Thursday 8 November 2012

Yesterday's news...

President Barack Obama won Tuesday's election. Without Florida's undecided but inconsequential 29 electoral vote, the current result is 303 to 206 electoral votes for Obama. Of the swing states that were still in play on election night, Obama managed to win all (and if Florida is decided for Obama, Nate Silver's prediction for the election was completely correct). 
That’s why we do this. That’s what politics can be. That’s why elections matter. It’s not small, it’s big. It’s important. Democracy in a nation of 300 million can be noisy and messy and complicated. We have our own opinions. Each of us has deeply held beliefs. And when we go through tough times, when we make big decisions as a country, it necessarily stirs passions, stirs up controversy. That won’t change after tonight. And it shouldn’t. These arguments we have are a mark of our liberty, and we can never forget that as we speak, people in distant nations are risking their lives right now just for a chance to argue about the issues that matter [...] the chance to cast their ballots like we did today. 
NY Times: Transcript of President Obama’s Election Night Speech, November 7, 2012 [video of the speech)
The Democrats managed to hold on to the majority in the Senate and gained two seats. In Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren defeated incumbent Scott Brown, in Indiana, the Democratic candidate defeated notable tea party candidate Richard "pregnancies from rape are intended by god" Mourdock. With Tammy Baldwin winning in Wisconsin, she will be the first openly lesbian Senator. 
The Republicans lost three seats in the House of Representatives but still hold a majority of 233. 
In ballot measures in Maryland and Maine, voters legalized same-sex marriage (the first time ever by popular vote rather than court decisions). A similar measure in Washington seems to have succeeded as well, and one barring marriage for same-sex couples in Minnesota was defeated. 
Where will the Republican party go after "losing the popular presidential vote for the fifth time in six elections" with demographics working against their current political strategy? Did conservative media fail conservative voters? Will key positions in Obama's government change, with Geithner, Panetta and Clinton rumoured to be leaving

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