2004 Election Results

Well, looks like the Redskins’ 68-year predictive streak has come to an end.

This was my first time voting. I voted for Kerry. Not because I felt any particular affinity for him, but more because of my issues with Bush’s foreign policy. In retrospect I should probably have cast a symbolic vote for Badnarik. I do live in Massachusetts, aka “the least contested state in the country”. (Probably.)

I certainly feel less unhappy about the results than most Bostonians I know, and I can’t help but think they should be directing more of their anger towards the Democratic Party, for selecting the most boring, lackluster, and discomforting person in the world as their candidate.

But I am very disturbed by one aspect of November 2nd. This map has been floating around the internet since the election, and I think it reflects the fact that others share my source of anxiety: the effect of the extreme religious right—well, let’s not mince words—the fundamentalist Christian population of this country. And it’s not just their power in the presidential election. Their influence shows up in many more local political issues too. A Metafilter post sums this up nicely:

Senator-elect Jim DeMint: Thinks that unwed pregnant women and gays are unfit to be schoolteachers. Senator-elect Tom Coburn: Wants the death penalty for abortion doctors. Senator-elect John Thune: Mr. School Prayer Amendment. Voters in 11 states voted to ban same-sex marriage. The lowest margin was 57%-43%. The highest (Mississippi) was 86%-14%. Kentucky’s also bans civil unions. That one was 75%-25%.

That’s just frightening. And it’s not just my hyper-liberal cohabitors who are disturbed by this. David Bernstein, a Volokh conspirator, has noted what he sees as “Karl Rove’s apparent plan to drive all well-educated, secular folks out of the party in exchange for the votes of the most ignorant elements of the fundamentalist community, a traditional Democratic stronghold”. His plight and that of his fellow conservatives is described in this article.

Scary stuff.

(And just what would Jesusland export to USC? Beef? Tobacco? (Probably outlawed in USC.))


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