Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Yes we can.

Two years ago I predicted that the U.S. would not be ready for Barack Obama to be president in 2008, and that 2012 would be his year. It's a good thing that nobody pays attention to my political predictions.

So where was I when I found out that he was officially projected to win? Well, I had been following the race all day yesterday, and saw that he had a healthy lead before I left my mom's house for my indoor soccer game. I didn't find out that he was the winner until I returned home around 20:20, 20 minutes after he was declared the victor. I did have a suspicion, though, when on my way home I received a text message from my friend Robert which simply said "Yes!"

But what about Missouri? This is only the second time my state has been "wrong" about the president in over 100 years...and the margin was tiny - less than 6000 votes (49.4% to 49.2%). How did the Democrat Jay Nixon manage to win the gubernatorial race so handily (58.4% to 39.5%) if the presidential race was so close? I'm guessing due to a combination of a few factors:

  1. Nixon, having served as the attorney general for 16 years, was already very popular in Missouri.
  2. Hulshof, his opponent, was not the ideal Republican candidate.
  3. Obama is (at least perceived as) too liberal for Missourians.
  4. St. Charles County had the highest voter turnout by percentage in the state.
  5. Missouri may have more pro-white racists than pro-black racists.
As an aside, I am also happy that Proposition C (which mandates investor-owned electric companies provide certain percentages of power from renewable sources, with a target of 15% by 2021) was passed. I'm not exactly thrilled that all the other state-wide amendments and propositions passed, though.

In any case, my enthusiasm for politics, which always peaks at election time, has already begun to wane. I hope that Obama does well in his first term as president, but it's time for me to return to being mostly apathetic.

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