Fight every day
Sen. Barbara Boxer, right, joined Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones in objecting to the vote count
Bush carries Electoral College after delay
Democrats challenge Ohio vote, push back official certification
Thursday, January 6, 2005 Posted: 6:55 PM EST (2355 GMT)
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush officially won a second term in the White House after electoral votes from all 50 states were counted Thursday during a joint session of Congress.
The normally perfunctory ceremony of counting and certifying Electoral College votes was delayed for about four hours as Democrats unsuccessfully challenged Ohio's votes for Bush.
Bush received 286 electoral votes, 16 more than the 270 he needed to win re-election. Sen. John Kerry, a Massachusetts Democrat, received 251 votes. One Democratic elector cast a vote not for Kerry but for former Sen. John Edwards, his vice presidential running mate.
Alleging widespread "irregularities" on Election Day, a group of Democrats in Congress objected earlier Thursday to the counting of Ohio's 20 electoral votes.
The challenge was defeated 267-31 by the House and 74-1 by the Senate, clearing the way for the joint session to count the votes from the remaining states.
The move was not designed to overturn Bush's re-election, said Ohio Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones and California Sen. Barbara Boxer, who filed the objection.
The objecting Democrats, all of whom are House members except Boxer, said they wanted to draw attention to the need for aggressive election reform in the wake of what they said were widespread voter problems.
In a letter to congressional leaders Wednesday, members of the group said they would take the action because a new report by Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee found "numerous, serious election irregularities," particularly in Ohio, that led to "a significant disenfranchisement of voters."
"How can we possibly tell millions of Americans who registered to vote, who came to the polls in record numbers, particularly our young people ... to simply get over it and move on?" Tubbs Jones said at a press conference with Boxer.
Now, if you go over to Kos, you're going to read a lot people pissed that it wasn't a 55-45 vote.
That's not how you make a point. You do that, nothing gets done in either body as grudges play out. There is a ton of shortsighted thinking here. I mean, it's not about your feelings, it's about politics. The objection surprised the GOP and sent a clear message that there is no mandate.
People are quick to cry sellout and rant, but how long have they worked in politics? A year? Attended a few Meetups, volunteer for Ohio or Florida for a few days. Well, it's not just about one day or even one election. It's every day.
A lot of these people so quick to rant need to shut the fuck up and listen. You have to think about the long term, and you cannot oppose the majority on everything. Why? Because, first of all, the majority of voters in this country are independents. They don't like partisan politics to begin with. You resist every idea, you condemn the Dems to minority status as obstructionists. Now, that may make you feel better, but that's not politics, that's a temper tantrum.
If you calm down and think, you'd realize Bush is going to be in trouble. He barely won reelection and the country is divided. Now, maybe in Karl Rove's world, ending Social Security is a good idea, but a lot of Congressmen won't think that when they go home. He's already admitted that the SS destruction plan needs bipartisan support to pass. You think that's gonna happen?
Well, instead of screaming sellout, work the ropes. Make it clear that if your local congressman, regardless of party, does this, well, he's gonna have problems.
And all you have to do is post up some fliers asking why he wants to destroy social security. You don't need to rely on anyone. Next time he has an event, just leaflet the room, the older the better. You don't need a blogger to lead this fight. With Photoshop and $10, you can cause someone some real problems. You put his contact info, the name of his staffer who deals with these issues, and some questions you have. The more local it is, the more effective it will be.
Harold Ford's PR guy was quick to send me an e-mail saying he supported social security. Why? Because he knew we'd be on his ass like shit on flies if he didn't back down.
Politics is not just about elections. It's about change, long-term, endemic change. It is one day at a time.
You know where John Kerry was today?
Yet some people called him a pussy for not being in the Senate? Excuse me? I think he was doing his job, which is more important than making a point.
The Dems did something smart today, get positive news and make a point, while not getting beaten by the Wurlitzer for it.
The election is over, but there is a lot to do. You want to save social security, save it. That's right, you. Press your Congressman and has him hard questions. Stick up those questions at the local mall. You don't need an army, you don't need to spend a lot of time, just a couple of weekend hours between runing errands. You don't even need a group to do it, but a group would help.
You have to become your own activist. No one else can do it for you. Not a blog and certainly not a politician. You may not win, but you sure as hell can fight, and that matters. The Dems fought today in a way which got noticed. You can do the same thing. But you need to stop being angry and start being smart. Retirement homes and church services are a great place to start.
posted by Steve @ 12:00:00 AM