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In the wee hours this morning, I wrote a diary called WA Gov -- recount final ... now what?, which disappeared before a whole lot of Kossacks were awake enough to see it.  In that diary, I examined, in some depth, the disposition of the 735 not-previously-tabulated ballots that extended Christine Gregoire's lead over Dino Rossi to the landslide, mandate margin of 130 votes.

Today has been mostly quiet while we wait for Secretary of State Sam Reed to certify the hand recount totals and officially declare that Gregoire is governor-elect.  He'll do that on Thursday, we're told ... probably after returning from a brief, well-deserved holiday break.

This afternoon, however, the ever-so-slimy state GOP chair Chris Vance restarted his propaganda machine.  A few notes below the fold...

(oh, "s/p" is "status/post" in medicalese ... meaning after or following)

In a story filed this afternoon by AP Political Writer David Ammons, we learn that Vance has "demanded" the complete list of approximately 900,000 King County voters who submitted ballots in the election.  Neither the AP writer nor Vance seems quite sure why the state Republican party wants the list:
Republican state Chairman Chris Vance said the party and other backers of GOP candidate Dino Rossi have nagging questions about the vote-count in the county that tipped the race to Gregoire by a scant 130 votes last week.

"We want to know who voted in the election, and it's hard to know where we go from here (with a possible court challenge) before we get some answers," Vance said in an interview.

"We're mostly posing questions. King County is where we saw the votes changing. King County is the one county that was allowed to take ballots that were declared dead in November and bring them back to life in December."

He stopped short of committing to a court challenge of the election results.

Far be it from me to agree with that slathering, Rovian slimebucket Vance, but in this case I fully support his request.  County elections chief Dean Logan should certainly send him the information he requests.  It is, after all, public information.

I'd love to see precisely what Vance and his cronies are seeking from the county.  In particular, unless they craft the request very precisely, it would be quite possible to either starve the Republicans or drown them in data:

  • Comply extremely precisely and narrowly.  If Vance wants a list of those who voted, send him voter ID numbers, and nothing but voter ID numbers. Let him and his techies do the work of connecting those ID numbers to something meaningful like names, addresses, and such.  The file might look something like this list of returned absentee ballots in the 1st Legislative District.
  • Comply with a full file dump.  Each record in the voter file contains literally hundreds of fields -- several forms of the address, County Council districts, date of registration, flags indicating whether the person voted in previous elections (going back at least 10 years), flags for absentee/poll voter status, and so on.  Give the whole shebang, megabyte upon megabyte, to Vance.  But if he doesn't specificly ask for a field dictionary or column definitions, don't send them.  After all, if he'd needed that, he would have asked, wouldn't he?

Either way, I can't think of many more productive uses of Chris Vance's time than wading through more Democrats than he's ever encountered before.  Hey, Chris, get Dino in on the action while you're at it!  It looks like he's going to have plenty of free time.

Finally, note that there's no mention of recanvassing other counties (the county auditors' association scotched that one) or of a vote in Thurston County, or of anything tangible.  Vance is grasping at straws, and all he's going to find is the short one.

Originally posted to Peace Tree Farm on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:38 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  tip jar (4.00)
    And Recommend if you'd like...

    You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

    by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:18:29 PM PST

    •  Always, always, always (none)
      I loved your coverage of this election, N. Hope to see you sometime in the near future, next time the Seattle-area Kossacks decide to meet up and imbibe....

      What shall I write about in my diaries? Vote in the poll today!

      by lilithvf1998 on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:25:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I keep mentioning it in other posts (none)
        Let's get together. How do we go about making it happen?

        "A bookstore is one of the only pieces of evidence we have that people are still thinking." - Jerry Seinfeld

        by SeattleLiberal on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:34:49 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  mcjoan's the party planner (none)
          As I recall, Plutonium Page is due back in the area some time in the next couple of months.  I think we, or at least mcjoan, promised her another Kossack-gathering.

          And Drinking Liberally is supposed to be starting a Seattle cell next week...

          You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

          by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:53:37 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  All well and good.... (none)
            But there's no way I could hope to break away on a Tuesday night for the upcoming Drinking Liberally.

            Maybe, once mcjoan has recovered from her birthday :) we could plan an interim DrinkFest to bide the time before Plutonium Page returns?

            What shall I write about in my diaries? Vote in the poll today!

            by lilithvf1998 on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 05:16:59 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I will keep my eyes on mcjoan's posts n/t (none)

            "A bookstore is one of the only pieces of evidence we have that people are still thinking." - Jerry Seinfeld

            by SeattleLiberal on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 05:34:37 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  It's a fishing expedition (4.00)
    He wants one of two outcomes, both relating to Cook County, Ill, circa 1960:

    A)  They find votes for Gregoire cast by dead people, felons (the old GOP bugaboo - they really hate those felons who vote), or anyone else they disapprove of.  I've received e-mails from Republicans accusing us of accepting votes from, and I quote: "a downtown Seattle address that does not exist, it is where homeless people live and a majority of them are felons, you f*@# head cheaters".  So, this story is being spread in their circles, now he's trying to find proof.  OR...

    B)  They find nothing untoward and never say another word about it.  Just by asking for the list, they've cast the spectre of Cook County (a term, btw, that's appeared in more than one LTE around here).  As long as their followers can be allowed to connect King Count and Democrats with Cook County, the 'common knowledge' assumption in 2006 will be that we steal elections.

    As I've said a billion times...this close election is lose-lose, but much worse for our side.

    I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

    by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:30:56 PM PST

    •  On KIRO (710 AM) radio ... (none)

      This afternoon, the substitute host (Dory "The Libertarian Thug" Monson is on vacation), I just heard a smidgen of the entire discussion ... here's what I heard:

      They want to look at all the votes of people who used the county building as their address.  These are -- horrors -- homeless people.  (It's legal for them to use the county building as an address.)  

      And, a caller said that some of these people had TWO addresses!  (Perhaps, Susan wonders, those are the old addresses they had when they had a home?)

      The sub host also said that King County counted its votes entirely differently from every other county and that that is grounds for an examination of the ballots in every other county.

      Susan in Port Angeles (my cat)

      by SusanHu on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:40:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bedtime stories! We want bedtime stories!!! (none)
    •  Like I said before (none)
      Rather than handwringing and going "woe is us" get out our message.

      The Democrats have a compelling message.  They have all been stated on this board.

      The best one is that Mr. Rossi tried to get 735 or so ballots that he acknowledged were legitimate to not be counted.

      The man is slime and so is his right ass man Chris Vance.  Spend your time stating that, rather than handwringing and maybe you'll get different results from what you fear.

      •  Handwringing? (none)
        It's called reality.  Perception means much; perception is against whoever wins an election like this, but especially against us since we had to come from behind to do it.  That's just the truth.

        As for handwringing; I believe I've done enough work in realspace (i.e. not on Kos) to earn a right to my opinion.  Sometimes life isn't rosy and sometimes we're on the shit end of it.  Saying that doesn't preclude doing something about it.  

        I have never said 'woe is us'...rather, I've gone out and worked.  I work every day to ensure our message is out.  I worked on this recount, knowing that the worse possible PR outcome was for Chris to come back and win.  

        Only a fool fails to recognize when the deck is stacked against him; without that recognition he never knows when to work even harder or what he's working against.

        I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

        by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 05:17:36 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It seems like handwringing to me (none)
          You say that you worked on the recount but you told all the people here who worked so hard on this matter that Gregoire winning is the worst possible scenario, and that this will have horrible future consequences. People in Washington who don't live in King County probably already have a negative view of the city anyway if they are told to do so by Republicans. The bottom line is keeping Rossi out of office. People said Bush's time in office would be tained in light of much uglier fraud allegations than anything Gregoire is involved with. That the Republicans have to work so hard to come up with allegations shows that they are not winning the PR battle.

          I don't live in Washington but I think Gregoire has been faring better in the PR battle than most people expected at this time a month ago.

          •  he said (none)
            PR scenario... rossi winning is quite bad because he is a freaking looney and will screw the state over - but a Gregoire win after two recounts is a set up for some nasty PR.  People tend to forget the losers, so PR is not an issue for them.

            Daddy was ashamed, daddy was ashamed, daddy was ashamed he was nothing. Nirvana - Even in his youth

            by Demosthenes on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:14:23 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  If Rossi runs for the Senate in 2 years (none)
              how can they forget the loser? The media will try to make him look like the rightful winner of the 2004 election but that will only take him so far. People do NOT forget sore losers.

              Gregoire won by a rightful recount. If Rossi had tearfully conceded, it may be bad PR for her, but when the Republicans are talking about going to court and Vance is showing his fat ugly face everywhere, do you really think that's great PR? Even some of the Rossi voters are going on TV and saying it's time to give up.

              Why do Democrats always doom themselves? Do you think that in January 2001 Bush said, "oh me oh my, I almost lost, I'm going to be a-scared because now everyone will hate me"? No. He fought and he fought and he fought. Why can't Democrats do this instead of kvetching and sobbing about what an awful campaign Gregoire ran and what a great politician Dino is and how the Democrats are sunk in Washington because geewhiz the Republicans are going to say the election was rigged?

              •  When has anyone said this? (none)
                what an awful campaign Gregoire ran and what a great politician Dino is and how the Democrats are sunk in Washington because geewhiz the Republicans are going to say the election was rigged?

                Okay, I have said she ran an awful campaign, but I'm hardly alone there.  But I've never said a positive thing about Dino, nor that we're sunk.  

                If you can't take some negative news - i.e., an election this close is bad for everyone - without hearing all these horrible things, I really don't know how to make you feel better.  Life is going to be much more difficult for us than if we had won by 15,000 votes - or even lost by so much!  It would be the same for us AND THEM if Dino had won the last recount.

                Does it mean the sky is falling?  Are we crying to our mommies?  Lord, I hope not!  I hope we're able to admit that we have something unpleasant to deal with, then get to work dealing with it.  Admit there's an elephant in the room!

                I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

                by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 09:04:07 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  Should I pretend? (4.00)
            Should I pretend to think that all is well and wonderful?  We won, so the media will blithely follow along?  

            The media does not like Gregoire all that much.  PR will be difficult - when you lose not one but two counts, and win on the third, appearances are NOT good.  It's tough to spin.  Chris Vance's job is easy - do what he's doing; impugn every vote in King County.  The rest of the state, and all King County Republicans, are fully prepared to believe any bad thing said or implied about the King County elections, voters and Democrats.  To avoid this reality is to bury our head in the sand.  To admit this reality is not tantamount to giving up or admitting defeat.

            You're right, people outside of King County do have a negative image about it - but now they have a perceived theft to hang their hat on.  Should I pretend that the furious e-mails I'm receiving aren't real?  Should I pretend that the widespread coverage of Chris Vance's righteous anger isn't happening?  Should I pretend that talk radio's single-minded focus on the "irregularities" in King County aren't happening?

            Or should I acknowledge that it's happening and that it was predictable.  I think if we acknowledge what we're dealing with, we can actually get started dealing with it.  

            Let's break down, again, what I've been saying for six weeks:

            1.  A race which is this close is bad for both parties.  Legitimacy will be in doubt for whoever wins, because spoilage alone outweighs the margin of victory, and spoilage is always open to question.

            2.  Should the trailing party come from behind in subsequent recounts, they face a rougher road...half the state will always doubt, if not outright disbelieve, their victory.  The eventual losers will be enraged and energized in the next election.

            I worked on the recount not because I care who won - I've never liked Gregoire, and prefer her to Rossi only a little bit.  I worked on the recount because it was the right thing to do, and because I wanted every vote counted...and I wanted to verify for myself that neither side - NEITHER SIDE - did anything underhanded.  

            I will not pretend that this recount is a good thing and all is well.  We have a problem.  We will have to deal with it over the next four years, and we will have to deal with it in 2006 when Rossi and a stirred-up, enraged Republican Party run against Maria Cantwell - who won in 2000 in a recount which saw her gain enough absentee votes in King County to unseat Slade Gorton, a popular Republican.  Interesting coincidence, no?  I think it'll make for a very interesting ad nauseum story.

            I hope the state Party is taking this seriously, and not worrying about handwringing.  They, of course, get paid to go to the media and say that all is peachy.  They should, they do, and good for them.  But I hope for their sake that they don't bury their heads in the sand back in the office and realize that they have a ton of hard work to do to convince the other 38 counties to trust the elections process...and Democrats.

            I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

            by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:51:40 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  You should stop pretending this is all new. (4.00)
              The media doesn't like Gregoire? Well she won anyway, in spite of a lousy campaign and constant negative press attention. Republicans now have more reason to hate King County? Chris Vance "righteously impugns"? What else is new? How does this make the Republicans any more motivated than they were this year? 2004 was their best shot, and they blew it. This was the year that a lot of Democrats took the election for granted. Do you really think they will do the same in 2006? If Republicans stir up partisan attitudes, do you think all those Democrats who supported Rossi will still support him when he's not the "reformer" but instead the tool of shrill dittoheads?

              Did anyone ask you to pretend that people weren't complaining about Gregoire's win? Of course they are, but Republicans always complain. Republicans fool you into believing that because they yell the loudest, everyone agrees with them.

              Gregoire ran a shitty campaign. The Democrats took the race for granted. The media gave Rossi a constant rim job. And Gregoire still won. As long as Republicans go on and on about vote fraud and inventing reasons to go to court, they will look like they're dragging things out and trying to shut down state government. And instead of encouraging people to make this very clear to Washington voters, you're just going on about how awful it all is and that it's a big PR disaster, as if the other 38 counties or the media were innocent babies before this process began.

              Take a cue from what Democrats in New Jersey have done. They may be corrupt, but they never let the Republicans browbeat them. They had slugs who were far worse than a simp like Gregoire - they had people who should be locked up in jail - but they never let Republicans define them and they never let the media roll over them. And they've kept winning. In 2002. In 2003. In 2004. And more likely than not in 2005. If they can do it, then so can Washington Democrats. You are still the majority in Washington and it is your state as long as you play your cards right.

        •  I disagree entirely (4.00)
          This is the reality: Christine Gregoire played by the rules and after a hand recout she won by 10 votes.  There is ZERO credible evidence of any fraud in the hand recount.  A bunch of additional ballots were found to have been improperly not counted.  The State Supreme Court ruled UNANIMOUSLY they should be added in.  After that, Gregoire's winning margin increased to 130 votes.

          Those are the facts, that is the reality.  Gregoire has NOTHING to be ashamed of, she won fair and square.

          •  You're ignoring the public perception (none)
            Gregoire has nothing to be ashamed of but a crappy campaign.  I was in the room watching those votes be counted.  It was fair and square.  

            There are approximately 300 other people who can say what I just said.  There are 5 million other people in this state who are hearing one thing:  King County elections found 735 votes which had been thrown out, sued to count them, won, and Chris Gregoire is now ahead by 130 votes.  

            The only true statement there is that she's ahead by 130 votes.  But that doesn't matter to the average shmoe listening to Dori Monson or reading about Chris Vance's latest howling statement, seeing it on TV, or worse yet...getting it second and third hand at work from people who have been getting GOP e-mail updates.

            We know the truth.  But we are not the shapers of public opinion.  Understand something - Daily Kos is not a press release for the Democratic Party, nor is it all that widely read.  Seriously, a million daily hits - at most?  280 million Americans - 1 million = 279 million who don't know or give a shit what we know or think.  

            Gregoire faces a difficult task of earning the public's trust.  The Democratic Party and especially King County elections face an equally difficult task of earning the public's trust.  As I said in my inordinately long post a moment ago, I really won't pretend otherwise.

            I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

            by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:59:16 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Not seeing the worst is not pretending (none)
              You talk about the image the public sees. But what image will they see if Republicans take this to court and the battle goes on so long that state government cannot begin? Will that really impress the public?

              How do you know that people in the state do not remember Gregoire already won by 10 votes? I'm sure that some of the media in Washington are pointing this out, even if the national media isn't. The national media has been obsessed with the holidays and with the disaster in Southeast Asia -- the national public are not obsessed with who is doing what in Washington state. Even the Ukraine elections got more publicity.

              You can still warn people to expect bad things without repeatedly telling everyone that this is horrible PR and the entire state hates Democrats.

              •  Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings (none)
                How do you know that people in the state do not remember Gregoire already won by 10 votes?

                Because many people in the state never knew she'd already won by 10 votes.  The media covered it, but in the "currently, CG leads by 10 votes pending the outcome of the Supreme Court ruling", which was both technically and factually incorrect, but is what folks heard...those that follow the news, anyway.

                The Washington media is not being generous with the details of the election - the details we already know, that make it clear this was a fair and honest win.  They are being generous with coverage of our friend Chairman Vance.  Details are boring.  Chris Vance being hysterical is a fun story to run.

                If it makes you feel better...expect bad things.  But other than that, everything's fine! /snark  And with that, I leave this tiresome parsing of my opinions.

                I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

                by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 09:31:34 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Yes it's certainly tiresome (none)
                  I think that you honestly do believe that people here have never heard this before. You honestly believe that everyone here believes the media has accurately covered the story, Gregoire will waltz into office and the entire state will kiss her feet. So you need to tell us AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN about how horrible everything is, because you think you're doing us a favor.

                  Well all you are really doing is making life miserable for people who already know about these problems but unlike you, do not need to tear their hair out for dramatic effect.

                  You're so defensive every time someone points out that every point you make is "this sucks, this is the worst possible scenario". You shriek, "I never said that!!!" but you have said it a zillion times.

                  We get the point already. You oh-so-nobly worked for the recount even though you hate Christine Gregoire. Now you have oh-so-nobly deigned to come to this diary and tell people over and over that Chris Vance gets a lot of media attention or that <gasp> Republicans will hold a grudge or <gasp> the media will make some people believe the election was rigged, and <gasp> Republicans will now say King County can't be trusted. And you lash out at anyone who tries to tell you that they already know this and unlike you, they're still trying their best to make the situation work.

                  You spend so much time gasping you must need an oxygen mask as you wheel your way around various parts of the state. It's like the Paul Revere of the recounts.

                  If anyone needs to know how awful Gregoire is or how talk radio has doomed all of Washington or how King County is now tainted. If anyone wants to actually work, then they will find a reasonable, worthwhile source.

                  •  Give it a rest (none)
                    Ray's opinion is well-informed, it's carefully considered, and while I don't entirely share it I am bound to respect it.

                    As for your attempt to shame him into a more postive outlook, I'll give you the standard response I gave Kossites who attacked me in October for suggesting things didn't look so good going into November (on the misguided notion that "we" are somehow obligated to project a collective upbeat attitude):

                    Fuck you, Quartermaine. (And a Happy New Year!)

                    •  Kiss my ass, lapdog. (none)
                      I trust your opinion about as much as I trust Switzer's. You spent so many months slandering Howard Dean that you shot any integrity you ever had. No one wants to hear your bullying and I'm not surprised that you hang around in packs with these types. You are so far out of touch and you think that makes you of the elite. You want everyone to hate you because you think it makes you a worthwhile person, gives you a reason to get up in the morning. It doesn't.

                      I only criticized your special friend switzer because he was constantly telling people everything they did was worthless and that ooh golly King County was tainted or wow gee Republicans were sure mad at Gregoire. That's it. He really did think this was earthshattering news. And you follow right along.

                      After your long and ugly history here, anything you respect is garbage. You clearly believe that any negative opinion is wonderful and any positive opinion is just worthless. You would rather be angry all the time and predict the worst because then you can vomit "I told you so" in everyone's faces. Fine. Enjoy yourself. But don't wave your flaccid, tiny profanity at me. Go find someone who is dumb enough to fall for your sick games.

            •  All you are stating (none)
              Is why it's so important to get the truth out.  If reporters or journalists state incorrections, phone up or write to them and hound them.

              It's like I said before, if they say "the people believe this election is tainted"  ask them over and over "who, aside from partisan Republicans believe that, and on what basis do they make that charge"

              There is one reason to believe the people of Washington will see this properly: we have the facts on our side.

              The people of Washington state are reasonble people that, I don't think, are as easily fooled by lies and empty holloring as you seem to think they are.

              •  Can we at least wait until the campaign to worry? (none)
                This really IS unnecessary handwringing. It's 100% distractive of anything real and principled. What is real?

                1. The election was close. Can this be changed? No.
                2. Once the automatic recount made the margin almost imperceptible, there was a moral imperative to count all ballots by the most discerning and open method possible, and rely on the results.

                what are the principles?

                1. For all her apparent faults, supporters of Gregoire believe her election will be a more positive event than if Rossi were to become governor.

                2. No matter what anyone says about theft, and however much we may worry about "how it looks," the right course was followed, and there is nothing to be ashamed of in the way the process was followed. The best possible count is the most important thing in a close election, because that insures that the proper person is seated.

                We were not going to get to 3 without 2, 4 be damned. That's the long and short of it. If that causes problems down the road and we are unable to ameliorate it, SO BE IT. It would not, either logically or morally, have changed any of the truisms and principles above. So be mindful of the spin, engage the spin--but for the love of Pete, let's get the proper person seated in 2004 before we start laying flowers on Cantwell's metaphoric grave.
    •  Consequences (none)
      They have no shame. They spin seemingly without regard for the consequences.
      Your concerns on lose/lose are very real to me also. We must continue to confront their tactics at every turn and so, mitigate their crap. Phrases such as fishing expedition and obstructionist are effective. Make this about their attempts to negate a transparent process that they were involved in all along. Kudos to Paul Berendt and the party. "No mercy for swine."

      "Reform is the hallmark of a strong Democratic Party." Howard Dean

      by Lahdee on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 06:22:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They and Surrogates Were Using the Term (none)
        "illegitimate" before Christmas.

        My guess is that if they intend to attack, the media will become awash in chatter relating to an "illegitimate" process and of "nobody" being able to have confidence that we have found the "legitimate" winner.

        We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

        by Gooserock on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:03:08 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  illegitimate (none)
          Yeah, I love the Vance schtick about how we don't have a legitimate governor-elect right now.

          He's absolutely correct -- Dino Rossi is the governor-elect right now.  Come Thursday, however, legitimate governor-elect Christine Gregoire will be in place.

          You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

          by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:21:18 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Well, if you live in Washington State (4.00)
          If the media does that, it is your job to call them and correct them.  Point this ask: ask them, who, aside from Republican partisans is calling this election result illegitmate, and on what grounds are they doing so.

          As I said above:

          This is the reality: Christine Gregoire played by the rules and after a hand recout she won by 10 votes.  There is ZERO credible evidence of any fraud in the hand recount.  A bunch of additional ballots were found to have been improperly not counted.  The State Supreme Court ruled UNANIMOUSLY they should be added in.  After that, Gregoire's winning margin increased to 130 votes.
          Those are the facts, that is the reality.  Gregoire has NOTHING to be ashamed of; she won fair and square.

    •  a funny thing happened on the way to the forum (none)
      I've received e-mails from Republicans accusing us of accepting votes from, and I quote: "a downtown Seattle address that does not exist, it is where homeless people live and a majority of them are felons, you f*@# head cheaters"

      Interestingly enough, I was doing GOTV for Kerry a week before the election in what I can only imagine is the area referred to in the quote. Our voter list did indeed list non existent addresses for a few voters (something between nine or ten), and a substantial number of voters living in a couple of the missions. We weren't able to talk to voters in one of those missions, but did manage to find and talk to several in the other.

      I didn't know nuthin' about no felons.

      I did find out that Seattle has two, "Second Avenue's", right next to each other. We updated the Dem's list, I'm sure it wouldn't be hard for the repubs to figure it out...

      Jason "first post ever" Waskey

  •  28 OTHER counties changed the number of ballots.. (4.00)
    (I posted this in an earlier discussion, but it was so far down the queue I doubt anyone saw it.  It is significant because of Vance's claim that "King County is the one county that was allowed to take ballots that were declared dead in November and bring them back to life in December." )

    28 OTHER counties changed the number of ballotsthat were counted, based on Turnout numbers provided by the Secretary of State's website...

    The GOP is trying to pretend that King County is the only place that changes in the total number of ballots counted took place.  That is not the case.

    In fact, there was a total of 1008 ballots added to, or removed from, the total number of ballots counted in the 38 other Washington State Counties.  Six counties (Cowlitz 100 fewer ballots, Douglas  220 fewer, Kitsap 15 fewer, Okanogan 1 fewer, San Juan 4 fewer, and Walla Walla 2 fewer) reported a total of 342 FEWER ballots cast than were counted during the machine recount.

    And there were 22 counties other than King County that added BALLOTS to their turnout totals...statewide adding 666 new ballots that were not included in the machine recount.  

    Only ten of 39 counties reported the same number of ballots counted during the machine recount as during the hand recount.

    King County's total ballots counted changed by 0.11%.   There were seven other counties whose total ballots changed by a greater percentage (Grant, Kittatis, Cowlitz, Skaggit, Whitman, Franklin, and Douglas) and Rossi picked up a net 19 votes in those counties.   In six of those seven counties, Rossi won handily...(Gregoire BARELY carried Cowlitz County in the machine recount (20207 to 20047) )

    Bottom line---King County was only ONE of 29 counties that came up with a different number of total ballots counted.   SEVEN counties---which combined voted overwhelmingly for Rossi 58% to 42%---had a higher rate of change than King County.  

    •  y'know, it's funny (none)
      Faithful readers of my diaries will recall that I went through each county's changes as they reported -- from initial to machine recount, then from machine recount to hand recount.

      The ones that bugged me weren't the counties reporting an increasing number of Ballots Counted.  No, it was the ones where the ballot numbers decreased -- especially Cowlitz County (-99 from initial to machine, -1 in the hand recount) -- that drew my attention.

      I show a smaller count of newly-counted ballots in the 38 other counties than you suggest, but that's because I refuse to accept the never-corrected machine recount mistakes in Ballots Counted by Pend Oreille and Whitman.  Both reported the Gregoire/Rossi/Bennett sum as Ballots Counted, forgetting to include write-ins, blanks, and overvotes.

      You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

      by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 04:47:32 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I bow to your far greater expertise (none)
        and familiarity with the details of this recount.  

        what I was trying to do is provide a "talking point" kind of rebuttal to the ridiculous charges being made by Vance--and repeated ad infinitum.  I think its important to be able to say that there were 22 OTHER counties where ballots were "resurrected", and (importantly) its easy to find the proof of this on the State website.  Vance wasn't talking about "resurrected ballots" when these counties were coming up with extra net Rossi votes---and he needs to be called on that.

    •  THIS is the point that we need to keep pushing! (none)
      Everyone seems to think that King county had much worse problems than all the other counties. In fact, they were better than most.
      •  Indeed (none)
        Had the two candidates showed the same percentage change in King County as they did in the rest of the state, it would have added 327 votes for CG and 195 for DR...BEFORE considering the 735 ballots.  And if KC's vote totals had altered the way Pierce and Snohomish's did, it'd be a landslide.
    •  I live in WA and this morning (4.00)
      a co-worker came into my office and tried to tell me that King County was the only county that had changed their votes.  After several minutes of discussing the issues, I was so pissed off at her I wanted to shake her!

      She is the most argumentative person, and I finally just looked at her and said "Sweetie, I think I'm a bit better informed than you, and ALL counties did a hand recount, and most of those counties changed their totals, not by much, but there were changes.  You can look it up on the internet, honest."  I think she left my office still thinking that Chris Gregroire should not be the new governor and the voting was not fair.  Ignorant Republican.

      he's not a leader, he's a texas leaguer swinging for the fence, got lucky with a strike ... Pearl Jam

      by tamens on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 10:39:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nastiness continues (none)
    It's not surprusing that Chris Vance and the nasty republicans will continue their shenanigans. I suggest that we undertake true electoral reform in Washington, such as an entirely vote-my-mail system, and runoffs for races where the result is too close to call. We need to take the high road all the way on this one.
  •  do we have anything on vance? (none)
    anything at all?  I'd like to see him divorced before this is over.
  •  Will they call people at random? (none)
    Try to confirm that the people who are recorded as having voted actually did vote?

    I can just imagine the shrill Republican screaming when people hang up or refuse to confirm anything -- clearly that must be fraud!

    76% of dKos readers think I'm a secret wing-nut operative!

    by Gustavo on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 05:23:25 PM PST

  •  love your suggestions (none)
    to either "starve the Republicans or drown them in data."  Nice work.

    "I still think politics is about who's getting screwed and who's doing the screwing." -Molly Ivins

    by hono lulu on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 05:56:48 PM PST

    •  It depends how they provide the data (none)
      If they provide it electronically, the repubs can just write up a Perl script in 5 minutes to search through the file for whatever data fields they want (or if they are given the list of voter IDs, have a program go through and retrieve data on each ID via some website).  Of course, if they're given a big stack of paper, that task becomes more difficult.
      •  Sure, give them a big stack (none)
        of paper after charging them for the data run and print job.

        Such a shame. The killing of Head Start. My chameleons never learned haiku.

        by nargel on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 07:18:14 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Paper it is, then! n/t (none)

        "I still think politics is about who's getting screwed and who's doing the screwing." -Molly Ivins

        by hono lulu on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:26:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Do like the SCO Group did (none)
        I'll speare you the details of the SCO v. IBM lawsuit, except to say that you can find excellent coverage of the brouhaha on Groklaw.

        Suffice it to say that at one point IBM requested a series of technical information from SCO -- source code for something or another, I think. SCO responded first by sending it all on paper printouts, then when IBM complained and wanted electronic media, they sent a stack of CD-ROMs filled with PDF files containing the information. They could argue that it was what IBM asked for, but in the form they sent it it was totally worthless for the purpose for which it was intended.

        So I say, get the voter records, and a filter that creates PDF files, and a CD burner . . .

        I wonder how many CDs it would take to contain 900,000 voter records.

        Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. -Mark Twain

        by Our Man In Redmond on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 09:49:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  PDF format: Messy but not that hard (none)
          When we did absentee matchbacks, a couple counties provided PDF files. It was a mess. They listed all the voters in the county; if they voted, the receipt date was listed. So you couldn't just pull out all the voterids. And there was lots of other information formatted into several columns. Copying and pasting the text didn't make things much easier.

          But it only took me about 10 minutes of playing with the data in Excel to pull out the voterids correctly and we were in business.

          King County, of course, is nowhere that archaic.

          I remember during the 2000 campaign, the Bush campaign liked to claim they listed all their major contributors immediately on the web... but it was in that inconvienent PDF format. But someone wrote a script to pull out the information and posted it on their site in an easy to search format.

          Really, the best solution is to just give Vance the data in a nice easy format so he can quickly shut the fuck up and move on to something else. Otherwise, he'll make hay about King County nefariously dragging their feet and impeding access to public information.

          --- My opinions are my own and not my employer's.

          by Aexia on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:05:46 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hear hear! (none)
            I've missed you, aexia.  We need to grab a beer and catch up.

            I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

            by switzerblog on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:20:21 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  There's PDFs and then there's PDFs (none)
            If the PDF is just converted text data, sure a script will work. But if the PDF is a converted TIFF file you got by scanning the document, you'd need some decent OCR at the very least.

            Mostly my post was meant for amusement. Vance hasn't got a leg to stand on. We know it, he knows it, and he knows we know it. So yeah, we should just give him the data and let him stew. We don't need to make it any easier for him to do what he thinks he wants to do with it than we have to, though.

            Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. -Mark Twain

            by Our Man In Redmond on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 07:30:08 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  "Drowning" (none)
      has long been a tactic at certain federal agencies to punish FOIA requests.  I can't say the idea of burdening Chris Vance with a couple truckloads of printouts doesn't make me smile, but I think I'd rather take my government transparent than secretive, even if it means Republicans have access to the same data I do.
  •  thx N - good to have a news source (none)
    and I just can't tell you how annoying Chris Vance is.  While I think the state Dems need to get their act together or lose elections more and more, Vance is a really annoying person alltogether.

    Seems like the work after this will be to help poor Cantwell along.

  •  asdf (none)
    I picked up on the s/p. The rest of the post is cool too.

    Get Your War On! --> http://www.ebaumsworld.com/endofworld.html

    by FLS on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 06:19:02 PM PST

  •  Dear Chris Vance (none)
    You do not have permission to get my name from the King County Elections Division.

    Now f*ck off.

    Kerry/Edwards: For a reality-based America

    by Em on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 06:49:05 PM PST

    •  They do. This is public information ... (none)
      ... received on a routine basis by both parties.

      Vance's "demand" is for PR effect.

      •  You're right of course (none)
        since we know who's voted when canvassing, calling, or lit-dropping.

        And wow, it occurs to me this would be bloody useful in something like Ohio. Publish a big ol' list of everyone who voted in each county, according to the official records, and let everyone have a look, and find out who got disenfranchised. Ok, I'm sure they've already done that. Or have they? It would have the added effect of helping detect rampant Dieboldization.

        Kerry/Edwards: For a reality-based America

        by Em on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 09:55:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Hold on here - - - (none)
          The list of 900,000 voters will not tell Vance anything - especially NOT who they voted for - so what is the point really?

          The envelopes with names/addresses are not kept together with the votes -- right??

          So even if he finds some poor slob that Vance has a problem with - what does that prove -- Nothing -- because who knows how this voter actually voted.

          ...Release the Hounds

          by sara seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:17:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  But this is King County (none)
            There are better than even odds that the vote will be for Gregoire. So he'll try to toss out any votes that are "problematic".

            --- My opinions are my own and not my employer's.

            by Aexia on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:56:44 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  It's not about tossing out votes (none)
              It's about finding improperly-accepted ballots, which would build an evidentiary foundation for one of the clauses in the Contest statute.

              I think the story is on its last legs ... but I could be wrong. Rossi has three bad options:

              1. Concede belatedly, and look like a jerk.
              2. Never concede, and look like a jerk except to the dittohead crowd.
              3. Make a federal case out of it, and make it a winnable federal case.

              He could dick around with county-level protests, probably enough to delay the inauguration, but that wouldn't win him any friends.
      •  Hey RonK (none)
        Please go to my comment-thread argument upthread, tell my friends that I really do get it and I'm an honest and good soldier despite my overly realist outlook?

        While you're there, tell me to be nicer to people who disagree with me.  An objective third party says I'm being harsh.  He may be right.

        I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

        by switzerblog on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 10:12:14 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Overly realist? (none)
          That's a pretty high opinion of yourself, considering you are the only person to go around spouting all this about King County is now tainted forever. You have a very low opinion of people like N in Seattle who actually try to inform readers instead of driving them to suicide.

          This isn't all about you.

          •  erm... (none)
            I'm trying to make nice, here.  You're really reading much more into my opinions than are there.  At no point have I spouted.  Nor have I said King County is tainted forever, and for the love of christ I've never driven anyone to suicide!  

            btw, N in Seattle's a friend of mine.  He's heard my opinion about the recount offline, and we haven't had to parse it to death.  

            Please relax.  Yeesh.  If you look at my comment to Ron, I'm asking him to be an mediator so we can find peace between us...because he's also my friend and knows this isn't that big a freakin' deal!  It isn't about me - I know!  You're pursuing it!  

            I'm off to pull my little remaining hair out...

            I put things where they don't belong at Switzerblog.

            by switzerblog on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:18:48 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  cat fight (none)
            Man, I turn off my computer a bit early and little hissyfits break out all over my diary...

            Q'maine, you're blowing switzer's comments waaay out of proportion.  He's frustrated that we had to go through this process.  Even though it is all but certain that it came out "good" in the end, I believe his big picture negative outlook is probably correct.  

            WA Dems have to get better a choosing candidates -- they need to have backbones, they need to radiate strength or warmth or something, and they need to stand affirmatively for Democratic values with traction throughout the state.  Different people will emphasize different parts of the message, and the message itself must be kept fresh and forwardlooking.  I hate to paraphrase Poppy Bush, but people like Christine Gregoire don't even have "the vision thing", much less a positive or inspiring or thoughtful underpinning for their candidacies.

            I don't fully agree with everything switzerblog says; I may still be a bit pollyannaish.  But we're generally on similar wavelengths.  Neither of us has >the answer", but he and I, and a boatload of others in WA and elsewhere, are searching our selves, our souls, our party, our nation, our world for ways to build on what we've all accomplished and extend it more widely.

            You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

            by N in Seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 08:12:13 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I have no problem with a negative view (none)
              I have a problem with someone who says over and over that every single thing is horrible and tries to claim that suddenly Republicans will be mean to Gregoire or suddenly Republicans will hate King County, as if this has never happened in the past. I have a problem with someone who tries to belittle the opinions of people who do not agree with him by saying he's "realist" (which means others are not) and by teaming up with trolls like RonK.

              No one expects great times ahead in Washington but that does not mean the whole thing has been a disaster and now the Republicans have won forever and ever and ever and that everything Democrats and Gregoire did was worthless, or that it would have been better if Rossi had won. That's a huge slap in the face to every person who tried to help. And all the fake attempts at being noble ("I worked on the recount because that was FAIR and RIGHT, even though Gregoire is so bad and I'm so sad") were out of place. This wasn't sacrificing your son's life to God or anything, it was just a recount. Some of the people who are whining about this want to be martyrs and make it all about them. The worst offender is that jackass who whined and whined about how he's from East Washington and oh people on this blog are "disgusting" and since Gregoire won the counties by only a marginal amount that means everyone needs to hear him go on and on about how awful Democrats are. This jackass is such a professional victim he thinks anyone who dares to disagree with his me-me attitude must be some big city liberal. He's giving us all the tired Republican talking points and he's probably a Republican himself.

        •  Aww, crap! Is this still stewing? (none)
          Quartermaine, take a chill pill.

          Ray, take your Nyquil and get some well-deserved rest.

          You'd have to paw through about 900,000 registration cards to find a better Democrat than Ray, who's been working his heart and lungs out to win one for the Gregoire.

          What happens now? My assessment is not as dark re the recount PR shadow. It's pretty dark re prospects for governing WA, because WA gov is bogged down badly, and Dem's (in or out of power) get the worst of it because at least they try.

          I don't think Gregoire has the answer, and I don't think Sims had the answer, and I haven't got the answer, and I haven't heard anybody else who sounds like they have the answer. (You can infer that I don't think "Backbone!" is the answer.)

          Sorry, what was the question?

  •  Whatever.... (4.00)
    Whatever the Repubbas wanna do in Washington, let them do it.

    But then the same things should be done in Ohio.

  •  N. . . (none)
    In particular, unless they craft the request very precisely, it would be quite possible to either starve the Republicans or drown them in data

    You have the soul of a litigator . . and I mean that as a compliment!

    Fight the American Taliban

    by pontificator on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 07:07:31 PM PST

    •  hmmm (none)
      Thanks, I think.

      It's probably my decade or so of working for companies that deal with public release of semi-confidential information.  If a requestor doesn't know the tricks of the trade, giving them exactly what they ask for (which bears little resemblance to what they want, or what they thought they were asking for) doesn't help them one little bit.

      You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

      by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 07:39:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Disclosure: I am a litigator (none)
        I am always drafting document requests and responding to document requests, so I'm somewhat familiar with these types of issues.

        It's 20% art, 80% science, and definitely a skill worth having.

        Fight the American Taliban

        by pontificator on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 07:50:25 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks (none)
    For this diary, and your whole series. I suppose you'll have to do a few more; unfortunately, this may not be over until the judge dismisses Vance's upcoming election contest.
  •  Public opinion (none)
    Are a lot of people upset that the Republicans are dragging this out or are they buying into the Republican spin that even some people here have spewed?
    •  under the radar (none)
      It's been rather quiet since Thursday.  Today's Vance story was the first new news in a while.

      I think most people believe (hope) it's over.  By this point, the average Washingtonian probably doesn't much care which of the two ends up taking the oath of office, assuming that we're in for weak governing no matter what.  (I might want to remind such people that that's what we were thinking precisely four years ago with respect to the other Washington.)

      Unless Vance can find something really serious and really clearcut with which to contest the election, I think he'll slither back into his cave soon after the result is certified on Thursday.

      You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

      by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 08:17:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  50:50 (2.66)
      People were sick of the Dems dragging it out and now they're further sickened by the Repubs dragging it out.  IMHO, Washington state is going to be just as divided over this as the US has been over Bush/Gore & Bush/Kerry.  

      It should never have come to this.  While Gregoire is certainly the preferable choice, she ran a lousy campaign that allowed Rossi to make the race so close.  She is going to have to do some excellent work as governor and do some healing with the Repubs in order to have a shot at a second term, methinks.  How does one promote healing with Repubs without compromising Democratic/liberal principles?  What a sticky whicket!

      As a newly elected committeewoman at the Washington state party level, I'm planning on working extremely hard to get the State Dems to recognize the importance of the rural counties.  We need more Democrats in eastern WA to ensure this doesn't happen again.

      •  I disagree (none)
        She should have no difficulty in governing because she has a Democratic majority in the legislature.

        It's no different than what Bush did when people said he'd have to govern as if he won no mandate.  He didn't give a rats ass about the size of his mandate.

        Gregoire didn't have a difficult time winning because she failed to win Republican votes, she had a difficult time because a number of Democrats crossed over to vote for Rossi. Both Kerry and Patty Murray received more votes than she did.

        It is far easier to work on getting Democrats to support her than in trying to convince rural Republicans.

        •  The main priority in 2006 (none)
          should be keeping your legislature Democratic. I'd say this is even more important than Cantwell. The Republicans will try to beat the Democrats to death with Gregoire, and Democrats in the state can't let that happen.
          •  2 things (4.00)
            This is the number one thing to recognize:

            Republicans are going to try to beat you to death no matter what you do.  The Democrats could adopt 100% of the positions of the Republican platform and the Republicans would still attack.

            Two years is a long time in politics to bring up old charges.  It went nowhere for the Democrats in Florida, they couldn't even win the Secretary of State's office.  If the Republicans bring it up, don't get frightened, don't say "woe is us", go on the f-ing attack.  A state legislator should just say "I'm discussing health care, transportation, education, job creation; issues that matter to you, and my clown of an opponent is wasting your and my time bringing up baseless two year old charges".

        •  And I disagree with you (4.00)
          First, while it may be easy to govern when the Dems control the legislature, that still means that she will need to make good decisions.  Right now this state is in a crisis.  Most of the burden of the fiscal crisis is being borne by the cities and counties.  I don't have the answers to the problems but I hope Gregoire and the Dems do.  

          Second, yes, a lot of Dems crossed over and voted for Rossi.  You wanna know why?  One big reason is that rural Dems are totally ignored by the State Party and most of the state-wide campaigns.  And I believe this exodus of rural Dems to the Republican party will continue unless something is done about it.

          Third, I have no idea why you associate rural votes with Republican votes.  Have you looked at the Blue-Red map of Washington state?  Most of western Washington is blue.  A LOT of that area is rural.  Believe me, the I-5 corridor can't do it alone.  If the Dems lose those rural blue areas....and I really think they will if they don't start thinking a bit more about how they treat us out here...then this state will turn into a solid red state.  No question about it.

          Fourth, there are a lot of Dems in Eastern WA as well.  Should they just be ignored?  Yes, we should strengthen our base but we should also show the misguided Repubs why voting Dem is in their best interests.  A lot of the rural poor in Eastern WA actually vote against their best interests by voting Repub.

          If you live in one of the urban areas, you have no clue what I'm talking about and how crucial this matter is.  

          I live in a rural Dem county.  Believe me, we're losing it.   My county is a strong Dem county.  Ever single county-level elected official is a Democrat.  I believe the last county-level Republican served in about 1965.  And they have been few and far between since the 1930s.  Our county is divided between 3 Legislative Districts.    All three of our state senators are Dems.  5 of our 6 state representatives are Dems.  Yet my county is virtually ignored by the State Dem party, by our Congressional District Chair, and by the state-wide campaigns.  

          Rossi came down here 5 times.  Each time he came he made speeches and had fairly long Q&A sessions.  Gregoire came down here twice.  Once to speak out our local Dem party meeting.  Nice but not an event that draws huge bi-partisan crowds like Rossi got.  And once to go fishing.  She was shamed into appearing in a parade that was happening the day she came down but it wasn't a part of her plan.  That's it.  No other attention.  Nada.  Rossi got almost as many votes as she did from my county.  Gee, I wonder why.

          •  Well, that's a very fair point (none)
            She needs to work on getting Democrats who voted for Rossi, whether they live in rural or urban areas to support her.
            •  Thanks and sorry.... (3.00)
              ...for ranting.

              It is discouraging to see increasing numbers of Dems in this area turning their support to the Repubs.  The State Repub Party puts a lot of support toward the local Repubs.  Even though they have not even fielded a Republican candidate to challenge any Dems down here!  What's up with that?  Well, they see the potential for long-term gain and their taking the opportunity that our State Dem Party is neglecting.  It's really too bad.

              I have a passion about this issue and, believe me, Paul Berendt (or whoever replaces him) is going to rue the day I got on the state committee because I'm going to hammer this as hard as I can.

              •  Good for you! (none)
                It's important to compete for every vote and to be attentive to the concerns of the people in every part of the state.

                Like I said in another thread, it's amazing to me how so many see the Democrats as the 'elitists' when the country clubs are full of rich Republicans.

              •  Just get us a new state party chair... (none)
                I take it you're in the 19th?

                Tell me how you spend your time and how you spend your money -- I'll tell you what your values are.

                by oldpro on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:16:54 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, but next door (none)
                  I'm in the 24th.  My county is split between the 19th, 24th, and 35th.
                  •  Me too. The GH vote for Buck (none)
                    was the most disappointing...any insights into why VanDeWege didn't do better down your way?

                    Tell me how you spend your time and how you spend your money -- I'll tell you what your values are.

                    by oldpro on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 08:56:28 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Hey Neighbor! (none)
                      It's fun to meet people who live close to home.

                      Kevin really didn't do all that bad down here in GH.  Granted he didn't beat Buck but it was closely than I thought it was gonna be.  Unfortunately, I think the main reason why he failed was lack of name recognition.  

                      He got off to a rocky-start in Grays Harbor.  I won't go into detail but a few simple mistakes at the beginning of his campaign really turned a few key people off.  And the mistakes were from simple naivete that is not surprising from someone who had never ran for office before.  He did a stand-up job in trying to rectify those mistakes but some of the damage lingered.

                      I worked hard for Kevin down here and I would do it again in a heartbeat.  I'm encouraging him to run again next time.  He has proven himself as a viable candidate.  He just needs to keep his name out there.

                      I'm proud to say that John Pollock, current chair of the 24th LD, contacted me to run for vice-chair of the 24th.  Kevin is going to run for chair.  (John Pollock is stepping down gladly to give Kevin this opportunity.)  Kevin and I are excited that we might potentially be working together...if we both get voted in.  I intend to work closely with him and find ways to ensure that he maintains a presence in Grays Harbor so that he's no longer an unknown commodity down here.

                      Buck is our only legislator from the dark side.  It would be nice to have a clean-slate of Dems representing us.

                      •  Thanks for the assessment (none)
                        of Kevin's race.  I worked hard to fundraise for him here in Jefferson and we did very well, $$$ and votes.

                        Glad to hear he may take over for John Pollock and that you'll be working with him.  Good!  That will definitely be good for the 24th and for Clallam Dems as well.  We hee in Jeffco are meeting with Kevin in January when Dave Woodruff gets back from Mexico and we're encouragin him to run again as well.  Let's all learn from those mistakes.  He's young and green but a good kid and can mend fences with time.

                        See you in the 24th and on Kos!

                        Tell me how you spend your time and how you spend your money -- I'll tell you what your values are.

                        by oldpro on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 10:36:31 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

          •  funkycamper (none)
            From your description, I'm presuming that you live in Grays Harbor County.  I appreciate and laud what you and your neighbors have been able to do to maintain the Dem character of your county.  Jefferson to your north and Pacific south of you also appear to have bucked the alleged [rural=GOP] trend.

            We Washington urbanites, as well as the state party and the national party, must pay attention to Grays Harbor and the few places like it.  How'd you do it?  Are there particular issues that work well?  Is it a mode of approaching the voters?  Do your local governments have innovative programs or services that help to maintain support and strength as Democrats?

            You're right that we can't hitch ourselves solely to urban Puget Sound counties.  We're one state, with many issues and problems -- and hopefully, solutions -- in common.  Sure, there are urban-specific and rural-specific issues, but even there it will be necessary to develop wide enough political support to pass legislation.

            One important question -- is there sufficient political will in Gray Harbor County to allow political discourse on such issues as the state's tax structure?  Is there support for developing fairer revenue streams?

            It's clear to me that you feel that Berendt has failed to motivate and develop the party beyond whatever narrow structures he knows.  I'm not sure he's been particularly good at building the party in Seattle either, and he has clearly let us all down when it comes to building a public face in person and on the web.  Which, if any, of the other candidates do you think could make positive changes?

            You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

            by N in Seattle on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 10:30:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yes, I'm in Grays Harbor (none)
              Good questions!

              How'd we do it?  In Grays Harbor, it's simply built on history.  But as the "old guard" yellow-dog Dems of the past die out, the Republicans are taking hold.  A scary development is that the Grays Harbor Republicans have an active and motivated Young Republican Club.  The local Dems have NO Young Democrat Club.  Yikes!  We just can't get young people interested enough in Dem positions.    

              Issues the Republicans are using to make in-roads here are:

              • environmental restrictions
              • gun ownership
              • restrictions on hunting and fishing
              • wedge social issues like gay marriage and abortion

              These issues are complex.  Believe me, it's not as simple as the stereotypical portrayel of loggers as guys who love to "kill" trees.  Believe me, that is NOT the case.  In essence, there are many here who share the perception that Seattle-area environmentalists have destroyed their own area yet want to impose excessively harsh restrictions on our areas in order to mitigate their own destruction.  

              It would take me a book to explain what I'm talking about.  Let me give you just one example.

              Our local beach communities only have one industry allowed due to environmental protections.  That industry is tourism.  As you may be aware, most tourism jobs are low-paid and many are only full-time during the summer months and during clam-digging.  A big attraction to our area beaches is the ability to drive on them.  Even in the winter, there are hundreds of cars on the beach.  In the summer, it easily reaches into the thousands.

              Last year, the State Dem Party was considering endorsing a ban on all beach driving in Washington state.  This would devestate the economies of these beach communities.  If a tourist can't even get out to the beach, why would they come here?  There are virtually no parking lots near the beach to park at.  Some of us local Dems had to quickly rally to educate the State Dem Committee on how devestating this decision would be and lobby them to not support this issue.  

              Then Rep. Al O'Brien, Dem (I think from Mercer Island?), introduced a bill to eliminate beach driving.  Again, a contingent of Dems from Grays Harbor rallied against this.  Our strong Coastal Caucus also fought this issue.  It failed in commitee.

              But the point is this:  At no point in time was one single Democrat in Grays Harbor or Pacific counties contacted to find what we thought about this issue.  No one asked us if it would negaticvely effect our already devestated economies.  No one asked us if there were certain areas that a ban on beach-driving might be appropriate vs. other areas where it would not.  No one asked us if there were ways to mitigate the issue to make it more palatable and to have less devestating impacts.  

              This is the perfect example of how urban Dems tend to get an idea and act on it without consulting those who it would effect.  We are left out of the process.  It is as if we are considered nothing but a bunch of uneducated red-necks who don't have a clue.

              <<One important question -- is there sufficient political will in Gray Harbor County to allow political discourse on such issues as the state's tax structure?  Is there support for developing fairer revenue streams?>>

              I believe so.  Ron Sims actually had stronger support from the core Dems in this area than Gregoire did, mostly due to his courage in bringing up the income-tax issue.

              I'm not thrilled with Berendt.  The only opponent of his who I have heard from yet is Greg ??? (a Latino name like Gonzales or Rodrigues).  I really like what he had to say.  And he sure had a "fire in the belly" that I don't see from Berendt.  At the 24th legislative district re-org on January 8th, all the candidates will be speaking.  I will need to reserve my judgement on this until I hear all of them.

              I do agree with you that our State Dem website is atrocious.  We need a good blog!!!

              •  one of the real (none)
                downsides to Sid Snyder's retirement, eh?

                I'm in the 19th (in Cowlitz).  Well, rather, I'm not, because I'm in Germany, but that's where I vote.

                The issues in Cowlitz are a little different than out on the coast, but there are a lot of similarities, and as it kind of represents the intersection of rural WA with the I-5 corridor, it ends up being pretty emblematic of how D's are doing statewide.  Thus, you have Gregoire in a virtual tie in a county that Murray carried handily (Gregoire also runs behind Kerry, but if I remember correctly, Gore's margin was rather better).

                The imperative issue for any candidate to handle in this area is the massive unemployment caused by the downfall of the resource extraction economy.  Voters here do tend to get caught up in anti-environmentalism (I very much disagree that environmental regulation is to blame, but I can understand their reasoning), but there's another thread D's need to hammer to defuse this potential R issue: anti-corporatism.

                Let me explain part of the situation in Cowlitz County.  During the power crisis, the BPA offered to pay aluminum smelters to shut down temporarily (it was locked into providing power to them, and wanted the capacity back).  Theoretically, this money was supposed to cover salaries for all of the workers until the plant re-opened.  Well, the owner of the plant here (I can't remember its name at the time, since it's been sold so many times in recent years: it was Reynold's, then Alcoa, then Longview Aluminum, then something else...) decided to lay off all the workers, close the plant permanently, pocket the money, and leave town.  Oh, and he was being audited by his brother's firm.

                Our U.S. Rep (Brian Baird) has done a great job working with his constituents on this issue.  He's met repeatedly with the unemployed workers (mostly but not entirely union), listened at length to their concern, and then explained what he's been doing in D.C. to try to get an investigation going, what he's been doing to try to get help for unemployment/training/etc, and what he's working on to bring new jobs to the area.  I know that constituent relations from Congress are different than on the State level, but Gregoire could still learn a thing or two about retail politics from Baird.

                The thing is, this should have been a bread-and-butter issue for Gregoire.  Go down to the closed-down mill sites, say "As AG, I worked hard to protect the citizens of WA from corporate greed. I accomplished A, B, C...  As Gov, I will continue to fight for workers all over the state, and will make my job-creation plan, blah, blah, blah, my top priority".  As many others in this thread have described, she didn't even come and speak to the people.

                She has a second chance, now.  Four years to get out and get to know the people of Washington.  I used to work in Gov. Kulongoski's office in Oregon, and he said from the moment that he entered office, that getting outside of the Valley, and into every part of the State as often as possible was one of his top priorities.  Gregoire needs to set a goal of visiting every County in the State at least once every 3 months.    Whether she serves a second term has a lot to do with whether she has answers for the problems facing every part of the state, but it also has to do with whether she goes and asks questions like "What do you need your state government to do for you?"  And asks them not just in places like Grays Harbor and Cowlitz, but in places like Adams and Benton, Chelan and Okanogan.  I don't know if Gregoire has the skills to make people in all these places consider her "their" governor, too, and not just King's.  But if not, she'd better learn them soon.

                Sorry for the long, rambling post, but hopefully my experiences as a semi-rural Washingtonian are at least slightly enlightening.

                •  thanks! (none)
                  I must admit that my urban/Seattle blinders made me wonder how it was that -- considering that she led Rossi in only 8 counties -- among "her" counties were such non-urban/non-trendy ones as Jefferson, Grays Harbor, Pacific, and Cowlitz.  (San Juan may not be urban, but it is trendy.)  To someone who arrived in WA less than four years ago, that observation puzzled me.

                  Your post, and those of funkycamper, have been invaluable in widening my perspective.  Hopefully, I'm not alone.

                  You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

                  by N in Seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 08:22:05 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Yay, Brian Baird (none)
                  I've really been impressed with him.  Glad to hear he's doing a stand-up job for your area.  

                  I have the utmost respect for Sid Snyder.  But I also have a lot of respect for Mark Doumit, his replacement as senator.  I think Mark is doing an excellent job.  Of course, he is still building up the gravitas Sid had but I think he's getting there.  Brian Blake, Mark's replacement as state rep from the 19th, is also a real go-getter.  I've been impressed with the way he's thrown himself head-first into his position.  That both Mark and Brian were unopposed in this last election tells me that many out there agree with me.

                  But with Brian Hatfield's resignation, we have a new junior representative from the 19th....and he's from your area...Dean, or is it Dave?, Takko.  He's got a lot of experience at the county level so I hope he's able to hit the ground running and maintain the momentum.  It will be interesting to watch.

                  Thanks for the info on Cowlitz County.  I am a bit familiar with the alumininum situation and the unemployment but your post clarified a few things.  I agree that unemployment in these rural areas is a key factor.  And I would agree with you that environmentalism isn't the only reason for it.  And, in fact, most of the environmental restrictions are good things.  Even those who have lost their jobs usually think that.  However, that doesn't help put food on the table.  

                  I totally agree with your assessments on Gregoire re these issues.  The one and only time she spoke in Grays Harbor, her only discussion about jobs was concerning the Boeing corporate welfare boondoggle.  Nada, zip about our local unemployment and under-employment issues.  This should have been a no-brainer.

                  And, yes, not only Gregoire but more state-level politicos need to get into other areas of the state (both red and blue, both rural and the smaller cities) and find out what issues they're concerned about and how they would see them resolved.  Most of us have some pretty good ideas if only someone bothered to listen to us.

                  I really appreciate you sharing your insight.

          •  Rural vs Urban (none)
            Have you looked at the Blue-Red map of Washington state?  Most of western Washington is blue.

            Have you looked at how much area those counties cover? Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, King and Pierce extend from the water to the cascades.

            A LOT of that area is rural.

            I can assure you eastern King County isn't voting Democratic and the same holds for other counties as well. Looking at it from just a county perspective is very misleading. (much like looking at red/blue by state on the national level) If you did it by precinct, I think you would see the I-5 coordidor being a river of blue in a sea of red.

            Second, yes, a lot of Dems crossed over and voted for Rossi.  You wanna know why?  One big reason is that rural Dems are totally ignored by the State Party and most of the state-wide campaigns.

            The race wasn't close because Gregoire neglected rural areas and lost them by large margins. The race was close because Gregoire was a lousy candidate and underperformed statewide. If Gregoire had done as well as Kerry in pretty much any county, we wouldn't be having this conversation.

            If anything, Gregoire spent too much time chasing rural voters instead of working on her obviously neglected urban base.

            Rossi got traction everywhere because he ran on a simple platform of "I'm an agent of change". Gregoire ran on a platform of "I'm a female Gary Locke."

            Focusing on Urban over Rural doesn't mean "focus on King County over the rest of the state". It means focus on the City of Spokane over Adams County. It means taking the City of Yakima over Okanogan County. The urban sections of otherwise rural counties are our greatest opportunity for growth. Urban voters are natural Democratic voters. Rural voters are not.

            --- My opinions are my own and not my employer's.

            by Aexia on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:41:39 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I guess we don't count? (none)
              While Eastern King County isn't voting Dem, the coastal and Olympic Peninsula rural counties are.  Grays Harbor, Jefferson, and Pacific Counties have been Democratic strongholds for decades. Or do those of us west of I-5 not count?  From your post, I can only assume so.

              I totally disagree that Gregoire spent too much time with the rural base.  She virtually ignored these rural areas.  She did little to no campaigning in rural Western WA.  And there were vast areas of Eastern WA that she never visited at all.  Nada.  Zip.

              Yes, courting voters in the population bases of the state is always a good thing.  I don't deny that it would be a mistake to neglect Spokane, the Tri-Cities, Moses Lake, Yakima, Vancouver, Kelso/Longview, etc.  But it is also a mistake to neglect the rural parts of the state as well.

              I do agree with you that Gregoire was a poor candidate who ran a poor campaign, in general.  I was a Talmadge supporter at first and then switched to Sims.  Gregoire was my candidate only because I was anti-Rossi.

              <<Urban voters are natural Democratic voters. Rural voters are not.>>

              I would love to hear you explain this!!  I couldn't disagree with you more.

              •  I'd be willing to bet... (none)
                While Eastern King County isn't voting Dem, the coastal and Olympic Peninsula rural counties are.  Grays Harbor, Jefferson, and Pacific Counties have been Democratic strongholds for decades. Or do those of us west of I-5 not count?  From your post, I can only assume so.

                it's the relatively urban areas of those counties(Port Townsend, Aberdeen, South Bend, etc) that vote Democratic and everywhere else votes Republican. The counties you're listing are not uniformly rural just as King County is not uniformly urban.

                Or do those of us west of I-5 not count?  From your post, I can only assume so.

                Counties aren't uniformly urban or rural. There are urban parts of "rural counties" that vote Democratic and rural parts of "urban counties" that vote Republican. Democrats should focus on the urban portions.

                I would love to hear you explain this!!  I couldn't disagree with you more.

                People who live in cities tend to vote Democratic. And the bigger the city, the larger the margin.

                --- My opinions are my own and not my employer's.

                by Aexia on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 05:47:47 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  I Don't Get One Thing (none)
            Are mad because the Dems don't campaing in your area? Or are you mad because once they get into office they don't do anything for your district?  The second I understand, but the first seems a bit petty.  No offense, but if they believe (if perhaps mistakenly) that they can better spend their resources elswhere, shouldn't they?  

            When all else fails...panic

            by David in Burbank on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 08:15:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  They're both tied together (none)
              The state-wide Dem candidates don't spend enough time nor pay us enough attention.  And I don't mean just my county.  I mean virtually all the rural areas.  Again, without our votes, they have no chance to win.  King County may be the biggest county in the state but it can't do it alone.

              Granted, it's probably particularly galling to me that they ignore us so much when we're so close.  Aberdeen, the biggest town in my county, is only 50 minutes away from the State Capital.  And it's a beautiful drive, too.  

              Also, they tend to not discuss issues with us as my tale about the banning beach-driving issue illustrates.  I can only say that I'm thankful for my strong coastal caucus of legistors or this area would be even more ignored.  

              I fail to see how anyone can pretend to have an answer to a community that they are unfamiliar with.  Rural issues are very different than urban issues and require different solutions.  

              <<No offense, but if they believe (if perhaps mistakenly) that they can better spend their resources elswhere, shouldn't they?  >>

              And if they show such poor judgement in this area, why should I trust their judgement in other areas  and continue to support them.

      •  Why bother cuddling the right? (none)
        She can still win in 2008 as long as the totals are high enough in King County. And if she's that awful then she would probably face a primary challenge and lose, like Dixy Lee Ray.
        •  See my post above (2.66)
          Your attitude re rural Dems disgusts me.

          Do I sound angry?  Yeah...I am.  If you think that Washington state will stay blue based on King County, you're quite deluded.  

          I am tired of the elitist attitude of Seattleites concerning the importance of the rural Dems.  Without our votes, Gregoire would have lost and lost BIG.  No recount would have made a difference in the outcome.  Without our votes, Kerry might not even have won Washington state.  

          •  I think you need to get your violin repaired (none)
            You aren't in a prison camp, you're in rural Washington. Stop trying to bully people with your manipulative words like "disgust". I've never seen such whining in my life. You went on and on about all the mistakes Gregoire made and yet she did well in most of your area. If the Republicans let her get into office I highly doubt she will make the same mistakes again. But your me-me-me attitude does nothing but drive people away. If you ever wonder why the state party doesn't pay attention to your area, your yenta imitation probably doesn't help.
            •  Quartermaine is off base on this one... (none)
              Funkycamper is simply telling you the way it is and what can happen in our rural areas through neglect and mismanagment by the state party and some candidates.  He is right.  

              I, too, live in rural Western Washington in a county that went for Gregoire...but went a lot bigger for Kerry and Murray.  I blame the campaign and the state party for only 2  (count 'em, two) Gregoire signs in our whole damn county here on the peninsula!  We saw Chris twice...once in July at a D picnic and once at a private (!) event the week before the election, 2 weeks AFTER absentees were mailed!  Sheesh.  Rossi was all over the local papers with photos and stories the last month and pro-Rossi letters swamped the editors columns.

              The difference in the rural areas, just like in the urban ones who got all the campaign attention, is not Republican votes but independent votes.  With no Gregoire presence, getting those was very, very difficult and made this election as close as it was.  Democrats nationwide have a rougher row to hoe so it takes more work to get and keep the Dems engaged and the swing voters coming our way.  The locals can do it but they can't always do it alone.

              Past time for a new state chair...ABB...anybody but Berendt.

              Tell me how you spend your time and how you spend your money -- I'll tell you what your values are.

              by oldpro on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:14:13 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  From what I've heard (none)
                Barendt is a lock for re-election now that Gregoire is going to be Governor.

                Even if Gregoire had lost, it would've been difficult to unseat him.

                --- My opinions are my own and not my employer's.

                by Aexia on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:44:49 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  Wrong (none)
              Gregoire barely carried Grays Harbor....by just a handful of votes.

              I'm sorry if the truth hurts but the Dems are in danger of losing what little rural support they have left if they don't start considering our issues in their decision-making.

              I think you're one of those urban-elites that is driving many rural Dems away from the party.  

              •  I've never lived in an urban area (none)
                but I know a professional victim when I see one. You would rather make yourself a martyr than help anyone. You just remind people in rural areas as to why they are moving away from Democrats. You're a shrieking headcase who helped Dino Rossi every step of the way.
      •  I honest;y do not care how long (none)
        this drags out.

        Not one of my friends or neighbors have mentioned anything about how long this is takings (and I do know all my neighbors) -

        so people should just chill -- just because Vance is wigging out does not really do anything for me at all -- though I am rather enjoying that he is showing the whole world that he is such an assh*le -- so sometime before Thursday he should have a total meltdown -- either that or he just wet his pants.

        ...Release the Hounds

        by sara seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 12:10:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Our spin should be (none)
    Finally they are concerned about the validity of the ballots we count. That's where the focus of the recount litigation should have been instead of trying to eliminate the ballots of valid voters. Now that the count of legitimate ballots doesn't favor them, they want to go on a fishing expedition.
  •  Did you see this (none)

    ... new diary about Clark County?  Hope this doesn't start something...

    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/12/28/11348/988

    WA-Clark County to review GOP ballots
    by stilwell
    [Subscribe]

    Mon Dec 27th, 2004 at 22:13:48 PST

    Late today the Clark County Elections Department put out a press release stating they would review 28 ballots on Tuesday.

    Twenty-four of those ballots are supposedly from Rossi voters.

    More below the fold. ...

    Susan in Port Angeles (my cat)

    by SusanHu on Mon Dec 27, 2004 at 11:11:32 PM PST

    •  It won't. It can't. (none)
      Like N in Seattle says in the comments following the diary, Clark County has signed off on their recount. They can't open it back up again now.

      This thing is over. Bloviator Vance at this point is like the manager of the baseball team, screaming at the umpire after the last batter has struck out looking on a pitch the manager thought was a ball. The game is over, and all the screaming in the world won't help. Anything else just paints Rossi, Vance and the people they've gulled into supporting their arguments as sore losers.

      Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it. -Mark Twain

      by Our Man In Redmond on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 07:42:45 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Vance goes fishing in deep waters (none)
    In addition to ballot data, Vance requested all correspondence, email or otherwise, to and from anybody who had anything to do with King County Elections.

    He won't find a conspiracy, but maybe he'll find an email that says "Chris Vance? Is this guy a flaming asshole or what?" (or words to that effect) ... and he'll use that to trump up a case of administrative bias.

    •  speaking of drowning (none)
      Were it not for the possibility of breach of confidentiality -- and that's a fine reason to deny most of the "correspondence" demand -- dropping several thousand emails on Vance would be a nice touch.  

      Especially if some of them had something like MIME coding that turned into pages and pages and pages of gibberish when (im)properly translated.  HTML codes displayed as text would be a good idea too.

      You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

      by N in Seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 11:45:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Looks like this thread drew some juicy (none)
    ... commentary, but it got tangled up in a pissing contest -- and it looks like I'm 3 or 4 beers behind the curve.

    Did I miss anything too good to miss?

    •  lessee now... (none)
      More "switzerblog is the angel of doom" crapola, but I think you got in on that.

      Interesting back-and-forth on the (utterly false) proposition that [urban=Dem, rural=GOP], with compelling counter-evidence from WA's coastal counties and a Cowlitz emigree.  Some discussion of strategies for retaining and extending blue-ness, wherever it's located in Washington.  I, for one, hope to hear more (and learn more) from the likes of funkycamper.

      You're only young once, but you can be immature forever -- Larry Andersen

      by N in Seattle on Tue Dec 28, 2004 at 01:56:39 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Just go to Redstate or Rossi campaign (none)
        fuckycamper has all the talking points down pat.

        No one said switzerblog was an angel of doom, he just is not able to realize that just because he hates Gregoire does not mean that King County and Democrats are destroyed in the state forever. He also needs to understand that many of the problems he believes sprung out of nowhere have been around for years.

        It's all about him, but at least he does try, unlike fuckycamper who just wants to be a victim.

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