Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Live Blogging Super Tuesday

Let's hope the rest of the night is as compelling as this afternoon's Republican Convention in West Virginia. Mitt Romney was supposed to win the state's delegates with ease, until John McCain dropped out and sent his votes to Huckabee in an attempt to deny Romney the victory. It worked! Huckabee wins West Virginia, Romney is steamed. More on this and the rest of the night's activities starting around 8:00 pm.

Hello, loyal fans of No Drumlins. I'm Scott, brother of Mr. No Drumlin himself, and I will be joining you this evening in this soothing shade of blue. I am a registered Democrat and on the Lance scale of politics I am Left of Lance, hence my claim to the blue font. Earlier today I cast my vote for Barack Obama, much to the chagrin of Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Jim McGovern and Jack Nicholson, all of whom called me within the past 24 hours to implore me to vote for Hillary. Had Jack Nicholson asked me in his Joker voice, I might have been swayed. As it is, I treated the phone calls with the level of respect they deserved, as typified by this exchange I had with my unappreciative phone:

Recording: I'm Jim McGovern, and I'm calling on behalf of Hillary Clinton.

Me: I'm Scott, and I'm hanging up on behalf of America.

Now that you have an idea of where I am coming from, let's head right to the election coverage. Lance and other exciting guest bloggers will be joining us later in the evening.

7:06 -- Our second big results of the day have come in, and MSNBC has declared Obama the victor in Georgia. The pundits are currently talking about the fact that Obama is black, something that up until this very moment had escaped me. One minute, I need to run to town hall to change my vote.

7:08 -- Well, I'm back. They wouldn't let me change it, so I guess I will have to stick with Obama. To be fair to MSNBC, their racial commentary is based on cold hard numbers: after getting just 25% of the white vote in South Carolina, Obama apparently has taken well over 40% of the white vote in Georgia, suggesting that his appeal is starting to cross over more widely. Let's wait and see how the hispanic vote in California goes before we go crazy, though.

7:16 Tom Brokaw's is on, trying to talk without using his vocal cords as usual. It's like he's trying to do a ventriloquist routine without a puppet. I especially enjoy it when he gets to a particularly difficult glottal stop, he lurches forward to cough up the syllable. This seems like a good time to go over some of the MSNBC coverage in general. The ringmasters are, as usual, Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann, and they are joined by a series of dusty wonks who seem to exist solely to provide biased opinions based entirely on their ingrained party platforms. Pat Buchanan in particular is a total shill, as he takes every possible moment to explain why he honestly thinks every single thing McCain does is a bad idea. Of course, he comes across as almost rational compared to some of the more extreme freaks who slither onto the screen; a commentator earlier -- who may have been Buchanan's sister -- began ranting in such a dedicated, intense monotone that I feared she would begin spinning in a circle while pea soup spewed from her gaping yap.

7:17 -- While Scott has been carrying the ball, I've been watching "Captain X" on Sesame Street with Jackson. By the looks of things, I may not be needed here for a while. Which is fine, since the "Penny Candy Man" is coming on now.

7:20 -- To continue with MSNBC's coverage, they have a couple recurring gimmicks this evening. First, they have a guy stationed in what they are calling the "virtual room", which is a lot like the holodeck in Star Trek the Next Generation. Whoever the talking head is there, though, he doesn't have a patch on Patrick Stewart. If the floating exit poll graphics were being narrated by Jean-Luc Picard's Dixon Gunn persona, it would be vastly more entertaining.

Meanwhile, in another part of the cavernous MSNBC studio, some lady is running what Olbermann calls "the Hall of States". I'm thinking that time with Disney owned ESPN has subtly left it's mark on Keith. All it needs is Maya Angelou lisping "We... we the people" just before a graphic of Obama's Gerogia victory. Then an animatronic Mark Twain could come up through a slot in the fllor and say, "but we the people didn't yet mean ALL the people" just before a glorious chorus of pro-American music would swell and bring the auidence to tears.

7:27 -- Maria Teresa Peterson is on, talking about something. I don't know what, though. I'm distracted by the fact that her cleavage seems to go all the way up to her adam's apple.

7:29 -- Scott gets cleavage on MSNBC, I get a muppet singing "Holy Moly Eight Balls of Fur." Once this is over, I'll be headed to CNN where the only cleavage is Wolf Blitzer's. But at least the graphics are in Hi Def.

7:33 -- Have they not yet called Georgia for Romney? If Huckabee has a good day down South, Mitt is dead.

7:37 -- And my serious question brings the live blog to a screeching halt. Based on what I've seen over the past hour, I project Elmo the winner of the New York Republican primary.

7:42 - No winner has been declared in Georgia on the Republican side. McCain, Romney and Huckabee are apparently in a three way race. Meanwhile, I just received a phone call from a friend at Disney World. She was unable to verify if the Hall of States is actually being built in Epcot, but did say that she sent in her absentee ballot for Massachusetts and voted for McCain, not because she supports him but because she wanted to help Romney lose. A stance I fully agree with.

7:44 -- The polls in Georgia have been closed for 45 minutes, and cnnpolitics.com is showing less than one percent of the vote in? Sherman could have carried the results from Atlanta to the sea faster.

7:45 -- MSNBC insists on dragging Mike Barnacle out from whatever shed he is being kept in, as though he is a credible expert on anything other than fraudulence.

7:47 -- He's originally from Fitchburg. That has to count for something.

7:47 -- It would count for something if this was a show about American bicycle competitions.

7:50 -- You have no chance of getting anyone other than me to get that reference. Although you have been rubbing elbows with Fitchburg mayor Lisa Wong. She might get it.

7:53 -- Well, pretty much all of my references are aimed at impressing Mayor Wong. Meanwhile, on MSNBC, they went again to the panel of wonks, which is headed by Joe Scarborough and includes Buchanan, an african-american guy, and some lady from Air America who looks a little too much like Project Runway season three winner Jeffrey Sebelia.

7:55 -- I'll be interested in seeing if there are early calls in the Eastern states. If Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Jersey stay out for a while, I'd say that could be good news for Obama.

7:57 -- One thing we should mention, in case you are using No Drumlins as your primary source for election coverage, is that the Democrats are using a system that is not winner take all, meaning even when winners are declared in a state, the delegates are probably going to be nearly even anyway. For the most part, then, winning states for the Democrats is about momentum. The Republicans are mostly winner take all, though, so when people win over on that side they really get some tangible benefit. The different processes strangely reflect the personalities of the parties as well.

8:00 -- McCain in Connecticut. Romney in Massachusetts. McCain in Illinois. Obama in Illinois. Clinton in Oklahoma. Good opening for Obama. No early calls for Clinton in the East.

8:02 -- MSNBC is also calling New Jersey for McCain. They said it's still too close to call NJ for the Democrats, which is good for Obama.

8:04 -- With 5% of the vote in, Romney is leading in Montana by 4%. It looks like his push to mobilize the all-important moose vote is working. Hopefully nobody in Montana reads this blog, or else I guess I should expect to receive 160,000 letter bombs next week.

8:06 -- The exit polls from Massachusetts are showing a dead tie between Obama and Clinton.

8:14 -- MSNBC: too close to call for Democrats are CT, TN, NJ. For the GOP it's AL, MO and TN. Olbermann is having some excitement in pointing out that Clinton was ahead by nearly 20% in the polls in both NJ and TN at one point.

8:16 -- And Olbermann no sooner says that than they call TN for Clinton. I wonder if the producers were saving the results just for that. "Wait till he says something... wait... wait... NOW! TENNESSEE!"

8:18 -- We're off to a new post. Link is here.

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