Posted tagged ‘Election Day’

Barack Obama Re-Elected President of the United States

November 7, 2012

Barack Obama was elected to a second presidential term Tuesday, defeating Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

As of midnight (PT) tonight, Obama has secured 303 electoral votes while Romney has 206. The state of Florida is still close to call.

Obama appears as if he will also win the popular vote as well, with a nearly 2 million vote lead and 50% of the overall vote, compared to Romney’s 48%.

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Barack Obama Speaks to the State of the Economy

November 8, 2008

In his first press conference following Tuesday’s Presidential election, President-Elect Barack Obama addressed the struggling economy this afternoon.

The text of his statement can be found below, courtesy of MSNBC.

This morning, we woke to more sobering news about the state of our economy. The 240,000 jobs lost in October marks the 10th consecutive month that our economy has shed jobs. In total, we’ve lost nearly 1.2 million jobs this year, and more than 10 million Americans are now unemployed. Tens of millions of families are struggling to figure out how to pay the bills and stay in their homes. Their stories are an urgent reminder that we are facing the greatest economic challenge of our lifetime, and we must act swiftly to resolve them.

The United States has only one government and one President, and until January 20th of next year, that government is the current Administration. I have spoken to President Bush, and I appreciate his commitment to ensuring that his economic policy team keeps us fully informed as developments unfold.

Immediately after I become President, I will confront this economic crisis head-on by taking all necessary steps to ease the credit crisis, help hardworking families, and restore growth and prosperity.

This morning, I met with members of my Transition Economic Advisory Board, who will help guide the work of my transition team in developing a strong set of policies to respond to this crisis. We discussed several of the most immediate challenges facing our economy and key priorities on which to focus on in the days and weeks ahead:

First, we need a rescue plan for the middle class that invests in immediate efforts to create jobs and provides relief to families that are watching their paychecks shrink and their life savings disappear. A particularly urgent priority is a further extension of unemployment insurance benefits for workers who cannot find work in the increasingly weak economy. A fiscal stimulus plan that will jump-start economic growth is long overdue – and we should get it done.

Second, we must address the spreading impact of the financial crisis on other sectors of our economy: small businesses that are struggling to meet their payrolls and finance their holiday inventories; and state and municipal governments facing devastating budget cuts and tax increases. We must also remember that the financial crisis is increasingly global and requires a global response.

The news coming out of the auto industry this week reminds us of the hardship it faces – hardship that goes far beyond individual auto companies to the countless suppliers, small businesses and communities throughout our nation who depend on a vibrant American auto industry. The auto industry is the backbone of American manufacturing and a critical part of our attempt to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. I would like to see the Administration do everything they can to accelerate the retooling assistance that Congress has already enacted. In addition, I have made it a high priority for my transition team to work on additional policy options to help the auto industry adjust, weather the financial crisis, and succeed in producing fuel-efficient cars here in the United States. I have asked my team to explore what we can do under current law and whether additional legislation will be needed for this purpose.

Third, we will review the implementation of this Administration’s financial program to ensure that our government’s efforts are achieving their central goal of stabilizing financial markets while protecting taxpayers, helping homeowners and not unduly rewarding the management of financial firms that are receiving government assistance. It is critical that the Treasury work closely with the FDIC, HUD and other government agencies to use the substantial authority they already have to help families avoid foreclosure and stay in their homes.

Finally, as we monitor and address these immediate economic challenges, we will be moving forward in laying out a set of policies that will grow our middle-class and strengthen our economy in the long-term. We cannot afford to wait on moving forward on the key priorities that I identified during the campaign, including clean energy, health care, education and tax relief for middle class families.

My transition team will be working on each of these priorities in the weeks ahead, and I intend to reconvene this Advisory Board to discuss the best ideas for responding to these immediate problems.

Let me close by saying that I do not underestimate the enormity of the task that lies ahead. We have taken some major actions to date, and we will need further actions during this transition and subsequent months. Some of those choices will be difficult, but America is a strong and resilient country. I know that we will succeed if we put aside partisanship and work together as one nation. And that is what I intend to do.

Why Proposition 8 Passed in California…

November 7, 2008

There are a lot of people who continue to fight the outcome of the vote on this issue on Tuesday night in California. The question on half the state’s mind is this: Why did voters pass this proposition in quite possibly the most liberal state in the nation? John Cloud of TIME Magazine has written an interesting piece which discusses what happened over the final few weeks of the campaign to cause a shift in the vote.

From TIME:

Nov. 4 may have been a joyous day for liberals, but it wasn’t a great day for lesbians and gays. Three big states – Arizona, California and Florida – voted to change their constitutions to define marriage as a heterosexuals-only institution. The losses cut deep on the gay side. Arizona had rejected just such a constitutional amendment only two years ago. It had been the first and only state to have rebuffed a constitutional ban on marriage equality. In Florida, where the law requires constitutional amendments to win by 60%, a marriage amendment passed with disturbing ease, 62.1% to 37.9%.

And then there was California. Gay strategists working for marriage equality in this election cycle had focused most of their attention on that state. Losing there dims hopes that shimmered brightly just a few weeks ago – hopes that in an Obama America, straight people would be willing to let gay people have the basic right to equality in their personal relationships. It appears not.

The California vote was close but not razor-thin: as of 10 a.m. P.T., with 96.4% of precincts reporting, gays had lost 52.2% to 47.8%. Obama did not suffer the much-discussed “Bradley effect” this year, but it appears that gay people were afflicted by some version of it. As of late October, a Field Poll found that the pro-gay side was winning 49% to 44%, with 7% undecided. But gays could not quite make it to 49% on Election Day, meaning a few people may have been unwilling to tell pollsters that they intended to vote against equal marriage rights.

Gays are used to losing these constitutional amendment battles – as I said, Arizona was the only exception – but gay activists cannot claim they didn’t have the money to wage the California fight. According to an analysis of the most recent reports from the California secretary of state, the pro-equality side raised an astonishing $43.6 million, compared with just $29.8 million for those who succeeded in keeping gays from marrying. The money the gay side raised is surprising for two reasons: first, the cash-Hoover known as the Obama campaign was sucking down millions of dollars a day from the nation’s liberals. Many gays expected it to be difficult to raise money to fight Proposition 8 and its plan to outlaw same-sex marriage from Democrats eager to give to Obama and to the outside 527 groups supporting him. As recently as August, one of the nation’s top gay political givers told me that he expected the gay side to raise no more than $25 million.

A symbolic low point for the gay side came on Oct. 13, when the Sacramento Bee ran a remarkable story about Rick and Pam Patterson, a Mormon couple of modest means – he drives a 10-year-old Honda Civic, she raises their five boys – who had withdrawn $50,000 from their savings account and given it to the pro-8 campaign. “It was a decision we made very prayerfully,” Pam Patterson, 48, told the Bee’s Jennifer Garza. “Was it an easy decision? No. But it was a clear decision, one that had so much potential to benefit our children and their children.”

You could argue that marriage equality has little to do with children, but Patterson seemed to speak to Californians’ inchoate phobias about gays and kids. On the Friday before the Bee story appeared, a group of San Francisco first-graders was taken to city hall to see their lesbian teacher marry her partner. Apparently the field trip was a parent’s idea – not the teacher’s – but the optics of the event were terrible for the gay side. It seemed like so much indoctrination.

That news came around the same time the pro-amendment forces were running a devastating ad showing a self-satisfied San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom shouting wild-eyed at a rally that same-sex marriage was inevitable “whether you like it or not.” The announcer then said darkly, “It’s no longer about tolerance. Acceptance of gay marriage is now mandatory.” Many fence sitters were turned off by Newsom’s arrogance; blogger Andrew Sullivan attributed mid-October polls against the gay side to the “Newsom effect.”

Gays came back in some polls, but they couldn’t pull out a win. Part of the reason is that Obama inspired unprecedented numbers of African Americans to vote. Polls show that black voters are more likely to attend church than whites and less likely to be comfortable with equality for gay people. According to CNN, African Americans voted against marriage equality by a wide margin, 69% to 31%. High turnout of African Americans in Florida probably help explain that state’s lopsided vote to ban same-sex weddings.

I Voted Today…Did You?

November 4, 2008

I can say now that I happily casted my vote about 30 minutes ago. This is quite possibly the most important election in our history and I made sure that my voice was heard.

I’m not afraid to say who and what I voted for: Barack Obama for President

I also took part in the vote on California ballot measures:

No on Proposition 2

No on Proposition 4

and No on Proposition 8.

There were many decisions that will have a great impact on this country, and on the State of California this year. I’ve told others, if you don’t vote, don’t complain! I hope everyone out there, no matter who or what you are voting for, gets out and votes. Have your voice heard! Now, it’s time to sit back and wait for the election results.

From Yahoo!:

If Americans cast their ballots in a manner consistent with Monday’s final state poll averages, Obama would win 338 electoral votes, far surpassing the 270 needed to win the presidency. Don’t bank on it though. People may not cast their votes the way the polls predict and that makes this race a lot less of a sure thing than most people are saying.

Here’s a quick recap of what the state poll averages looked like as of Monday night for the big-get states, the swing states and the states that are surprisingly in play.

The Big Three

Pennsylvania: Obama + 7.6
Democrats have carried this state worth 21 electoral votes for the past four elections. But the big story here is that John McCain has significantly closed what was once a double-digit point deficit in the poll average.

Florida: Obama + 1.8
Twenty-seven electoral votes at stake make this an important state to win for McCain. He has been ahead here for the majority of the election season. Obama took the lead at the end of September, but the margin has never been consistent. The last Mason-Dixon poll says it’s too close to call.

Ohio: Obama +3.2
The state that decided it in 2004 gets some of the spotlight again because of its large electoral vote offering (20) and its capacity to swing.  Who wins this state might depend on which voters decide to stick out the wait in the long voting lines.

Toss-up states

Indiana: McCain +1.4
This state will be an early indicator of how the night will play out since its polls close first.  If Obama flips this traditionally red state, the rest of the night looks really bad for McCain. But the most recent polls show McCain ahead.

Virginia: Obama + 4.3
The Virginia polls are one of the biggest stories in this election. If Obama wins this state (and a collection of western states), the 13 electoral votes it offers become Obama’s route to 270 if McCain wins the Big Three.

The Western swing states

Colorado: Obama +5.5
Big crowds and a series of good poll numbers make this state look like one Obama can flip back to blue.  The last time Colorado voted Democratic for a president was in 1992.

Nevada: Obama +6.2
Nevada was red during the Bush years and blue during the Clinton years.  Obama took the lead in polling in early October and has held the lead since.

New Mexico: Obama +7.3
This state has been shockingly close in the last two elections.  Al Gore won in 2000 by less than 1,000 votes.

From CNN:

John McCain and his aides are still banking on a come-from-behind victory Tuesday, but the GOP’s most famous political strategist has already called the race for Barack Obama.

Karl Rove, the man widely credited with engineering President Bush’s two successful White House bids, is predicting the Illinois senator will take the White House in an Electoral College landslide, winning 338 votes to John McCain’s 200. That would be the largest Electoral College victory since 1996, when Bill Clinton defeated Bob Dole in a 379-159 rout.

Barack Obama’s Grandma Passes Away at 86

November 4, 2008

Senator Barack Obama’s grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, has died following a bout with cancer at the age of 86. Obama has spoken about his grandmother many, many times during the campaign, talking about what an important person she was in his youth and how she struggled against the glass ceiling in her own career.

Associated Press

Credit: Associated Press

From CNN:

“She was the cornerstone of our family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility,” a statement by Senator Obama and sister Maya Soetoro-Ng said.

“She was the person who encouraged and allowed us to take chances. She was proud of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and left this world with the knowledge that her impact on all of us was meaningful and enduring. Our debt to her is beyond measure.”

Obama and Soetoro-Ng asked that donations be made for the search for a cure for cancer in lieu of flowers. A small private ceremony will be held “at a later date.”

Dunham passed away peacefully at her home shortly before midnight Sunday night (5 a.m. ET), campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki told CNN. She said Obama learned of her death around 8 a.m.

The Democratic presidential candidate left the campaign trail on October 23 and flew to Honolulu, Hawaii, to spend the day with Dunham, whose health deteriorated after she suffered a broken hip.

His wife, Michelle Obama, filled in for him at events in Columbus and Akron, Ohio, on October 24.

Reuters

Credit: Reuters

From Reuters:

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama‘s grandmother died of cancer, he said in a statement on Monday, a little more than a week after he interrupted the White House campaign to say goodbye to her in Hawaii.

Dunham, 86, helped raise Obama from the age of 10 while his mother was working in Indonesia, and Obama took an emotional 22-hour trip to Hawaii to visit her on October 23 and 24.

Obama said afterward his grandmother had been flooded with cards, flowers and well-wishes from around the country, and he regularly thanked crowds at his campaign rallies for their prayers.

“Our family wants to thank all of those who sent flowers, cards, well-wishes and prayers during this difficult time,” the statement said.

“It brought our grandmother and us great comfort. Our grandmother was a private woman, and we will respect her wish for a small private ceremony to be held at a later date,” the statement said.

Dunham had followed Obama’s presidential bid with great interest, and her death comes one day before U.S. voters will render their verdict in the race between Obama and Republican John McCain.

One Day Left…Are You Still an Undecided Voter?

November 4, 2008

I have made my choice and will cast my vote tomorrow morning for President of the United States. But there are still many out there who have yet to come to a final conclusion on their vote for either Barack Obama or John McCain.

Less than 24 hours before the presidential election, Kevin Sheen is one of these people who has yet to decide who will get his vote.

From CNN:

“I’m actually still wrestling with moral issues,” says the 29-year-old registered Democrat, who voted for George W. Bush in 2004.

Sheen is one of the 5 percent of American voters who are either undecided or could change their mind before Election Day.

It’s not unusual for a small percentage of Americans to be undecided in the final hours before casting their votes.

In 2004, a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll released two days before the election showed 3 percent of those surveyed were still undecided. In 2000, 4 percent of those surveyed said they were undecided two days before the election.

This year, the most recent CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll shows the number of undecideds is much smaller.

“In our last poll, we only had about 1 percent who said they were undecided and only about 4 percent who said they might consider changing their minds. So there is hardly anyone left who could be considered undecided, or even persuadable,” says CNN polling director Keating Holland.

Sheen, of Lincoln, Nebraska, says his vote is coming down to one issue: abortion. Sheen says he’s “definitely pro-life” and he’s trying to decide whether Democrat Barack Obama or Republican John McCain is more in line with his views.

“Neither of them have the track record I would like in a political candidate. So at this point, it’s me sort of deciding upon, who do I think will be the best representation for if something is able to happen with the issue of abortion,” he says. iReport: Still undecided? What gives?

New Poll Shows Barack Obama Supporters Excited, McCain Supporters Not So Much

November 1, 2008

While 43 percent of the Democrat Barack Obama’s backers said they are excited over the campaign, just 13 percent of McCain’s said so, according to a new survey of adults, conducted by Knowledge Networks. The findings show that six in 10 Obama supporters said the race interests them, compared to just four out of 10 backing McCain. 52 percent of McCain supporters said the campaign has left them frustrated, compared to only 30 percent of Obama’s.

From the Associated Press:

That smiling guy walking down the street? Odds are he’s a Barack Obama backer. The grouchy looking one? Don’t ask, and don’t necessarily count on him to vote on Tuesday, either.

More John McCain supporters feel glum about the presidential campaign while more of Obama’s are charged up over it, according to an Associated Press-Yahoo! News poll released Saturday.

The survey shows McCain backers have become increasingly upset in recent weeks, a period that has seen Obama take a firm lead in many polls. One expert says the contrasting moods could affect how likely the two candidates’ supporters are to vote on Election Day, possibly dampening McCain’s turnout while boosting Obama’s.