Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Continuing Update

Last update before I sleep tonight (yes, I know, I'm going to bed just a little after midnight, I get that I'm somewhat uncool for doing so on election night).

Precincts reporting: 62%
Yes: 52%
No: 48%

Los Angeles County
Precincts reporting: 51%
Yes: 53%
No: 47%

I'd be interested to see when I get the results in the morning, if Los Angeles county did indeed end up being very close to the results for the entire state. Right now, the results are off by only 1% , interesting considering that many other counties in the state are severely polarized towards one side or another (See San Francisco/No, Madera/Yes). I also imagine the reason for news organizations holding off on calling the proposition, is due to smaller amount of precincts reporting in Los Angeles County as compared to other states. No one wants to call this before they are absolutely sure, no matter what result the trend suggests. There are too many people watching the outcome of this proposition, in and out of state. The media is not about to commit a Florida here.

This time data was taken from, as appeared to be slow on the update. This will be my last update for the night, assuming that the proposition is not called in the next few moments. I will return in the morning with commentary on the final result

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The President elect...and the wait begins

Oh the Obama mania. It would only be expected at the college with the most liberal student body in the country...but still it was an experience. With the Cooler compeltely full of excited students, the room EXPLODED at 8pm PST, when the majority of the polls closed and Obama was declared to be the President elect. It was definitly a crazy experience.

But as wonderful as the news about Obama is, the wait is still on going for Proposition 8. The verdict thus far? Not good. LA times has a nifty page tracking all the California propositions, which with 36% of precincts reporting, puts Yes in the lead with 52.6% of the vote. (CNN has very similar numbers as well). This is not looking good folks.

Even more worrying, is that with 23.1% reporting in Los Angeles county, Yes is up with 54.5% of the vote. As a population center, this trend needs to reverse or at least shrink in order for Proposition 8 to fail. In the words of a text sent to me from a friend who has been very active on the No on 8 campaign, "It all rests in LA. If LA loses, we lose."

I don't know if I'll be awake still when the decision on Proposition 8 is projected, my brain is starting to crash after all the caffeine and sugar and excitement of Obama. Still, as I've been saying for many weeks...I'm very worried.,0,1293859.htmlstory?view=8&tab=0&fnum=0

From the Eyes of Yours Truely

So, as some of my readers know, I am registered to vote in California, and thus, voted at my local polling place this morning. (The Deaf Center a few blocks from the Occidental College Campus). I went at 11:30, right after I got out of my morning class, and at that time the line wasn't too long- I waited about 45 minutes to vote, and that was mainly due to a rush of Oxy students...all coming to vote during their lunch break. Unfortunately, since I didn't receive a sample ballot in the mail, and thus didn't bring that or think to bring another piece of mail to prove my address, as a first time voter I had to vote with a provisional ballot. Annoying, but not a big deal. I imagine many Oxy students who were registered close to the deadline had this problem - on the provisional ballot roll, I recognised at least the two other names immediately above my own. At any rate, I managed to vote, got a chuckle out of a student from a one of my classes last year running for a state level position as a libertarian, (Tom Logan), and got the coveted "I voted" sticker.

I also got a kick out of seeing a student at the polls I know that Oxy for Obama managed to register for the first time. Proof that all our efforts weren't for nothing.

But I've deviated a bit from the subject of this blog - Proposition 8. Outside of my polling location, there were No on 8 demonstrators holding signs and passing out leaflets (outside of the required 100ft of course). Beyond one rather enthusiastic man handing me fliers that appeared to be home made and NOT from the No on 8 campaign, the demonstrators were fairly timid and passive. There were no Yes on 8 demonstrators present, either before or after I voted. My guess as to why is fairly straightforward: A significant amount of the voters going to this polling location would be from Oxy, considered to have the "most liberal student body in the country" according to Princeton Review. Students from Oxy are unlikely to be voting or demonstrating for yes on 8, and other groups probably could see their efforts as being more worthwhile elsewhere.

That being said, in the van on the way back from the polling location another student told me that a coworker had her house vandalized. The woman had a No on 8 sign on her lawn, and someone had spray painted "fags" on the side of the house. I guess our area isn't necessarily as blatantly liberal as I thought.

Violence in the Streets

When I looked up Proposition 8 on Google News this morning, I found a significant smattering of stories talking about arrests and violence related to Proposition 8 rallies. Passions are high, as people on both sides of the issue feel extremely strong that they are in the right, and have no room for understanding of the other side of the issue.

A 17 year old female opponent to Proposition 8 was struck in the head and spat on by two men in an altercation between demonstrators:

In Carlsbad, an elderly couple supporting Proposition 8 was punched by a neighbour in an altercation over lawn signs.

In Sacramento, at least one man was arrested Saturday night as protests got out of hand.

I'm sure these stories are the exception rather than the norm, but it leads to an interesting train of thought. What will happen post-election, when Proposition 8 passes or fails? There has been talk of riots if Obama is/is not elected...but what of Proposition 8? On an issue that seems to have no middle ground, will we see an increase in the number of violent incidence against LGBT people or those that support tradition marriage? I think it is certainly more likely than a mass riot in the streets over a black president. I do think we can only hear more of these stories as the day goes on, as demonstrators square off on street corners.

Monday, November 3, 2008

One Last Taste of Propaganda...

Figured with so many new commercials being aired in the last couple weeks, I couldn't leave for election day without throwing up a few more clips for your pre-election enjoyment...

From the No on 8 campaign: Who can go wrong with a little Samuel Jackson? Hits hard on the "proposition 8 is discriminatory" note, arguably better than earlier ads attempting the same thing. I was about to say that I thought that the NO on 8 campaign had finally simplified it's message...but of course the motto of "unfair, uneccessary, wrong" was chopped into just "unfair, wrong" for this commercial. I suppose I will never stop complaining about the lack of a single uniform message from the No campaign.

From the Yes on 8 campaign:An ad in which viewers hear the voice over of a heterosexual married couple talking about the implications of legalized gay marriage on the public school system. A powerful ad, especially with the mention of the fact that both presidental candidates do not support gay marriage...but in my partisan bias, it made me kind of sick to my stomach. That, and I hate the world "tolerate" being using when talking about LGBT people/

And finally, just because I love Ellen:

Happy voting everyone! Please, if you are registered to vote in California, don't forget to vote on this issue! This is an issue where your vote WILL make a difference. Vote No on Proposition 8!

Final Poll Blitz - What Does It All Mean?

Tomorrow is the big day. By this time tomorrow night, the polls in California will have closed, and the fate of same-sex marriage will have been decided (if not yet announced).

Dramatic isn't it?

A number of the most recent polls across the state have shown the gap between those supporting and those opposing Proposition 8 narrowing. The most recent Field Poll puts the gap at 49% No, 44% Yes, and 7% Undecided. The Public Policy Institute of California puts the gap at 52% No, 44% Yes. The gap between Yes/No votes has narrowed since earlier polls taken by both organisations.

Essentially, this could be either side's game on election day. It is a little too close for comfort to call for the no vote with 100% certainty. The issue really at stake here however, is who actually manages to vote tomorrow, not the opinion of likely voters. With wait times at polls expected to be hours long in some locations, one must worry whether liberal voters will actually make it to the polls to vote no. With California undoubtedly going for Obama, will liberal voters bother to wait in long lines to vote on a proposition that might not have any direct affect upon their lives? If I were the No on 8 campaign, I would be VERY nervous about voter turnout tomorrow. Liberal voters giving up at the polls tomorrow could very well enable the supporters of proposition 8 to eek out a victory. We shall have to see. Not much left to do but to cross our fingers, pray for no inclement weather, and hope that those poll lines stay at a managable length.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Confusion Alert Ahead

When I was bumming around the No on 8 website looking at their TV ads, I noticed something very strange. Up until recently, the logo for "Vote No on Prop 8" featured a little green check through the o of no. This is the logo that can still be seen on all merchandise sold in the (Coincidentally, this is the lawn sign I have on my dorm room door):

However, now the logo for the no on 8 website has a red x through the o of no.

What is the reason for the change? This is all purely speculative, but it seems as if those behind Equality California/No on Prop 8 realised that a green check is a positive thing, and that in their efforts to get people to vote no, this might become confusing to voters, causing them to vote yes by accident. Personally I think it's a tad silly, but it should be noted that the wording of Prop 8 is somewhat confusing - voters are used to being -for- gay marriage, not -against- a ban on gay marriage. Usually when someone talks about being "pro-gay marriage," one doesn't think about voting against anything.

What I am confused about, is why would Equality California/No on Prop 8 change their logo now, less than 3 weeks before the election, whatever the reason? Thousands of lawn signs, poster, stickers, buttons, t-shirts, and other paraphernalia have been distributed with the 1st version of the logo. Why change the logo now? Doesn't this make a tiny detail even more confusing?

Come on Equality California, please pull yourself together and stop acting like an indecisive spastic puppy. Pick a message, and go with it. Don't confuse voters. Air some stronger TV ads, and stop playing defense. A strong campaign is starting to slowly look weaker, which does not bode well for the outcome of November 4Th.