Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Shattered glass

Yet another Super Tuesday is upon us with the primaries in Ohio, Texas, Rhode Island and Vermont. Opinions abound as to the possible outcome. Hillary may win both narrowly, or split the two states, some say. No one seems to think Obama will blow her out, as he had been doing, but there is a lot of feeling that he will at least win Texas. If so, what should Clinton do? Quit, say many, while others cry for her to push on to Pennsylvania, Mississippi, even Puerto Rico.
It's somehow fitting that these two big ones today are in states known for nasty electioneering in the form of vote stealing. The 2004 residential election ultimately came down to the state of Ohio, which George Bush won by a margin of 118,601 votes, giving him the state’s 20 electoral votes and victory.
But it has been estimated that one out of every four voters in Ohio who registered to vote and showed up at the polls did not have their votes counted.
Even worse, some writers claim that 80,000 votes that were cast for Kerry in fact were counted for Bush in a contest overseen by Ohio Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, who – like Katherine Harris in Florida in 2000—was co-chair of the Bush-Cheney reelection effort.
Texas has also has a rep, dating back even before the 1960 elections, when dead voters walked the land, zombie-like, casting their ballots over and over again, and some precincts had voting machines rigged to give Democrats two votes for every tug of the lever.
Not that this will happen today in a primary race, but things are getting nasty and there seems to be perception that Clinton's aggressive tactics are roughing up Obama a little, although how much remains to be seen. It's just a foretaste of the general election. Quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle, John Gilliom, a political scientist at Ohio University, said the candidates are still in a healthy process of "checking for glass jaws." Voters "want to know what Sen. Obama's answers are on the various questions she's been asking," he said. "They're going to be asked in a lot tougher way later on."
Quite true. My prediction for today? More shattered glass, since there will be a split victory and this incredible Democratic race will go on.

No comments: