Election 2009 Summary

It is worth breaking the summary down into “national” to me and “local” to me. Local means interesting stuff in Washington state.

On the national front, things didn’t quite go like I expected, but not too far off. In Virginia, it has been clear for some time that McDonald (R) would beat Deeds (D) in the gubernatorial race. There are reasons for this outcome are local, but also, Virginia is fundamentally still a rather conservative state. I’m not at all surprised by the outcome.

What about New Jersey gubernatorial race? The polls were up and down, but former BushCo Attorney General Christie (R) beat Corzine (D). I was a little bit surprised, but not overly so, as the state has had a Republican Governor for 16 of the past 28 years. I didn’t think Christie had the charisma to pull it off, but I was wrong. The up side for Democrats: Christie is a Republican corruption scandal waiting to happen. Mark my words.

For NY-23, all I can say is, “wow.” Chaos ensued leading up to the election. In the end, Owens (D) beats Hoffman (Conservative party) 49% to 45%. I believe this is the first time a Democrat has held this seat. The big losers are the Republicans, who had to sell out their name brand. As I hinted at earlier, a win by Owens could cost Democrats a few bonus seats in 2010 because a Hoffman win might have catalyzed a few more teabaggers into running for congress, splitting the right-wing vote. There will still be plenty of such challenges I suspect. I’m good with the Owens win.

Maine had two “Questions” on the ballot. Question 1 was on gay marriage, and the homophobes won. The only surprise was the largish margin. Question 4 was a TABOR initiative that went down in flames. Both outcomes were consistent with the most recent poll.

Here in Washington state, things were blue, blue, blue.

First, we had two statewide ballot measures that were not unlike Maine’s. Referendum 71 allowed voters to approve of recently passed legislation that gave registered homosexual and older same-sex heterosexual couples equal legal rights under state law. As I write, the referendum is passing 51.1% to 48.9%. A huge fraction of uncounted votes come from King county, so the measure should gain even more support as absentee ballots are processed.

The other statewide measure is Initiative 1033 that is a kissing cousin of Maine’s TABOR initiative. The initiative is losing 55.5% to 45.5%. This reflects a huge loss for professional initiative huckster, Tim Eyman. Combined with the Maine TABOR results, the I-1033 results are a disaster for the anti-government extremists that promote these things. Suck it, wingnuts.

Here in King County, latent wingnut Susan Hutchison lost to Democrat Dow Constantine, 42.8% to 57.0% for King County Executive (to fulfill Ron Sims’ term). The loss is huge for Republicans. In 2008, the more right-leaning element of the county qualified a ballot initiative to turn the King County Executive position from partisan to non-partisan. The thinking, I suppose, is that removing party labels is the best shot Republicans have of getting themselves elected. The initiative passed, but The Plan failed to put a Republican in office.

In sum: nationally there was mixed news for progressives. Here in King County, Washington, things went exceedingly well.

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3 Responses to “Election 2009 Summary”

  1. N in Seattle Says:

    For New Jersey, it’s not merely that they’ve had Republicans in Trenton for 16 of 28 years (and it’ll go to 20 of 32). Yesterday marked the sixth consecutive election in which they chose a Governor of the party opposite to the winner of the presidential election a year earlier.

    Then again, Virginia has done the same thing in nine consecutive election cycles.

    What are the odds that you’ll hear either of those phenomena mentioned in the MSM?

  2. Tlazolteotl Says:

    Referendum 71 allowed voters to approve of recently passed legislation that gave registered homosexual and older same-sex couples equal legal rights under state law.

    I think you meant ‘older straight couples’ or ‘older mixed-sex couples’ or something similar.

    I am overall very pleased by the election outcome. NY-23 was certainly a popcorn moment, I sure do hope the teabaggers continue their strategy of getting Republicans kicked out of safe seats. And I note that Christie and McDonnell were smart enough to keep Sarah Palin away from their campaigns.

  3. Darryl Says:

    Tlazolteotl,
    Yes I did…thanks. I suppose I could say “older couples and younger same-sex couples”….

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