 11/7 +6074, 11/8 +4637, 11/9 +2020, 11/10 +2009, 11/12 +1011, 11/13 -261).
posted by RichardP at 5:04 PM on November 13 [3 favorites]


And Young Kim (R) is only ahead of Cisneros (D) by 700 in CA-39!

It's happening!
posted by Justinian at 5:20 PM on November 13 [4 favorites]


After all the votes are counted there will be no Republicans left representing Orange County. It's probably not apparent to non-Californians what a seismic shift that is. Orange County was for quite a long time the archetype of a non-rural Republican bastion.
posted by Justinian at 5:24 PM on November 13 [41 favorites]


@AP_Politics: Democrat Josh Harder wins election to U.S. House in California's 10th congressional district. #APracecall at 6:20 p.m. PST.
posted by zachlipton at 6:24 PM on November 13 [18 favorites]


Iris Gambol: "and this is when Republicans aren't simply promoting the scions of political families. "

Democrats are guilty of this, too.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:48 PM on November 13 [12 favorites]


Latest AZ numbers:

* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +4,957 (0.227%)

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +536 (0.620%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +841 (0.50%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district

Called races:

* Senate: Sinema [D]
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D]
posted by Chrysostom at 6:55 PM on November 13 [13 favorites]


Oh, hey, there is now a small possibility that Alaska might not end up with a Republican trifecta after all- there’s still hope for a bipartisan coalition to control the House. Crossing my fingers for the rest of the absentee vote.
posted by charmedimsure at 7:23 PM on November 13 [10 favorites]


Good news/bad news from CA:

Good: In Sec Pub Instr, Thurmond now up on charter school guy Tuck by 67,161.

Bad: Board of Equalization Member District 4, Schaefer [D] now up 3,508 on Anderson [R]. Why is that bad? Well:
Uh, so the Democrat who's probably about to win a usually-Republican seat on the California Board of Equalization is a disbarred lawyer and perennial candidate who was previously ordered to stay at least 100 feet away from comedian Brad Garrett.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:58 PM on November 13 [9 favorites]


Exciting Alaska news!
posted by Chrysostom at 7:59 PM on November 13 [1 favorite]




GA-07 update: Dem Bourdeaux picked up a net 368 votes today, GOP incumbent Woodall lead cut to 533 votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:05 PM on November 13 [5 favorites]


who was previously ordered to stay at least 100 feet away from comedian Brad Garrett

This is not disqualifying for me.
posted by rhizome at 8:12 PM on November 13 [4 favorites]


who was previously ordered to stay at least 100 feet away from comedian Brad Garrett

In fairness, that's only like arms-reach for Brad Garrett.
posted by Etrigan at 8:37 PM on November 13 [10 favorites]


Also has anybody had the title song stuck in their head constantly for three days now? Asking for a friend.
posted by rhizome at 8:54 PM on November 13 [3 favorites]


@AP_Politics: Democrat Josh Harder wins election to U.S. House in California's 10th congressional district. #APracecall at 6:20 p.m. PST.

Holy cow, ogooglebar! YOU DID IT! YOU DID IT!

I am full-on Kermit flail.

YAY! And THANK YOU!
posted by kristi at 10:00 PM on November 13 [14 favorites]


I was kind of meh Wednesday morning after the elections (Florida, Beto, etc.), but the 2018 elections have proven to be a gift that keeps on giving.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 4:38 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


dances_with_sneetches: I was kind of meh Wednesday morning after the elections (Florida, Beto, etc.), but the 2018 elections have proven to be a gift that keeps on giving.

This may have been linked here before, but a Vox piece by Matt Yglesias nicely captures why we've all been feeling a bit like that: Democrats’ blue wave was much larger than early takes suggested.

The short of it is that the first races to be called naturally skewed Republican and had a lot of overlap with the ones you mention, the ones which captured national imagination. In fact, Democrats are definitely on track for a House margin that can only be called a "wave" without caveat or qualifier.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 4:56 AM on November 14 [7 favorites]


I hope it's okay to mention it here, but Chrysostom has just passed 100,000 likes. That's pretty likeable.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:00 AM on November 14 [29 favorites]


Who? Wasn't he up for self-re-election next year?

:D
posted by petebest at 5:17 AM on November 14


I was kind of meh Wednesday morning after the elections (Florida, Beto, etc.), but the 2018 elections have proven to be a gift that keeps on giving.

I think the wonky 538 projections that night gave everyone PTSD flashbacks and it's taken us all a few days to get through it. Not joking.
posted by showbiz_liz at 5:18 AM on November 14 [31 favorites]


You know, I think the difference is between the tidal waves in movies I saw when I was a kid: a giant triangular swell; and what tidal waves actually look like: a flood coming from the sea.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:32 AM on November 14 [17 favorites]


Palm Beach County’s voting machines overheat and force recount of more than 170,000 votes (MiamiHerald)

The county’s decade-old ballot-counting machines overheated and gave incorrect totals, forcing the county to restart its recount of about 175,000 early votes, supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher said Tuesday night.
posted by petebest at 5:37 AM on November 14 [8 favorites]


The Mass. Vote No On #1 lobby definitely won the communication war. I saw a variety of compelling ads for Vote No, with a spin that it would be bad for patients and official-sounding nurse and doctor organizations supporting it, and almost nothing for Vote Yes.
posted by He Is Only The Imposter at 6:07 AM on November 14


The Democratic Party is attempting to diversify itself and that is involving a lot of reckonings with things like structural privilege, economic insecurity, structural racism and sexism, and so forth. That the party is doing this learning in public is a strength, not a weakness, because it provides an active signal to people who fall into those categories that there are in fact people like them in power.


Regarding Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez' rent troubles, the Democratic Party absolutely must come up with a way to support young talent in a manner that is generous, open, and beyond reproach.

For one thing, if only the wealthy can afford to serve, the only ones to serve will be the wealthy and those beholden to them.

If memory serves me correctly, not a few Republican politicians were revealed to have been living in a dormitory-style arrangement in a home that was structured around religious conservative principles. We don't want to have to wonder if our representatives are immersed in a cultish atmosphere in order to put a roof over their heads, or if living in DC needs must divide their loyalty between their constituents and those who pay their rent.

Whatever the Democrats do, they need to do it fast, declare it openly, and then use it as a conversation to discuss the issue of rent seeking and insane housing costs everywhere.
posted by Gelatin at 6:56 AM on November 14 [11 favorites]


public housing for representatives would certainly move the overton window on public housing in general
posted by murphy slaw at 7:04 AM on November 14 [22 favorites]


Palm Beach County’s voting machines overheat

Are they using fucking Hollerith Tabulators over there? Did a vacuum tube burn out or something?

"Overheat". How do you even do that in this day and age with off-the-shelf electronics?
posted by jackbishop at 7:13 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


re they using fucking Hollerith Tabulators over there?

Let us hope not. It was IBM's technology that gave the Nazis the wherewithal to efficiently fill the death camps.
posted by Devonian at 7:21 AM on November 14 [2 favorites]


If this is accurate, Voting System Qualification Test Report Dominion Voting Systems, Inc. Sequoia WinEDS Release 4.0.175, Version1, we're totally fucked.

The tabulators are so old, there are maintenance contract issues, and one of the reported issues is they're sensitive to static. The servers are all unsupported Windows Server 2005.

THIS is why we need national standards. NIST Information Technology needs a budget increase.
posted by mikelieman at 7:44 AM on November 14 [11 favorites]


"Overheat". How do you even do that in this day and age with off-the-shelf electronics?

Probably not hard at all, really, when you're dealing with feeding a lot of physical objects. I think most people don't really consider the huge gap in engineering between things for consumer or periodic use versus things that you put into service and work hard for long sustained periods.

That said, looking at the document mikelieman produced this count should be well within the past stress test if this is using the big 400-C scanners.
A full mass ballot count was conducted on this scanner using the General election. One machine was used in Tallahassee, and two machines were used in Palm Beach County. A total of 193,440 ballots were cast,
That's three machines for a number barely bigger than the count named here and the article claims they had eight. I wonder if this is in fact using machines normally at polling stations and probably expected to only need to feed 2-3 ballots a minute at peak times?
posted by phearlez at 7:55 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


murphy slaw: "public housing for representatives would certainly move the overton window on public housing in general"

A congressional dorm has long been one of my hobbyhorses, having lived near DC and seen the housing costs.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:11 AM on November 14 [4 favorites]


GA gov: More numbers in, provisionals from Gwinnett this time: 1,505 Abrams, 668 Kemp, 21 Metz, 2,194 total. 68.6% Abrams. 17,759 to runoff, 15,445 to recount
posted by Chrysostom at 8:12 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


A full mass ballot count was conducted on this scanner using the General election. One machine was used in Tallahassee, and two machines were used in Palm Beach County. A total of 193,440 ballots were cast,

Reading closer, I see there is a note about an expected over flow at 64k ballots per batch... I suspect they didn't think using more than a 16 bit number was worthwhile.
posted by mikelieman at 8:14 AM on November 14


I mean, 32-bit registers aren't cheap, you know? 🤦
posted by ragtag at 8:16 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


dances_with_sneetches: "I hope it's okay to mention it here, but Chrysostom has just passed 100,000 likes. That's pretty likeable."

And yet I was turned down when I asked a girl to the prom.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:16 AM on November 14 [21 favorites]


FWIW, I've long said this is all because at the end of the day, our votes are WORTH LESS than a dollar bill dispensed at an ATM ( yeah, I know there aren't single dollar bill ATMS, but you get my point )

Back when I was doing Personal Income Tax Processing with a REALLY BIG BANK on behalf of a tiny state called New York, we used this kind of stuff because people don't fuck around when it comes to counting money
posted by mikelieman at 8:20 AM on November 14


I mean, 32-bit registers aren't cheap, you know? 🤦

You know, I don't even think there's a native 16 bit integer type in MS-SQL server...

/me googles

Fucking .NET has a "UShort", System.UInt16 with a range from 0 to 65,535.

/facepalm indeed
posted by mikelieman at 8:29 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


public housing for representatives would certainly move the overton window on public housing in general

This would not help Ocasio-Cortez, whose new job doesn't technically start until January. And I can see other problems with dorm-like arrangements: do they just house congressfolk, or elected person + spouse, or electee + spouse + kids? Do they allow dogs? (How many?) How accessible are they? Include parking, and how much? What's the penalty for someone who throws wild parties and trashes the place, or is just a horrible slob? Is there a maid service?

These could all be addressed, but those pushing for them would need a way to approach these issues before pushing to get laws passed and money spent.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 8:33 AM on November 14 [2 favorites]


Fucking .NET has a "UShort", System.UInt16 with a range from 0 to 65,535.

Is there a reason to assume they were built with anything so modern as .NET? I'm assuming Visual Basic 6, where Int was a 16-bit type.
posted by bcd at 8:37 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


And I can see other problems with dorm-like arrangements:

Honestly, it wouldn't be that hard to offer, like, an 'orientation hostel' sort of thing for the few months before the term starts and salaries kick in.
posted by nonasuch at 8:38 AM on November 14 [2 favorites]


Regarding Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez' rent troubles, the Democratic Party absolutely must come up with a way to support young talent in a manner that is generous, open, and beyond reproach.

To be real, she will be making a $175K salary in a couple months and I find it pretty out of touch for her to be complaining about her rent issues. That there are SERIOUS cost of living and especially housing cost issues in the DC area is a horrible fact that deserves attention. But she is like the opposite of a poster child for those issues. She is actually exactly the kind of person -- yuppie with a huge salary and no ties to the area other than (gov't) work -- who drives COI/rent UP. And to her credit, I don't think that she's been actively trying to make herself into the poster child or throwing herself a pity party, but that's still what the framing of "poor AOC's money troubles!" is doing and in my opinion, it's still not a good look. In general, I think that she is going to have to deal with the fact that she is part of the establishment now, even if that creates a lot of dissonance in terms of what her personal identity has been, and pretending she isn't is just her being a poser. Other people will disagree, I'm sure, but I do think that greater self-awareness on her part would be an improvement.

I also think that the Democratic party would do well to have greater outreach and to be more welcoming/inclusive to its base (which includes youth and working people) but I don't support creating a pol pipeline the way the Republicans have. A pipeline creates an in-group elite who get into the pipeline and an excluded group who don't, and I think that's antithetical to liberal/democratic values and ALSO goes against the current Democratic "big tent" strategy.
posted by rue72 at 8:43 AM on November 14 [9 favorites]


Maybe this antique technology keeps them from being hacked. The hackers have to find an 8 inch floppy and work with a 1200 baud modem.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 8:48 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


By the way, we will be seeing more and more blame placed on the elections supervisors in Broward and Palm Beach. It might even feel reasonable to join in. Try to remember they don't set their budgets. They are funded by the state, and have been funded very very poorly quite intentionally.

And yes, other counties aren't having the same problems. Let's also remember that being two of the largest counties, problems are more likely to show up there than anywhere else.

Point is, this entire farce can be laid at Rick Scott's feet. That's why he's gone nutballs about it, not because he genuinely thinks anything unexpected is happening (other than the races being closer than he might have hoped).

Also Governor Skeletor has refused to say whether he would certify the vote count in the event he ends up losing. Yes, he is a member of the three person board that certifies elections, despite being in one of those elections.
posted by wierdo at 8:51 AM on November 14 [20 favorites]


To be real, she will be making a $175K salary in a couple months

I think were pretty far down the rabbit-hole-derail here but i think a big part of her point is that she, like many many americans, lacks the savings or credit-worthiness to manage a short term expense like her temporary housing needs. It isnt about fixing her housing needs, or even providing for orientation dorms for all congresspeople, its a reminder that half of this country couldnt afford a $400 medical bill tomorrow without sacrificing some other essential need like food or shelter. a 7500 paycheck (assuming congresspeople are paid bimonthly) in february wont help her out today (even though she will be totally fine).
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 8:52 AM on November 14 [36 favorites]


Also keep in mind she needs to maintain a residence back in her own district.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:55 AM on November 14 [12 favorites]


Is there a reason to assume they were built with anything so modern as .NET? I'm assuming Visual Basic 6, where Int was a 16-bit type.

Only my complete and total blissful ignorance about the entire Microsoft development ecosystem? It was the first reasonable suggestion Google kicked out.
posted by mikelieman at 8:55 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


I find it pretty out of touch for her to be complaining about her rent issues.

Please don't buy into the Fox News "Young socialist grows up, discovers that things cost money!" spin on this. It was an off-hand comment during an interview that's been blown up out of context, and she's spent far more time "complaining" about her constituent's rent issues than her own.
posted by Etrigan at 8:55 AM on November 14 [43 favorites]


Democrat Josh Harder wins election to U.S. House in California's 10th congressional district.

We were dancing with joy at my house last night, this is a great change for this region of California. So many folks worked hard to flip our district, and I have had more conversations with cranky old white dudes, about politics and Donald Trump, than anyone should have to endure.*

This region is fascinating to me, and I still believe that it's more deeply progressive than its residents have realized.

*(However, I have learned that discussing/arguing any actual issues is a waste of time, but that appeals to decency and values do seem to penetrate--e.g., in response to a fishing comment like 'it's terrible all the grief they're giving Trump, won't let him just do his job,' (said to me unsolicited as I sit at the breakfast counter of one of our local diners early one weekday morning, I suppose in hopeful white-guy-solidarity-chat or something), the most effective reply I found was '...[thoughtful pause with pursed lips, considering all the grief that the poor, beleaguered President is receiving so undeservedly]...well, the thing is...I just think that the President should really be the best of us, you know? Like, a person really worth admiring, that's something that really helps make their leadership effective, and also helps me to remember to try to be better.....and the thing is, Donald Trump is just not the best of us. He's not near the best of us, and I can't get past that.' It's the kind of reply that sneaks past their alerts or trigger words, is human in its appeal, and foregrounds the one aspect of Trump that everyone agrees on, even all of his supporters: he's a giant asshole. Responses to that have varied, but each time it left the person I was chatting with at least looking more thoughtful--when you get that neutral grunt, maybe 'well, that's true...' and a change of subject, you've probably said something that's stuck.)
posted by LooseFilter at 8:57 AM on November 14 [45 favorites]


she's spent far more time "complaining" about her constituent's rent issues than her own.

Thing is, she's one of the few cases where her constituent's issues are her issues, and lo-and-behold, if you're not privileged enough to have a campaign donor rent you a room or something, then -- to co-opt a meme, "The Rent is Too Damn High!"
posted by mikelieman at 8:59 AM on November 14 [2 favorites]


i think a big part of her point is that she, like many many americans, lacks the savings or credit-worthiness to manage a short term expense like her temporary housing needs.

The thing is that that's not her anymore. The current version of her is someone who is going to get a big payday starting in a couple months and actually isn't facing financial precarity. Being cash poor for a couple months is not the same thing, and pretending that it is comes off to me as really out of touch and unhelpful.

Please don't buy into the Fox News "Young socialist grows up, discovers that things cost money!" spin on this.

This is my personal reaction after reading her comments, please don't decide that having a different reaction from you is just Fox News spin.
posted by rue72 at 9:02 AM on November 14 [1 favorite]




All the comments I've seen from her have been along the lines of "I'm seriously going to be fine, we've budgeted for this, if you're worried about people not having housing here's an organization that needs donations." And then, fifteen minutes later, an apology for crashing that charity's website.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 9:06 AM on November 14 [25 favorites]


"Yes, he is a member of the three person board that certifies elections, despite being in one of those elections."

This, and the fact that Kemp had to be sued to get him to step down from overseeing the GA recount are perfect examples of the reforms Dems should look to enact where they have some levers of power. Clear rules are needed on conflicts of interest, rather than hoping people do the right thing.
posted by jetsetsc at 9:07 AM on November 14 [7 favorites]


The thing is that that's not her anymore. The current version of her is someone who is going to get a big payday starting in a couple months and actually isn't facing financial precarity. Being cash poor for a couple months is not the same thing, and pretending that it is comes off to me as really out of touch and unhelpful.

Doesn't this presume she can just put 5 or 10 grand on a credit card until the first payroll is processed? And that her landlord will let her charge it in the first place?

Also, I just thought about all the congressmen who "Slept in their office and showered at the gym", which presumes the kids are being cared for by someone else, somewhere else. Nice privilege if you can get it.
posted by mikelieman at 9:07 AM on November 14 [8 favorites]


The thing is that that's not her anymore. The current version of her is someone who is going to get a big payday starting in a couple months

If we can hold aside her national celebrity and use her as an example of a type, shes still not going to get a landlord to rent her an apartment on the promise of a big paycheck a few months away. job offers disappear (hers wont). large deposits are required. even then, theres a pretty classist assumption that she should just be able to absorb all these expenses and cover them eventually. this is not most peoples reality (even -some - folks who land 6 figure jobs).
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 9:07 AM on November 14 [16 favorites]


AP:
Florida Gov. Rick Scott will step down from the state panel responsible for certifying the results in the state’s highly contested elections.

Daniel Nordby, a lawyer for the Republican governor, told a federal judge Wednesday that Scott will recuse himself from the state’s canvassing commission. The commission is a three-member panel that officially signs off on election results in state and federal races.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:07 AM on November 14 [18 favorites]


> Governor Skeletor has refused to say whether he would certify the vote count in the event he ends up losing

Spoiler: He won't. I feel like I can say this pretty confidently because there's no other reason to refuse to say, and if he was going to do any of this in good faith he would have started down that path a long time ago.

> a big part of her point is that she, like many many americans, lacks the savings or credit-worthiness to manage a short term expense like her temporary housing needs.

This really is the bulk of the point as I see it. It's a nuanced message that doesn't fit in a simple sound bite, and is incredibly easy to corrupt and reframe the way we are seeing. But don't expect any sort of balanced media take on her - She's already wildly radical compared to so many of the favorite targets of the GOP, AND she's seen as a threat by some of the Democratic party as well - and on top of that, she is a non-white millenial woman, so she hits all of the Republican rage points, and as we've seen, most media establishments have no problem parroting that. I'm afraid that the smears on AOC are going to make the years of attacks on Hillary Clinton look like a friendly roast by comparison.
posted by MysticMCJ at 9:15 AM on November 14 [7 favorites]


hah - well, damn, I should have previewed more, I guess you can ignore my take on Rick Scott. Lets hope I'm just as wrong about the sort of character attacks that AOC will be facing.
posted by MysticMCJ at 9:16 AM on November 14 [1 favorite]


> theres a pretty classist assumption that she should just be able to absorb all these expenses and cover them eventually

I hit up the news sites to see what the Fox take was on this, and it's basically "as long as she clears all of her savings out entirely and doesn't spend a dime on anything other than rent, she will be fine, unless she already cleared it out on frivolous things like every other millennial, which she probably did, because she's an ENTITLED SOCIALIST MILLENNIAL WHO THINKS EVERYTHING SHOULD BE FREE*"

* i may be taking some liberties here, but I promise this is pretty close to what they are saying.
posted by MysticMCJ at 9:24 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


Judging by her twitter, OAC is whip smart and well able to respond to character attacks very directly and honestly. I her no BS way of staying things is a huge part of her appeal.
posted by jetsetsc at 9:26 AM on November 14 [2 favorites]


The current version of her is someone who is going to get a big payday starting in a couple months and actually isn't facing financial precarity. Being cash poor for a couple months is not the same thing, and pretending that it is comes off to me as really out of touch and unhelpful.

She’s been working 18-hour days for the last decade to keep her family from losing their home due to her father’s sudden death. She may not be facing financial precarity in November 2018, but the “current version of her” remains familiar with it.
posted by Etrigan at 9:43 AM on November 14 [17 favorites]


Charles Pierce: The Republican Voodoo Tax Cuts Are Not Delivering. That includes votes.
One of the most promising characteristics of last Tuesday's election results was that the abominable tax-cut package that was supposed to be the golden ticket for Republicans turned out to be essentially worthless, if not a demonstrable deadweight, to Republican candidates up and down the ballot. If that means that Republican voters are finally coming out from under the noxious spell of tax-cuts-uber-alles supply-side voodoo, that would be an epochal development for all of our politics.
posted by homunculus at 9:45 AM on November 14 [12 favorites]


ME-02: Judge's decision tomorrow on whether he'll issue a restraining order in Poliquin's case; state count finished today or tomorrow.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:20 AM on November 14 [1 favorite]


The servers are all unsupported Windows Server 2005.

Fortunately, even decade+ old versions of Windows are well-nigh impervious to all manner of attacks, vulnerabilities, and bugs.

It's really the perfect platform to base America's democratic foundation on, really, is all I'm saying.

*chews corner off of keyboard*
posted by petebest at 11:14 AM on November 14 [6 favorites]


*random electrical firing from the chewed-up keyboard exploits a 0-day flaw in Windows Server 2005*
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:28 AM on November 14 [14 favorites]


I think they meant Windows Server 2003. There was no such Windows Server 2005 product, to my knowledge. 2008 was the next version and is in "extended support" now, though many of its components and compatible software are no longer supported.
posted by wierdo at 11:28 AM on November 14


> There was no such Windows Server 2005 product, to my knowledge.

What, you never used Election Edition?
posted by MysticMCJ at 11:32 AM on November 14 [3 favorites]


I think they meant Windows Server 2003. There was no such Windows Server 2005 product, to my knowledge. 2008 was the next version and is in "extended support" now, though many of its components and compatible software are no longer supported.

You are correct. The testing doc specifies SQL Server 2005 on Windows Server 2003 R2.

Oh, the clients are XP.
posted by mikelieman at 11:38 AM on November 14 [5 favorites]


If that means that Republican voters are finally coming out from under the noxious spell of tax-cuts-uber-alles supply-side voodoo, that would be an epochal development for all of our politics.

They'll just pick the tax cut stuff back up again as soon as the Democrats are in charge. It's a useful campaign and media manipulation tool against the Democrats, a grifting opportunity for wealthy Republicans, and a handy in-group signifier, but it's not like an actual deeply-held principle.
posted by jason_steakums at 11:40 AM on November 14 [6 favorites]


Oh, the clients are XP.

[real] or [fake] tag, please!
posted by Gelatin at 11:49 AM on November 14


AP calls NJ-03 for Andy Kim [D].
posted by Chrysostom at 11:50 AM on November 14 [23 favorites]


Oh, the clients are XP.

Ah, now we're getting somewhere. Released in October 2001. Extended support (only covers powertrain, oxygen recirculation, and Clippy), ended in 2014. Any new vulnerabilities or other excitements are absolutely free of charge and shall remaineth unpatched.

If Obama heard about that bullshit and ponied up millions of clams, or bones, or whatever you call them, to fix it, you'd have to be flat out crazy, stupid, or crooked to decline by calling it "unconstitutional".

(Spoiler, it's all of the above)
posted by petebest at 11:57 AM on November 14




Current Dem pickups stands at 35 seats. Outstanding:

CA-39 [open (Royce)]
CA-45 [Walters]
GA-07 [Woodall]
ME-02 [Poliquin]
TX-23 [Hurd]
UT-04 [Love]
posted by Chrysostom at 12:05 PM on November 14 [9 favorites]


For the last month or so before the US elections last week, submissions to [The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction] had been slowly declining. I took it as an indication of general social distraction and anxiety, and also writers being busy volunteering for campaigns. Submissions shot up 50% on election day.

And then, the day after that, submissions doubled the pre-election rate and have been consistently higher since. I'm not really trying to make a point about this. I'm just glad that everybody feels like writing and submitting again. I think it's a good sign.

[DLTwitterThread]
posted by Etrigan at 12:25 PM on November 14 [14 favorites]


Honestly having Clippy around might be an improvement
"It looks like you're attempting representative democracy! Would you like help?"
posted by halation at 12:29 PM on November 14 [15 favorites]


Honestly having Clippy around might be an improvement
"It looks like you're attempting representative democracy! Would you like help?"


"It looks like you missed the Senate race. Would you like to vote in it?"
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:36 PM on November 14 [13 favorites]


I don't really want to continue the AOC derail much further, but I thought it's probably worth mentioning that her staffers are going to be making about $32,000 a year. Many will come from her district. As congressional employees, they are are exempt from all federal minimum-wage laws (they'll be working enough overtime that their salary will work out to far less than minimum wage).

She's going to have about $1.3 million dollars per year to pay for 14 staffers, and all other official expenses.

That's a razor-thin budget.

Now, consider that many of these staffers have advanced degrees, and skills that are generally valued in the larger workforce. That leaves 3 categories for congressional hires:
  • True believers who will serve their country in exchange for poverty-level wages.
  • People who can't find work elsewhere (j/k, competition for these jobs is way too fierce).
  • People who are independently wealthy.
I'll let you guess which category most staffers actually come from, and I'll let you guess how this has impacted policy for the past ~30 years.

If we want to talk about how Congress is slanted toward the wealthy, I don't think we should be talking about the one congressperson who has a short-term cash-flow issue, and instead talk about the 6,000+ staffers who are all in a far more dire financial predicament (or, more distressingly, are working for congress nearly for free).

That being said, I'm also firmly in favor of dramatically increasing Congressional salaries. Congress should be a calling to our nation's best and brightest, and Congresspeople should not be bending over backwards for laughably-small bribes and campaign contributions. I also think AOC could make a very strong case for Congress to allow members to take out a short-term, interest-free loan for relocation expenses. Heck, the Congressional Credit Union could just provide that service as a courtesy.
posted by schmod at 12:54 PM on November 14 [54 favorites]


Clippy inspried humor break:
“Hey there,” the steely abomination said with infinite, Buddha-like compassion, “it looks like you’re trying to come to grips with the existence of events and entities far beyond your experience and, as a result, are currently undergoing a small, entirely understandable, psychological break. Would you like help?”
--- Cat Valente, Space Opera
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 12:54 PM on November 14 [9 favorites]


I just want to give a huge shout out to the Maine Secretary of State twitter feed, who have been posting regular updates and many, many very non-dramatic photos of the process of counting votes for RCV in Maine. If you want to see what a low-key, drama free recount looks like (at least from the counting side), this is it.

They're terrific, and Sec. Matthew Dunlap is also terrific, even in the face of Bruce Poloquin's sore loser motion for a restraining order to stop the count.
posted by anastasiav at 12:56 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


Public housing for Members and their staffs. Comparable to Embassy Suites. Should do wonders for camaraderie and inter-party cooperation, too.
posted by notyou at 12:59 PM on November 14 [3 favorites]


Yep, Congress should build extended-stay dorms rented at fair rates to members and staffers.

(In Britain, MPs were unpaid until 1911, on the assumption that members had other sources of income. Wven after the introduction of a salary, working-class MPs were supported by union sponsorship.)
posted by holgate at 1:11 PM on November 14


As with all public programs, i can assume republicans will advocate for drug and means testing to be requirements to use the congressional public housing.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 1:13 PM on November 14 [7 favorites]


It would prevent the shenanigans involved with lobbyist-provided housing and the performative austerity of multi-millionaire well-propertied hypocrites sleeping under their desks.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 1:14 PM on November 14 [7 favorites]


Charles Pierce: The #FiveWhiteGuys Are Offering a Sucker's Bet to Anti-Pelosi Democrats. There is no need for any of this.
For those members, old and new, who oppose Pelosi from the left, the #FiveWhiteGuys are offering a sucker's bet. The #FiveWhiteGuys are of the school that believes that the Democratic Party's needs are best served winning back all those disgruntled folks at diners in the Mahoning Valley, a theory fairly well demolished last Tuesday. It is very unlikely that a Green New Deal or Medicare For All is high on their list of priorities. The only argument that the #FiveWhiteGuys have that might resonate with their new progressive colleagues is that Pelosi is old and has been in Congress for a long time. Period. That's not enough to dispense with the party's most effective legislative leader since Lyndon Johnson.

So what the #FiveWhiteGuys are flirting with is not a brawl within the party, but a three-way brawl in which the progressive side and the #FiveWhiteGuys side both work to bring Pelosi down, which would set the stage for an absolute bloodbath between those two forces for the right to pick her successor. (And, strictly from a provincial standpoint here in the Commonwealth—God save it!—we are preparing to have Richard Neal as chairman of House Ways and Means and James McGovern as chairman of House Rules. If this attempted coup screws that up, Moulton's going to have some serious 'splainin' to do back home.)

There is no need for any of this. Pelosi stays as speaker. Steny Hoyer goes, replaced by, say, Hakeem Jeffries of New York. Jim Clyburn does what he wants, and the new generation moves into position as deputy whips under him. Then the Democratic Party can get back to the primary business at hand: beating the Republicans sufficiently hard and sufficiently often until the Republican Party regains a semblance of sanity. It's a long, hard job.
posted by homunculus at 1:15 PM on November 14 [23 favorites]


The only argument that the #FiveWhiteGuys have that might resonate with their new progressive colleagues is that Pelosi is old and has been in Congress for a long time

He forgot the misogyny, especially the variety that those young progressives might not have the experience to spot in others or the introspective skills to identify in themselves (whether they’re male or female).

I mean I haven’t seen a whole lot of introspection from those quarters about why they were so willing to believe utterly transparent bullshit in 2016, so...I don’t really have any reason to think that particular bigoted blind spot would have improved much.

And Pelosi is the other powerful woman who’s been on the receiving end of public misogynistic vitriol for decades.
posted by schadenfrau at 1:25 PM on November 14 [22 favorites]


She's going to have about $1.3 million dollars per year to pay for 14 staffers, and all other official expenses. That's a razor-thin budget.

One million of that allocation is specifically for staff, which works out to an average of $71,000 per staffer. I wouldn't call that exactly razor-thin.
posted by JackFlash at 1:40 PM on November 14 [1 favorite]


>She's going to have about $1.3 million dollars per year to pay for 14 staffers, and all other official expenses. That's a razor-thin budget.

One million of that allocation is specifically for staff, which works out to an average of $71,000 per staffer. I wouldn't call that exactly razor-thin.


I'm working mostly off this April 2018 CRS report, but:

In 2017 it was $944,671 -- has it gone up? I only ask because that's literally the difference between hiring another staffer or not -- rounding makes a difference.

Relatedly, you could hire more staffers -- up to 18 permanent staff, or more if you mix in temporary staff -- but you don't get more money to hire more people, so if you're hiring rich staffers who can afford to take a smaller salary you can hire more people than if you try to pay them a living wage. If you hired the full 18 permanent staff at the 2017 funding level, that works out to $52,481 per staffer -- which doesn't directly translate to $52,481 in salary for each staff, I think, right?
posted by cjelli at 1:53 PM on November 14


Here's a spreadsheet that lists some stats about congressional salaries.

Generally speaking, a lot of positions hover around $50k, while high-level positions get ~$70k.

That's comparable to what you'd make managing a Starbucks (not adjusted for DC's cost of living).
posted by schmod at 1:53 PM on November 14 [1 favorite]


I don't really want to continue the AOC derail much further, but I thought it's probably worth mentioning that her staffers are going to be making about $32,000 a year. Many will come from her district. As congressional employees, they are are exempt from all federal minimum-wage laws (they'll be working enough overtime that their salary will work out to far less than minimum wage).

She's going to have about $1.3 million dollars per year to pay for 14 staffers, and all other official expenses.

That's a razor-thin budget.


If you're interested in how the House and Senate do business - and you should be, because the how greatly impacts the what, as schmod superbly explains in the above comment - I highly recommend Daniel Schulman's weekly newsletter First Branch Forecast. It's a Demand Progress production and equally talks about stuff coming down the pike as far as legislation and hearings as well as links about process stuff like these links from the past half dozen or so newsletters:

What happens when a congressional office for a departing member is closed, and privileges and courtesies extended to departing members, and retirement benefits.

"Decades of institutional deterioration has left lawmakers in the dark on technology. The Lincoln Network's Zach Graves told the tale in ten charts. (We helped)" -- this one is greatly pertinent when talking about schmod's stuff about why congressional member employee salaries matter.

"— What's in the conference bill? Casey summarized it here; I wrote about the House and Senate bills as they passed each chamber. Notable is that the House paralleled the Senate and added $8.8m for paid interns, a good start, but well shy of the approximately $18m needed to have 1 intern working in an office over the course of the year."

"Capitol Hill child care centers that prioritize Congressional staff have only 240 spots and a 550 deep wait list, according to a new Demand Progress report. Roll Call's Katherine Tully-McManus covered efforts to expand availability to serve the 15,000 staffers on Capitol hill; even if expansion plans come to fruition, they would not meet demand."

Sometimes it also has stuff about DP and other folk's initiatives, like Future Congress. And Schulman agrees with schmod that Congress (and staff!) should be paid more.
posted by phearlez at 1:57 PM on November 14 [10 favorites]


which doesn't directly translate to $52,481 in salary for each staff, I think, right?

do you expect congressional staffers to get benefits or something?
posted by prize bull octorok at 1:58 PM on November 14 [4 favorites]


There is no rule saying that a congress member has to hire 18 staff or even 14 staff. Many members do not and have money left over.
posted by JackFlash at 2:05 PM on November 14


The only argument that the #FiveWhiteGuys have that might resonate with their new progressive colleagues is that Pelosi is old and has been in Congress for a long time

Funny how that doesn't apply to Saint Bernie, despite his relative ineffectiveness as a MOC.

Whatever could the difference be?
posted by Dashy at 2:05 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


Whatever could the difference be?

Sanders is pushing for single payer while Pelosi isn't. For me and 99% of the people I know this is an important issue.
posted by edeezy at 2:10 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


One of the issues with recent Congresses is they don't have enough staff, and end up relying on lobbyists.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:14 PM on November 14 [15 favorites]


There may not be a rule but you can look at that techdirt article and see how the resources for MOC have greatly diminished over the last decades. If you have work that needs to be done you then have two choices: you hire staff yourself or you lean on offered assistance from folks who want to lobby you.
posted by phearlez at 2:15 PM on November 14 [5 favorites]


do you expect congressional staffers to get benefits or something?

They get health insurance subsidized at 70%, the same insurance and rates as their congress member bosses.
They get an automatic 1% of salary contribution to their Thrift Savings Plan (401k) plus up to 4% additional matching contributions.
They accrue 4 hours of sick leave per pay period.
10 annual paid holidays.
Subsidized commuting on public transportation.
posted by JackFlash at 2:16 PM on November 14 [3 favorites]


Public housing for Members and their staffs. Comparable to Embassy Suites. Should do wonders for camaraderie and inter-party cooperation, too.

No, thanks -- what about all of the other people who live and work in DC who aren't part of this little group?

The DC area has a devastating cost of living problem (which exacerbates and is exacerbated by enormous power imbalances), and insulating policymakers from that problem by creating a little bubble of housing perks just for insiders would exacerbate things further.

What actually needs to happen is for DC to have representation in Congress to advance its interests, and what AOC needs to do is to connect with the representation that DC does have and talk about cost of living problems and how to solve them IN CONJUNCTION WITH that representation and their constituents. Given that she's also from an urban district, a coalition and policy agenda like that would make lots of sense anyway. (And it wouldn't have to be just her and Norton, either!). And, personally, I would appreciate it. The cost of living here has a huge impact on my own life and family and I would really love it if representation in Congress started dealing with economic issues like that in a real way.

Admittedly, I'm being harsh on AOC considering that she hasn't even been seated yet! But I expect her to act like what she is, one of the most powerful people in the United States, more powerful than hundreds of millions of us, and not like an ordinary citizen protesting someone else's Rep and talking about how hard it is for her to get an affordable apartment. I don't think it's an affectation yet (the way I think that Bernie Sanders's "I'm just an ordinary Joe!" schtick is, frankly), I think it's just part of her transition from activist to legislator, but I am impatient for her to make that transition already. Too impatient, to be fair.
posted by rue72 at 2:23 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


Honestly, I loved that at least we got a couple months of reprieve after Trump was elected before he was actually sworn in, but I am so ready for the new House to be seated altogether...it already feels like ten years since the election, somehow.
posted by rue72 at 2:25 PM on November 14 [3 favorites]


There is no rule saying that a congress member has to hire 18 staff or even 14 staff. Many members do not and have money left over.

The depletion of legislative staff budgets was a purposeful brain drain on the part of Newt Gingrich.
posted by Jpfed at 2:26 PM on November 14 [33 favorites]


the thing about electing outsiders is that once you do that, they immediately become insiders and following the outsider playbook is pretty much never appropriate or effective from that point on. but it's hard when you got fans and they want to hear you play your greatest hits.

(this is not a specific criticism of AOC)
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:29 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


Professor Andrew Appel (Princeton University): Florida is the Florida of ballot-design mistakes. Includes details of past and present ballot design problems in FL.
posted by mbrubeck at 3:10 PM on November 14 [6 favorites]


CA-21 still tightening, Valadao now up by 1,884 votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:44 PM on November 14 [7 favorites]


UT-04: McAdams [D] lead down to 873. Tossup at this point.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:06 PM on November 14 [1 favorite]


Latest AZ numbers, moved left in all races:

* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +6,115 (0.277%)

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +472 (0.538%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +610 (0.36%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district

Called races:

* Senate: Sinema [D]
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D]
posted by Chrysostom at 4:17 PM on November 14 [7 favorites]


Still some races not resolved, but looks like Dem state legislative gains at about 380 seats.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:22 PM on November 14 [7 favorites]


CA-39: Kim [R] drops down to 590 votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:24 PM on November 14 [4 favorites]


CA-21 still tightening

Over in the other thread, Oyéah mentioned that there are lots of uncounted ballots in Kern County. This is a good sign for T.J. Cox; it was votes from Kern that gave Cox a boost over the weekend. A friend who did lots of canvassing there just did some back-of-the-envelope math and says that if Kern ballots continue to favor Cox at the same rate then he can still win it in a squeaker.
posted by donatella at 4:26 PM on November 14 [1 favorite]




Katie Porter (D) extends her lead in CA-45 by 3536 votes and Wasserman calls it for her over incumbent Mimi Walters (R).

So much for Walters' run for NRCC chairman.
posted by zachlipton at 5:06 PM on November 14 [14 favorites]


CA-39: Kim [R] drops down to 590 votes.
121 now.
posted by zabuni at 5:17 PM on November 14 [5 favorites]


Who'd have thunk that voting to screw over CA taxpayers with the SALT deduction cap, a measure that hits right at Orange County homeowners, would mean basically the end of CA's Republican delegation?
posted by zachlipton at 5:25 PM on November 14 [15 favorites]


CA gov:
California Governor-elect Gavin Newsom is making history. His share of the vote is up to 61 percent. No California governor has hit that in at least 50 years. Not Jerry Brown, not his father, and not Ronald Reagan.

Newsom also nearly won Orange County.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:30 PM on November 14 [11 favorites]


California delegation is going to be, what, 46-7? 45-8?

lol gop

The California delegation is going to make up something like 20% of the entire Democratic caucus. Go CA!
posted by Justinian at 5:31 PM on November 14 [10 favorites]


Sadly, although we swept the GOP riffraff out to sea in California, Jaime Herrera Beutler's (R) victory in WA-03 means that we can't claim the entire coast from Mexico to Canada. WA-03 touches the Pacific.

We need to get rid of her in order to landlock the GOP. Because how the districts look on a map is obviously the most important thing.
posted by Justinian at 5:46 PM on November 14 [30 favorites]


Wow, it also occurs to me that if Ortiz Jones manages to pull it out in TX-23 the entire border from the Pacific to the Gulf of Mexico is also blue. It's only a matter of time before there's a blue wall stretching from the Gulf of Mexico to Vancouver, BC and we'll make the Republicans pay for it.

Unfortunately though she's only behind by like 1000 votes I think Hurd (R) will end up winning TX-23. But... soon.
posted by Justinian at 5:51 PM on November 14 [12 favorites]


Are those Florida ballots that Trump says showed up ‘out of nowhere’ from military absentee voters?
As President Donald Trump and others express concerns about ballots materializing in Florida after the Nov. 6 election, some advocates are reminding people that many of these ballots are likely coming from military voters and U.S. citizens living overseas.

In Florida in particular, if a ballot coming from overseas from a registered voter is postmarked by Election Day, Nov. 6, it will be counted if it arrives by Nov. 16. Over the years, many states have enacted legislation that extended deadlines for these voters to make sure the ballots get there to be counted.
Trump is telling Florida to ignore military ballots. Happy Veterans Day.
posted by homunculus at 6:36 PM on November 14 [19 favorites]


Trump is telling Florida to ignore military ballots.

Maybe you recall that back in 2000 during the Bush/Gore election, Republicans argued that ballots from overseas must be counted, even if they were postmarked after the election.

Later examination identified 680 votes that may have been solicited from overseas by Republicans after the election was over to swing the election. These questionable votes were counted and exceed the official 537 vote difference when the Supreme Court halted recounting.
posted by JackFlash at 6:57 PM on November 14 [36 favorites]


California Governor-elect Gavin Newsom is making history. His share of the vote is up to 61 percent. No California governor has hit that in at least 50 years. Not Jerry Brown, not his father, and not Ronald Reagan.

some of this may be due to the blue wave, some due to newsom’s political gifts, but much of it must be due to his opponent John Cox, one of the most hapless republican gubernatorial candidates in decades, a real standout in a murderer’s row of schmucks
posted by murphy slaw at 8:00 PM on November 14 [9 favorites]


I wish I had the tweet to hand, but Cox spent something like 50x what the GOP candidate for treasurer and got like 2 points better margin.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:19 PM on November 14 [1 favorite]


Losing in Utah’s 4th District, Rep. Mia Love sues Salt Lake County to suspend vote counting even as Ben McAdams' lead narrows.

Utah’s 4th District is comprised of portions of four counties. Love is suing to stop the count in the one county that leans blue, the other three are described as "Republican strongholds".
posted by peeedro at 8:23 PM on November 14 [4 favorites]


Cox ran a strong reform campaign to be elected administrator of the DMV, only to be surprised that he was supposed to be running for Governor and there is no elected DMV official, nor do voters care that much about a place they only go to every 5-10 years.
posted by zachlipton at 8:24 PM on November 14 [4 favorites]




How did we get Kathy Hoffman in office?
This 31-year-old speech therapist at a public school was so appalled when she heard how ignorant Betsy DeVos was during DeVos's confirmation hearing that she decided to run for office & was just elected Arizona's Superintendent of Education as a Democrat.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:23 PM on November 14 [65 favorites]


John Cox is right about our DMV; it’s a mess.

(And any Californian who travels by air will need to visit in the next couple years to get a TSA compliant Real ID, and yeah, that process is currently fuxxored, too.)
posted by notyou at 10:02 PM on November 14


> "Rep. Mia Love sues Salt Lake County to suspend vote counting even as Ben McAdams' lead narrows."

The entire Republican party is a criminal organization from top to bottom now.
posted by kyrademon at 1:36 AM on November 15 [12 favorites]


They basically need to build more DMVs in California. I like a lot of the changes lately, but they simply don't have capacity.
posted by rhizome at 2:03 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


I totally missed that Gavin Newsom had been elected governor. I don't know what to make of this information. Impressed that his naked and obvious ambition to be governor hadn't derailed said ambition? Assume that everyone who's anyone in California politics holds every statewide office eventually? (I mean, governor in most states is kind of end of the road unless you run for senate or president. But if you're Jerry Brown, you go on to become mayor of Oakland, Secretary of State and then governor again.)
posted by hoyland at 4:20 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


As I recall, Trump gave up immediately on Mia Love the day after the election, saying "She gave me no love" with a hint of glee that it looked like she would lose the to Democrat. That's thanks to both his spite (she had been on record as anti-Trump in 2016, although she's apparently voted with him 96% of the time) and misogynoir (she's a black woman).
posted by InTheYear2017 at 4:34 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


Trump gave up immediately on Mia Love the day after the election, saying "She gave me no love"

And you know he was congratulating himself on how clever that was for days afterward, too.
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:39 AM on November 15 [8 favorites]


Jerry Brown had a radio show on Pacifica for a time (before he became Oakland’s mayor), which is a really strange way for someone to restart their political career.
posted by notyou at 6:20 AM on November 15


Trump claims people wear disguises to vote illegally in Florida

Is this where we learn about people doing that... to vote Republican? #onlythebestmirror
posted by Rykey at 7:12 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


> a really strange way for someone to restart their political career.

I know of several Democratic and GOP politicians (although definitely more GOP skewed) who were in talk radio or other media before they were in office... So is it only the "re" part of "restart" that makes it strange? Granted, I don't know a ton about Pacifica, or his specific show.
posted by MysticMCJ at 7:13 AM on November 15 [1 favorite]


"Rep. Mia Love sues Salt Lake County to suspend vote counting even as Ben McAdams' lead narrows."

Guess shes . . . giving her own voters no love?
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 7:34 AM on November 15


AP: Federal Judge Lets Florida Voters Fix Mismatched Ballot Signatures
A federal judge is giving thousands of Florida voters until this weekend to fix their ballots if they haven’t been counted due to mismatched signatures.

U.S. District Judge Mark Walker ruled early Thursday that current Florida law on mail-in ballots places a substantial burden on voters. The ruling comes as Florida is wrapping up a recount in three statewide races.

Walker did not go along with a request from Democrats to count all ballots with mismatched signatures. Instead he ordered that local election officials give voters until 5 p.m. on Saturday to correct the problem so that their ballots can be counted.
these voter suppression measures keep failing scrutiny when they go in front of a judge. next time we need to get them up there BEFORE the election.
posted by murphy slaw at 7:50 AM on November 15 [12 favorites]


It's the Pacifica part that makes it odd -- it's a network of half a dozen or so listener-funded FM stations whose politics are on the left edge, with a dose of woo. Pacifica's internal politics are notoriously fractious.
posted by notyou at 7:51 AM on November 15


Exceptional_Hubris: Guess shes . . . giving her own voters no love?

I wondered the same thing, but Salt Lake County specifically leans Democratic, so it's straightforwardly strategic. Targeted suits like this are nothing new (I'm pretty sure both the Bush and Gore people did that in 2000 rather than push broadly for recounts everywhere); what's new is the Republican push to halt even the first count.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 7:52 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


Federal (Trump appointed) Judge refuses to stop the Ranked Choice recount in Maine's CD2.

Sec of State's office says they'll have final totals in about an hour.

Edited to add: Full ruling from CD2 case (sorry, copy paste problems) It's pretty blunt.
posted by anastasiav at 7:53 AM on November 15 [9 favorites]


these voter suppression measures keep failing scrutiny when they go in front of a judge. next time we need to get them up there BEFORE the election.

I suspect the challenge with that is going to be issues with standing. In a sane world anyone who could potentially vote absentee or provisional would have standing but I can completely imaging it going the other way. But making this a 50 state strategy would certainly be a good mission for a vote-focused organization (and very well may be and I just don't know about it!)
posted by phearlez at 8:09 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


My understanding is that the judge in Poliquin refused to order a TRO, but the overall case is still going to proceed, though?
posted by Chrysostom at 8:12 AM on November 15


Palm Beach County has announced it won't be done with the machine recount on time, and lost a bunch of ballots. I have no idea of where we go from here.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:14 AM on November 15 [5 favorites]


I think the stark difference between parties in terms of who is trying to make sure votes get counted and who is trying to stop both voting and vote counts at all costs says rather a lot.
posted by kyrademon at 8:18 AM on November 15 [15 favorites]


My understanding is that the judge in Poliquin refused to order a TRO, but the overall case is still going to proceed, though?

Yes, but part of the test for a TRO is likelihood of success on the merits, and when the judge explicitly finds that the plaintiff's request fails that particular bar, they're gonna have a bad time.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:23 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


My understanding is that the judge in Poliquin refused to order a TRO, but the overall case is still going to proceed, though?

Correct. However I'd encourage you to read the ruling linked above, particularly the "Likelihood of success on the merits" section.

From the decision - "Simply stated, Plaintiffs have not provided the Court with any reasoned
argumentation, supported by citation to authority, on the specific topic of why
the remedy they propose is the remedy they are entitled to."


Bear in mind that this is a Lepage and Trump appointed and approved judge. He's pretty harsh on Poliquin's position throughout the ruling. Its extremely fun reading.
posted by anastasiav at 8:25 AM on November 15 [6 favorites]


"Plaintiffs' position is not without irony ... [I]f the court were to determine, as Plaintiffs request, that the appropriate remedy is to declare Representative Poliquin the winner, there are many who would consider the cure to be worse than the alleged disease, at least insofar as the professed concern is with the right of voters to cast effective ballots in a fair election."

Gee, ya think?
posted by kyrademon at 8:26 AM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Yup, I read the opinion, just wanted to be sure I understood where we are in the process. Legal Twitter has been highly skeptical of this succeeding, and looks like that was correct.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:30 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


They're apparently broadcasting the final tabulation (with a bonus explainer) as a Facebook livestream, if anyone wants to get their nerd on with lunch.
posted by anastasiav at 8:52 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


Palm Beach County has announced it won't be done with the machine recount on time, and lost a bunch of ballots.

Exsqueeze me? Like, *lost* lost a bunch of ballots? Or "Dumb Dave left them by the copier, now we need to redo it" lost a bunch of ballots?
posted by petebest at 8:56 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


With deadline looming, troubled Palm Beach County recount 'in prayer mode'
there was very little visible activity throughout the afternoon and into the night Wednesday. Only one ballot-counting machine was used, and it seemed to be in testing mode, with a technician feeding what appeared to be the same stack of ballots through it multiple times.

The canvassing board, which oversees counting procedures, had been meeting periodically throughout the day, but by evening, Bucher could be seen straightening chairs and turning off lights in their separate room.
...
Bucher said her team had expected a quiet midterm election and did not anticipate the need to run the county’s machines, manufactured by a now defunct company, all day and night during a multi-race recount.

The county has set aside more than $11 million to purchase newer machines, but Bucher said she had been waiting for the state legislature to tweak a new law that she says, once it goes into effect in two years, would make the new machines obsolete.
posted by BungaDunga at 9:03 AM on November 15 [6 favorites]


NYT reporter Frances Robles:
Palm Beach county recount is missing votes. They’re trying to figure out why.

More than a dozen precincts lost a substantial number of votes in Palm Beach county, the supervisor said.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:07 AM on November 15 [4 favorites]


GOP power grab in Oakland County, MI backfires.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:09 AM on November 15 [15 favorites]


This Maine livestream - thrill as we open Excel files live!
posted by Chrysostom at 9:13 AM on November 15 [7 favorites]


And do a Find / Replace!
posted by mikepop at 9:16 AM on November 15 [3 favorites]


I love that we're all watching this together. I also love my boring, nerdy, and hyper-competent State employees, who sing the Jeopardy theme while they wait for a file to open in front of an audience.
posted by anastasiav at 9:17 AM on November 15 [8 favorites]


Press Herald calling it for Golden - were they able to read the spreadsheet over the livestream?
posted by mikepop at 9:18 AM on November 15 [1 favorite]


I think they're calling it based on the exit polling....
posted by anastasiav at 9:19 AM on November 15


"Measure twice, cut once" - Maine SOS is actually Norm Abram.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:21 AM on November 15 [6 favorites]


I don't know when this will happen for the current ones (or if it already did?) but Maine's ranked ballots from earlier this year (the primaries) are available online as Excel spreadsheets, which means anyone should be able to independently verify the results given the input.

I'm glad that find/replace thing is happening publicly; it seems minor but it's a good example of an expected error and it's being handled transparently. (To explain: the Democratic challenger for Senate Jared Golden's name was entered somewhere in the process in two different ways, with and without a comma, and they're fixing that in live view.)

Calling a race based on exit polling seems like a mistake precisely because of the system being used, even if you asked all the voters for their second/third choices; my intuition says the error rate would overwhelm everything unless your sample size was significant.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 9:25 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


Vox piece on Fargo, ND's new approval voting system for local elections.

Really seeing a lot of innovation in voting systems these days.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:25 AM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Golden won.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:26 AM on November 15 [9 favorites]


GOLDEN!

The R's basically told their folks not to rank, and you can really see the difference in the results.
posted by anastasiav at 9:27 AM on November 15 [7 favorites]


That brings us to 36 Dem gains, probably a few more to come.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:28 AM on November 15 [10 favorites]


I wish the program they used had a nice graphical display, like an animation or something in a Hollywood film. It was very black-box (unless I missed something) which would magnify the suspicions of people who don't already understand how the ranked-choice instant-runoff system works.

At the very least, the secretary of state who announced Golden's win should have first explained which candidate got eliminated in the first round, and how many of that person's second-choice votes then went to Golden (because I think his victory only took one round of calculation).

But I suppose I shouldn't complain; the election commission of just about any state probably has to fight for the money to buy another stapler, let alone the kind of fancy system I'm picturing.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 9:33 AM on November 15


unless I missed something

Did you watch the long explanation at the beginning? Also, historically they've posted those .xls sheets we saw on the screen on their website, for anyone to play around in and add up. I feel like some kind of flashy graphic would have made the result seem pre-determined. Even most conspiracy theorists are familiar with Excel.
posted by anastasiav at 9:37 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


Since we're talking about CD2 today, I also just want to highlight one other great 2018 result. Before Poloquin arrived, Maine CD2 was represented by Mike Michaud, a former mill worker and labor guy from Millinocket, which is a pretty tiny town waayy up north. Millinocket was a paper mill town (until the mills closed) and is also the closest town to Baxter State Park and the new Maine Woods and Waters National Monument. Like LePage, Michaud also grew up in a Franco-American, French speaking home, and he was

Michaud served as the CD2 rep for 12 years, then stepped down to run for Governor and was very narrowly defeated by LePage for LePage's second term. During the 2014 campaign, Michaud was forced to come out after LePage & co started to spread rumors about him in 2013. Following his defeat, President Obama named him as Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training, a job he held until the end of Obama's term.

Last week, Mike Michaud got elected to a new position - he's now a town selectman for his hometown of East Millinocket (population 1600), where he's going to try and use his connections and experience to save the town from the economic impact of the devastating closure of the town's largest employer, the Great Northern Paper Mill, in 2014.

People get into politics for a lot of different reasons, but Mike Michaud has only ever run for office for one reason - to make Maine a better place. I really wish there were more polticitians like him, and I'm really enormously proud that Jared Golden will now hold Mike's old seat.
posted by anastasiav at 9:54 AM on November 15 [37 favorites]


Golden wins Maine’s 2nd District race after historic ranked-choice count: Democrat Jared Golden won 50.5 percent of the vote versus 49.5 for incumbent Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin after the elections results were run through the ranked-choice tabulation software.
Democrat Jared Golden was declared the winner of Maine’s 2nd Congressional District race on Thursday following a historic tabulation of ballots using ranked-choice voting.

Golden, a Marine Corps veteran and state lawmaker from Lewiston, began the day roughly 2,000 votes behind incumbent Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin. But Golden surged past Poliquin after the ranked-choice votes of two independents in the race were redistributed Thursday morning.

The final vote tally was 139,231 votes for Golden versus 136,326 votes for Poliquin – or 50.5 percent to 49.5 percent.

This is the first time in U.S. history that a congressional race was decided using ranked-choice voting, which allows voters to cast ballots for their favorite candidate but also rank other candidates in order of preference. Those ranked-choice votes only come into play, however, when no candidate wins more than 50 percent of the vote on the initial tally.

Thursday’s vote tally may not be the end, however. Poliquin is challenging the constitutionality of ranked-choice voting in federal court, and the campaign could ask for a recount of the results.
posted by homunculus at 9:54 AM on November 15 [10 favorites]


Susan Collins is now the only GOP member of Congress from New England.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:07 AM on November 15 [40 favorites]


anastasiav: I feel like some kind of flashy graphic would have made the result seem pre-determined. Even most conspiracy theorists are familiar with Excel.

I guess I had in mind the kind of user who assumes nothing is happening if they don't see it on the screen. "Wait, you told me how it works -- and then you just clicked a button?"
posted by InTheYear2017 at 10:15 AM on November 15 [2 favorites]


There was a really interesting report on Radiolab about Ireland's use of ranked choice voting. According to the story, at first they got immediate results by pushing a button. But people didn't like that, so now they file the votes in a special desk, and when there's no winner they take out the votes in the cubby of the lowest candidate and redistribute them. Complicated, but visually understandable in a way that people seem to prefer.
posted by rikschell at 10:33 AM on November 15 [17 favorites]


I think if you made it look like a gameshow an american audience would get it
posted by schadenfrau at 10:48 AM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Yes, the podcast about Ireland and its "dramatic" counting process is one thing I had in mind.

A key difference is that Ireland uses the system to populate multi-member districts, which is actually a pretty sensible way to do things. (Other ways of creating multi-member districts in American history have disenfranchised people by essentially letting minorities be overwhelmed by surrounding majority ballots, but the single-transferable-vote system allows every vote cast to be matched with an acceptable candidate.)

A downside of STV (compared to the single-winner IRV) is that redistributing ballots becomes even more complicated -- you take them not only from losing candidates, but also from "excessively winning" candidates whose victory is assured and whose extra votes could be helpful to second-place choices. The question then becomes which subset of those ballots to use?

The Irish method is random selection, which I think is how it's done in a couple other countries too. This means that multiple iterations of the same election could in fact reach different results (not possible in Maine). But in my opinion the optimal way is to take a fractional set of all the votes, no randomness involved. This essentially requires a computer because of the complication of the calculations, though if you really wanted to do it by hand you could.

Whatever is used, the end effect is the same -- each voter cast the same "amount of vote", split fractionally among various candidates that voter prefers, based on how critical that vote was to the candidate's success (or, non-split and assigned fully to a single random candidate with a proportional probability). Good luck explaining this to someone who insists it violates one-person-one-vote, though.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 10:53 AM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Wasn’t +36 seats the most wildly optimistic forecast anybody made for the House this cycle? And we’re still counting!
posted by Andrhia at 12:14 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


I think 45 was the "wildly optimistic" upper bound at places like 538, but 40 was definitely in the regularly optimistic range.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:17 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


@lbarszewski: Broward numbers are lower than first results: Numbers being sent to Tallahassee show 779-vote swing to Scott.

@baseballot: Based on reports, Palm Beach *should* be the only county that didn't finish machine recounting by 3pm. That just means the original results will stand, for the purposes of determining if a hand recount is necessary. #FLsen

Palm Beach apparently didn't manage a machine recount of any race before the deadline.
posted by zachlipton at 12:30 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


Final 538 House Projection from before the election is still available. Top of their probability bell curve was +39, pretty spot on.
posted by mcstayinskool at 12:44 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Most of the action was always likely to be in the manual recount in any case - that's where they examine the under and over votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:46 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


New Hampshire selects their Secretary of State by a majority vote of the entire legislature (because, New Hampshire). The current SOS, Bill Gardner, is nominally a Democrat but has been a big backer of vote suppressing legislation, and supported the Trump/Kobach "voter fraud" commission.

Dems took control of both houses this time. House Dems just took a non-binding vote, and Gardner got crushed. Real vote is Dec 5, but NH is likely to get a much better SOS.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:00 PM on November 15 [21 favorites]


House Dems just took a non-binding vote, and Gardner got crushed.

I wonder how bad it could have be --

Current Secretary Gardner on short end of 179-23 secret ballot vote.

Oh my.
posted by joyceanmachine at 1:07 PM on November 15 [11 favorites]


People have been putting up with Gardner for a long time because he is a zealous defender of NH's "first in the nation" status, but I think NH Dems are just fed up at this point.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:11 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


I've been keeping tabs on Iowa's 55th HD since that's where I went to college. On election night, the Democratic challenger, Kayla Koether, was down 8 votes to Republican incumbent Michael Bergan. After adding in mailed absentee ballots this week, she cut that deficit to 7. However, not all absentee ballots were treated equally....

Kate Payne, Iowa Public Radio: Auditors Improperly Count Some Ballots in House District 55, Disqualify Others
Fayette County Auditor Lori Moellers says elections workers there improperly included 12 last minute mail-in ballots in their count, even though the ballots were not postmarked, which is required by Iowa Code. The move could have affected the outcome in northeast Iowa's House District 55 race.

[...]

Moellers called the move unfortunate, but directed further questions to state elections officials. Now that the ballots have been included, the secretary of state’s office says there’s no way to remove them from the count.

[...]

[Winneshiek County Auditor] Steines's office tossed out 32 mail-in ballots because they were not postmarked, and he's now mailing out letters to affected voters to notify them their votes have been rejected.
It's entirely possible that treating the absentee ballots uniformly would have swung the election, especially since Fayette County went 57.5% Republican, and Winneshiek went 53.3% Democrat in this race.
posted by bassooner at 1:23 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


NPR continues to be shitty with a completely misleading tweet about how ranked-choice voting works:
"Republican incumbent Bruce Poliquin was ahead after all votes were counted, but because of Maine’s “ranked-choice” voting system, Democrat Jared Golden won."
posted by Atom Eyes at 1:32 PM on November 15 [17 favorites]


Wasn’t +36 seats the most wildly optimistic forecast anybody made for the House this cycle? And we’re still counting!

From the top of the previous election thread:

-- 538: Dems are "pretty clear favorites." Odds of control: 80.0%/87.4%/84.1%, depending on model. Median result of 233 seats.

-- Daily Kos Elections: Pickup of ~ 30 seats.

-- Cook: Pickup of 20-45 seats, most likely 30-40.

-- The Crosstab: 79% chance of Dem control, 229 seats most likely.

-- Crystal Ball: Pickup of ~ 34 seats.

-- The Economist: 86% chance of control, 229 seats most likely.

-- YouGov: Dems with 225 seats.

So if I'm reading correctly, we're currently at a 36 seat pickup (beating Daily Kos and Crystal Ball predictions), for, what, 227 total seats?

I'm happy about each climbing number (and super happy we didn't actually end up 4 down in the Senate), but mostly I'm just ecstatic that we got the majority. Every additional seat is a fantastic win, but crossing that majority threshhold is where the magic is.
posted by kristi at 1:35 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]




Amanda Marcotte has a pattern of erasing left-feminist critics of centrist women politicians by caricaturing all such critiques as sexist.
posted by One Second Before Awakening at 1:59 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


The thing about any argument that favors plurality over instant-runoff (which I wish everyone stopped calling "ranked choice" because it's like referring to someone's "pet mammal", but I guess that's a losing battle) is they are fundamentally identical with one difference: the impact of spoiler candidates.

If someone says "Forget this ranking gobbeldygook, Poliquin is the 2nd district's real choice" (I mistakenly said Senate before), then they're arguing that independent candidate Marty Grohman occupied some kind of crucial role in the system. I don't see how that possibly holds up. Suppose he'd dropped out at some point -- would this disenfranchise Mainers? Even though he could never have won at all? Sheesh.

Correction: Two independents, Tiffany Bond and Will Hoar. Grohman ran in Maine's other district where the incumbent Democrat easily got over 50% anyway.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 2:06 PM on November 15


Amanda Marcotte has a pattern of erasing left-feminist critics of centrist women politicians by caricaturing all such critiques as sexist.

I don't know whether or not that's true. I do know that the big majority of the opposition to Pelosi is coming from her right and the name most often offered as an alternative is Marcia Fudge, who is one of only like two Democrats not to support protections for gay and transgender Americans.

Every time a supposed progressive expresses opposition to Pelosi's leadership I want to shake them and yell, "LOOK AT WHO YOU ARE ALIGNING YOURSELF WITH. THINK!"
posted by Justinian at 2:11 PM on November 15 [35 favorites]


I am seeing a lot of overlap between democrats who can't stand Pelosi for vaguely defined reasons and democrats who couldn't bring themselves to vote for Clinton for vaguely defined reasons. Not having it.
posted by phooky at 2:16 PM on November 15 [40 favorites]


/whines
But I want her to kick Republican ass, not be bi-partisaaaaan!
/whines
/grouses, elects Pelosi
posted by petebest at 2:16 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


Who are the "progressive" members of Congress that have expressed opposition to Pelosi's leadership from her left?
posted by contraption at 2:18 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]




According to DW-Nominate, Marcia Fudge is more left on economic issues but more right on social issues than Nancy Pelosi. Both of them are unambiguously to the left of the leader of the Dem House insurgency, Tim Ryan. Pelosi is more liberal than 93% of the House overall and more liberal than 84% of Democrats, which is a pretty unusual definition of "center-left" but not gonna quibble.

On preview,

Oh I see, you're just taking the media framing that everyone who opposes Pelosi's speakership is #TeamTimRyan or #TeamMarciaFudge seriously.

If anyone else wants to step up, they should make it known before Pelosi is unseated.
posted by Jpfed at 2:26 PM on November 15 [13 favorites]


No, I read AOC comments and others as well as news reports and the people holding the caucus hostage are Ryan et al. Not that others wouldn't want more of a firebrand but the issue is centrists/conservatives trying to Freedom Caucus the Dems and put in someone who thinks working with Rs to try and win some Rs and Inds for 2020 is the best plan. it's not.
posted by chris24 at 2:27 PM on November 15 [11 favorites]


And Pelosi isn't center right.

She's center-right in the sense that the Democrats as currently constituted are a center-right party by global and historical standards (avowedly pro-capitalist, largely in favor of deregulation and privatization, not particularly interested in rocking the boat when it comes to income inequality or redistributive tax policy) and she is somewhere toward the middle-left of that group.
posted by contraption at 2:31 PM on November 15 [7 favorites]


I'm not 100% on this, but I'm pretty sure I just saw a pair of goal posts sailing off into the distance.
posted by MysticMCJ at 2:34 PM on November 15 [34 favorites]


Pelosi could be more left than 98% of democrats and still not be centre-left.

They're only vaguely defined reasons if you have no problem with capitalism, pro-business politicians and continual support for a murderous international regime of imperialism.
posted by AnhydrousLove at 2:35 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


She's center-right in the sense that the Democrats as currently constituted are a center-right party by global and historical standards

Without taking a position on that assertion, even if it were granted it is completely irrelevant and unhelpful and, additionally, seems very unlikely to me to be what most people who call Pelosi center-right mean when they call her center-right. Particularly since it would mean there are maybe 2 members of Congress on the Democratic side who aren't center-right.

The fact is that Pelosi has for many years represented, and represented well, one of the most progressive districts in the nation (D+37). She has been laying her body on the tracks for progressive causes since before most of her critics were born. She's a hero.
posted by Justinian at 2:35 PM on November 15 [39 favorites]


I would just like for everyone who thinks Pelosi needs to go to please append the name of the person they think they should replace her to their comments calling her a right-winger and downplaying the misogynistic attacks on her.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:35 PM on November 15 [16 favorites]


OK, since I started this derail and people are now speculating on my intentions, I was calling Pelosi center-right for those reasons contraption and AnhydrousLove stated (capitalist, pro-business, imperialist, etc), and I will append the name of the person I think should replace her: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

I know that won't happen. But it doesn't matter, I don't get a say in it anyway. We're all just posting.

Apologies for starting this derail, feel free to delete this comment.
posted by One Second Before Awakening at 2:39 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


No, I read AOC comments

What comments?

I would just like for everyone who thinks Pelosi needs to go to please append the name of the person they think they should replace her to their comments

Barbara Lee.
posted by edeezy at 2:40 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


and I will append the name of the person I think should replace her: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Do... do you actually know what the Speaker does? I can't think of a worse choice.
posted by Justinian at 2:43 PM on November 15 [50 favorites]


It's become clear to me that when many people oppose making Pelosi Speaker of the House they really mean they oppose her becoming House Majority leader and just don't know what the heck they are talking about.
posted by Justinian at 2:45 PM on November 15 [16 favorites]


Look, I get it, I'd like to see things shifted DRASTICALLY to the left also, but that's not the makeup of congress we have today, and you don't get there by putting the left-most person as speaker of the house. You get there by electing more people who are drastically to the left to congress - period. That's the only answer.
posted by MysticMCJ at 2:45 PM on November 15 [18 favorites]


Much love to AOC but maybe we should give her time to figure out where the restrooms are at the Capitol before making her Speaker of the House.
posted by murphy slaw at 2:46 PM on November 15 [27 favorites]


My god. I love AOC. She's a freshman.

We're facing a fascist wannabe dictator. The House is our only backstop against the end of democracy. Pelosi is the most powerful, knowledgeable, capable person to fight this battle. And people want to downgrade and risk it all because someone more liberal than 90% of Ds isn't liberal enough.

Madness.
posted by chris24 at 2:46 PM on November 15 [68 favorites]


Given the current political landscape there's not anybody I would consider better able to lead today's caucus than Pelosi, but I also think she represents the old guard and needs to either have a total ideological epiphany or get out of the way in the medium-to-long term. In the meantime, I hope AOC and others in the left wing of the party are successful in strong-arming her into taking positions to the left of what she's comfortable with even as they continue to back her Speakership. It'll be good practice in the sort of parliamentary maneuvering they'll need to master in order to take leadership positions themselves in the not-too-distant future.
posted by contraption at 2:48 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


I will append the name of the person I think should replace her: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

As Dave Roberts wrote this morning:
whenever a position comes up, whether it's president, head of the DNC, or Speaker of the House, they rally around the person they like most, who is most charismatic & appealing, who gives them good feels & performs well on TV. But these jobs in politics are ... actual jobs, with actual responsibilities & goals, requiring actual knowledge & skills. They're not just all-purpose Titles to Give Good People. It's possible for a person to be great, generally speaking, but not suited to a particular job.
...
So many critiques I read of Pelosi are about whether people like her, or her approval rating, or the things she says. People seem to want the Speaker to be charismatic, say the right things, rally Dems, give good soundbites. But that's not the job! Any Dem can become a leader, rally the troops, give good speeches. The Speaker has access to a very specific set of procedural mechanisms & levers of power. It's about using those mechanisms & levers to support friends, gather votes, and shiv opponents.
...
Anyway, I'd at least like the debate over Speaker to be focused on the actual job. I'd like to hear why alternatives to Pelosi will be better at thwarting Trump -- which is about 98% of the job the next 2 years -- rather than about their superior rhetoric, tone, or style.
Ocasio-Cortez is going to be great. She's going to push everyone to be better; indeed, she's already doing it. But she is not qualified to be Speaker right now, because she just got there.

This discussion is swell and all, but the group that's trying to take down Pelosi are to her right. I love Barbara Lee, but if Pelosi can't get 218 votes, where is Lee going to get them?
posted by zachlipton at 2:48 PM on November 15 [35 favorites]


I dunno, it seems obvious that nobody but Pelosi can get close to 218 votes. The only real question is how drawn out and painful the process to get her there becomes.
posted by Justinian at 2:55 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


> the group that's trying to take down Pelosi are to her right. I love Barbara Lee, but if Pelosi can't get 218 votes, where is Lee going to get them?

Yeah, the lack of a serious alternative to Pelosi gives the game away here - this "speaker contest" is just a way to hobble the Democrats and have them be held hostage by a Republican-lite faction.

For people complaining about Pelosi not being liberal enough, I wish I'd kept a copy of my long comment, since deleted in a (totally justified) thread clean-up, where I ranted about the climate change bill, the public option, Democrats walking the plank for Obamacare, and fucking traitor Joe Lieberman.
posted by RedOrGreen at 2:58 PM on November 15 [18 favorites]


To me, the question isn't "who would be better" but "should anyone who thinks Pelosi is too conservative be signing on to an attempt to unseat her by people who think she's too liberal" and I think it answers itself.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:58 PM on November 15 [22 favorites]


It seems like Pelosi is pretty solidly in the position, and we've established that there's a difference between criticisms from the left and supporting the group attacking her from the right.

So since we're not going to influence things from here, why do we have to pretend she has good politics? Why does she get to be sacrosanct just because she fills an important role?

Also, re: fascists... Even if the current batch are ousted, if you keep supporting capitalists, they'll be back again, and probably before we're all in the ground.
posted by AnhydrousLove at 3:01 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Exactly. Why would the left help Blue Dogs knife Pelosi so they can implement their agenda, not the left's.
posted by chris24 at 3:01 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


Again, no one seems to be able to produce these leftists who are supporting Ryan's effort.
posted by edeezy at 3:04 PM on November 15 [10 favorites]


So since we're not going to influence things from here, why do we have to pretend she has good politics?

hi, this ain't red rose twitter, there is still some diversity of opinion remaining here and I'm not "pretending" to like Pelosi's politics.
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:06 PM on November 15 [10 favorites]


Making demands of someone when you know they'll need your vote to survive is exactly the sort of ruthless tactical thinking we're all supposed to respect when Nancy Pelosi does it. Why shouldn't AOC and others on the left use what leverage they have to get the policy platform they want?
posted by contraption at 3:07 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Why is criticism clearly saying she's not left enough helping the Blue dogs? That's an argument for Pelosi against them.

Also, the criticisms I've been exposed to aren't that she's not liberal enough, it's that she's a liberal. At some point it would be nice to see more people understand that not everyone on the left is a liberal, regardless of how they feel about that.
posted by AnhydrousLove at 3:07 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


(and that's not the same thing as throwing in with Marcia Fudge, which nobody on the left seems to be doing.)
posted by contraption at 3:08 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


The ratio of energy dedicated to attacking largely unnamed left-wing Democrats who might prefer someone lefter than Pelosi but are not actually mounting a challenge to her, vs critiques of the center-right faction who is actually mounting a (foolish and hopeless) challenge to her, is pretty remarkable. The reason the far left isn't suggesting an alternative candidate is because they aren't actually mounting a challenge. For the most part, the very few who have said anything at all have merely said that they would prefer someone more left, which is 100% what democracy is about. The fact that they aren't mounting a more substantial challenge and aren't doing much of anything to support the attack from the right shows that they are actually being pragmatic, just as everyone wants. But the proportion of the criticism they are getting is way out of scale given all this.
posted by chortly at 3:08 PM on November 15 [13 favorites]




why do we have to pretend she has good politics?

Obamacare and the 2009 Climate bill both passed almost singlehandedly by the hard work and sheer willpower of Pelosi. At great political risk. She's not perfect, but her politics aren't awful.

Also, re: fascists... Even if the current batch are ousted, if you keep supporting capitalists, they'll be back again, and probably before we're all in the ground.

Yeah, cuz fascists have never sprung up and taken over from socialists.
posted by chris24 at 3:09 PM on November 15 [33 favorites]


why do we have to pretend she has good politics?

Because we're not pretending. She's a founding member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus! In what way does she not have good politics in a way that is out of step with the majority of the caucus?

She's strongly pro-choice, she's for increasing gun laws, she's a leader in the movement to increase the minimum wage, she called bullshit on "welfare reform" under multiple administrations, she opposed cutting taxes for the wealthy, she votes AGAINST reauthorizing the Patriot Act, she blocks offshore drilling and supports climate change legislation, she is the person most single-handedly responsible for the ACA (and she wrangled the House into voting for a public option later stripped by Joe Fucking Lieberman in the Senate), SHE VOTED AGAINST THE AUTHORIZATION FOR WAR IN IRAQ, is possibly the single strongest supporter of LGBT rights in the House, and I give up because I could go on for years.

Oh, she yanked a statute of Robert E Lee out of the Capital and replaced it with Rosa Parks. And didn't make a big deal out of it. She just did it.

What the heck do people want? The risen corpse of Leon Trotsky?
posted by Justinian at 3:10 PM on November 15 [94 favorites]


[None of is actually in congress, to my knowledge, so while I understand that there's an understandable energy of nowness about this whole debate of whether and who and how and when with the House and the Speakership and so on maybe we can not armwrestle each other to death about it.]
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:11 PM on November 15 [5 favorites]


None of is actually in congress

yet

*eyes Chrysostom*
posted by Justinian at 3:12 PM on November 15 [14 favorites]


What the heck do people want?

Someone who supports single payer.
posted by edeezy at 3:14 PM on November 15 [15 favorites]


But the proportion of the criticism they are getting is way out of scale given all this.

yeah, but they're the ones showing up here to discuss it. I haven't seen anybody actually defending the hashtag five white guys here.
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:15 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


We interrupt this edition of the circular firing squad to bring you news of an Extremely Florida Thing happening.

@DaniellaMicaela: NEWS from @AnnieGrayerCNN, who's been at Broward County every day this week: The director of elections announced they uploaded their new recount totals 2 minutes late, so they Sec of State did not accept them. Broward has to use the unofficial results from before the recount.

I'm not really quite sure how or if this matters, since the big question is a hand recount, but it's not a good look.
posted by zachlipton at 3:25 PM on November 15 [13 favorites]


Holy motherforking shirtballs.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 3:28 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


If you give a shopper a box of cereal, he’s going to be asked for a voter ID (Alexandra Petri, WaPo, in fine shaggy-dog form)
If you buy a box of cereal, they’re going to ask you for voter ID.

And if they ask you for voter ID to buy your cereal, you’re going to want to leave right away without getting a jug of milk, because what kind of a grocery is this?

But if you decide you want a jug of milk, you’re going to keep coming back to check out, in different outfits, a wig maybe, six or seven times, but you have practice, because that’s how you vote, apparently.

And if you keep coming back to vote in different outfits, because that’s how you vote, apparently, it’s going to turn out that you are … Kris Kobach?
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 3:36 PM on November 15 [14 favorites]


I’d prefer someone who had Pelosi’s skills and a better ability to speak extemporaneously in the press; I assume there are more than a few members of the House who would do a great job as speaker and bring their own particular skills to the position; neither better nor worse, just different. But no one other than the DINO caucus seems to be interested in stepping up, so I assume they either don’t want to or don’t have the support (if you can’t get the votes for speaker how are you going to get the votes for bills?). I wish Pelosi were a better public speaker on the issues I care about, and I hope we’ll get more diversity in other leadership positions, but there is no way in hell I’d support this DINO gambit.
posted by melissasaurus at 3:37 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


I sense two interlocking tendencies among progressive/lefty/actually-liberal folks when we look at and think about the Democratic Party as it operates in DC. One is understandable disappointment at the centrism, corporatism, etc... and the other is the need for a singular hero to celebrate. The more disappointed we feel, the more we yearn for a Somebody who brings us powerfully in the direction of what is good and right. The more we think about the individuals who exemplify that, the more disappointed we become about all the others who don't meet that standard.

But this is a bad cycle. There's an odd mix of high optimism and defeatism going on -- that on the one hand, the right leader could effect some significant change... and on the other hand, that the party collectively can't. But this is almost backwards. Supporting single-payer and abolishing ICE isn't the job of the Speaker of the House. It's the job of the entire Democratic Party. And as counter-intuitive as this sounds, we have a much better chance to achieve the latter transformation than the former. This isn't chess, where you focus everything on capturing and replacing some Heraldic King/Queen, changing the avatar and thus transforming the whole army. (Okay, that isn't chess either.) It's more like go. Maybe.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 3:46 PM on November 15 [26 favorites]


As CA continues to count, Young Kim (R) is currently ahead of Cisneros (D) by... 48 votes.

I hope she enjoys the next 20 minutes because that's when her hopes and dreams are crushed beneath the blue tsunami.
posted by Justinian at 4:44 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


And Hobbs (D) is now up on Gaynor for AZ SoS by 13,000.
posted by chris24 at 4:54 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


BOOM.

Better luck next time, Young Kim (R). You tried!
posted by Justinian at 5:03 PM on November 15 [7 favorites]


With some new results posted, Cisneros (D) takes the lead over Young Kim by 941 votes!
posted by zachlipton at 5:04 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


Ok, but I waited until exactly 20 minutes after your comment just to make you look like a genius.
posted by zachlipton at 5:05 PM on November 15 [13 favorites]


That just happens naturally, zach, no help needed.
posted by Justinian at 5:05 PM on November 15 [7 favorites]




if you can’t get the votes for speaker how are you going to get the votes for bills?

This is a very important point. If this other group can't wrangle more than a couple dozens votes in opposition to Pelosi, they have no business leading the Democratic caucus in the House. Pelosi managed to pass the ACA by one vote in the House in spite of a bunch of conservative Blue Dogs, no votes to spare. You need someone who can count the votes and get the votes. It's not easy and requires someone with experience and a track record of success.

At this most critical point in history when everything is on the line you don't say "Hey, let's just give the job to someone who's never done it or anything like it before."
posted by JackFlash at 5:20 PM on November 15 [32 favorites]


Supporting single-payer and abolishing ICE isn't the job of the Speaker of the House. It's the job of the entire Democratic Party. And as counter-intuitive as this sounds, we have a much better chance to achieve the latter transformation than the former.

This is so important, too. We cannot built a long-term, progressive movement in the US while waiting for a charismatic perfect candidate or set of candidates who have the perfect record on the perfect slate of issues. We build it by putting our party intopower, building the candidates we want to see within the party, putting them into power, building more candidates we want to see, and so on and so on, until PROFIT!!! political domination, GOP-style. As long as we don't get that, we keep losing - or we win only on the coattails of a charmer.
posted by Miko at 5:34 PM on November 15 [37 favorites]


*eyes Chrysostom*

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:23 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


Latest AZ numbers, moved left in all races:

* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +13,171 (0.587%)

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +380 (0.427%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +577 (0.34%) =>this is the race for the second spot in the two rep district

Called races:

* Senate: Sinema [D]
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D]
posted by Chrysostom at 6:28 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


AZ SOS seems pretty close to being wrapped up at this point. Gaynor would have to clean up in Maricopa remaining votes, and he's been losing there. At this point, I'm mostly thinking about these legislature races.

Fun fact: Arizona doesn't have a lieutenant governor, so if Ducey accepted some other gig, Hobbs would become governor.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:31 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


AP calls CA-45 for Katie Porter [D].
posted by Chrysostom at 6:32 PM on November 15 [10 favorites]


CA-21: Valadao [R-i] lead at 2,209.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:39 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


In 1990, about one-fifth of voters said they voted for a House candidate from the opposing party. This year- about 5%.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:46 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


what was independent identified voting like this time around?
posted by murphy slaw at 6:53 PM on November 15


Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.

That's not a no.
posted by contraption at 7:00 PM on November 15 [27 favorites]


Sen Cindy Hyde-Smith - she of the public hanging comment - now says we should be making it harder for Democrats to vote.

I mean, she's still probably going to win the runoff, but she's sure not very good at keeping the quiet parts quiet.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:01 PM on November 15 [9 favorites]


Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.

yeah, pull the other one. next thing you tell us donald trump will run for president
posted by murphy slaw at 7:02 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.

That's not a no.


Chrysostom running for President in 2020 confirmed.
posted by Marticus at 7:03 PM on November 15 [14 favorites]


That's old news.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:06 PM on November 15 [2 favorites]


More Scott Walker skulduggery as WI GOP try to protect a conservative seat on state SC.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:09 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


GA-07: Initial count complete, Woodall [R-i] up by 419 votes. Dem Bourdeaux asking for recount.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:24 PM on November 15 [1 favorite]


next thing you tell us donald trump will run for president
posted by murphy slaw


Epunysterical?
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:25 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


what was independent identified voting like this time around?

The only data I can see, on cnn's page that I've carelessly closed, includes "leaners" and so is complete garbage. But it was 54% D. There's no reason to expect the small bunch of pure independents to be any less a gaggle of randomly voting knuckleheads than they always are.

When they ask about partisanship they ask whether you usually think of yourself as a Democrat, Republican, independent, or what. And if you say D or R they ask whether you're strong or not so strong, and if you say you're independent they ask if you lean towards either party. We've known for decades that those "leaners" are just partisans who are lying to themselves and that they're almost completely interchangeable with weak partisans. So if you want to know what actual independents think, you need to strip out the leaners and look at the 15% or so who don't lean. Those people are mostly doofuses, people who don't care enough and haven't learned enough about politics to acquire a partisanship.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 7:47 PM on November 15 [6 favorites]


Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.

Donald Trump apologizing for being wrong about something?

Have you even seen this time line lately? You could resurrect the Gonzo Party and run as Colonel Kurtz and eat babies and apparently you've got at least a 50/50 chance just for running.
posted by loquacious at 7:55 PM on November 15 [4 favorites]


Sure, he may eat babies, but he does it without making any excuses for it.
posted by MysticMCJ at 8:09 PM on November 15 [3 favorites]


I’d prefer someone who had Pelosi’s skills and a better ability to speak extemporaneously in the press

It's not the job of the Speaker of the House to be the party's mouthpiece; the title "Speaker" is metaphorical. Consider all the Speakers in recent years: Lyndon Johnson, John Boehner, pervert Dennis Hastert, Tom Foley, Newt Gingrich, James Wright, Carl Albert.... none of these were dynamic speech-makers, or people you wanted to see on TV representing your party.

They are cat herders and vote counters and horse traders, nothing more and nothing less. If anything, Pelosi is the most appealing, dynamic and well-spoken of all of them.
posted by msalt at 8:25 PM on November 15 [32 favorites]


More Scott Walker skulduggery as WI GOP try to protect a conservative seat on state SC.

This is similar to what they did to get state supreme court justice Rebecca Bradley to defeat progressive candidate Joanne Kloppenberg in 2016; they knew the presidential primary was more hotly contested on the GOP side than on the Dem side, so they put the state supreme court race on the same date as the presidential primary, but (contra the stated reason of saving money) moved primaries for other elected positions to a separate date.
posted by Jpfed at 8:34 PM on November 15


I wish the program they used had a nice graphical display, like an animation or something in a Hollywood film...
At the very least, the [Maine] secretary of state who announced Golden's win should have first explained [what happened]...


There's a good depiction (not animated, though) of the ranked-choice voting process on the Wikipedia page for this summer's Maine primary to pick the Democratic candidate for governor. None of the Republican candidates at the time liked the idea of RCV, and all the Democrats did – except the winner (and now Governor-elect) Janet Mills, who as state Attorney General said she couldn't comment because the matter was before the courts. (Also, predictably, Republican Gov. LePage called RCV "the most horrific thing in the world," and said he wouldn't cooperate with the process no matter how legal it was.)

There's also an illustration at Wikipedia of the RCV for the ME-02 U.S. House voting just resolved (at the bottom of the page), but it's not complete at the moment because it doesn't show either one of the two remaining candidates with more than 50% of the vote.
posted by LeLiLo at 9:15 PM on November 15




This seems like a positive step.

@benwikler: This is huge. Nancy Pelosi has committed to put Progressive Caucus members—including newly elected progressive champs—on the most powerful committees in the House.
posted by contraption at 10:36 PM on November 15 [29 favorites]


It's almost like Pelosi gets shit done while most of her critics are blowhards who couldn't wrangle Brett Kavanaugh to a kegger.
posted by Justinian at 11:15 PM on November 15 [73 favorites]


Personally, I've gone from anxiously watching Arizona to anxiously watching Utah.
posted by kyrademon at 4:05 AM on November 16 [1 favorite]


"[Rep. Tom] Reed, co-chairman of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, said the growing frustration with gridlock, polarization and a top-heavy leadership approach in Congress are the reasons why several members in his party are willing to supply Pelosi with some Speaker votes in exchange for extracting an overhaul of the House rules."

... Nancy Pelosi, who did not arrive at the Capitol Thursday morning on a turnip truck, was ready for this shell game..... “Oh, please,” she said. “No, never.”
“I intend to win the Speakership with Democratic votes,” she said.


Heh. Awesome.
posted by petebest at 5:03 AM on November 16 [24 favorites]


Lyndon Johnson

politics nerd engage pedantry

LBJ was Senate Majority Leader (a role with no constitutional authority which he turned into a powerful position through sheer force of will). He was never Speaker.
posted by dis_integration at 5:39 AM on November 16 [10 favorites]


Trump's supporters aren't swallowing his bullshit about the election, an LA Times poll finds:
The day after the Nov. 6 election, President Trump claimed the results represented a “tremendous success,” but most of his supporters aren't buying that, a new postelection survey shows, and the president also has significantly soured on the outcome.[...]

Democrats and Trump opponents are significantly happier about that outcome than are Republicans and Trump voters, according to a new USC-Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.

Asked to rank their reaction to the congressional election results on a 0-100 scale, voters who said they cast ballots for the Democrats were, on average, 26 points more positive than were Republican voters. [...] On the 0-100 scale, Republican voters on average listed their feeling about the outcome at a tepid 47. Democrats averaged 73, the USC/L.A.Times poll found.
Unsurprising, really, but it's nice to have a corrective to Trump's ceaseless spin and the mainstream media's complacent coverage of it.
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:56 AM on November 16 [5 favorites]


it's nice that they don't believe his line about it being a good outcome, but do they believe his line about it being stolen by illegal mexican voting
posted by murphy slaw at 7:14 AM on November 16 [3 favorites]


I'd like a poll that asked them directly "President Trump called the election a 'tremendous success'. Do you agree?" Just because they're naturally unhappy about the outcome doesn't mean that, in some way, they aren't swallowing or "believing" his nonsense.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 7:37 AM on November 16


it's nice that they don't believe his line about it being a good outcome, but do they believe his line about it being stolen by illegal mexican voting

Yes, yes they do.

Brendan Karet (MMFA)
Lou Dobbs: "We are watching, you know, millions of illegal immigrants cross our borders, and many of them voting in the past election that's what, just a couple weeks ago, and having immense impact"
VIDEO
posted by chris24 at 7:52 AM on November 16 [3 favorites]


i have a little bit of hope that at least some of the people who can tell he's bullshitting about how good the election was are not Clearly Insane People like lou dobbs
posted by murphy slaw at 8:59 AM on November 16




One of the many gratifying aspects of the Big Blue Wave is how much it has halted and reversed any chances for that Republican scheme, to the tune of quite a few trifectas. Both those articles came from before the election; today we can all breather a little easier.
posted by InTheYear2017 at 9:28 AM on November 16 [16 favorites]


Why stop at 'repealing the twentieth century' when the real bug up the collective asses of the STATES RIGHTS!!1!1! crowd are the thirteenth (abolition of slavery), fourteenth (citizenship), and fifteenth (voting rights) amendments. They're all about partying like it's 1859.
posted by hangashore at 9:29 AM on November 16 [4 favorites]


Conservatives want to bypass usual way to amend Constitution


After the gains in the 2018 election, this doomsday scenario is even less likely to happen. Let’s table this disaster fanfic for now.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 9:33 AM on November 16 [15 favorites]


Both those articles came from before the election; today we can all breather a little easier.

The Jacobin article is from today and takes the election into account.
posted by homunculus at 9:37 AM on November 16


Oh my, I cannot think of anything less likely than me becoming a member of Congress.

Your talents would be wasted as a congresscritter. Chief of Staff is where you need to be!
posted by absalom at 9:42 AM on November 16 [5 favorites]


I agree that nobody should be worrying about this in the next two years, but inasmuch as it's worth thinking about the numbers at all, note that state legislatures are the ones that call for a convention, rather than states, so holding the governor's veto pen doesn't allow Democrats to block one of these resolutions. They'd need control of at least one legislative chamber.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 9:46 AM on November 16 [5 favorites]


Why stop at 'repealing the twentieth century' when the real bug up the collective asses of the STATES RIGHTS!!1!1! crowd are the thirteenth (abolition of slavery), fourteenth (citizenship), and fifteenth (voting rights) amendments. They're all about partying like it's 1859.

This piece makes a strong case for liberals to embrace “progressive federalism.” It's a good article despite the hyperbolic (though not unthinkable, imo) title:

Rebirth of a Nation: Can states’ rights save us from a second civil war?
Progressives’ negative reaction to the words “states’ rights” was formed before the Civil War and reinforced during the Jim Crow era, but there’s a long tradition of progressives using the Tenth Amendment as a political tool, most notably, and successfully, in the 1850s, to resist the Fugitive Slave Act. Many Northern states abolished slavery decades before the Civil War. Wisconsin pioneered unemployment insurance for its residents twenty-four years before the federal government; Wyoming allowed women to vote in 1864, more than fifty years before the Nineteenth Amendment enacted suffrage nationwide.

The modern incarnation of this strategy, which one of its chief theorists, the Yale Law School professor Heather Gerken, calls “new progressive federalism,” has its origins in President George W. Bush’s reelection in 2004, when Republicans took control of all three branches of government. Gerken hoped a states’-rights strategy would serve as a counterweight to Republicans’ control of Washington, and that passing progressive legislation at the state level would be a way for “national minorities” to “constitute local majorities.” Since then, most major progressive reforms have been incubated and become law at the state level—commonsense gun control, tackling climate change, ensuring ­LGBTQ rights, marijuana decriminalization.

Citizens uninterested in living in Trump world should look to the recent heartening developments in California, Oregon, Vermont, New York, Massachusetts, and Washington State: local legislators taking on federal power in ways that have proved far more effective than rallies or federal legislative efforts at stalling or presenting alternatives to the Trump Administration’s agenda. The era when the federal government was a progressive force against reactionary states such as Alabama and Mississippi is dead, and progressive change is now flowing from the states, not from Washington.
posted by homunculus at 10:12 AM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Rebirth of a Nation: Can states’ rights save us from a second civil war?

First, you have to define "us".
posted by Etrigan at 10:48 AM on November 16 [12 favorites]


The problem is that the Supreme Court has tilted into an openly partisan operation. It certainly was not good in the early 2000s, particularly in deciding the 2000 election, but progress was still possible and was made.
posted by Candleman at 11:25 AM on November 16


GA-GOV: Abrams considering a legal challenge and a second vote.
Top Abrams advisers outlined her prospective case to The Associated Press, stressing that the Democratic candidate hasn’t finalized a decision about whether to proceed once state officials certify Kemp as the victor. That could happen as early as Friday evening.

Allegra Lawrence-Hardy, Abrams’ campaign chairwoman, is overseeing a team of almost three-dozen lawyers who in the coming days will draft the petition, along with a ream of affidavits from voters and would-be voters who say they were disenfranchised. Abrams would then decide whether to go to court under a provision of Georgia election law that allows losing candidates to challenge results based on “misconduct, fraud or irregularities ... sufficient to change or place in doubt the results.”
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 11:47 AM on November 16 [20 favorites]


GA-GOV: Abrams considering a legal challenge and a second vote.

I want to see this happen. Even if she loses, it would set a precedent that attempts to disenfranchise should be met with legal action. It will demonstrate which party is protecting your right to vote instead of pretending that "illegals" are stealing votes.
posted by Mental Wimp at 11:55 AM on November 16 [33 favorites]


From the Rebirth of a Nation article:

> Some will suggest that while this new embrace of progressive federalism may drastically improve the lives of citizens in liberal cities and states, the residents of the rest of the country may suffer. But just as in the migration of African Americans out of the Jim Crow South in the 1930s and 1940s, citizens are already moving to the diverse cities where the new jobs are.

Oh, ok - so fuck everyone who can't move then, and hope that anyone disenfranchised in a state never has to cross that states lines, ever. Got it. This is totally the correct message to have after we just retook the house in a very substantial wave.

States rights ARE important, as we've seen, and can be useful to work against a malicious federal government, or one not aligned with the interests of the people within a state. That does not mean that we just say fuck it and give up on Federal governance. That approach is right up there with calexit.
posted by MysticMCJ at 11:59 AM on November 16 [9 favorites]


I keep saying that the original American Civil War was completely stupid (and entirely about slavery), and a repeat isn't going to happen in the modern era where the most critical economic and ideological divides are urban vs. suburban vs. rural rather than regional. The potential for violence is likely an escallation of the domestic terrorism we've already seen. That would be bad, but trying to partition the Trump South from the MLK South down here would be an economic catastrophe that makes the Brexit problem of Ireland and Ulster look like a sudoku. Some Republicans in GA blinked when Disney threatened to pull out over an anti-LGBTQ bill, so clearly economic reality does speak to some of them.

That kind of federalism just kicks the problem of minority rule back to the states where it's already policy. And frankly, I get a little bit sick of NIMBY denial by my fellow white northerners regarding conservativism and white supremacy. They're not just in your back yard, they're the streets our childhood back yards were built on. State-level minority rule gave us redlined Chicago and Detroit as well as Jim Crow.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 12:42 PM on November 16 [14 favorites]


And coming out with an op-ed like that a mere two weeks after a historic election that proved GOTV and ballot-access activism can turn red states purple is, frankly, outrageous. Yes, the best strategy for national peace to tell civil rights groups to just pack up and move.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 1:14 PM on November 16 [9 favorites]


This piece makes a strong case for liberals to embrace “progressive federalism.”

Not if you’ve actually read any history on the run up to the Civil War it doesn’t

GenderNullPoint is right — sectarian violence in the future won’t look like the Civil War exactly

But in either case, if the Redhats really want violence there's nothing Blue can do, up to and including abandoning everyone in the red states who isn’t a Nazi, that will magically convince the Redhats to stand down and be reasonable. If what they want is violence, they will find an excuse for violence.
posted by schadenfrau at 1:19 PM on November 16 [4 favorites]


The violence is already happening, has been happening, we live in it. It's certainly more evenly distributed than these lovely new jobs in diverse cities to which "citizens" are apparently flocking.
posted by aspersioncast at 1:46 PM on November 16 [2 favorites]




More than 2,000 women will serve in state legislatures when those chambers convene for their upcoming sessions, representing roughly a quarter of all state lawmakers across the country. That mark will eclipse the record of 1,875 who served this year, according to reports Thursday from the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University.

The number could rise as ballot-counting concludes in close contests across the country. The Associated Press has not yet called 216 state legislative elections, races that include about 185 female candidates, according to the center.

In another first, women could end up holding the majority in two state legislative chambers at the same time — the Colorado House and Nevada Assembly, according to tallies by the center and the National Conference of State Legislatures.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:56 PM on November 16 [19 favorites]


California GOP ponders way forward after stunning losses

The Pacific Ocean is that-a-way.
posted by Gelatin at 1:57 PM on November 16 [23 favorites]


The Pacific Ocean is that-a-way.

Go west, old white man.
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:59 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Republicans:
Are we so out of touch??

No. It's the voters who are wrong.
posted by Atom Eyes at 2:05 PM on November 16 [8 favorites]


Kristin Olsen was Minority Leader of the California State Assembly and is vice-chair of the CA Republican Party. She wrote a commentary the other day (briefly mentioned in the AP article), GOP is dead in California. A new way must rise
The California Republican Party isn’t salvageable at this time. The Grand Old Party is dead – partly because it has failed to separate itself from today’s toxic, national brand of Republican politics.
...
It is time for a New Way. And if the Republican Party can’t evolve, it may be time for a third party, one that will appeal to disenfranchised voters in the Republican and Democratic parties who long for better representation and a better California for all.

Individual Republicans are good, conscientious people dedicated to serving their communities, but they belong to a brand and a national party that is toxic and growing more toxic by the day.
(We do not need to debate whether individual Republicans are, in fact, good, conscientious people.)

I don't know if anything like this will actually happen, and if it does, whether it will actually be a repudiation of hate or just a rebranding of the Republican Party's worst attributes. But it's the first time I've heard a fairly senior Republican say anything other "No. It's the voters who are wrong."
posted by zachlipton at 2:13 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Wasn't there a big foofaraw from Republicans (Rubio, for one) after losing in 2012 about how they were going to redirect their efforts towards attracting more women and minority voters? We see how that turned out.
posted by Atom Eyes at 2:21 PM on November 16 [4 favorites]


@LauraLitvan: Atlanta (AP) -- Democrat Stacey Abrams says she can't win Georgia governor race, effectively ends challenge to Republican Brian Kemp.

Some video from her speech, where she forcefully speaks about voter suppression: "let's be clear, this is not a speech of concession, because concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true, or proper. As a woman of conscience and faith, I cannot concede that."

She plans to file a federal lawsuit "to challenge `gross mismanagement' of Georgia elections."
posted by zachlipton at 2:22 PM on November 16 [41 favorites]


Damn, I was hoping against hope Abrams would be my governor.
posted by reductiondesign at 2:28 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Wasn't there a big foofaraw from Republicans (Rubio, for one) after losing in 2012 about how they were going to redirect their efforts towards attracting more women and minority voters?

The "Republican Autopsy." Funny that this seemed a reasonable assessment five years ago.
The GOP today is a tale of two parties. One of them, the gubernatorial wing, is growing and successful. The other, the federal wing, is increasingly marginalizing itself, and unless changes are made, it will be increasingly difficult for Republicans to win another presidential election
in the near future.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 2:45 PM on November 16 [4 favorites]


> Some will suggest that while this new embrace of progressive federalism may drastically improve the lives of citizens in liberal cities and states, the residents of the rest of the country may suffer. But just as in the migration of African Americans out of the Jim Crow South in the 1930s and 1940s, citizens are already moving to the diverse cities where the new jobs are.

Oh, ok - so fuck everyone who can't move then, and hope that anyone disenfranchised in a state never has to cross that states lines, ever. Got it. This is totally the correct message to have after we just retook the house in a very substantial wave.

States rights ARE important, as we've seen, and can be useful to work against a malicious federal government, or one not aligned with the interests of the people within a state. That does not mean that we just say fuck it and give up on Federal governance. That approach is right up there with calexit.


Yeah, the ending was a cop-out. After the paragraph about California passing its own net neutrality law, I thought the author was going to go for something more ambitious, along the lines of the saying "As goes California, so goes the nation". If California wins the net neutrality lawsuit, other states could pass similar laws and perhaps it will be revived at the federal level once the Democrats take it back (assuming the GOPSCOTUS doesn't sabotage it.) The author could have ended with a more altruistic take on progressive federalism; the last sentence I quoted above should have said "and progressive change is now flowing from the states, not from Washington, but to Washington." A genuinely progressive "progressive federalism" wouldn't stop at the state's border.
posted by homunculus at 2:47 PM on November 16 [4 favorites]


GOP is dead in California. A new way must rise

That line reminds me of something...
posted by homunculus at 2:48 PM on November 16 [2 favorites]


The Saruman Trap: Ally with the rising power (Sauron is making his ashen, desolate homeland, Mordor, great again) and use your wisdom to contain and guide it. Your old friends and allies are fools or weaklings. Go along with the inevitable, and you may shape the new world; oppose it, and you will simply fail and perish.
posted by BungaDunga at 3:04 PM on November 16 [8 favorites]


To be clear, most states rights arguments are pissiness that they can't short cut around the due process, equal protection, establishment, and privacy at the statehouse. You can't give a state the option of weaseling out of Obergefel without saying that LGBT people don't actually have rights under the equal protection clause in that area.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 3:16 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Somehow I missed the fact that Congresswoman-elect Sharice Davids is a former MMA fighter.
posted by homunculus at 3:27 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


Ha ha, gloat gloat - the CA Republicans are going to be scraping the stench of Trump and the party's turn to white nationalism off their shoes for a long time. I hope this happens in more states. Trump SHOULD be hung around the party's neck like an albatross. The party SHOULD be painted with the Nazi brush. Sucks to be you, GOP. Let it be an object lesson.

I flagged homunculus' comment as excellent - I've always beaten the drum for local control, and for the liberal states to act as bulwarks against the erosion of human rights. But I hope they can send progressive change flowing to Washington, and to the purple states. When Massachusetts and California allowed same-gender marriage, other states followed, and then, one day, Obergefell was the law of the land. Colorado's new governor-elect is a gay man with a husband and kids. Colorado legalized marijuana, and now several other states (including California) have followed suit. States can be shining beacons of light to set examples for others. So yes, state's rights, local control, what have you, is important, but not in a selfish, I-got-mine, batten down the hatches way.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 4:29 PM on November 16 [15 favorites]


I vote in Maine, and the explanation of Ranked Choice Voting at the polls is quite clear. If Poliquin succeeds in challenging it, I can't see how there wouldn't have to be a special election, since voters based their decisions on using RCV. And I think Mainers would be pretty pissed at Rep. Poliquin being so openly weaselly about votes cast. I watched the District 2 debate, though I'm in D1, and he was so obviously coached, such an ass, that I was kind of stunned. Golden looks like he'll be a terrific Representative.

Susan Collins is now the only GOP member of Congress from New England.. For now.
posted by theora55 at 4:34 PM on November 16 [2 favorites]


GA-GOV: More Abrams
“I will not concede because the erosion of our democracy is not right,” she said.

“Let’s be clear, this is not a speech of concession. Because concession means to acknowledge an action is right, true or proper,” she continued. “As a woman of conscience and faith I cannot concede that. But my assessment is the law currently allows no further viable remedy.”
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 4:35 PM on November 16 [32 favorites]




The numbers are not looking great right now in UT-04. The provisionals have to break strongly for McAdams for him to win it at this point. :(
posted by kyrademon at 5:48 PM on November 16


Previously:
Alaska Legislature: in what was probably the most important state senate race, Pete Kelly (R) leads Scott Kawasaki (D) by 11 votes.
It is looking more and more like Scott Kawasaki (D) has managed to pull off a narrow upset -- he is leading by 173 votes with almost all votes counted. It's a tiny bit of good news for Alaskans in what has otherwise been a mostly disastrous election cycle for state and national offices.
posted by Nerd of the North at 7:02 PM on November 16 [6 favorites]


During his eight year tenure as Georgia’s secretary of state, Kemp drew criticism for backing controversial voting laws that critics said disproportionately affected black voters. His office also oversaw the purging of over 1.3m names from the electoral rolls.

Fiat justitia, motherfucker!
posted by petebest at 7:23 PM on November 16


GA-SOS: Blatant bump. The GA Secretary of State office (that Kemp just vacated) will be decided in a run-off election on December 4. Please keep up the support and pressure because that will help decide how the 2019 and 2020 elections will be run.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 7:28 PM on November 16 [14 favorites]


zachlipton: "Kristin Olsen was Minority Leader of the California State Assembly and is vice-chair of the CA Republican Party. She wrote a commentary the other day (briefly mentioned in the AP article), GOP is dead in California. A new way must rise"

I do sometimes wonder if we might see a situation like Canada, where the national and provincial parties are distinct, and sometimes fairly different.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:31 PM on November 16 [1 favorite]


Nerd of the North, what's happening in HD-1?
posted by Chrysostom at 7:33 PM on November 16


kyrademon: "The numbers are not looking great right now in UT-04. The provisionals have to break strongly for McAdams for him to win it at this point. :("

Well, the court did throw out Love's lawsuit.

I'd say McAdams still has a chance - local observers have been more optimistic than Wasserman - but it's clearly not a great situation.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:36 PM on November 16


Donate to John Barrow in the Georgia SOS runoff here. If you're local, consider volunteering - I know Abrams said she'll be campaigning for him, so hopefully she can mobilize her folks.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:38 PM on November 16 [5 favorites]


Gov Ducey has called Katie Hobbs to congratulate her on victory in the SOS race. Still no AP call, though, as far as I know.

Latest AZ numbers:

* Sec of State: Hobbs [D] +15,025 (0.662%)

Close legislative races:

* SD-28: McGee [R] +284 (0.314%)
* HD-06: Thorpe [R] +577 (0.34%) => I think this one is done, unfortunately; the only outstanding counties don't overlap.

Called races:

* Senate: Sinema [D]
* Pub Instr: Hoffman [D]
posted by Chrysostom at 7:47 PM on November 16 [10 favorites]


Outstanding CA races:

* CA-21: Valadao [R-i] +2,086

* CA-39: Cisneros [D] +3,020

Based on outstanding ballots, CA-21 is expected to go right down to the wire.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:51 PM on November 16 [13 favorites]


Nerd of the North, what's happening in (Alaska) HD-1?
It is incredibly close. As of the most recent count, Bart LeBon (R) leads Kathryn Dodge (D) by 5 votes and the difference between divided government and total legislative and executive control of the state could actually hang on those five votes.

I am not going to react politely to the next person who tells me "I didn't bother to vote, one vote can't make a difference."
posted by Nerd of the North at 9:42 PM on November 16 [38 favorites]


Hobbs has declared victory in Arizona SOS! This really is a big win for voting rights.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:53 PM on November 16 [16 favorites]


Nerd of the North, what's happening in HD-1?>

It is so frustrating...Kathryn was down by 79 on election night, then up by 10 after questioned ballots, now down by 5 after absentee ballots...there’s still a chance there might be a few more absentees show up, but it’s not likely. Should be within the recount margin. But I don’t know if they do anything other than feed them through the machines—i don’t know if they look at the over/under votes or the write-ins. A friend said there were a bunch of problems with some of the machines, but...

And she was campaigning incredibly hard for this seat.
posted by leahwrenn at 10:26 PM on November 16 [3 favorites]


And another one down, another one down, another one bites the dust: Democrat Rebecca Bauer-Kahan squeaks out a win in California's 16th Assembly district, defeating the last Bay Area Republican in the State Assembly, Catharine Baker.

This district encompasses some wealthy East Bay 'burbs and I can remember when it was a lot more conservative than it was now. And I have some friends who campaigned for Bauer-Kahan and had a yard sign up for her, and they are stoked. The Republicans are becoming the personification of a flaming bag of dogshit in most of California.
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 11:49 AM on November 17 [17 favorites]


Also in California: Tony Thurmond wins the race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction in a squeaker!

Schadenfreude is a problematic emotion and one I try not to indulge too often, but I delight in the fact that Marshall Tuck, charter school orgs, and out-of-state billionaires spent $34 million on this race and still lost. My German isn’t good enough to create a compound word for this feeling, so I’ll just call it the “Meg Whitman effect.”
posted by donatella at 12:18 PM on November 17 [22 favorites]


@o_ema: In Palm Beach county the manual recount was supposed to begin at 8am. It’s 3pm and it hasn’t. “It’s because we’re working with decade old machines and too few of them,” an attorney said. “Since these machines were purchased the country increased in size by about 300k voters.” They estimate it won’t happen until around 5 or 6pm but say they will still get it into the state before the deadline

This is the same county that completely missed the deadline for the machine recount, so I'm totally confident they're on top of things now, right?
posted by zachlipton at 12:41 PM on November 17


Also in California: Tony Thurmond wins the race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction in a squeaker!

AaaahhhHH!!!! What a wonderful relief for California's public schools!
posted by elsietheeel at 1:04 PM on November 17 [8 favorites]


Keep in mind that, although Nelson's goose is cooked, we still have a shot at getting a Dem in as Ag Comm. Plus there are a few legislative seats in recount.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:21 PM on November 17 [1 favorite]


The networks still haven't withdrawn their calls of CA-21. I'm not certain who is gonna win but nobody else can be either. I guess they just don't care about accuracy anymore.
posted by Justinian at 2:09 PM on November 17




NYT, Nearly 3,000 Votes Disappeared From Florida’s Recount. That’s Not Supposed to Happen. This is from the machine recount, not the manual recount.
In one of the most serious cases, Palm Beach County found “dozens of precincts missing a significant number” of votes during the machine recount, according to the supervisor of elections, Susan Bucher, causing the county to conclude that entire boxes of ballots may not have been counted.

Ms. Bucher blamed an overheated and outdated ballot-scanning machine. But the manufacturer of the high-speed scanner used in Palm Beach said its technicians had witnessed Palm Beach County elections workers, apparently worried that one of the machines was running too fast, jam a paper clip into the scanner’s “enter” button in an effort to slow it down. That, in turn, caused a short circuit that cut off the power, a company spokeswoman said.
...
State officials said some fluctuations in vote counts are normal. “It is expected that as each set of results are due, the numbers will fluctuate some,” said Sarah W. Revell, a spokeswoman for the Florida secretary of state. “It is not indicative of a problem.”
What the hell?
posted by zachlipton at 4:09 PM on November 17 [15 favorites]


> Technicians had witnessed Palm Beach County elections workers, apparently worried that one of the machines was running too fast, jam a paper clip into the scanner’s “enter” button in an effort to slow it down.

As one does, you know.

What the hell are these people thinking? Even paid Russian saboteurs couldn't pull this shit off.
posted by RedOrGreen at 4:16 PM on November 17 [1 favorite]


Conspiracy theory; Republican complaints about the election officials in Palm Beach / Broward are always crocodile tears. They deliberately appoint lousy officials knowing they'll fuck up the Democrats chances through sheer incompetence.
posted by Justinian at 4:44 PM on November 17 [1 favorite]


Metafilter omnithreads: "What the hell...?"
posted by tivalasvegas at 5:03 PM on November 17 [1 favorite]


CA-39: AP calls race for Gil Cisneros [D].

Net Dem pickup is now 38 seats.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:30 PM on November 17 [19 favorites]


Final Maricopa County, AZ ballot drop should be tomorrow. Only outstanding race I can see is SD-28, where McGee [R] leads by 347 votes. Probably enough to hold on.

All told, though, a really good Dem year in AZ. Picked up:

* Senate
* AZ-02
* Superintendent of Public Instruction
* Secretary of State
* one seat on the Corporation Commission
* four seats in the AZ House
posted by Chrysostom at 7:42 PM on November 17 [11 favorites]


CA-21: Valadao [R-i] +2178
posted by Chrysostom at 7:43 PM on November 17


CA factoid:
One interesting thing about Orange County -- it is not actually becoming more Democratic *relative to rest of CA*.

in '94 Pete Wilson (R) did 13pts better in OC than statewide margin. John Cox in 2018: +13 again.

What *has* changed is California has gotten much bluer.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:52 PM on November 17 [9 favorites]


CA-21: Valadao [R-i] +2178

Do you know if this includes last week's Kern ballot dump? That's where I understand the trouble for Valadao will show up, if it does show up.
posted by Justinian at 8:12 PM on November 17


That's from CATargetBot, which I believe always has the latest official counts. Here's the latest update, which is some stuff from Kings.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:24 PM on November 17


Comments in that link indicate Kern should have a week's worth of ballots dumped on Monday! Internet comments are always right.
posted by Justinian at 9:05 PM on November 17 [3 favorites]




Internet comments are always right.

I mean, that's just science.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:34 PM on November 17 [7 favorites]




Was Rahm locked in the basement before the election and this elder-statesperson summary is his reward? That the headline is "signs of unity" is really off for me. Really off. Centrist-when-centrism-is-falling-by-the-wayside off. Fuck Rahm, fuck Karl Rove, fuck Mark Penn, fuck Steve Schmidt...fuck all of these Strategy Expert people who can't muster more than profoundly tepid praise for stereotypes. "Republicans you've heard of, replaced by brown people eventually!"

Maybe even more important, these races should serve as a reminder that Democrats’ impulse to paint Trump supporters with a single brush can obscure what’s really happening in voters’ hearts and minds. Yes, too many Americans continue to cast their ballots on the basis of ingrained prejudice. But many of the men and women who voted for President Trump in 2016 saw beyond their own identity when voting earlier this month.

jerkoff.gif

He spends paragraphs on this sentiment while floating right over something kind of glaring to me:

"Georgia’s sixth congressional district, situated to the north and west of Atlanta, was once Newt Gingrich’s home base. Dennis Hastert hailed from Illinois’ 14th district, on the outskirts of Chicago."

He can't say that these are the same seats, because gerrymandering has made it so he can only say, "those guys were sorta from around here [makes circling motion with hands]." So, in stereotypical Rahm fashion he shines his flashlight on the surface rather than the structural impediments that have made this kind of thing take so long. HE KNOWS WHAT THAT STUFF IS.

In the face of hostile rhetoric from the White House and a political system prone to exacerbating the divisions separating Americans by gender, geography, religion, sexual orientation, and, of course, race, millions of Americans refused to take the bait.

jerkoff-furiously.gif
posted by rhizome at 10:47 AM on November 18 [7 favorites]


One of the many gratifying aspects of the Big Blue Wave is how much it has halted and reversed any chances for that Republican scheme [a Constitutional Convention], to the tune of quite a few trifectas. Both those articles came from before the election; today we can all breather a little easier.

Can a legislature that has voted for a Constitutional Convention rescind that vote? Democrats should be looking to do so in states where they just won a Chamber or a trifecta.
posted by msalt at 1:42 PM on November 18 [3 favorites]


Can a legislature that has voted for a Constitutional Convention rescind that vote? Democrats should be looking to do so in states where they just won a Chamber or a trifecta.

They should also be joining the National Popular Vote Compact, if they aren't already.
posted by rocket88 at 1:57 PM on November 18 [23 favorites]


Dem Nikki Fried has officially won Florida Ag Commissioner. Small comfort compared to governor, but still the first statewide state office the Dems have won in Florida since 2006.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:38 PM on November 18 [17 favorites]


Literally, went to small size fundraising parties for Fried's competition where he was present (in a non-donating, placeholder, this-part-of-living-here-sucks sort of way). Silently rubbing my hands together in glee that at least one of these R fuckers got beat out here.

Don't talk to me about the rest, I'm hoping the reinstatement of the felon vote tips the scales going forward. At least Greyhound racing got the boot too.
posted by RolandOfEld at 5:40 PM on November 18 [4 favorites]


Brenda Snipes resigns as Broward County elections supervisor.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:23 PM on November 18 [2 favorites]


Atlantic: How the Democrats Took Back Michigan
posted by Chrysostom at 6:39 PM on November 18 [6 favorites]


Atlantic: How the Democrats Took Back Michigan

This article is roughly as true as Primary Colors, but a bit more entertaining.
posted by Etrigan at 8:02 PM on November 18 [1 favorite]


Brenda Snipes resigns as Broward County elections supervisor.
Snipes, 75, expressed a desire to spend more time with her family.
Oh shit it's... that bad isn't it
posted by Rykey at 3:33 AM on November 19 [1 favorite]


Snipes has a doctorate in education leadership from Nova Southeastern University. She is referred to by virtually everyone — even her fiercest critics — as “Dr. Snipes.”
What a bizarre way to end the article. Can you even imagine the same thing being written in an article about a white man?
posted by schmod at 6:36 AM on November 19 [8 favorites]


I can, but mostly because the inverted pyramid means I expect print publications to sometimes have some really curious filler at the end of the articles.
posted by phearlez at 6:58 AM on November 19 [2 favorites]


This is a stupid thing to be mad about, but Trump claiming that his support for Kemp swung the GA governor election to him infuriates me. Daniel Dale on twitter: "Trump said his successful aid to Kemp was extra-impressive because, for Abrams, "Oprah went, Obama went, and Michelle Obama went...they had Obama, Mrs. Obama and Oprah.”

Michelle Obama didn't go to Georgia. She didn't campaign for Abrams in any way, an Obama spokesperson says."

Trump is so desperate to claim that his support matters more than Obama and Oprah rather than some of the boldest voter suppression since Shelby.
posted by gladly at 7:04 AM on November 19 [6 favorites]


Is there a good link for seeing which House races are still uncalled, preferably with some current vote total data? I've been completely unable to find anything reasonable that's following the remaining races.
posted by mcstayinskool at 7:52 AM on November 19


Nate SIlver posted a thread on the significance of the Democrat's sweeping victory and how it's not being adequately covered in the mainstream media:
Seems likely Democrats will eventually get up to about 60m total votes for the House once unprocessed ballots from CA are tallied. Maybe a bit more (~61M?) based on what's left in other states. Those are similar numbers to what recent GOP *presidential* candidates have received.

Trump got 63m votes, Romney 61m, McCain 60m. Dem votes for the House this year should be very close to that range.

There's not any precedent for an opposition party coming this close to matching the president's vote total from 2 years earlier. The closest to an exception was when Democratic House candidates in 1970 got 92% of Nixon's vote total from 1968.

Of course, this reflects 3 things we already knew: 1) Trump was elected despite losing the popular vote; 2) D's won by a big margin this year and 3) Turnout was VERY high.

But Trump is a very unpopular president, and I don't think that's totally sunk in yet in how he's covered.

About 60 million people turned out to vote for Democrats for the House this year. That is a **crazy** number. (Republicans got 45m votes in the 2010 wave.)

And this was sort of missed. Why so many stories about Trump voters in truck stops and not so many about "the resistance"?
posted by Doktor Zed at 8:05 AM on November 19 [30 favorites]


Trump is so desperate to claim that his support matters more than Obama and Oprah rather than some of the boldest voter suppression since Shelby.

Well, that plus if you put two black women in the same place, he sees all black women. He probably thinks Leslie Jones and Maya Angelou and Lisa Leslie were there too.
posted by Etrigan at 8:11 AM on November 19 [6 favorites]


Nate SIlver posted a thread on the significance of the Democrat's sweeping victory and how it's not being adequately covered in the mainstream media

Freelance journalist Noah Berlatsky gives an example of how that lack of coverage works: An editor who outright refused to entertain a pitch for an article about anti-Trump organizing unless the organizers were reformed Trump voters.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:19 AM on November 19 [15 favorites]


Are there any major media outlets that could actually go all in on "fuck Trump and his moronic followers" -- abandoning bothsidesism completely -- writing off the right completely in order to report objective reality -- without suffering enormous blow-back from owners, major shareholders or seats on the board of directors? It seems like there would be a lot of money to be made, kind of the way Fox did on the right, but the Venn overlap between people who control media and people who stand to profit from Trumpian economics is perhaps insurmountably large?
posted by seanmpuckett at 8:27 AM on November 19 [3 favorites]


Slate and Salon seem pretty good in this regard.
posted by Melismata at 8:45 AM on November 19


A look at use of color in congressional candidate signs: In a year of political logos, campaigns of all stripes preferred blue (WaPo)
posted by peeedro at 8:49 AM on November 19 [4 favorites]


kind of the way Fox did on the right

Careful now. FoxNews is straight up propaganda, whereas going all in on abandoning bothsidesism is simply understanding that some things are unbalanced and therefore require no "balanced" reporting. Not the same.
posted by mcstayinskool at 8:49 AM on November 19 [8 favorites]


Slate and Salon seem pretty good in this regard.

I don't know much about Slate beyond the clickbait headlines I see coming across my Facebook feed, but they sure do seem to love their do-progressives-go-too-far Dems-in-disarray narratives.
posted by Faint of Butt at 8:50 AM on November 19 [1 favorite]


Imagine working at an actual newspaper in the year of 2018 and deciding to write about THE COLOR OF THE SIGNS USED IN CAMPAIGNS instead of.... literally anything else.
posted by odinsdream at 8:54 AM on November 19 [5 favorites]


Imagine working at an actual newspaper in the year of 2018 and deciding to write about THE COLOR OF THE SIGNS USED IN CAMPAIGNS instead of.... literally anything else.

If 2016 taught me anything it's that message matters.

Plus, I am amused by this:
Williams, of the Stoneridge Group, agreed that experimentation by Democrats overshadowed that of Republicans.

“They are the SEC football of design, and Republicans are the Pac-12,” he said.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 9:00 AM on November 19


I actually find the color thing interesting. With the Dems=Blue and GOP=Red associations eternally fixed by the nightmare that was 2000, which candidates lean into that (Blue Wave!) and which don't can tell you something about whether they see their party affiliations as an asset or a hurdle
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 9:05 AM on November 19 [4 favorites]


Chrysostom: One of the issues with recent Congresses is they don't have enough staff, and end up relying on lobbyists.

That's by design, but it can be reversed. The Other Biggest Problem in Washington -- Congress is very weak — but the “first branch” has rejuvenated itself in the past, and can do so again. (NYT Opinion By Lee Drutman and Kevin R. Kosar, co-directors of the nonpartisan Legislative Branch Capacity Working Group, Sept. 11, 2018)
Congress slowed investments in internal capacity and began to centralize internally in the 1980s. Under Democratic leadership, party leaders took power away from committees, and that process was turbocharged in 1995 by Speaker Newt Gingrich, who took control of selecting committee leaders and cut staffing levels by one-third.
Emphasis mine.

See also: The Decline Of Congressional Expertise Explained In 10 Charts (Zach Graves and Daniel Schuman for TechDirt, Oct. 18th 2018)

... As Jpfed noted upthread: The depletion of legislative staff budgets was a purposeful brain drain on the part of Newt Gingrich.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:50 AM on November 19 [13 favorites]


I think that taking power away from committees also had the effect of making party unity more important. If you have less influence through being a committee member you'd have to rely on your role as a member of the larger house to exert influence which means you need the help of the rest of your caucus. That then probably contributed to more polarization.
posted by VTX at 10:00 AM on November 19 [2 favorites]


Freelance journalist Noah Berlatsky gives an example of how that lack of coverage works: An editor who outright refused to entertain a pitch for an article about anti-Trump organizing unless the organizers were reformed Trump voters.

Berlatsky's latest piece on Medium: Tucker Carlson Helps Nazis Find Victims. No One Cares.
posted by homunculus at 10:09 AM on November 19 [9 favorites]


An editor who outright refused to entertain a pitch for an article about anti-Trump organizing

I'm not sure I see a scandal here. Not only did I see a fuckton of "organizing against Trump" stories in the aftermath of 2016, I'm not sure exactly what this story's new angle would have been. Let's hear the pitch itself and then we'll know how important it would have been. The editor may well have been communicating the fact that they'd run 35 stories already about anti-Trump organizing and unless this one highlighted something new and unusual, there wasn't a need for another one.
posted by Miko at 11:52 AM on November 19


The editor may well have been communicating the fact that they'd run 35 stories already about anti-Trump organizing and unless this one highlighted something new and unusual, there wasn't a need for another one.

This is exactly the crux of the issue, though: if the news, in general, is biased towards 'new and unusual,' does that make it hard to cover and represent the truth of what's happening?

It's basically the same issue of cable news shows wanting to find new pro-Trump conservative voices in the wake of 2016 because it was so 'one-sided' to keep their existing anti-Trump conservative voices on and not really have anyone to defend Trump: that's definitely boring, but only fringe voices were defending Trump because he's indefensible. In service to novelty and engagement, they moved away from accurate analysis.

If so many people are organizing against Trump that you have record-shattering voter turnout numbers, maybe running 36 stories is actually warranted because that's how you get across the truth of Trump's opposition; actively seeking out counterfactual narratives simply because they're unusual does a disservice to objectivity. Trump is objectively a bad president. Many people do dislike him. Many people are organizing against him -- many, many more people than are organizing for him. Why signal-boost the fringe?
posted by cjelli at 12:08 PM on November 19 [19 favorites]


If so many people are organizing against Trump that you have record-shattering voter turnout numbers, maybe running 36 stories is actually warranted

Yes, this. While there's some validity in, "we've run a few dozen of that kind of story; we need a new angle to run another one," there's also no end of potential new angles.

* X city joins Trump protest wave
* High school students protesting Trump - they can't vote, but it's their future on the line
* Protesting in red vs blue districts - what's different?
* Local businesses support protests
* Protesting because of health care
* Protesting because of treatment of minorities
* Protesting because of military violence
* Protesting because of (etc)
* Best protest signs
* Families that protest together
* How many arrests have there been for protesting Trump? How many convictions?

...and so on. If there's a new protest every week, that's news; any competent media company can find a way to make that interesting.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 2:01 PM on November 19 [10 favorites]


Cox (D) in CA-21 has now pulled within 1000 votes of Valadao (R).

This is a race which was called for Valadao on election night and, so far as I am aware, no news organization has yet bothered to rescind the call. Seems like they will maintain this call right up until Cox is sworn in on Janurary 3rd. And maybe after.
posted by Justinian at 5:04 PM on November 19 [5 favorites]


With what sounds like only scattered ballots left to count, McAdams (D) has just pulled ahead of Love (R) by 739 votes, after trailing by 1516 earlier in the day. The just-counted provisional ballots in Salt Lake County went 64% for McAdams. If this holds up (and it seems likely to), I think it would raise the current Democratic seat gain to 39.
posted by kyrademon at 5:39 PM on November 19 [10 favorites]


With what sounds like only scattered ballots left to count, McAdams (D) has just pulled ahead of Love (R) by 739 votes, after trailing by 1516 earlier in the day.

He can only hope. McAdams is one of 16 in the Democratic caucus who signed the anti-Pelosi letter. It would be sort of embarrassing if one of the NeverPelosi people became NeverCongressman.
posted by JackFlash at 5:51 PM on November 19 [1 favorite]


odinsdream: "Imagine working at an actual newspaper in the year of 2018 and deciding to write about THE COLOR OF THE SIGNS USED IN CAMPAIGNS instead of.... literally anything else."

I think it's quite interesting, fwiw.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:48 PM on November 19 [6 favorites]


mcstayinskool: "Is there a good link for seeing which House races are still uncalled, preferably with some current vote total data? I've been completely unable to find anything reasonable that's following the remaining races."

538 is still updating this article.

Basically, though, it's:
* UT-04: Today's Salt Lake ballot dump puts McAdams [D] up 739 votes. There are only a handful of disputed ballots remaining; Love [R-i] is likely to be outside the recount range.

* CA-21: Valadao [R-i] now leads by 968 over Cox [D]. Based on outstanding vote totals by county, it is likely to be incredbily close.

* GA-07: Woodall [R-i] up 419 votes on Bourdeaux [D], going to recount.

*NY-27: Collins [R-i] leads by about 2k, but there are some 7k outstanding ballots remaining. We should know more tomorrow.
Other things:

* UT prop 4 (redistricting commission) appears to have squeaked by 50.32% to 49.68%.

* MS Senate runoff is Nov 27.

* GA SOS runoff is Dec 4.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:59 PM on November 19 [6 favorites]


And that Arizona state Senate race, the GOP candidate squeaked it out by 267 votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:00 PM on November 19 [1 favorite]


Interesting development in the GA SOS runoff, where the Libertarian candidate has endorsed the Democrat. First round was:
GOP 49.1
Dem 48.2
L 2.2
posted by Chrysostom at 7:21 PM on November 19 [12 favorites]


Eight majority white House districts elected an African-American rep (or nine, depending how you run the numbers on MA-07).
posted by Chrysostom at 7:23 PM on November 19 [6 favorites]


odinsdream: "Imagine working at an actual newspaper in the year of 2018 and deciding to write about THE COLOR OF THE SIGNS USED IN CAMPAIGNS instead of.... literally anything else."
I think it's quite interesting, fwiw.
posted by Chrysostom
If that means the focus has moved on from the daily shit show of the Trump administration, I will take it. I would be more than happy to have a news cycle or two where it's not "omg, can I go to sleep and wake up without the prez causing a nuclear war via twitter before I even waken up?"

To Chrysostom's point, I could maybe fall down the rabbit hole as well. I still largely don't put much weight on the background color of the signs, but that would be a derail for the ages.
posted by a non mouse, a cow herd at 7:28 PM on November 19


McConnell pushing for McSally as Kyl replacement.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:27 PM on November 19 [2 favorites]


* CA-21: Valadao [R-i] now leads by 968 over Cox [D]. Based on outstanding vote totals by county, it is likely to be incredbily close.

All I can figure is the networks and newsplaces are crossing their fingers and hoping Valadao pulls it out to save them from themselves. Then they never have to address having called it so prematurely.
posted by Justinian at 9:33 PM on November 19


GOP Worries Mississippi Senate Seat May Be In Peril After Senator’s Missteps

Yes, Alabama had an upset
But Tennessee made me lose my rest
And everybody knows Mississippi goddam
posted by Kattullus at 4:32 AM on November 20 [30 favorites]


The Mike Espy campaign was mentioned upthread, but Postcards to Voters is now writing for both the Mississippi Senate runoff and the Georgia Secretary of State runoff.
posted by teditrix at 5:58 AM on November 20 [9 favorites]


NM-02 has been called for Xochitl Torres Small (D). Hat tip to a water rights lawyer running on healthcare access and boosting education spending defeating an opponent who ran principally on being a devoted follower of the orange clown.

According to that article, this makes a net D+38 with two races yet to be called. I'd guess they are referring to UT-04 and CA-21, of which I think UT-04 is a near definite flip now.
posted by mcstayinskool at 7:54 AM on November 20 [19 favorites]


McConnell pushing for McSally as Kyl replacement.

TNR contributor David Dayen questions Kyl's hasty departure:
Nobody is really asking why Jon Kyl was so hot to enter and leave the U.S. Senate within a few months, after serving as a paid advisor to the Kavanaugh confirmation and a lobbyist for one of the biggest law firms in D.C.

Kyl was temporarily placed on the Armed Services Cmte while pausing his lobbying services for defense contractors Northrop Grumman and Raytheon

Could it be that Kyl just wanted to gather a few months' worth of political intelligence that goes a bit beyond his existing floor privileges and access to the Senate gym and dining room as an ex-Senator.

And Kyl is leaving before he has to show his financial disclosure form, which would have to list all the other companies he's received money from for lobbying. It's a giant, completely under-the-radar scandal to everyone but @jeffhauser
Jeff Hauser, by the way, runs the Revolving Door Project at the Center for Economic and Policy Research.
posted by Doktor Zed at 8:19 AM on November 20 [12 favorites]


McConnell pushing for McSally as Kyl replacement.

FWIW, this is something that's been talked about even before the election, that Ducey would appoint McSally to McCain's seat if she lost. The idea isn't going over very well in a lot of Arizona, though.
posted by azpenguin at 8:47 AM on November 20 [2 favorites]


McAdams has declared victory in UT-04, for whatever that's worth.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 9:52 AM on November 20 [2 favorites]


Trump wrote Love off day one.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 10:41 AM on November 20 [1 favorite]


Which made the race coming down to a nailbiter two weeks later win-win, frankly.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:08 AM on November 20 [2 favorites]




UT-04 is now official, it's just outside the recount margin.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:54 PM on November 20 [3 favorites]


NY-27: Collins basically has this wrapped up; Erie counts of provisionals and emergency ballots were favorable to McMurray but not enough. He'll end up squeaking through with like 1500 vote margin.

And then we'll have a special election in a few months, after he's convicted.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:56 PM on November 20


CA-26: FYI, no updates from Kern County (where Cox is cleaning up) until next Monday. Not sure about other counties.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:59 PM on November 20




GA-07 recount will be tomorrow. Sounds like it might just take one day?
posted by Chrysostom at 4:16 PM on November 20


Update on the diversification of our folks in Washington, which is happening entirely on the Democratic side. Dave Wasserman: Love’s defeat also ensures that Rs will lose 43% of their women in the House, from 23 to just 13. 90% of House Rs will be white men.

Yes, in the year of the woman a full 40% of House Republican women will be leaving Washington, leaving only 13.
posted by Justinian at 4:33 PM on November 20 [10 favorites]


Cook preview of MS Senate (tl;dr: Lean R).
posted by Chrysostom at 4:37 PM on November 20


Flipping one or both Arizona chambers is going to be a Dem priority for 2020:
Senate: 17R-13D (unchanged)
House: 31R-29D (+4 Dems)

Dems came within 2,500 votes *combined* of picking-up 2 seats (& the majority) in House; & 3,800 votes combined of picking-up 3 seats (& the majority) in Senate.
Plus, we picked up 4 statewide seats (first statewides since 2006).
posted by Chrysostom at 4:47 PM on November 20 [16 favorites]


> "Love’s defeat also ensures that Rs will lose 43% of their women in the House, from 23 to just 13. 90% of House Rs will be white men."

I don't know why I was slightly surprised, but I was, to learn that with Mia Love's loss, the Republicans have lost their sole, first, and thus far only ever black female congresswoman.
posted by kyrademon at 4:54 PM on November 20 [8 favorites]


Flipping one or both Arizona chambers is going to be a Dem priority for 2020: Senate: 17R-13D (unchanged) House: 31R-29D (+4 Dems) Dems came within 2,500 votes *combined* of picking-up 2 seats (& the majority) in House; & 3,800 votes combined of picking-up 3 seats (& the majority) in Senate. Plus, we picked up 4 statewide seats (first statewides since 2006).

It's been such an amazing couple of years here in Arizona. I can assure you that it's taken a full court press for the entire time to make this happen (no overnight miracles, here), but people have surged forward so incredibly. I feel so privileged to have been able to contribute a small bit but mostly watch this happen from a front-row seat.

You can imagine how this success has energized us all even more. We have our legislative district reorganization meeting on the first, and the Maricopa County meeting the following weekend, and I CAN NOT WAIT!
posted by Superplin at 6:31 PM on November 20 [28 favorites]


By the way, although Dem Xochitl Torres Small has been declared the winner of NM CD2, the Republican candidate, Yvette Herrell is taking her sore loser case to the courts. She convinced a judge to impound ballots.
posted by maurreen at 7:42 PM on November 20 [1 favorite]


CA-26: FYI, no updates from Kern County (where Cox is cleaning up) until next Monday. Not sure about other counties.

CA-21, I believe, just in case anyone else is following it closely.
posted by ogooglebar at 7:54 PM on November 20


Bleh, yes, CA-21. It's currently Valadao +969.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:25 PM on November 20 [2 favorites]


WaPo has a feel-good story about how opposition to a confederate memorial swung a Jefferson County, WV county commissioner seat from R to D, A controversial Civil War memorial faces removal after West Virginia election.
posted by peeedro at 12:00 AM on November 21 [11 favorites]


The Root: We're Being Too Hard on Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (emphasis in original)
Racism is so embedded in Southern culture that Mississippi Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith truly believes that she’s not racist; that her comment about being front row at lynching were not racist; that wanting to suppress the liberal vote is not necessarily racist or posing in Confederate artifacts is racist.

Wait, what?

On Tuesday, the same day that Hyde-Smith was set to take on Mike Espy in a debate before their runoff election on Nov. 27, photos emerged (well, they were posted to her Facebook account in 2014) showing Hyde-Smith proudly wearing a tiny-ass Confederate hat and a brandishing a Confederate weapon.

Ok, that’s racist AF.

But is it? Southerners argue that holding on to their heritage, which just so happens to be racist AF, isn’t racist it’s just nostalgic.

“I enjoyed my tour of Beauvoir. The Jefferson Davis Home and Presidential Library located in Biloxi,” she wrote in the post on her Facebook page, according to CNN. “This is a must see. Currently on display are artifacts connected to the daily life of the Confederate Soldier including weapons. Mississippi history at its best!”

See? That’s totally not racist. It’s just Mississippi history at its best! And Mississippi history just so happens to be that they seceded from the rest of forward-thinking Americans and formed the Confederate States of America to keep black people as slaves. But that wasn’t because they were racist, that was because of money and since Mississippi depended on the free labor of their workers (also called “slaves”) this was really just a sound business decision.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:23 AM on November 21 [23 favorites]


im excitedly looking forward to texting for espy this weekend.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 8:58 AM on November 21 [5 favorites]


El Caudillo Del Mar-A-Lago

That is all.
posted by Mental Wimp at 10:24 AM on November 21 [4 favorites]


GA-07: Recount complete, Woodall wins by 433 votes.

CA-21 is all we have left for the House, I believe.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:35 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]


Next Monday is probably the big day for CA-21. Sending my energy!
posted by Justinian at 1:43 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]


There do exist activities in which one can learn about southern history that are not in and of themselves racist though the history itself is racist. However, when one says the things that Cindy Hyde-Smith says and talks about southern pride the way she does, one is sending a message that one is in fact racist.
posted by wierdo at 2:22 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]


@NateSilver538: We're moving CA-23 to **Lean D**. Obviously going to be very close, but these late ballot updates keep coming in on pace with what Cox (D) would eventually need to win by a couple tenths of a point.

He means CA-21, not CA-23. It's going to be a squeaker, but if Silver thinks Cox can pull out a win, I'll believe him.
posted by zachlipton at 3:23 PM on November 21 [6 favorites]


Never let it be said Nate doesn't have a sense of humor. He typoed it as CA-23 in an initial tweet and so many people replied with corrections. Since then he has never addressed the mistake and calls it CA-23 in every subsequent tweet and people keep trying to get him to correct it. He's clearly trolling and its glorious.
posted by Justinian at 3:36 PM on November 21 [22 favorites]


Oy, in small-times Alaska news it looks like the last House race that will make the difference between total Republican domination of the state govermnent or not is exactly tied. Hand recount 11/30 and the winner will be decided in a coin flip if it remains tied.
posted by charmedimsure at 3:38 PM on November 21 [11 favorites]


Wow! There's always one or two races like that, but they're usually for mayor or something. I don't know if partisan control of a state legislative chamber (and a trifecta or not) has ever come down to a coin flip.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:01 PM on November 21 [3 favorites]


Didn’t that happen in Virginia last year?
posted by Etrigan at 4:07 PM on November 21 [3 favorites]


Hmmm, that's true, although a trifecta wasn't in play. How soon we forget.

(also they drew film canisters out of a bowl)
posted by Chrysostom at 4:18 PM on November 21


Good MS Senate runoff piece by David Byler. Basically, MS is really inelastic, and Hyde-Smith probably isn't *quite* bad enough to make up for that.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:45 PM on November 21 [1 favorite]


The article that charmedimsure linked above mentions that the political career of Bryce Edgmon, current Speaker of the Alaska House (and the first Alaska Native to hold that position) began when he won the Democratic primary in 2006 on a coin flip.

It being Alaska, the coin had a walrus on the ‘heads’ side. Which the incumbent called, but he lost when the state seal came up (‘tails’).
posted by LeLiLo at 8:45 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]




Cohn: Polling was good this year, but saw some of the same problems it had in 2016.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:05 PM on November 21 [1 favorite]


Holy moley, Valadao's lead in CA-21 is down to 447 votes!
posted by ogooglebar at 10:10 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]


If Cox holds on, this is definitely one of the top 5 most surprising results.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:13 PM on November 21 [3 favorites]


It being Alaska, the coin had a walrus on the ‘heads’ side. Which the incumbent called, but he lost when the state seal came up

To be fair, I would put my money on the walrus over the seal, too.
posted by a non mouse, a cow herd at 6:07 AM on November 22 [9 favorites]


The Walrus is Paul, y'all.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 11:31 AM on November 22 [3 favorites]


The Atlantic: California Has Become a Crisis for the Republicans
But despite the unmistakable indication of Trump’s local unpopularity, the California GOP delegation locked arms around his turbulent presidency. That was partly due to pressure from McCarthy, who was looking to strengthen his own leadership prospects by solidifying his state delegation for Trump. (The House GOP caucus elected McCarthy as its leader last week.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 11:45 AM on November 22 [3 favorites]


Mother Jones has an interesting article about Utah's approval of the anti-Gerrymandering measure. Among other things, it talks about the effort to gerrymander Utah's congressional districts in order to remove the one Democratic district.

The end result of that effort today was moving a safe Republican District into competitive territory--enough so that that Mia Love could be deposed in a wave year.

We'll see what the future holds.

RE: Missouri's Clean Missouri measure, which passed by a 62/38 margin and dramatically changes re-districting practices for state offices and introduces a number of other ethics measures: My only question is how long until the legislative and judicial attempts to dismantle the measure begin. That has been the fate of every previous similar measure in Missouri.
posted by flug at 9:46 AM on November 23 [3 favorites]


...and Alaska HD-1 is still tied at the end of the ballot audit of the absentee ballots. (The hand audit of the Election Day ballots is what moved it from LeBon up by 5 to it being tied.) But apparently there’s one questioned ballot that they found that is still unaccounted for...
posted by leahwrenn at 8:55 PM on November 23




This week may be the last gasp of the midterms with a big drop of votes out of CA-21 tomorrow and then the Mississippi runoff on Tuesday. I say "may" because depending on how the votes break in CA-21 it could take another week before we know who is going to win. And I don't expect it to be even semi-official until CA makes it really-official and certifies the votes.

But if the votes are good enough for Cox (D) in CA-21 we may be able to infer a victory, which would make Tuesday the end of Election Month.
posted by Justinian at 2:57 PM on November 25 [1 favorite]


Don't forget the GA runoffs.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:00 PM on November 25 [4 favorites]


In probably the only MS Sen poll we're going to get, BBC/JMC has GOP incumbent Hyde-Smith up 55-45 on Dem Espy [MOE: +/- 4%].
posted by Chrysostom at 7:02 PM on November 25 [2 favorites]


Time for some schadenfreude!

CNN: Mia Love Slams Trump In Concession Speech: 'No Real Relationships, Just Convenient Transactions'

She explains, with all the wounded sincerity of a newly enlightened Face-eating Leopard Party voter: "You see, we feel like politicians claim they know what's best for us from a safe distance, yet they're never willing to take us home. Because Republicans never take minority communities into their home and citizens into their homes and into their hearts, they stay with Democrats and bureaucrats in Washington because they do take them home -- or at least make them feel like they have a home."

After Donald Trump literally tried to prevent black tenants from renting his homes, why did she think he'd metaphorically invite her to his?
posted by Doktor Zed at 10:19 AM on November 26 [6 favorites]


It appears the House numbers have settled on D+39 (#thoughtsandprayers Mia Love, it must be so hard for you to have come to the difficult conclusion you are a member of a racist party that you still vote with 90+% of the time), with 1 race, CA-21, uncalled.

This is the official place to see CA-21 results, which are not final due to a 30 day period of counting mail-ins, provisionals, etc. Valadao (R-i) is up about 450 votes, and while very unlikely to flip, the final count is still undetermined.
posted by mcstayinskool at 12:07 PM on November 26


I don't know that I'd say it's very unlikely to flip. Seems like a toss-up to me. Some of the numbers guys actually think Cox might be favored.
posted by Justinian at 12:50 PM on November 26


Fresno Bee article on CA-21 outstanding ballots. I'm kind of amazed there's this many yet-to-be-counted ballots, but I now agree that it's by no means over.

An unfortunate side note: recounts have to be paid for by the party requesting the recount. Valadao has $700K on hand, but Cox's campaign is in debt. So if it comes to that, it's in question whether the recount even happens.
posted by mcstayinskool at 2:00 PM on November 26


The article says Valadao had more than $700,000 on hand as of Oct. 17; that doesn't mean he's still got it after the election. It does seem reasonably likely that he has money to spend on a recount though.

But with over 12,000 ballots to be counted - about 10% of the total vote - a recount may seem pointless when that's done.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 2:21 PM on November 26


Hey, we did get another MS Senate poll! Change Research has Hyde-Smith up 51-46 on Espy [no MOE listed].

You might remember those late polls from Change Research that were kind of all over the place, so who knows. But if Espy lost by low to mid single digits, it would certainly make 2019's MS governor look like a real race.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:14 PM on November 26




Note that not a single major network retracted their call for Valadao. I believe the only organization of any significant size that did so was DecisionDesk HQ.
posted by Justinian at 4:51 PM on November 26 [2 favorites]




In historic upset, Alex Villanueva beats incumbent Jim McDonnell in race for Los Angeles County Sheriff. An incumbent hasn't lost the LA County Sheriff race in over a century.

This is a big deal; Villanueva campaigned on throwing ICE out of the jails and supporting sanctuary city policies.
posted by zachlipton at 5:27 PM on November 26 [28 favorites]


That IS a big deal, great catch, zachlipton.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:16 PM on November 26 [1 favorite]


Note that not a single major network retracted their call for Valadao. I believe the only organization of any significant size that did so was DecisionDesk HQ.

Yeah, inexplicable. First couple of days, okay, but by a week ago, it was clearly no longer in "called race" territory.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:17 PM on November 26 [1 favorite]


Ah, now the AP has un-called it:
The AP is retracting its call in the race for California's 21st Congressional District. The AP had declared Republican David Valadao the winner. However, Democrat T.J. Cox has taken the lead in the vote count. No new call will be made until the results are certified.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:22 PM on November 26 [5 favorites]


GA SOS news:
On the eve of the sole televised debate for Secretary of State, the @atlpressclub reports that Republican Brad Raffensperger has declined to participate citing a scheduling conflict. @Barrow4Georgia will get the stage to himself. #gapol
posted by Chrysostom at 7:24 PM on November 26 [2 favorites]


Newsom takes the lead in Orange County; would be first Dem to win it for CA gov since Brown in '78.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:26 PM on November 26 [2 favorites]


Huh, the Libertarian has endorsed the Democrat in the *other " GA runoff, for one of the Public Service Commission slots. You might remember the Libertarian endorsed the Dem for SOS earlier.

First round PSC results:
GOP 49.8
Dem 47.5
Lib 2.7
So, not out of the question it could make a difference.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:30 PM on November 26 [2 favorites]


Fun fact: if Cox holds on, we will have gone from 25 Clinton-House GOP seats to...three.

(NY-24, PA-01, TX-23)
posted by Chrysostom at 9:07 PM on November 26 [4 favorites]


Alaska HD-1 update: With a GOP trifecta in the balance, a dead tie, a mystery ballot, a Friday recount, and (maybe) a coin flip.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:12 PM on November 26 [4 favorites]


Dave Wasserman: Another way of looking at it: in January, House Dems will represent:
79% of all Asians
72% of all Latinos
66% of all African-Americans
66% of all Clinton voters
60% of all college grads
54% of all House seats
45% of all whites
39% of all Trump voters
20% of America's land area
And apparently ME02 & NM02, which Democrats won by only 1 and 2 points respectively, are two of the largest districts in the country. Without those two the amount of land House Dems represent drops another couple points!
posted by Justinian at 11:13 PM on November 26 [4 favorites]


I *think* ME-02 is also the second most rural district in the contiguous 48 states.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:19 PM on November 26


While we're on trivia: the *smallest* district is NY-13, at 10.25 sq miles of land (it's basically upper Manhattan and a smidge of the Bronx).
posted by Chrysostom at 11:23 PM on November 26


@Chrysostom: How does anyone not look at TX-23 and just say "Gerrymandered"?

Everything for that district follows county lines except El Paso and this weird claw right around San Antonio.

I remember the Rs not caring about the redistricting to the points the Dems fled the state, but geez! Put El Paso county in one district. All of Bexar in a different one, and then grab the counties holding Midland and Odessa (which they probably don't need for TX-23) to make it at least look appropriate.

(I know. There is some computer algorithm out there smarter than me that drew the lines. I can't wait until it torches TX Rs.)
posted by a non mouse, a cow herd at 6:54 AM on November 27


The Atlantic: Mike Espy's Uphill Battle for the Senate

(TL;DR: Racism.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:38 AM on November 27


Where The Suburbs Moved Left — And How The Shift Swung Elections (NPR, November 27, 2018)
Democrats will have control of the U.S. House once again beginning in January, thanks, in large part, to their performance in America's suburbs.

Of the 41 congressional districts that Democrats turned from red to blue this election, 38 were suburban, according to an analysis by The New York Times. (Democrats could pick up one to two more seats, once all votes are counted and elections are certified.)

But more granular than congressional districts overall are the counties that comprise them. For each suburban county, we mapped the percentage of ballots cast for the party that received the most votes in that county, and looked at how that compared to 2016.

(Some counties span multiple congressional districts, and the maps do not break down the vote cast by county within each congressional district.)

The data came from the Associated Press vote tallies and the Center for Disease Control's designation of "suburban" districts.
The article includes "some of the suburbs that had the most dramatic turnarounds," made visual with County-level 2016 vs 2018 GIFs, and a bit of description of the percentages, looking at 13 key cities and suburbs.

But again, this is a map of land, not people. Justinian's comment with Dave Wasserman's figures tell a different story (and still incomplete - percentages of what totals?)

In short, reporting on these details is not easy, because any one angle can be interesting, yet tell a drastically different story than another angle.


Also from NPR today: 40 Years After The Assassination Of Harvey Milk, LGBTQ Candidates Find Success
In this month's midterm elections, Colorado elected the nation's first openly gay governor. Voters across the country sent a record number of LGBT candidates to Congress. These victories come 40 years after the assassination of the first openly gay elected official in California — Harvey Milk.

Milk was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1977. In 1978, under his urging, the city council passed a gay rights ordinance that protected gay people from being fired from their jobs. His advocacy angered many.

On Nov. 27, 1978, Supervisor Milk and Mayor George Moscone were assassinated by Dan White, a former police officer and former city supervisor who had clashed with Milk over LGBTQ issues. After shooting the mayor, White entered Milk's office and shot him five times at his desk.

Milk's murder transformed national politics

The success of LGBTQ candidates in the midterm elections would have been hard to imagine four decades ago when Milk first won office. In California at that time, a conservative state senator named John Briggs was pushing a statewide ballot measure, Proposition 6, to ban gay and lesbian teachers. Harvey Milk led the fight against the proposition, debating Briggs around the state.
Thank you to people like Harvey Milk who pushed back (and continue to push) against people like John Briggs.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:06 AM on November 27 [8 favorites]


Ive been texting for Espy - no clue how they compiled these lists but the responses have been mixed but not soul crushing, with a couple notable exceptions...
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 9:23 AM on November 27 [1 favorite]


wait...texting? Data point of one, but if I got an unsolicited text for a candidate the only way that pushes my needle is towards voting against them. I wonder if they know whether they are actually doing damage by using that as a GOTV method.
posted by mcstayinskool at 9:31 AM on November 27


wait...texting? Data point of one, but if I got an unsolicited text for a candidate the only way that pushes my needle is towards voting against them. I wonder if they know whether they are actually doing damage by using that as a GOTV method.

I agree. I've had a few texts from candidates and I always ask how they got my number, though the volunteers never have that information. I think I used my phone number when requesting an absentee ballot once and the county clerk added it to my voter record, so I had to submit a new voter registration without my phone number to get it cleared up.
posted by stopgap at 9:44 AM on November 27


the messages are pretty generically GOTV - i did have a couple people ask how i got their number and used the automated/canned response that basically said some pat version of political groups get numbers from publicly available data sources
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 9:47 AM on November 27 [1 favorite]


wait...texting? Data point of one

That is indeed a data point of one by this point enough data exists for them to be nigh-on certain that they are, net, increasing turnout and support. While of course there will always be individuals to the contrary, at the aggregate level this is not something subject to reasonable disagreement.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 9:51 AM on November 27 [9 favorites]


metafilter: subject to reasonable disagreement
posted by mcstayinskool at 9:57 AM on November 27 [1 favorite]


wait...texting?

Millenials pretty famously prefer texts to calls.

Some Gen Xers, too.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 10:33 AM on November 27 [7 favorites]


a non mouse, a cow herd: " How does anyone not look at TX-23 and just say "Gerrymandered"? "

So much so that there's been litigation over it.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:35 AM on November 27 [1 favorite]


@chrysotom Thanks. It is a bit of work to keep up with all the Gerrymandering just in Texas, much less all of USA. I have no idea how you do it all. (As well all of the other things you keep track of.)
posted by a non mouse, a cow herd at 11:02 AM on November 27 [2 favorites]


The TX House is going to be a major Dem focus for 2020 - if they pick up 9 seats there, they'll be able to stop a new gerrymander, which will have big implications for the US House in the 2020s.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:19 AM on November 27 [6 favorites]


We are very excited about this prospect here in Austin. There is a lot of political mobilization at the state level as well as the federal level here, and we flipped a really heartening number of state seats this cycle. I bet you we can do more, given a few more years to organize.

I do not think the federal Democratic party will give a shit, but I think we are building one hell of a machine here at the state level.
posted by sciatrix at 11:25 AM on November 27 [9 favorites]


Eh, TX House is identified as a target by the NRDC. I guess we could argue over whether that qualifies as part of the Dem establishment or not. But I do think that the importance of state-level offices has really penetrated the consciousness of the larger party.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:37 AM on November 27 [3 favorites]


Millenials pretty famously prefer texts to calls.

Some Gen Xers, too.


Yeah this genXer would rather be left the fuck alone but, acknowledging the necessary evil, I'd way prefer a text to someone making my phone ring. I just ignore them or respond 'unsubscribe' but less disruptive than a phone call.
posted by phearlez at 12:23 PM on November 27 [6 favorites]


Yeah, as a Gen-Xer I also prefer getting a text to getting a call. Also preferable to having a person knock on the door. Pro-tip: if you can vote early, that usually gets your name off the lists!

In the recent midterms I did little texting, as well as canvassing and writing postcards. I got pushback on about 5% of the texts (including some wrong numbers), replies like "Thanks, yes, I'm voting" on about 10% of them, and longer conversations on about 5% of them. All methods have pros and cons, but they all seem to work a little bit.
posted by lisa g at 1:18 PM on November 27


54% of all House seats
...
20% of America's land area


That says it all right there. Democrats do best in places were people actually live.
posted by octothorpe at 1:59 PM on November 27 [3 favorites]


Some Gen Xers, too.

What? Did someone say something? Nah, probably just the wind.
posted by Miko at 2:23 PM on November 27 [2 favorites]


wait...texting?

Millenials pretty famously prefer texts to calls.

Some Gen Xers, too.
I probably do not have to make it explicit to this audience, but texting is asynchronous. I read the message when I can/want and reply in the same manner. Phone calls are intrusive and imply, by the their nature (oh, look my cell literally just started ringing. I thought it was the spouse. Now I have to get my head back to where was I.)

Oh, so phone calls, back in the day, that's all we had. You answered or you didn't hear from someone.

In my eyes, at the tender age of 40 something something something, what I have noticed is I can mute the ring tone/decline the call/whatever and 98% of the time no message is ever left. I pay more attention to spam e-mail than random phone calls because at least that has a verifiable return e-mail address.

Texts from campaigns? I understand why people wouldn't like them. But I am sure a lot more engaged with those than calls where no one leaves a voicemail. I can choose to read texts at anytime. I can also just swipe them away and be done.

(Full disclosure: I have done *a lot* of texting this election cycle. Enough to re-inflame my RSI which I have kept calm for 15 years. I think my texts made a difference.)
posted by a non mouse, a cow herd at 3:15 PM on November 27 [5 favorites]


Rick Hasen on the new Stacey Abrams litigation over Georgia voting issues.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:37 PM on November 27 [1 favorite]


With 1% reporting Espy (D) 55% to Hyde-Smith 45%. Nice to have a moment of sweetness.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:39 PM on November 27 [1 favorite]


MS is both super racially polarized and has really bad precinct data, so you have to be ultra-careful making projections.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:59 PM on November 27 [1 favorite]


Yeah the early returns were probably from pro-Espy areas. Hyde-Smith moving up as more returns come in.
posted by Justinian at 6:02 PM on November 27


Dave Wasserman: I'd still rather be Hyde-Smith (R) than Espy (D) based on the balance of very early results, but this is clearly not shaping up to be a blowout. #MSSEN

I'm waiting to see what the turnout in Hinds is like (we know the margin will be big for Espy) but right now Espy is doing better than usual for blue in Mississippi but not quite enough better to win.
posted by Justinian at 6:10 PM on November 27


Data point of one, but if I got an unsolicited text for a candidate the only way that pushes my needle is towards voting against them.

I got a lot of texts before the 6th, both from candidate supporters and about ballot measures. I didn't reply to any of them, but I was happy to receive them; they gave me warm fuzzy feelings of "oh look, people actually are reaching out to potential voters."

I can ignore texts that I don't care about, in ways that I can't ignore a phone call. However, I have put all political email into a filter that I rarely look at; those were never just "here's our reminder to vote!" They always included, "here's a link where you can donate." The texts never asked me for money.
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 6:21 PM on November 27 [1 favorite]


Something very weird is going down in NC-09, where the state board of elections is refusing to certify the 905 vote victory by Mark Harris [R].
posted by Chrysostom at 6:36 PM on November 27 [4 favorites]


Wasserman is calling it a narrow win for the racist. Expected but still a disappointment. A disappointment in white Mississippians, not in Espy.
posted by Justinian at 6:48 PM on November 27


Makes a Jim Hood victory in MS gov next year look possible.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:56 PM on November 27 [1 favorite]


Data point of one, but if I got an unsolicited text for a candidate the only way that pushes my needle is towards voting against them.



I vastly prefer them to emails, which I vastly prefer to phone calls. I can respond or not to a text as I choose, no one ever asks me for money, I never get interrupted doing other things by texts, and I think I've gotten literally one text ever from a candidate I wasn't already cheering on. They take way less energy for volunteers, too. As it happens, that was a progressive gentleman running for my city council seat who I would have been quite fine with; I just liked someone else better. That election is going into a runoff, and the candidate I did vote for reached out to me today to ask if I would turn out to vote for her again. (I will, and I will be chivvying my roommates out, too.)

They take way less energy for volunteers, too. I usually respond to give them the data so I don't get bothered again, but also because I like to say nice things to the folks working hard on these campaigns, to thank them. I told an awful lot of Beto canvassers that I was proud of them and happy to see their work this fall via text; I confess I tended to hide from the phone calls and I definitely hid from in person canvassers despite being one myself at other times. Text engagement is easier and less obtrusive, so it feels like an opt-in sort of thing rather than a demand on my time and attention in real time or year another thing flooding my inbox asking for money I don't have and drowning out the work emails I need to follow up on.
posted by sciatrix at 7:42 PM on November 27 [5 favorites]


Espy going to end up losing by about 8 points, which is the closest a Dem has come in MS Senate since 1988.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:34 PM on November 27 [12 favorites]


From the "oh, FFS" files: Maine CD2 Rep Bruce "sore loser" Poliquin is asking a Federal Judge to hold an entire new election for CD2, because of the "broad-gauged unfairness" of ranked choice voting. Note that he's filed this after a Federal Judge completely demolished his claims that RCV was unconstitutional two weeks ago.

He's not winning himself any points among Maine voters with all this, let me tell you.
posted by anastasiav at 7:35 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


At this point he has to know there's no way in hell he's getting the seat -- at best he gets a new election where the voters tell him exactly where he can stick this nonsense -- but the GOP would love to get a court precedent on the books that says ranked choice voting is unconstitutional and can never be done again, so that's his job now.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 7:39 AM on November 28 [5 favorites]


the GOP would love to get a court precedent on the books that says ranked choice voting is unconstitutional and can never be done again, so that's his job now

It seems fairly clear that they're going to get the opposite, though - a bunch of court precedents that say "yep, RCV is fine, get on with your voting selves" ... Walker (from the last case) is a LePage and Trump approved Judge, and by far the most conservative justice on the Maine District Court. He's a Federalist Society guy. If he can't win in front of Walker, he can't win.
posted by anastasiav at 7:44 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


the GOP would love to get a court precedent on the books that says ranked choice voting is unconstitutional and can never be done again, so that's his job now

It seems fairly clear that they're going to get the opposite, though - a bunch of court precedents that say "yep, RCV is fine, get on with your voting selves"


If they can get a RCV-stare decisis turnover twofer, they'll push him for any seat he wants.
posted by Etrigan at 8:00 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


In California, the vote count creeps along. Watching Katie Porter (Dem, CD-45) slowly crush the hopes and dreams of Mimi Walters (Rep incumbent, CD-45) has been very satisfying! Election night it was like 52-48 in favor of Walters, day by day it's shifted a lot or a little as more votes are counted, until now when it's 52-48 in favor of Porter. (I did a couple weekends canvassing for Katie Porter. I had to. Election thread induced anxiety was driving me bonkers!).

So... CD-50, Duncan Hunter R vs Ammar Campa-Najjar D. I'll skip a re-hash of Hunter's deplorable-ness. Votes are still being counted. According to the Unprocessed Ballots Report, there are still ~113,000 votes to be counted from San Diego and Riverside County. Ammar's #'s seem to be climbing. Very slowly. Sometimes the new vote counts show him slipping a tiny bit. I've looked hard for expert analysis on the situation, but no one seems to be discussing it. Like the race is definitely over, even though a few other nearby districts in similar situations (hello Gil Cisneros vs. Young Kim!) have flipped since election night. With so many votes yet to be counted, is this race is still in contention? (or am I fooling myself?)
posted by ButteryMales at 8:09 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


The analyses I have seen are taking the position that 9,000 votes is too high a hill for Campa-Najjar to climb with what's left out there. Bear in mind that not all of those 113,000 votes are in CD-50.
posted by kyrademon at 10:19 AM on November 28


CA-12: Update from GOP-heavy Kings County extends Cox [D] lead to 506 votes.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:57 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


From the "oh, FFS" files: Maine CD2 Rep Bruce "sore loser" Poliquin is asking a Federal Judge to hold an entire new election for CD2, because of the "broad-gauged unfairness" of ranked choice voting. Note that he's filed this after a Federal Judge completely demolished his claims that RCV was unconstitutional two weeks ago.

I don't think a fresh election has been called for since Reconstruction.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:59 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


although if were going to go there, id rank GA Gov higher than ME-2 for a do-over.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 11:00 AM on November 28 [3 favorites]


My understanding on CA-50 is that Hunter's lead will continue to narrow, but he's not going to lose. It's like Collins in NY - we get close, but not quite enough.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:01 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


NC-09: Something up with absentee ballots, maybe? We do know that the board voted unanimously (so, Dems and GOP) not to certify, so doesn't seem like any partisan malfeasance by the BOE.

I've seen some comments that this might not be enough to change the result, but I'm not sure we have enough info about all what's going on yet.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:06 AM on November 28


That CA-21 Kings update was pretty much Valadao's last shot, Cox is the prohibitive favorite based on what's outstanding.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:37 AM on November 28 [2 favorites]


Cook Political Report editor calling CA-21 for Cox [D]. Final House tally, Dems net +40.
posted by mcstayinskool at 11:44 AM on November 28 [6 favorites]


For California 50, I decided to run the numbers.

Politico called the race for Hunter (R) on election night with 54.2% of vote versus 45.8% of vote for Campa-Najjar (D). Absolute votes at the time: 66,934 versus 56,481. This is the baseline.

The California Secretary of State website lists the current count at 131,436 (51.8%) Hunter versus Campa-Najjar at 122,255 or 48.2%. The numerical difference decreased by about a thousand while the percentage decreased dramatically (from 8.4% down to 3.6%).

Running the numbers, this means that Hunter has been getting 49.5% of the votes counted after election day and Campa-Najjar has been getting 50.5%.

At that rate it would require 920,000 outstanding votes to make up the difference in vote counts.

Of course, it could be that pockets of real support are among those that have not been counted.

California 50 is 90% in San Diego county, 10% in Riverside by population. I'll focus on the San Diego votes for a spitball figure. The Secretary of State website says that 47,000 votes remain unprocessed in San Diego. San Diego is divided into three districts, one of the other districts spills over into Inyo.

If, for some reason, all of the 47,000 votes uncounted were in District 50, Campa-Najjar would need to win the remaining votes 28,091 to 18,909 or 57.9% to 42.1%. Of course, he could get a little help from the 10% of the voting in Riverside.

So, for Campa-Najjar to win: He would need a large fraction of the remaining uncounted votes to be in his district, and they would have to be in a pocket of higher percent votes than what he has been getting. I can see the latter as possible, but it's more likely that there's not enough votes remaining.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 11:47 AM on November 28 [1 favorite]


Final House tally, Dems net +40.

Let's not close the door on NC-09 just yet.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:53 AM on November 28 [3 favorites]


It sounds like Bladen County (NC) has been a center of systemic Republican voter fraud for years and years. The supposed fraud would involve filling out mass amounts of absentee ballots for other people and sending them in.

Remember, if the GOP is frantically accusing you of something it's probably because they are doing it themselves.
posted by Justinian at 2:43 PM on November 28 [2 favorites]


California Democratic Chairman Eric Bauman accused of sexually explicit comments, unwanted touching - LA Times

Eric Bauman, the powerful chairman of the California Democratic Party, made crude sexual comments and engaged in unwanted touching or physical intimidation in professional settings, 10 party staff members and political activists said in interviews with The Times.

When presented with the allegations, Bauman said in a statement Wednesday that he plans to seek treatment for health issues and alcohol use...

Bauman, who is gay, is a fixture in California and LGBTQ politics. A former nurse who ascended to the top echelon of the state Democratic Party, Bauman has built a reputation for being brash and boisterous, with a large circle of allies within the party.


Bauman's already on a leave of absence. Alleged incidents are detailed in the article; one dates to 2006, and involves a 17-year-old high-schooler interviewing Bauman, then the LA County party chairman.
posted by Iris Gambol at 3:49 PM on November 28


CA-21: Cox has declared victory; LAT also called the race.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:54 PM on November 28 [2 favorites]


Dave Wasserman points out that there will be 36 freshmen women in the incoming Congress. 35D, 1R.
posted by Justinian at 3:56 PM on November 28 [10 favorites]


One of the replies points out that Republicans idea of diversity is apparently when one of the regular white dudes has an eyepatch, which seems on point to me.
posted by Justinian at 3:58 PM on November 28 [9 favorites]




ZERO Democrats have an eyepatch! So much for outreach!
posted by Chrysostom at 7:34 PM on November 28 [7 favorites]


It sounds like Bladen County (NC) has been a center of systemic Republican voter fraud for years and years.

Again, large parts of the US have no history of free and fair elections and no real desire for that to change.
posted by holgate at 8:29 PM on November 28 [2 favorites]


It's interesting, though, that the NC BOE is making an issue of it, in an apparently non-partisan fashion.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:39 PM on November 28 [2 favorites]


I'm so proud of Stacy Abrams. What a great leader!
posted by Sublimity at 4:59 AM on November 29 [7 favorites]


GA-SOS: Early voting is happening now for GA Secretary of State, with regular voting on Tuesday.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 5:49 AM on November 29 [3 favorites]


Bauman resigned.
posted by Iris Gambol at 3:23 PM on November 29


Wow, looks like extensive mail ballot fraud in NC-09. THE BOE *can* order a new election in these circumstances. And the House could refuse to seat.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:35 PM on November 29 [7 favorites]


It's interesting, though, that the NC BOE is making an issue of it, in an apparently non-partisan fashion.

Yes, it's an interesting situation: the allegation is that the county-wide operation was as active during the primary (where Pittinger, a bog-standard NC Republican was defeated) as the general. The GOPeratives in NC are saying they're going to head to court, but the allegation that one fixer was promised $40,000 in cash to "do absentee" for the Harris campaign is [sharp intake of breath].

(FWIW, it's a reminder that vote-by-mail isn't a panacea in places where people might get paid large sums of money to fuck with vote-by-mail.)
posted by holgate at 10:22 PM on November 29 [4 favorites]


Nate Silver on NC-09.

There are 8 counties in NC-09. In all 7 non-Bladen counties Democrats gained vs 2016, and by a mean of 10.8 points (4.2-25.5 range). In Bladen, Republicans performed 0.2 points BETTER than in 2016.

Nope nothing to see here.
posted by Justinian at 2:47 AM on November 30 [5 favorites]


Man this GOP voter fraud is going to be *all over* the news for weeks.


/s
posted by petebest at 6:36 AM on November 30 [8 favorites]


Man this GOP voter fraud is going to be *all over* the news for weeks.
You know what's sad? If it is all over the news for weeks, then it helps the GOP, because it legitimates their voter suppression efforts. For instance, the voter fraud in NC-09 couldn't have been prevented with voter ID laws, but it's easier to pass a voter ID law if people perceive that vote fraud is a real problem.

Having said that, and while I am still in favor of voting by mail, it's pretty clear to me that there's a lot more room for funny business with absentee ballots than with in-person voting. I've done a lot of canvassing to get people to sign up for vote-by-mail and then to collect ballots (which is legal where I live), and I have very occasionally seen things that gave me pause, mostly involving people who I suspected were going to fill out the ballots for their relatives. My hunch is that there's more of that than we'd like to think, although hopefully not systematic, organized vote fraud, the way this seems to have been.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 7:15 AM on November 30 [2 favorites]


> "If it is all over the news for weeks, then it helps the GOP, because it legitimates their voter suppression efforts."

I could be wrong, but I suspect you may be underestimating how much "voter fraud" means "imaginary Democratic voter fraud only" even to GOP voters. Actual voter fraud on the GOP side makes them look bad, rather than helping their cause, because it's not what "voter fraud" is supposed to look like.
posted by kyrademon at 8:28 AM on November 30 [3 favorites]


Actual voter fraud on the GOP side makes them look bad, rather than helping their cause, because it's not what "voter fraud" is supposed to look like.

Seconding that because, well insofar as any logic/evidence works when thrown at people who have abandoned all logic/evidence on, being able to link thinks like this when racists try to racist-but-via-whining-about-nonexistent-voter-fraud-concerns-that-is-really-voter-suppression-tactics is really helpful in shutting them up and/or making them revert to old person yelling at clouds. If they do try to come back with evidence it's usually a single case or something weak-sauce from 'their' media stream that is easily picked apart or made fun of, as desired.

Honestly it's a bit of a lost cause for some folks but I've seen definitive results from folks observing from the sidelines that aren't lost causes when they come to me and say "Man, yea, I didn't know Uncle Jim-Sam-Mikey was as crazy as he was. I thought he had a point until you posted that thing about that stuff. Thanks."

Sunshine, everywhere. It helps.
posted by RolandOfEld at 10:15 AM on November 30 [4 favorites]


N.C. election officials plan hearing over fraud concerns in U.S. House race, raising possibility of new election (WaPo, Amy Gardner & Kirk Ross)
The board is examining mounting evidence of election fraud in the 9th District, where Republican Mark Harris was ahead of Democrat Dan McCready by 905 votes out of 283,317 ballots cast, according to unofficial returns.
posted by kingless at 11:10 AM on November 30 [5 favorites]


So what happens if there is definitive evidence of fraud, but its unclear exactly how it might have impacted the official vote counts?
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 11:33 AM on November 30 [1 favorite]


I have no idea. I had forgotten about this (from an article in the Raleigh News & Observer) by Brian Murphy:
It’s still unclear what will happen next month at the elections board. In October, a three-judge panel ruled the board unconstitutional. A stay in the ruling allows the board to operate as-is until 11:59 p.m. on Monday. Republican lawmakers are pushing for a new stay — with or without Gov. Roy Cooper’s approval.
posted by kingless at 11:45 AM on November 30 [1 favorite]


Well, NC SBE can order a new election if there has been enough funny business, even if it would not have been enough to swing the election. And, ultimately, the House could refuse to seat Harris. This *has* happened, and not just in the 19th century. See also the 1974 New Hampshire Senate race.

Current state of play:
Motion from Democrat Josh Malcolm calls for .@NCSBE to hold hearing on or before Dec. 21 on absentee ballot issues in #NC9 (not certifying race until then). Two Republicans vote yes, two vote no. Passes in 7-2 vote. #ncpol
HOWEVER, there's also another wrinkle: the current SBE structure has been found illegal (this was another NC GOP hijack attempt). (which I see kingless just mentioned)
posted by Chrysostom at 11:47 AM on November 30 [2 favorites]


AK-HD-01 updates: The "mystery ballot" will not be counted. However a ballot that was initially counted in the wrong district was actually for HD1. It looks like *maybe* this will put the Dem in the lead. Recount should be done shortly.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:58 PM on November 30 [4 favorites]


I'm floored that as a female scientist even I didn't know this, because I feel like it should have been shouted from rooftops:

AOC won 2nd place in the 2007 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair for a poster about C. elegans

Here's to smart female scientists in Congress.
posted by Dashy at 2:33 PM on November 30 [16 favorites]


@AP_Politics: The AP is retracting its call of a winner for U.S. House in North Carolina's 9th Congressional District. The AP called the race for Republican Mark Harris on Nov. 9, after Democrat Dan McCready conceded.

They say they won't call the race until state officials certify the results, given the ongoing investigation into fraud.
posted by zachlipton at 2:57 PM on November 30 [4 favorites]


538, What The Heck Is Happening In That North Carolina House Race?, mostly notable because it has some numbers to look at what could have swung the race.
If [voter fraud occurred], the big question is whether fraud actually swung this incredibly close election. In Bladen County, where the evidence suggests that too many absentee-by-mail ballots were cast, only 684 absentee-by-mail ballots were accepted; they went for Harris 420-258.2 If fraudsters did indeed collect absentee-by-mail ballots in Bladen County in order to mark them off for Harris, it didn’t produce enough illegal votes to cancel out his 905-vote margin districtwide. But in Robeson County, 1,180 absentee-by-mail ballots that were requested were never returned. If some of those ballots were destroyed, that is a big enough number that McCready could theoretically have gained 906 votes — although it’s still unlikely. Plenty of absentee-by-mail ballots never get returned for one reason or another (lost in the mail, people get too busy, etc.), even in a normal election. But with 1,364 absentee-by-mail ballots cast between the two counties (679 for Harris), and 1,675 absentee-by-mail ballots requested and not returned, it may be impossible to conclude whether voter fraud across both counties changed the election outcome.
posted by zachlipton at 3:22 PM on November 30 [1 favorite]


N.C. election officials plan hearing over fraud concerns in U.S. House race, raising possibility of new election (WaPo, Amy Gardner & Kirk Ross)

I have it on pretty good authority from people on MetaFilter who say things that do-overs aren't possible.
posted by Mental Wimp at 3:43 PM on November 30 [1 favorite]


...after certification
posted by Justinian at 4:16 PM on November 30 [3 favorites]


with 1,364 absentee-by-mail ballots cast between the two counties (679 for Harris), and 1,675 absentee-by-mail ballots requested and not returned, it may be impossible to conclude whether voter fraud across both counties changed the election outcome.

I know that Nate's gonna Nate (and 538's gonna 538) but number crunching here is beside the point. If you rob a bank but only get away with the pens on the counter, you still robbed a bank.
posted by holgate at 4:29 PM on November 30 [2 favorites]


Nate didn't write that piece.

In any case, the Harris campaign has been leaning hard on "it didn't affect the outcome" and I think it's worth pointing out that it may well have.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:46 PM on November 30


If you rob a bank but only get away with the pens on the counter, you still robbed a bank.

Sure, but the question is whether you get charged.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 4:47 PM on November 30


And by a single vote, the GOP wins AK HD-1, thus the House, thus has trifecta.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:14 PM on November 30


So that makes two cases in as many years where Republicans have won control of a state legislative chamber, by a single seat, by a single vote.
posted by Rhaomi at 5:42 PM on November 30 [5 favorites]


Although, I guess the Dem is mulling going to the state Supreme Court.
posted by Chrysostom at 5:57 PM on November 30 [1 favorite]


They didn’t even prevail by a single vote in VA. They prevailed after a tie by pure luck of the coin flip.
posted by phearlez at 6:50 PM on November 30 [1 favorite]


And by a single vote, the GOP wins AK HD-1, thus the House, thus has trifecta.

Dang. It. I just remembered to check this- if there even exists a local news story about it it was shoved out of all my feeds by earthquake stuff. Thanks for updating. Ugh.
posted by charmedimsure at 12:14 AM on December 1


>>It sounds like Bladen County (NC) has been a center of systemic Republican voter fraud for years and years. The supposed fraud would involve filling out mass amounts of absentee ballots for other people and sending them in.

>If fraudsters did indeed collect absentee-by-mail ballots in Bladen County in order to mark them off for Harris, it didn’t produce enough illegal votes to cancel out his 905-vote margin districtwide.


But maybe this was a scheme of voter suppression rather than vote manufacture. I read a report stating that the vast majority of the unusually high number of absentee requests were for minority voters. Maybe the mechanism is that operatives falsely request absentee ballots for POC, who show up at the polls and are told they can't vote because they already got an absentee ballot?
posted by msalt at 1:22 PM on December 1


Having said that, and while I am still in favor of voting by mail, it's pretty clear to me that there's a lot more room for funny business with absentee ballots than with in-person voting.

I'm not so sure about that. The focus of most voter suppression is the strict timeline of voting day, which is why Republicans are also trying to shut down early (in person) voting, why lines are longer in minority precincts, etc.

Here in Oregon, which is all vote by mail over a 2-3 week period, we get an email confirming that our vote was received within a day of its receipt. That gives people lots of time to protest if they haven't voted, to clean up a vote if the signature is rejected, etc.

How many people who vote in person know for sure that their vote was recorded?
posted by msalt at 1:26 PM on December 1 [2 favorites]


Maybe the mechanism is that operatives falsely request absentee ballots for POC, who show up at the polls and are told they can't vote because they already got an absentee ballot?

I believe the allegation is, rather, that they collected and then destroyed the ballots from POC. So they wouldn't have turned up at the polls at all as they thought they had voted absentee.
posted by Justinian at 1:44 PM on December 1


...after certification

posted by Justinian at 4:16 PM on November 30 [3 favorites +] [!]


Not to relitigate, but, ahem: Vote-Fraud Ruling Shifts Pennsylvania Senate
posted by Mental Wimp at 4:42 PM on December 1 [1 favorite]


WP: North Carolina elections board chairman resigns, says he doesn’t want his partisan views to hurt election fraud investigation
posted by Chrysostom at 8:41 PM on December 1 [1 favorite]


I believe the allegation is, rather, that they collected and then destroyed the ballots from POC. So they wouldn't have turned up at the polls at all as they thought they had voted absentee.

Wow. That's even more evil than I suspected of Republicans, which is surprising. But it wouldn't explain the thing I read saying that a huge and disproportionate number of POC in that country had been flagged as requesting absentee ballots. Any idea why that might be?

I'm assuming there is some kind of public right to get a list of people who have requested absentee ballots, and that's how they would know who to pick up ballots from?
posted by msalt at 11:12 PM on December 1


I'm not certain so don't take it as gospel but what could have happened is; GOP operatives go around and get everyone to request absentee ballots. This part is non-shady and simple GOTV. But then the GOP guys apparently went around and suggested/asked/pressured people to hand over their ballots. Then they turn in the GOP ones and either fill out for their own guy or destroy the Dem ones. Not sure which is alleged?

It sure looks like we'll find out though. I don't see how Harris can be seated.
posted by Justinian at 11:44 PM on December 1 [2 favorites]


Fraud overview from the Charlotte News & Observer plus backgrounder on the guy at the center of it all.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:06 PM on December 2 [4 favorites]


It's weird seeing such obvious fraud and the Dem candidate is just letting the process play out without screaming FRAUD FRAUD FRAUD FRAUD all over the airwaves like the GOP does in the absence of fraud. It really draws a bright line distinction between the parties.
posted by Justinian at 2:00 AM on December 3 [5 favorites]


When you have the rules on your side, there's little need to play the ref.
posted by Kattullus at 3:17 AM on December 3 [2 favorites]


It's smart. Screaming would read as making political hash of it. It would also create media impressions that are then easily targeted by the right, making it much easier to inflate into a culture war/them'n'us narrative in right-wing channels - and that would have nothing much to do with the vote itself. This way, the responsibility stays clearly on the authorities to figure out what's happened.

It's less sexy but it's sane.
posted by Miko at 4:32 AM on December 3 [3 favorites]


Thanks for that link, Chrysostom. It does appear that falsely requesting absentee ballots on behalf of POC voters was part of the scam:

"notarized affidavits from voters raised concerns about... voters receiving mail-in ballots they did not request. … Bladen County had the highest percentage of absentee ballot requests in the state … The unreturned ballots are disproportionately associated with minority voters. More than 40 percent of the ballots requested by African Americans and more than 60 percent of those requested by American Indians did not make it back to elections officials. For white voters, that figure was just 17 percent."
posted by msalt at 9:34 AM on December 3 [3 favorites]


Pennsylvania has committed, in federal court, to updating all its voting machines by 2020.

The state settled a lawsuit Thursday that Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein filed two years ago, arguing that voting machines that don’t leave paper trails are susceptible to error because they can’t be double-checked.

The state hasn’t admitted any wrongdoing, or that there were any issues with the machines used in the 2016 election.

Governor Tom Wolf first urged counties to get voting machines with paper records earlier this year.
posted by octothorpe at 10:44 AM on December 3 [6 favorites]


Popular Information (Judd Legum's new thing), Absentee ballot envelopes in North Carolina fit into "a pattern of fraud", in which they have copies of 162 of the NC-09 absentee ballot envelopes, and stuff is weird. NC apparently requires the signatures of two witnesses on the envelope. The same names keep coming up:
Gerry Cohen, the former special counsel for the North Carolina general assembly and an expert in the state's election law, told Popular Information the envelopes "fit in with a pattern of fraud."

Typically, there would be a wide variety of witnesses for absentee ballots. A random assortment of voters chose to vote by mail-in absentee and then have family, friends or co-workers serve as witnesses. The ballots obtained by Popular Information, however, show that a small group of people served as witnesses for these Bladen County ballots. Some of the witnesses signed more than 40 absentee envelopes.

Several of the witnesses are related to Leslie McCrae Dowless, the man at the center of the controversy who has previously been convicted of felony fraud. In 2016, McCrae Dowless admitted to running an operation where he paid people for each absentee ballot they were able to collect. The operating allegedly involved paying "people to obtain absentee ballots, fill them out, and cast their votes on someone else's behalf," according to an exposé on This American Life.

In all, a group of just eight witnesses appear on over 130 of the 162 absentee ballot envelopes obtained by Popular Information.
posted by zachlipton at 11:03 AM on December 3 [8 favorites]


@JoeBrunoWSOC9: EXCLUSIVE: Absentee ballot witness says she was hired by McCrae Dowless to collect ballots & deliver them to him. When asked if she was told to tell people about certain candidates she said,"(Sheriff) McVicker & Harris. That's who he was working for."

@baseballot: Up to this point it had been a lot of speculation about Dowless's role. This is the first hard accusation that he engaged in election fraud—and the same kind of fraud alleged in voter affidavits to boot.

This is just the straight up fraudster who admitted to doing this before has done it again.
posted by zachlipton at 2:52 PM on December 3 [2 favorites]


Nate Silver moves NC09 to TOSSUP.
posted by Justinian at 3:43 PM on December 3 [3 favorites]


A Democratic candidate for a northeast Iowa House seat who trails the Republican incumbent by nine votes won a court ruling Monday that gave her the right to determine whether 33 absentee ballots that have not been counted were mailed on time.

Democrat Kayla Koether sued Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate and Winneshiek County Auditor Ben Steines on Thursday after they refused to count the ballots in her race against Republican state Rep. Michael Bergan, saying the envelopes lacked a postmark that would indicate when they were mailed.

Judge Scott Beattie ordered officials to preserve the ballots and determine whether they were mailed on time. But he did not rule on whether the ballots would ultimately be counted, saying that issue could be argued in court later.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:07 PM on December 3 [3 favorites]


TOSSUP is a weird classification when UP TO THE EYEBALLS IN FRAUD seems more appropriate.

You have to assume that Dowless has honed his absentee-jiggering strategy over more than a few election cycles, and that it has been most effective in county-wide races and only received proper scrutiny because the House race (covering a much larger population that extends to the Charlotte suburbs) ended up so close. This also means that the Charlotte Observer and the Charlotte TV networks have taken more of an interest than they would have done for Bladen County Commissioner of Widgets.

Again: large parts of the US have no history of free and fair elections.
posted by holgate at 10:30 PM on December 3 [10 favorites]


Up to this point it had been a lot of speculation about Dowless's role. This is the first hard accusation that he engaged in election fraud—and the same kind of fraud alleged in voter affidavits to boot.

Now there's a case for disenfranchisement.
posted by rhizome at 10:31 PM on December 3 [1 favorite]


Democrat Kayla Koether sued Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate and Winneshiek County Auditor Ben Steines on Thursday after they refused to count the ballots in her race against Republican state Rep. Michael Bergan, saying the envelopes lacked a postmark that would indicate when they were mailed.

As always the Republicans are full of shit. The USPS's system is literally called Intelligent Mail barcode, and the Iowa election law says, "postmarked or, if applicable, to have the intelligent mail barcode traced to the date of entry into the federal mail system."

Legislative intent is clear. IF the IMb's are in the right range, the votes must be counted.
posted by mikelieman at 10:34 PM on December 3 [7 favorites]


Follow up, because I'm the kind of asshole who goes to the spec. When the post office applies the barcode, the 20 bits of ID include Julian date + 1/2 hour processed.
posted by mikelieman at 10:45 PM on December 3 [13 favorites]


Judge Scott Beattie ordered officials to preserve the ballots and determine whether they were mailed on time. But he did not rule on whether the ballots would ultimately be counted, saying that issue could be argued in court later.

That seems like a weird caveat to include. He didn't rule on whether they would be counted because they won't be counted if they weren't mailed on time. Sure, he didn't rule that they would be counted if they were mailed on time... but I'd be shocked if he didn't make that ruling once the date of mailing is determined.
posted by Justinian at 1:53 AM on December 4 [1 favorite]


That seems like a weird caveat to include

My sense is that the court doesn't even know whether the barcodes on the envelopes carry a date, much less if it's useful. It's never come up, so they have to loop in the USPS, to translate them, and provide the date and 1/2 hour window it was processed.
posted by mikelieman at 2:18 AM on December 4 [1 favorite]


As always the Republicans are full of shit. The USPS's system is literally called Intelligent Mail barcode, and the Iowa election law says, "postmarked or, if applicable, to have the intelligent mail barcode traced to the date of entry into the federal mail system."

Legislative intent is clear. IF the IMb's are in the right range, the votes must be counted.

posted by mikelieman at 10:34 PM on December 3 [1 favorite +] [!]


I love MetaFilter and all the awesome MeFites that populate it.
posted by Mental Wimp at 5:20 AM on December 4 [4 favorites]


GA-SOS: Voting today. Seems like a lot of people are burned out after last month.
posted by GenderNullPointerException at 5:47 AM on December 4


That seems like a weird caveat to include. He didn't rule on whether they would be counted because they won't be counted if they weren't mailed on time.

Courts tend to be conservative in their rulings, so as long as there's a chance that none of the ballots were mailed on time there's no reason to rule on whether they'd be counted otherwise.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:41 AM on December 4


Hoyer says Harris may not be seated.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:27 AM on December 4


GA-SOS: Voting today.

Also runoff for one of the Public Service Commission slots.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:30 AM on December 4 [1 favorite]


Loooong 538 analysis of what went right and wrong in their 2018 election forecasts.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:02 AM on December 4


Hoyer says Harris may not be seated.

Harris hired an operative with a felony fraud conviction for the same crime. If the electoral effect of the fraud here can't be precisely determined, and the NC electoral commission won't order a new election, it's entirely reasonable, to refuse him a seat because of this documented fact: he willingly hired a fraudster who frauded.

The only question will be whether Harris' attempt to steal the election worked, or was barely unnecessary in the end. But his involvement in criminal electoral fraud is not in question.
posted by msalt at 11:40 AM on December 4 [1 favorite]


it's entirely reasonable, to refuse him a seat because of this documented fact: he willingly hired a fraudster who frauded.

Except the part where it leaves his constituents without a member of congress. (this isnt a justification for seating him at all, it should be the impetus for actually fixing this - whether by ordering a new election or some other mechanism).
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 12:11 PM on December 4 [1 favorite]


The Federal Contested Elections Act of 1969 is the controlling law here. The House could order a new election, or it could just outright seat the Democrat.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:19 PM on December 4 [4 favorites]


Chrysostom, since it seems relevant, which house would do that, today's or next year's?
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 12:24 PM on December 4


Here's a Congressional Research Service write-up of the process. As I read it, it's the new House.

Also, it looks like the House doesn't really take action until the election is certified by the state, which means that maybe North Carolina will cut this off at the pass by calling for a new election itself. However, since NC already certified the primary, I think a state-called new election would still be the original general candidates of Harris and McCready. Whereas a House-called new election could be whomever the parties wanted to put up.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:35 PM on December 4


You have to assume that Dowless has honed his absentee-jiggering strategy over more than a few election cycles, and that it has been most effective in county-wide races and only received proper scrutiny because the House race (covering a much larger population that extends to the Charlotte suburbs) ended up so close.

The same Joe Bruno from above has a thread on his interview with the woman who McCrae Dowless paid to pick up ballots.
Exclusive: A second woman, Cheryl Kinlaw, tells me she was paid $100 by McCrae Dowless to pickup absentee ballots. She said she never thought it was illegal because Dowless "has been doing it for years." She says needed extra money for Christmas presents.
Bolding mine: for YEARS!
posted by gladly at 12:54 PM on December 4 [9 favorites]


The NC situation has gotten so much weirder. Judd Legum's thread lays out the basics, including a straight-up scheme to pay cash for unsealed ballots, complete with paperwork purporting to prove it (unsealed is underlined twice, so you know they were serious).

Also read The New Yorker's Republican Operative Faced Prior Allegations of Election Fraud in Disputed North Carolina District. This seems to go back to at least 2014, and these people don't seem to have been the least bit clever about it either.
posted by zachlipton at 9:32 PM on December 4 [1 favorite]


Sigh, Democrats lost in both Georgia runoffs. SOS was 52-48.

On the plus side, Dems hold the Little Rock, AR mayoralty, and elect the first ever African-American to hold the office.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:54 PM on December 4 [2 favorites]


But wait, there's more. BuzzFeed, Inside The North Carolina Republican Vote Machine: Cash, Pills — And Ballots
Now two women intimately involved with the McCrae Dowless’s absentee ballot machine have revealed to BuzzFeed News its grim and chaotic workings, in which Dowless tracked votes on yellow paper and paid his workers, including family members, from stacks of cash, which some used to keep themselves high on opioids while they worked.

The accounts of the women, Jessica Karen Dowless and Lisa Britt, add significant new details to those that have come out from investigators and other news reports, as the state election board considers whether it should order a new election between Republican Mark Harris and Democrat Dan McCready. The women, both related to McCrae Dowless, paint a picture of American political chicanery at its lowest levels — though with sweeping consequences both for voters allegedly denied the franchise, and for the outcome of a pivotal national election, which Republican Mark Harris won by 905 votes.

Jessica Dowless described the scene in the small office at the intersection of two highways in Bethel, North Carolina, where she worked on Harris’s behalf for the last two months as chaotic. One worker, she said, “was so fucking high the other day she passed out at the fucking computer.” One of the workers who collected absentee ballots from residents was a “pill head,” she said.
...

“My job was at the office and I read emails and counted how many Republicans and Democrats and non-affiliated people voted everyday...I added up how many voted that day and wrote it on a piece of paper and then they read it and then I don’t know what it did with it. McCrae was the only one who saw it,” she said. “I would go down each page and count how many black Republicans, white Republicans and I did the opposite, black unaffiliated, black Democrats, and add them up and then calculate the percentage of how many people voted that way each day.”
She says that all the ballots she saw were already sealed, but it's illegal in North Carolina for third parties to collect ballots at all.
posted by zachlipton at 10:21 PM on December 4 [2 favorites]


Dems hold the Little Rock, AR mayoralty, and elect the first ever African-American to hold the office.

More than you probably want to know about Little Rock mayors (who, in the modern era, run as Independents):

Frank Scott, Jr. is the first African-American mayor elected by the voters of Little Rock, but he's not the first African-American mayor of Little Rock. Charles E. Bussey was elected mayor by the city's Board of Directors in 1981, and, in 1987, Lottie Shackelford was elected by the Board to be the first female, and the second African-American, mayor of Little Rock (from 1957 to 1994, mayors were appointed by the Board of Directors in a city manager system--in 1994, the city switched to citywide mayoral elections).

Although Frank Scott, Jr. got the most votes in November's mayoral election, none of the five candidates achieved the 40% of votes necessary to avoid a runoff. Scott defeated Baker Kurrus in the runoff election with 58% of the votes, 22,622 in total, against Kurrus' 16,282. Scott will be only the third mayor that Little Rock has elected since 1994.
posted by box at 10:08 AM on December 5 [2 favorites]


Thanks for the clarification, box.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:39 PM on December 5 [1 favorite]


AK-HD-1 update: The Democrat is appealing to the state Supreme Court.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:41 PM on December 5


This Florida County Is Still Counting Ballots That Won’t Matter—“I get to count ballots that will be ignored,” Palm Beach County’s election supervisor said with a sigh. (Buzzfeed) State election workers are required by Florida law to complete their manual recount, even if they missed the deadline for certification. Palm Beach elections supervisor Susan Bucher says, “Hopefully it will be done by Christmas.”
posted by Doktor Zed at 1:11 PM on December 5


@JoeBrunoWSOC9: Former #CLTCC candidate Pete Givens confirmed to Channel 9 that Mark Harris introduced him to McCrae Dowless. "Mark told me about this guy's process... that he had a process." Harris is Givens' pastor First reported by @theobserver #NC09 #ncpol

If I'm reading that right, that means someone is directly linking the candidate to the voter fraud guy. "Process" is a weird word for "illegal stuff with absentee ballots, of course, but here we are.

@NateSilver538: We're changing our rating on this race to Lean Prison.
posted by zachlipton at 9:32 PM on December 5 [13 favorites]


That rare exception to Betteridge's Law of newspaper headlines:

NYT: North Carolina Republicans Targeted Voter Fraud. Did They Look at the Wrong Kind?
Republicans find themselves on the defensive about whether their reliance on voter identification to combat fraud focused on the wrong source of trouble.
posted by RedOrGreen at 12:26 AM on December 6


Except that the answer is "no". Because the goal wasn't to stop fraud, it was to prevent black people from voting. The entire NYT article is predicated on the idea that the GOP actually wanted to stop voter fraud and were just going about it wrong.

They looked at exactly the right kind of laws to accomplish what they wanted to accomplish.
posted by Justinian at 1:11 AM on December 6 [7 favorites]


> They looked at exactly the right kind of laws to accomplish what they wanted to accomplish.

But are they prepared to say that out loud? Or are they "on the defensive"?

(And yes, in the year 2018, maybe in fact some of them *are* prepared to say it out loud...)
posted by RedOrGreen at 1:31 AM on December 6


Sadly, they are prepared to say it out loud. Though it's true that they may also be on the defensive.
posted by Justinian at 1:33 AM on December 6 [3 favorites]


Nate Silver: We're changing our rating on this race to Lean Prison.
posted by octothorpe at 4:53 AM on December 6 [8 favorites]


NC-09:
News: The executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party, Dallas Woodhouse, tells CNN he supports holding a new election if allegations of election fraud in the 9th congressional district are proven true (via @DrewGriffinCNN)

Woodhouse: “Clearly if what you reported is verified by the state board of elections ... there has to be a new election, and if ... [they] rise to a level of turning the outcome and this race, we're having substantial likelihood there has to be a new election.”
NC GOP position up until now has been that Harris should be seated, so they seem to have concluded this is too much to bluster through.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:01 AM on December 6 [3 favorites]


Update on unpostmarked absentee ballots in Northeast Iowa:
Winneshiek County Auditor Ben Steines has filed a report with the Polk County Clerk of Courts which says 29 of the 33 disputed ballots in the Iowa House District 55 election were mailed by November 5th--the day before the fall election.

....

The report says Steines "confirmed with the US Post Office" that 29 of the uncounted absentee ballots were put in the mail "on or before" November 5th. Under state elections law, that means the ballots were sent before the deadline.
posted by bassooner at 1:02 PM on December 6 [3 favorites]


Republican officials had early warnings of voting irregularities in North Carolina (WaPo):
When GOP Rep. Robert Pittenger lost his primary by a narrow margin in May, he suspected something was amiss.

The congressman turned to a group of friends and family who had gathered with him on election night at a steakhouse near Charlotte and blamed the “ballot stuffers in Bladen,” according to three people at the gathering.

Pittenger’s concern stemmed from the vote tallies in rural Bladen County, where his challenger, a pastor from the Charlotte suburbs named Mark Harris, had won 437 absentee mail-in votes. Pittenger, a three-term incumbent, had received just 17.

In the days immediately after the race, aides to Pittenger told the executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party and a regional political director for the National Republican Congressional Committee that they believed fraud had occurred, according to people familiar with their discussions.

GOP officials did little to scrutinize the results, instead turning their attention to Harris’s general-election campaign against a well-funded Democratic opponent, the people said.

Their accounts provide the first indication that state and national Republican officials received early warnings about voting irregularities in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District, now the subject of multiple criminal probes.
posted by peeedro at 1:54 PM on December 6 [6 favorites]


It's spreading.

@ryanobles: NEW-> A @CNN review of absentee ballots in a second county in #NC9 reveal irregularities. Dozens of absentee ballots were witnessed by 4 people in Robeson County- adjacent to Bladen County. These 4 people all connected to McRae Dowless- the man at the center of the investigation. One of these four people... Jennifer Boyd, signed 57 ballots, nearly 9% of all the absentee ballots that were cast in Robeson County.
posted by zachlipton at 3:46 PM on December 6 [4 favorites]


Holy crap this story.

BuzzFeed, “I Don’t Vote” — But He Did. Here’s How Alleged Election Fraud Works In North Carolina.
What Chris Eason does not do, is vote.

“I just don’t vote, I don’t believe it. Do nothing but lie anyway,” Eason told BuzzFeed News about politicians. “Everybody’s crooked and they’ll do anything they can to get put in office.”

But, technically, Eason does vote — he says he’s just not the guy casting the ballot.

Eason told BuzzFeed News that he signed a blank absentee ballot in the now-contested Nov. 6 general election, didn’t actually pick any candidates, and then handed the unsealed ballot to the man at the center of an unfolding election fraud scandal, McCrae Dowless.

Sure enough, public records show, his absentee ballot ended up signed, sealed, and witnessed to the county board of elections with Eason’s name on it. “That’s what I’m telling you, McCrae or whoever’s doing it, they checked them boxes, I didn’t,” said Eason. “I’d take a lie detector test on that.”
...
Eason’s interview is the first time someone has publicly said they saw Dowless himself collect an absentee ballot.

Eason’s story, if true, appears to show outright fraud: He says Dowless harvested his unsealed ballot, which is illegal for third parties to do in North Carolina with narrow exceptions for close family or disabilities. Even more, he suspects Dowless or one of his employees filled votes for him, which, if true, would also be illegal.
...
Though Chris Eason says he does not vote, there are votes recorded under his name for a hodgepodge of nine elections over the past decade, public records show. In three elections, it indicates he or someone under his name appeared in person for early voting. The other six were mail in absentee ballots. Eason also said that McCrae had offered him money in this past election and in previous elections in exchange for his vote.
Eason's sister Ginger, who signed the ballot as a witneess, says she was paid to collect ballots for Dowless:
“The only thing I want to say is to the one who put me in this shit,” she said, referring to Dowless, and raised two middle fingers.
posted by zachlipton at 4:17 PM on December 6 [12 favorites]


Oof. Do you think the sister realized that she was publicly confessing to crimes? Those people don't sound very bright.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 4:34 PM on December 6 [6 favorites]


Seriously. I'm hoping they let the pawns off easy.
posted by edeezy at 5:28 PM on December 6 [2 favorites]


Republican officials had early warnings of voting irregularities in North Carolina (WaPo)

Area Wolves Received Early Intel About Recent Sheep Abductions
posted by Atom Eyes at 7:43 PM on December 6 [5 favorites]


Well, I hear you, but the initial fraud was in primarying out a sitting Congressman, so it was intra-party.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:21 PM on December 6 [1 favorite]


CA-21: Valadao has finally conceded. Here's a nice write-up of Dem struggles in the district and how things finally happened this year.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:38 PM on December 6 [2 favorites]


Dallas Woodhouse is a prize fuckin' idiot, but he'd take a new election (under new Voter ID rules) over a contested result. That's not an adequate answer: it seems pretty clear that Pastor Harris signed up for McRae Dowless's absentee operation back in the primary, and that Woodhouse and the party poohbahs weren't concerned when it knocked off Robert Pittinger for being not-quite-batshit enough, which means that the NCGOP is already covered in election fraud shit and shouldn't be cleansed of its shit coating or have any influence on what happens next.
posted by holgate at 9:52 PM on December 6 [2 favorites]


Those people don't sound very bright.

On the one hand, the usual jokes about the rural south are not great; on the other hand, I'd guesstimate that in living memory about half of North Carolina's 100 counties have essentially been run by the same two or three families. What makes the NC-09 thing interesting is that the district extends sufficiently into the core Charlotte suburban/exurban media market that Charlotte-based reporters are going out to the sticks (perhaps for the first time) and talking to people and those people are just spelling out how it goes down in Bladen County.
posted by holgate at 10:00 PM on December 6 [5 favorites]


Hallie Jackson is eating Dallas Woodhouse for brunch right now live on MSNBC. . . pressing him hard on exactly what standard hes putting forward for a new vote and asking why he wasnt concerned when this was brought to his attention in the primary. . .

to quote a senile former mayor - hes got bubkes.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 7:39 AM on December 7 [2 favorites]


Weird Alaska News That Only I Care About Update: a lone Alaska House Republican asserts he will not be part of any caucus, perhaps ruining the Republican trifecta. Who knows?! Shit is weird and the legislature doesn’t convene until mid-January.
posted by charmedimsure at 12:57 AM on December 9 [5 favorites]


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