MASS POLITICS, MINORITY POLITICS. Here in the Bay State, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Deval Patrick is headed for a decisive and historic win. Historic, because he will be Massachusett's first African-American governor, and only the second elected nationwide, ever. Historic also, because race was not really even a part of the conversation about him locally until Republican candidate and Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey ran a series of racially-charged ads against him, accusing him of being so soft on crime that he was virtually pro-rapist.
EXIT POLLS. While the cable networks remain maddeningly unspecific, Political Wire has gotten a look at the individual Senate exit polls. The verdict? Democrats take the Senate. I'll caution that 2004's verdict was that Kerry takes the presidency, but well-placed sources I'm hearing of are hinting at a Democratic wave.
INVESTIGATE OR GOVERN! I have no appetite for making election outcome predictions, but one thing that I foresee with certainty is that if the Democrats win anything tonight, the spin over the next few days will be, to quote the Republican I appeared against on the BBC last night: "If the Democrats want to spend the next two years investigating everything, they can forget any hope of winning the presidency in 2008. If they want to work with President Bush and govern, then there's some hope for them."
TRY AGAIN LATER, SEZ JUDGE. CNN is reporting that the request made by Democrats to keep open polls in Denver an additional two hours has been denied. The Dems appealed for the extension of the voting time because of -- as posted here
by Ben -- long lines that occurred earlier in the day due to some sort of all-precinct voting scheme that went awry in addition to computer glitches. The judge is said to have decided that those who were stuck in line at the Denver Botanical Gardens polling site could have gone elsewhere to vote, or come back later in the day.
DOBBS DOES HIS JOB: I've been fairly critical of Lou Dobbs recently, but to his credit he's doing some semblance of journalism today, which many of his colleagues are not. As my colleague Danapointed out on our Campus Progress blog, most of what tv cable news has covered all day hasn't been news at all. That is, all these segments saying "Harold Ford would be the first black Senator from the South since reconstruction" isn't new, it's been the case since he got the nomination months ago.
"READY TO TRAVEL, READY TO SUE." Guardedly optimistic news from the land of voter suppression. Here in southwest Ohio�s 2nd congressional district, where late polls showed Democrat Victoria Wulsin with a narrow lead over incumbent �Mean Jean� Schmidt, voting seems to be going fairly smoothly. �It�s going much better than could�ve been expected,� said Michelle Young, part of a bipartisan team of attorneys doing election protection work in heavily Republican Warren and Clermont counties outside of Cincinnati. Both counties have given Democrats jitters in the past.
TURN OUT ALREADY! I walked over to the Philadelphia DNC headquarters at Broad and Walnut just now, hoping to tap into the voter vibe. The Center City streets were packed with people on their way to lunch, but I didn�t see a single flier or button. The office itself was deserted save for one worker, who was talking on the phone in the back room while he chain-smoked cigarettes. He looked like a union stalwart in his thick denim shirt hovering over the polling locations page in the newspaper; I imagined him to be a big fan of Congressman Bob Brady, who rose to prominence through the carpenters� and teachers� union and who now represents Pennsylvania�s 1st District.