Dec. 04 absentee ballot for overseas voters

Obama 365   McCain 173  
Senate Dem 58   GOP 41   Ties 1
House Dem 255   GOP 176   Ties 4

Senate map and races
Downloadable polling data
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strong Dem Strong Dem (258)
weak Dem Weak Dem (33)
barely Dem Barely Dem (74)
tied Exactly tied (0)
barely GOP Barely GOP (14)
weak GOP Weak GOP (39)
strong GOP Strong GOP (120)
270 Electoral votes needed to win
Map algorithm explained
Presidential polls today: (None) RSS
Dem pickups (vs. 2004): CO FL IN IA NV NM NC OH VA GOP pickups (vs. 2004): (None) PDA SMS

PW logo Bush Buys Home in Dallas Bonus Quote of the Day
Matthews in Talks with NBC News Hutchison Looking at Texas Gubernatorial Bid
Obama May Make Major Speech From Islamic Capital NBC News Upset About Leaks

News from the Votemaster

Charlie Brown concedes in CA-04

Tom McClintock (R) has been elected to the House in CA-04. His Democratic opponent, Charlie Brown, conceded yesterday. McClintock won by just under 1800 votes. House seats in OH-15, VA-05, LA-02, and LA-04 are still unresolved. The latter two will have runoffs Saturday.

133 Ballots Missing in Minnesota

Somehow 133 ballots vanished in one Minnesota precinct that went strongly for Al Franken. The number of votes in the recount is lower than in the original count by 133 votes. Franken estimates that these missing votes cost him 46 votes. These missing votes will surely figure in subsequent court cases. It boggles the mind that precincts are so sloppy with ballots. The NY Times proposes abandoning the recount and flipping a coin.

Who Will Fill Obama's Senate Seat?

Sometime in the next month or so, Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D-IL), the nation's least popular governor, with an approval rating of 13%, will get to appoint a United States senator. Politico has a list of potential candidates:

      - Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq veteran and director of the state's Dept. of veterans affairs
      - Emil Jones, a black man who is president of the state senate
      - Jesse Jackson, Jr., a two-term representative and son of Rev. Jesse Jackson
      - Lisa Madigan, the Illinois attorney general and potential Blagojevich opponent in 2010
      - Danny Davis, a liberal congressman from Chicago

Of course, Blagojevich could surpise people and pick someone else. Among other things, he has to be concerned about the appointed senator's ability to win election in 2010.

Obama's Approval Rating is 78%

President-elect Barack Obama is earning high marks for his initial cabinet picks. A Gallup poll shows that 78% of Americans approve what he has done so far. This number compares favorably to the approval ratings of President-elect Bush in 2000 (65%) and President-elect Clinton in 1992 (67%). Almost 70% approve of his pick of Hillary Clinton as secretary of state and 80% approve of his pick of Robert Gates to run the Defense Department. This increased popularity strengthens his already large mandate for change in the months ahead.

What is the Meaning of Chambliss Win in Georgia?

According to Amy Walter of the National Journal, nothing. Georgia is a reliably Republican state to start with, the Democrat, Jim Martin, had no statewise base, black turnout was way down compared to Nov. 4, and Barack Obama didn't want to use up much political capital helping Martin (all he did was make one radio ad for Martin). Walter doesn't believe this is a first step in rebuilding the GOP. Winning Georgia isn't very hard for Republicans.

Rebuilding the Republican Party

Walter's colleague Charlie Cook has a good column on whither the Republican Party. He talked to a number of top GOP strategists and got some insight. One strategist had excuses for everything: it was Bush, it was the economy, it was everything except the what the party stands for. Another said the party was pretty good at being against things but not so good at being for things. Yet another point is that Republicans are losing the suburbs because they don't have solutions to the problems real people have such as education, health care, and retirement.

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-- The Votemaster