I hope you will all excuse my delay in posting some post-election observations, as I spent the day sitting shiva for our democracy. I will for the moment ignore the national elections, except to once again respectfully ask my fellow Americans… are you out of your fucking minds?!!!
On to the results from the less-insane Washington, where it turns out my predictions (made without the benefit of polling data) were pretty damn close. “Damn” being the operative word.
In fact, I correctly picked the winning candidate in every race. I think.
The governor’s race is still up in the air, but the absentee ballots look somewhat encouraging for Christine Gregoire. There are slightly more absentee ballots left to count from pro-Rossi counties than from pro-Gregoire King County, but Gregoire’s margin of victory in King is quite substantial, so they should tend to even out. We’ll know a bit more tomorrow afternoon.
Perhaps the best news is that the Democrats will likely control both houses of the Legislature. It could be a week or more before we get the final count, but it looks like the D’s picked up 3 seats in both houses.
The other statewide races went pretty much as expected. Patty Murray trounced political midget George Nethercutt, and the apparently unlikable Deborah Senn lost to the clearly unqualified Rob McKenna for attorney general. If the D’s aren’t careful McKenna will be Governor or a Senator someday.
All the statewide incumbents won.
As to the initiatives and referenda, of course, the big news was the overwhelming failure of I-892. And it was overwhelming… a greater than 60-40 defeat.
Now Eyman has been running on about all the money spent opposing the initiative, but for the most part, the No campaign’s ads were honest… they simply explained to voters that I-892 would put slot machines in our neighborhoods. And voters clearly don’t want slot machines in their neighborhoods.
The gambling industry had hoped that the Eyman brand would masquerade I-892 as a tax cut initiative. It didn’t work.
I’ll talk more about the other initiatives later, but the only real surprise was the margin of defeat for I-884. And the only reason I find it surprising, is that I would have thought its sponsors would have done a better job on focus groups and polling before financing this desperately need measure with a wildly unpopular penny hike in the sales tax.
More comments tomorrow, including some new tidbits on loan shark infested Great Canadian Gaming Corporation.