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No Update in Minnesota
The ballot counters took a day off in Minnesota.
The current count is that Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN) leads Democrat Al Franken by
180 votes, but see the note about challenges
Counting will resume today.
Minnesota Public Radio is continuing to show some of the
The Virginia secretary of the commonwealth will
the results in House district VA-05 today.
Currently, Democrat Tom Perriello is leading Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA) by 745 votes.
After certification, Goode will ask for a recount. However, with such a large gap,
it is unlikely to save him. Perriello had some bad news and some good news last week.
The bad news is that since he hasn't won yet, he wasn't allowed to take part in the
office sweepstakes that the other freshmen entered. He had visions of being stuck in
a broom closet somewhere in the House basement. The good news is that if he does win, an occupied office
will become free--Goode's--and Perriello will
Goode is a six-term congressman and has a much nicer office than any of the freshmen will get.
In CA-04, Tom McClintock (R) has declared victory over Charlie Brown (D) on the basis of his current
lead of 1566 votes.
This number gives McClintock a lead of 0.6%, which if it holds, will mean there is no recount and McClintock
In OH-15, Mary Jo Kilroy (D) got some good news. Federal judge Algernon Marbley has
that 27,000 uncounted ballots in Franklin County must be counted. Since this county is Kilroy's home base
(she is a county commissioner there), she may well pick up the 479 votes she needs to catch up to Steve Stivers (R),
who is currently ahead. If Perriello and Kilroy win, the Democrats will have at least 257 seats in the House.
The other two undecided House races are in Louisiana and will be decided by runoffs in December.
Pollsters Disagree on the Meaning of the Election
The Washington Post has a
on the pollsters' take on the election. Was this a permanent realignment or just a fluke due to a an unpopular
President and a bad economy? The consensus seems to be it depends on Obama. If in four years he is perceived as
having done a good job under difficult circumstances, he will probably be reelected and the realignment is likely
to be stable for a while. While Indiana is not about to become a Democrat bastion, states like Nevada, Colorado,
and New Mexico, with their large Latino populations, could become permanently Democratic, especially if Obama
achieves some satisfactory immigration reform later in his first term.
Economic Team to be Announced Today
President-elect Barack Obama will hold a news conference at noon EST today to
announce his economic team. It is expected that he will name
as secretary of the treasury
as a top White House economic advisor. Geithner is president of the New York federal reserve bank and
has a long history of working as a government economist. He is greatly respected by Wall St., which will help
him immensely. Summers, a graduate of M.I.T. and Harvard, is by all accounts brilliant, but he made some
stupid remarks when he was president of Harvard, which led to his resignation there. Still, having a top
advisor who was formerly secretary of the treasury (under Bill Clinton) and who speaks his mind
and lets the chips fall where they may is probably a good thing for Obama to have in house.
Many people are worried that the economy may completely collapse before Jan. 20.
While President-elect Obama repeatedly says we have one President at a time, the current
one seems completely absent and is doing little to deal with the economic crisis. Secretary Paulson appears
to have given up on his original plan to buy up all the toxic securities and doesn't seem to have any new
one to replace it. So in a time of great crisis, the ship of state is drifting aimlessly with the captain
asleep at the wheel. Tom Friedman
yesterday that Bush fire Paulson immediately and appoint Geithner as secretary of the treasury so he can get
to work immediately.
Another NY Times columnist, Gail Collins,
went further and
that Dick Cheney resign as Vice President and then George Bush resign as President to let House Speaker
Nancy Pelosi become President until Jan. 20 since she would take her marching orders from Obama.
Neither is likely to happen.
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