Tag Archives: presidential election

A can of electoral whoop-ass

Well, I did it.  I called the Board of Elections.

When I called the Board of Elections, the woman I spoke with was very very not happy about it.  Well, before I told her why I was calling, and simply said I wanted to voice a concern about something that happened at my polling place today, she assumed I was going to say something stupid, I think.  I imagine she’s handled a lot of weird stuff today.  She automatically said that any complaints need to be submitted in writing.  I said, well, let me just tell you what happened to me and you can tell me if the concern I have is legitimate and tell me what my next steps should be.

So I told the story and she was actually pretty pissed off that it happened.  She explained to me what he should have done (verbally tried to get my attention or knocking on the side of the booth) even though she also said by my story it didn’t sound like I was taking an inordinate amount of time in the booth.  She said she was going to bring up the issue to the board of commissioners just based on my verbal complaint, that that specific poll worker would definitely be talked to, and she apologized profusely that it happened.  I don’t really want the guy to get in trouble… but what he did was pretty wrong, it seems.  I’m glad I called it in.

Election Day shenanigans

I went and voted, and took the kids with me.  Jake sat in a stroller just outside the voting booth but Lane came in with me and helped me push the buttons.  She’s enthusiastic and impressionable and it’s my job as her mom to make voting seem way super awesome.

And then, as we were nearly ready to pull the handle and submit our votes, the little weird old guy who was supervising our booth actually stuck his head INTO OUR BOOTH, THROUGH THE CURTAIN and said “Everything OK in here?”

“Yes, we’re fine, get out NOW,” I replied, or something to that effect.  When we left the booth a few seconds later a line of like three people had built up (we’d been able to go straight in).  Apparently this rush made him panic a bit, and he hadn’t yet heard about the blocks-long lines in many voting areas.

I was annoyed.  But the outrage didn’t really hit until I got into the car.  He basically violated the sanctity of my secret ballot.  Had I not had Jake in tow, who was desperate for a nap, I would have gone back and given him a real piece of my mind.  I’m still strongly leaning toward visiting the Board of Elections tomorrow and logging a complaint.  Should I?

Multitasking: It’s kind of a big deal

It looks like John McCain is bailing out of the first presidential primary tomorrow. I find this really disappointing; I LOVE presidential debates.

His reasoning is the economic crisis and all the work that needs to be done on his part to see the country through this hard time. Noble on the surface, but is it, really? He sits on a couple relevant committees and subcommittees in the Senate, but it’s not like they’re twiddling their thumbs waiting for him to gallop in on his noble steed to save the day. The way I see it, the main thing he needs to do is vote on stuff. He’s not in a position to be crafting the terms of the bailout packages or anything like that. Is he? Maybe I’m wrong about that.

McCain just seems to me to be pretty poor at multitasking. He makes a point of only scheduling one campaign stop a day. And now, he can’t take the time to prepare for a debate because of this current ‘crisis’? (I’m a bit dubious of the word ‘crisis’ as applied to the current situation. Oh, it’s not good, I agree wholeheartedly. And granted I don’t understand and am making no attempt to understand the nuanced effect that these government takeovers could have on the market as a whole. But I just don’t see how McCain playing hooky from the debate tomorrow is suddenly going to make rainbows and daisies out of the current situation.) Regardless, I see the presidential debates as like the pinnacle of the election process, the most important steps. Does McCain really want to be president? Or does he want to pretend to act Presidential by hiding in D.C.? It would be really impressive that if he’s going to do something to save us all from this corporate greed, that he could accomplish it AND show up to the debate to tell us all about it. I’d hate to see him have to try to handle two important things at once as president. “Sorry, Iran, you’re just going to have to wait a minute even though you’ve just rolled a nuclear weapon into your main square — we just got hit with a giant earthquake here. Can I pencil you in for next Tuesday? Will that work for you, crazy Iranian people? Swell. Thanks!”

The truth is, I really think he’s using AIG as the dog who ate his homework. We’ve spent the last few weeks watching Sarah Palin being kept under tight wraps from all first-hand media scrutiny (except of course for Charlie Gibson nailing her, that was funny — and damn, how annoying was it the way she said “Charlie”?). I’m not even going to get started on how pot-calling-kettle-black sexist that is of the McCain camp. Can’t they trust this woman to stand her own ground and handle the tough questions, even if it’s to issue her own personal “no comment”s? But now, John McCain is just throwing himself into the media black hole. In his first chance to face off with Obama on national TV, he’s bailing?? That seems so weird. And it’s not like I’m salivating because I think Obama is going to trounce him in the debates; I think McCain is probably going to prove to be a more effective debater than Obama in many respects. Mostly, because he’s a sound bite sort of guy and the American populace doesn’t seem capable of absorbing much more than neatly-packaged sound bites. But since the debates might very well be his forte, why bail? Why not use the forum to share your thoughts on the economy and other matters with the American people? It just smells like a three-day-old fish to me.

Or, maybe he’s just at a point in the campaign where he’s feeling like he’s not quite confident enough to quit his day job. 🙂

Spoiler alert

I tend to like spoilers.  Not movie spoilers or anything like that, but those behind-the-pack forces that wreak havoc for the people out front.  A last place team ruins a playoff chance for another team but pulling out an unlikely victory?  Awesome!  Maybe it’s something twisted about my personality, or maybe I just dig the expression of power that comes with it.

It’s probably not a secret that I am fairly left-leaning on the political spectrum.  Although my fiscal heart sits a smidge to the right side of moderate, for social issues I’m quite aligned with the Democratic party, and am registered as such.

I’ve written before about how much Ralph Nader gets my goat.  And it’s not necessarily because of his general role as spoiler, but that he was spoiler for MY candidate.  I suppose it’s fair to say that I like any spoiler, except when I’m vested in he for whom the spoiler works against.

But the campaigns of Ralph Nader, especially in 2000, have duly demonstrated the power of the political spoiler.

And now, I’ve got a spoiler I can get behind!

Bob Barr is running for president on the Libertarian ticket.  He’s got an uphill battle for sure — right now his campaign isn’t even certain they can get him on the ballot in all 50 states.  But people are loving him.  He’s garnering the attention of conservative Republicans, and independents are showing him a lot of interest, too.  Pollster John Zogby’s organization has done a really interesting poll that illustrates just how much influence Bob Barr might have in the ’08 election.

I don’t have the financial clout to max out my $2300 contribution limit for a candidate.  But Barack Obama‘s had a few bucks thrown his way from my wallet.  MoveOn.org Civic Action gets a few bucks when they are starting up a campaign I’m interested in (like now, they are about to embark on a big push in support of universal health care).  And today I decided to throw Bob Barr a bone, too.  If he can wreak half the havoc that Nader did in 2000, it will be money well-spent.

I’m also left to wonder how many of Ralph Nader’s political contributors were registered Republicans.