The results aren’t in yet but that isn’t what I’ve been noticing. Eighty percent turnout is expected in Florida and Ohio. People are coming out to the polls in record numbers. They are calmly standing in multi-hour long lines in order to have their voices heard.
This tells me that our democracy is strong. Beginning tomorrow we can address the issues that will surely be identified from this election.
How do we shorten the wait times? How do we assure that everyone who wants to vote has the ability to do so? How do we make sure that all forms of fraud are eliminated? How do we make sure that the election remains in the hands of the American voters rather than in the hands of attorneys?
These are questions for a later time. Today is Election Day.
The polls are open and I have the Electoral tally at 234 for Barack Obama and 161 for John McCain.
Obama needs to pick up 36 more electoral votes from the toss-up list and that is all she wrote. But here is the problem that John McCain faces. Pennsylvania has Obama up around double digits. Colorado, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Virginia all look like they’ll go for Obama.
Indiana is the first of the toss-up states to have their polls close. Part of the state closes at 6 with the rest by 7. Also at 7 are Florida, New Hampshire and Virginia. When the results start coming in from these 4 states, we will have a good idea of the direction the rest of the evening will take. I suspect New Hampshire will be declared a victory for Obama by 8 bringing him within 32 of the White House.
At 7:30 Ohio and North Carolina close followed by Missouri and Pennsylvania at 8. I suspect that Pennsylvania will declare quickly for Obama bringing him within 11.
At 9:00 Colorado and New Mexico close and those should put Obama over the top.
At 10:00 Nevada becomes the last toss-up to close their polls.
It is a good bet that by shortly after 7 pm we’ll have a really good idea at who will win this election.
Then again, the GOP is already warning us that the exit polls heavily favor the Democrats. Does that mean that we need to worry about the theft of another election? Exit polling is used as a benchmark to determine election fraud around the world. Why is this country the only place where exit polls are flawed?
And for good measure lawyers are positioning themselves in key locations around the country. Are they there to expect trouble or to cause trouble? I guess time will tell.
I will be keeping a close eye on those 11 states and just a glance to the other 40 contests in case there is a surprise – or a trend.
Regardless, today is Election Day in the United States of America. Turnout is very strong and clearly our democracy is great and I hope each of you voted.