Along the Tracks

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Recall Results

Arnold’s in, Gray is out - and now Californians get to see if the state’s problems really were intractable or if this was a clear case of mismanagement. The Democrats in the legislature and state executive offices will probably be putting up roadblocks all over the place to make Gov. Arnold’s life difficult. That’s a dim-witted strategy, as Arnold clearly has the people’s trust and backing, and any overtly partisan interference will probably spell doom for Democratic dominance of the state. I hope I’m wrong - not because I want to see the Dems survive this in control of the nation’s biggest state, but because such a “quagmire” strategy will be bad for Californians, and ultimately bad for the nation.

Now, let’s see how my predictions fared.

Recall prediction: 58% in favor; 42% against (Davis goes down)
Unofficial results: 55% in favor; 45% against (Davis goes down)

Replacement prediction: Schwarzenegger 43%; Bustamante 28%; McClintock 12%; (no others over 5%)
Unofficial results: Schwarzenegger 48%; Bustamante 32%; McClintock 13%; (no others over 5%)

Quick analysis: Voters took this even more seriously (as a whole) than I thought they would - and far more seriously than most of the national (and California) media though they would. That pushed the recall vote a little closer than I thought (i.e. - “Do we really want to do this?”) and the totals for the major candidates higher than I thought and far higher than the media thought (i.e. - “I am not going to waste my vote.”). These percentages demonstrate a serious and involved electorate not easily distracted by last-minute scandals, mudslinging or the “circus” atmosphere. Bravo, California!

If you had other, er, “favorites” on the ballot, check out how they did.

Finally, Mickey Kaus comes clean and explains why he voted for ... oh, just see for yourself.

All right, one more thing. Here’s Kaus (inside the post [essay?] explaining his vote) on Democrats:

“For decades, New Democrat reformers have been trying to free the party from the grip of powerful constituencies--not only unions, but seniors and civil rights lobbies--that increasingly stand in the way of achieving the party’s larger goals (which I would define as social equality, a society where you don’t need a big income to live a decent life as an equal).”

If the Democrats could pull that off, they’d get my vote.

LAST, LAST UPDATE: Can we recall Gov. Gray Taft in Ohio ... please, please, please?

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