Well, the day is finally here. The morning feels like Christmas, and the evening as the results come in and the tight races get closer and closer all the way down the line feels like the last final moments of a tied-up ball game with just seconds left on the clock. I know I’m not the only one who feels this way, but I know too that it’s a reasonably rare outlook on Election Day. For most people, by the time they finally get around to casting their votes, it’s with a sigh of relief. No more political ads. No more horse-race chatter among the punditry class. No more people pounding on the door, trying to get you to vote for a candidate that even they have never met and know very little about.
And sure, I find all of those things as cussedly annoying as anyone. But the vote itself, that is a hell of a lot of fun for me. It’s the only moment when I actually feel some sort of joy about being a citizen and doing my duty. And that night, after all the results are in and are being announced over the wires, that’s the only time the horse race actually matters, and, god damn, it’s the most entertaining television spectacle in four years. Howling at the TV, yelling at pundits I disagree with, knocking back a beer or ten …
Election Night is my Super Bowl.
And you may not feel that way completely, but I think that if you at least vote, some of you must. It’s like putting a bet down on a good sporting event. You’ve got skin in the game now. So, given that all that will be on TV tonight is news and election returns, might as well place your bet, right?
I don’t care if you’re conservative or liberal. Vote. (Though, really, I’m convinced that if all you nonvoters got out there, studied the issues, and voted your conscience, we’d have a far better country from my point of view.) I can’t tell you how to vote, no one can, which is what makes it the great thing it is, but I can tell you how I voted and why. My ballot won’t be the same as yours, of course — your state representative, state senator, or congressperson will be different, most likely, but maybe my own reasons why I voted for my people will help you vote for yours. So, let’s do this:
President: Barack Obama. Because Mexican-American candidate Willard “Mitt” Romney is a plutocrat who tried to sacrifice his dog to the sky gods. Also, when people ask me, “Yeah, but what’s Obama done with four years, huh?” I answer, “Well, he prevented a Second Great Depression, ended the Iraq War, killed Bin Laden, and got healthcare for 20 million more Americans all while a Neanderthal House of Representatives kicked and screamed and stabbed him in the back every step of the way. So, there’s that.”
Senator: Bill Nelson. Because no one should have to be represented by a guy named Cornelius McGillicuddy IV who insists that you call him Connie Mack. Also, because Florida is the swingiest of swing states, and few senators are as middle-of-the-road moderate as Bill Nelson. He’s an admirable representative for such a purplish state, and he’ll be a good advocate for Florida’s space industry as NASA gets squeezed for dollars.
Representative: Lois Frankel. Because Adam Hasner was a Republican Party apparatchik as state House Majority Leader, but now he’s suddenly saying things like “Republicans and Democrats share in the blame for adding about $10 trillion in debt over the last 12 years.” Not that Frankel’s a whole lot better, what with the $13,000 marble bathroom and police helicopter rides to parties, but at least she’s saying most of the same things she’s always said.
State Senator: Maria Sachs. Because Ellyn Bogdanoff isn’t nearly as moderate as she likes to claim. And besides, if you want a moderate, you should vote Sachs. You can’t be married to big-time Republican donor like Peter Sachs and be a flaming liberal. Then again, James Carville might have something to say about that. But never mind Serpent Head.
State Representative: Gerri Ann Capotosto. Because our state Legislature is a weird, backward, atavistic place, and it doesn’t need any more Republicans like George Moraitis. That said, it will have another Republican like Moraitis, because Capotosto is going to get her clock cleaned.
Sheriff: Scott Israel. Because Al Lamberti hasn’t done a bad job, but I’m no longer able to support any Republican in good conscience. Blogger David at 4 Quarters, 10 Dimes was far more articulate on this point than I could hope to be. If you’ve got a few minutes to read his analysis, long as it is, please do so.
Shall judges be retained? Yes. All of them. Because if not, Rick Scott will appoint their replacements. Nuff said.
Amendments: No. On all of them. Here is why.
That’s pretty much it. There were also three competitive judgeships and two school board members on my ballot. I went with Julio Gonzalez, Olga Levine, and Bob Diaz for judge and (Franklin Sands and Barbara Wilson for school board for the following reasons:
Gonzalez: Experience as a judge
Levine: Experience as a public defender as opposed to her opponent, who has experience as a prosecutor. If given that choice, I go with the public defender almost every time.
Diaz: Experience as a judge
Sands: Because Democratic state Rep. Franklin Sands is competing against an incumbent who was appointed by Rick Scott, and the less Gov. Moon Lizard has to do with our lives, the better.
Wilson: Because Dr. Barbara Wilson, a former teacher and administrator, is running against an incumbent on a school board that was notoriously corrupt over the past couple of years.
First, predictions are for morons because they’re almost always wrong. That said, tomorrow, when all of this is done, I want to be able to make fun of people like Dick Morris, who predicted Romney would win the electoral college 325 to 213, and Karl Rove, who predicted Romney would get at least 279 electoral votes. (FYI: You need 270 to win the presidency.) In order to make fun of them and not be a hypocrite, I better make my own predictions.
So, that said, I’m predicting Obama to win the election tonight 290 to 248.
I also say the Democrats will retain the Senate with exactly the same numbers they have now, 53-47. Some seats will change hands, but the end result will be the same, with the Republicans picking up Nebraska, North Dakota and maybe Montana, while the Democrats pick up Maine, Massachusetts, and Indiana. If anything, the odds are for the Dems to actually gain a seat, if they can hold onto Wisconsin and Montana.
The Republicans will keep the House, but will lose seven seats, so that the count in the House will be 200 Democrats to 235 Republicans.
Tomorrow, we’ll have a good laugh over how wrong I am. But one thing I know — I will not be as wrong as that toe-sucker Dick Morris. Happy voting!