I'm feeling pretty good about my picks in the election. Sure, I blew the Murray/Rossi race. And most of us were surprised by the failure of Initiative 1100, although I think it could still squeak by.
Right now, it looks like the state house of representatives keeps a Democratic majority, although it will shrink. We still don't know about the state senate, but it could go Republican. There were a few others, but, generally, I called them the way they happened.
So, what does it all mean?
I loved John Arthur Wilson's analysis on election night: The voters said, "Enough is enough." In other words, we expect the county and the state to get by with whatever revenues they have. Prioritize and cut where necessary.
You and I are living through difficult times. We've all had to tighten our belts. We've all worried about whether or not we'll have a job tomorrow. Why should government be any different?
Yet, I was listening to clips from the governor during Seattle's Morning News and I was struck by how shaken she sounded. Gregoire was speaking at the Yes on 1098 event, (pro-income tax.) She clearly doesn't want to make the cuts that she is going to have to authorize.
Reality check: They're going to be facing over a 5 billion dollar deficit in Olympia. That's a budget hole that the DEMOCRATS created with their wild spending in the last 6 years. State government grew by about a third in that short period of time.
And I'm not even mentioning the ridiculous state pension obligations that we have and that we're not funding.
That's what this election was all about. The voters here and nationally repudiated a progressive, big-government approach to solving problems. They want to stop it because they realize it's unsustainable.
Unions, government bureaucrats, and Democrats better listen this time, or 2012 will be more of the same.
At this writing, we're literally an hour away from election day. Across the last six months, I've read literally hundreds of articles analyzing what's going to happen.
Of course, it's just a guess. I have no more idea than most other people. But, it's fun to post my predictions, if for no other reason, so that we can make fun of how far off they are.
Here we go:
- The Republicans will gain between 50 and 60 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.
- The U.S. Senate will stay in Democratic control. The Republicans will pick up 6 to 8 seats.
- At the end of the day, there will be 30 states with Republican governors. That would be a pickup of six.
- The Washington State House of Representatives will change hands, with the Republicans enjoying a slim lead.
- The Washington State Senate will remain in Democratic control, but the margin between the two parties will shrink to a tiny number.
- The third time is a charm. Republican Dino Rossi barely tops Patty Murray for U.S. Senate.
- Rick Larsen will lose his seat to John Koster in the 2nd Congressional District.
- In the 3rd Congressional District, Republican Jaime Herrera, beats Democrat Denny Heck.
- In the 8th, Dave Reichert easily beats Democratic opponent Suzan DelBene.
- On the east side of Lake Washington, Democrat Rodney Tom loses his Senate seat to Gregg Bennett.
- In Kirkland, Senator Eric Oemig loses to Republican Andy Hill.
- In Bellevue, Republican challenger Diane Tebelius beats Democrat Ross Hunter.
How about the initiatives? Quickly:
- Initiative 1053 passes. Tim Eyman says, "I told you so."
- Initiative 1082 passes.
- Initiative 1098 fails, big-time, killing the income tax for at least the next 20 years.
- Initiative 1100 passes easily, but I-1105 barely fails. Costco parties while the state courts breathe a sigh of relief.
- Initiative 1107 passes. Sweet.
- Referendum 52 fails and classrooms become cold, dark places.
- Proposition 1 fails and King County Sheriffs virtually vanish, except for one, who is extraordinarily well-paid, with super benefits.
That's it. You may hector me in the comment thread.
The Libertarian website Reason.com took note of the many political pundits proclaiming the 2010 campaign to be the nastiest in U.S. history and said, not so fast. The site applied modern production values to actual verbiage of the 1800 presidential campaign that pitted Thomas Jefferson against John Adams and demonstrated that back then candidates said things about each other that make modern political mud-slinging seem tame by comparison.
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Back when I was at another radio station, a genius, an amazingly funny guy I worked with, Tim Hunter, came up with a riff on Lou Bega's hit "Mambo #5." He married it to "The Monster Mash" and called it "Bimbo #5."
I played it for Wild Sound on our Halloween show. Here's the video, starring Tim as Doctor Frankenstein. Enjoy.
Here are a few of the cartoons that I've had published in the last week or so. Feel free to leave your observations in the comment thread.
This is a theme I've used before around Halloween time, although I liked using the ghost to visually separate the witches and the jack-o-lantern. It ran in a lot of my client papers, including The Kitsap Sun.
I'm actually against Proposition One in King County. (See my election recommendations elsewhere on MyNorthwest.com. With this cartoon, I wanted to express that the county judicial types are telling us that, by failing Prop 1, we'll be damaging the court system.
Generally, the nine most-hated words in the English language are: Hey, I have a great idea for a cartoon. However, sometimes my friends and acquaintances come up with an idea that's really excellent. Our commercial production director, Russ Cimber, basically came up with this idea. I refined it a bit and voila'! This ran in The Federal Way Mirror.
This one ran in a bunch of papers. I love it because it combines two stories- 1.) The governor's Halloween costume and 2.) Democrats' disdain for the Tea Party.
This makes no sense to me. A couple of years ago, Arizona passed Proposition 200. It required that a person who wanted to register to vote or vote in Arizona had to present proof of United States citizenship.
Today, a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that law, saying that it was in conflict with the federal National Voter Registration Act. You might know it as the Motor Voter Act.
That act allows voters to fill out a mail-in card and swear they are citizens, under penalty of perjury. The act does not require citizens to show proof of citizenship.
It seemed like a good idea at the time. The purpose of the law was to increase access to voter registration. However, drafters of the law didn't anticipate that, in the following 17 years, our country would be invaded by literally millions of illegal immigrants.
Today, it strikes me as a well-meaning anachronism that allows people to vote who shouldn't be able to.
Ask yourself: which is the better standard? Allow anyone who says they're a legal citizen to vote? Or require that any voter prove that they are, in fact, legal U.S. citizens.
The answer seems pretty straight-forward to me.
Here's the video of the Texas tornado, taken by a cell phone camera in the middle of the storm by Eric Meyers.
Here are a few of the cartoons that I've had published in the last week or so.
I think this one nicely presents the problem the Republicans are facing after November. Voters are going to expect them to fix a lot of big problems, both on a state level and back in the other Washington. This one ran in The Kitsap Sun.
The good folks in Bellevue just can't agree about which route is the best to bring light rail into the city. Spin the wheel. Take your chance.
Did you know YOU'RE responsible for keeping the storm drains clear in your neighborhood. Yep. The city has better things to do. Like collecting your taxes.