Dec. 01 absentee ballot for overseas voters

Obama 365   McCain 173  
Senate Dem 58   GOP 40   Ties 2
House Dem 255   GOP 175   Ties 5

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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 Extra Bonus Quote of the Day Franken May Appeal to Senate
The Key to Hillary's Success Fox News Shut Out Again
Should Matthews Quit MSNBC? Recession Began a Year Ago

News from the Votemaster

Obama to Name National Security Team Today

President-elect Barack Obama is expected to name his national security team this morning at a press conference. The expected nominees are:

      - Secretary of state: Sen. Hillary Clinton
      - Secretary of defense: Robert Gates
      - Secretary of homeland security: Gov. Janet Napolitano
      - Attorney general: Eric Holder
      - National security adviser: Gen. James Jones
      - Ambassador to the United Nations: Susan Rice

None of the team members are expected to face confirmation difficulties in the Senate, but the challenges they will face are immense, including two wars and allies whose trust in the U.S. has been badly damaged during the past 8 years.

The most surprising choice (although her name has been widely leaked) is Hillary Clinton, his former rival for the presidency. Clinton traveled to nearly 100 countries as first lady and has served on the Senate armed forces committee. She knows world leaders like few others. She is also known to be especially interested in women's rights and the use of America's soft power. But she voted for the Iraq war resolution, which may now help her as foreign leaders are warned in advance that she does not hesitate to use military power when that is in America's interest. The main concern with her is that a secretary of state is effective only when everyone believes that talking to her is the same as talking to the President. There can't be any daylight between the two or word gets out fast that talking to the SoS is a waste of time--better call the President. USA Today has a good piece on this latter point.

The Dance Around Clinton's Seat is in Full Swing

Hillary Clinton's Senate seat will be filled by Gov. David Paterson (D-NY). There is no shortage of people who would be honored to accept a freebie trip to the Senate. To start with, New York State has 26 Democratic members of the House, all of whom would surely take the promotion if offered. But there are many factors for Paterson to consider. Women want to keep the seat in female hands. Latinos think it is time for one of them. Upstaters don't want someone from the New York metropolitan area (Clinton lives in Chappaqua, in downstate Westchester County).

In addition, Paterson has his own interests, like getting a potential primary rival in 2010, attorney general Andrew Cuomo, safely out of the way in Washington. And finally, he wants to pick someone who can win the special election in 2010. CQ Politics has a list of possible picks.

Sales Up, But not Profits on Black Friday

Customers jammed the stores on the day after Thanksgiving and sales were good but only because retailers offered huge discounts on just about everything. As a result, revenues may not fall so much this Christmas shopping season, but profits may be weak. That is not a good sign for the economy, of course.

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-- The Votemaster