Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Shock and awe

This egg on my face won't seem to come off.  But this isn't about me.

Yeah, the polls were wayyyy wrong and the election really was rigged by the outrage of white people living in the exurbs and rural parts of the country -- but especially in the Rust Belt, Great Lakes states -- that went unmeasured.  Then again, if you're at an Adele concert celebrating your 69th birthday in Miami on October 26 instead of campaigning in Flint, or Green Bay, or Allentown -- you might have some recriminations to take ownership of.

While the outcomes in Minnesota, Michigan, New Hampshire and Arizona are still being determined, Trump secured at least 279 electoral votes — smashing through Hillary Clinton’s blue wall in the midwest by taking Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, as well as winning Florida, North Carolina and Ohio — to win his long-shot bid for the presidency.

This election saw the two lead candidates fail to resonate with many young voters. Based on the CNN exit poll, 9 percent of voters ages 18-29 went for third parties.

Update (with some revisions): The kids own the future we leave them, and they're inheriting a terrible mess.  And they don't seem to think  that Democrats or Republicans are the best way to get it cleaned up.  Stop and think for a moment what the results might look like -- and what we might be talking about today -- had every age demographic cast 9 percent of its vote for a third party.

In contrast, Texas Democrats had a raft of good news, especially in Harris County, where their voters swept out the Republican trash (and, some of those judges, I assume, were good people).  But the Reds continue to have home court advantage statewide.

Trump carried Texas by a 52-43 margin, stunning when you consider all that hee-haw about Her winning it a few weeks ago (what was it that happened less than two weeks ago, again?) and Republicans held onto all the bench seats on the Supreme Court and the Court of Criminal Appeals, and also the SBOE.  Straight-ticket voting remains a strong, stupid, lazy way to go in this state.

The regional Appeals Court Democrats came up just short, by less than a 5-point margin generally in each race.  The outlying suburban and rural counties overcame the urban blue strength, Harris' in the case of the First and the Fourteenth.  Leticia Hinojosa in the 13th and Irene Rios in the 4th were the exceptions to this rule.  And in the only real contest in Texas for a congressional seat, Pete Gallego couldn't beat Will Hurd.

The Democrats locally benefited from the one-button selection, with Clinton sweeping Harris and Trump by twelve points, 54-42, and the downballot slate of county executives and judicials prevailing.  Kim Ogg is the new DA, Ed Gonzalez the new sheriff, and Ann Harris Bennett -- the only countywide Democrat trailing after the early vote was counted -- pulled ahead late in the evening.  Dan Patrick's son lost his race, the 177th District Court.

And the HISD recapture initiative -- explained best here for novices -- was knocked down hard.

Voter participation on Election Day in Harris County did not meet high expectations, but followed the long pattern of being bluer than the EV.  Texas will still be last or next-to-last in turnout compared with the other 49 states.

So ... what of a President Trump?  That's next.

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