If so - you might be a Political Junkie!
Its election eve. For me it is more like Christmas Eve!
You never know what the political Santa Claus will bring you.
Instead of opening your presents early in the morning, you start opening them at 5:00 pm MST. That's when the polls close in Indiana and Virginia. When the polls close in a state, then the exit polls that have been compiled throughout the day are released for that state. As it happens this year, Virginia is home to a hotly contested senate race (Allen Vs. Webb) and Indiana is host to 4 congressional districts (#'s 2, 7, 8 & 9) that are up for grabs.
At 5:30 pm the Ohio Polls close, with another incumbent Republican Senator (Mike DeWine) fighting for political survival.
At 6:00 many of the remaining Eastern Time Zone States will close their polls. It is at this point in the evening that we will start to get an idea of just how the cookie is crumbling. Of course, we are still only dealing with exit poll numbers thus far. It will take a couple of more hours for the real votes to be counted. Exit polls have been notoriously wrong during the last few elections. Usually they are skewed to the left -- that is in favor of the Democrats. There was a point early on election night in 2004 when all the exit polls were indicating a John Kerry win. There was much fist pounding and head banging until the real numbers came in.
In the East there are key Senate races in PA, NJ, MD, RI, and TN.
At 7:00 most of the Central Time Zone, and some of the Mountain time zone Polls close. There are several heated contests in the mid-west this year. Senate races of interest are in the Talent-McCaskill race in MO, and the Kennedy-Klobuchar contest in MN.
At 8:00 most of the Mountain Time Zone states close their polls. The most heated Senate race in the Mountain time zone this year is in Montana, with the Burns-Tester race.
At 9:00 the Pacific Time zone polls close, along with Hawaii. Not many house or Senate seats appear to be in danger of changing party affiliation in this region.
Finally, at 10:00 MST, Alaska Closes its polls.
Usually by 10-11:00 pm here in Utah, we know how things are going to turn out. The big exception of course was in the year 2000 when we had to wait 36 days to find out the election result. (Thanks to the Grinch (Al Gore) who stole Christmas that year!)
The polls would indicate that the Republicans are about to take a beating. By all indications, it appears that the Senate will be controlled by one or two votes (either way) and that the House will be in Nancy Pelosi's hands (Doh!) by this time tomorrow night.
If I had to pick one or the other for the Republicans to hold on to, it would be the Senate. The reason is because they are the ones who confirm the judges. It is likely that there will be another Supreme Court nominee during President Bush's last two years. Having a Republican controlled Senate will be crucial to getting his judicial nominees confirmed. One more conservative Supreme Court Justice would go a long way toward preventing a takeover of liberal values by Judicial fiat.
On the bright side, there has been a recent surge in the polls towards the Republicans, but will it be too little, too late. I guess we'll find out soon!
OK. I admit it. I'm a Political Junkie. I took this quiz today, and scored 10 of out 10. Not only a junkie, but a political geek as well.
I can't help it. Its in my genes. It's Grandpa Hatch's fault. He was the county republican chairman when I was in my youth. I got to tag along with him to political conventions and got all kinds of cool pins and bumper stickers. The best thing was the time I got to shake the hand of Ronald Reagan, at the State Republican Convention, when he ran for president in 1976. (My touch with greatness!)
I've always held a keen interest in politics and current events. I care about the course of events in our time, and about our nation's future. I don't want to see us turn in a direction that will cause irreparable harm in the future (Iranian nukes, giving in to Al-Qaida, etc.)
So take the quiz, see how you do. Try to get home early to watch the election returns. Pop a batch of popcorn and watch those numbers roll in. Cheer for your favorite team. And may the best team win!
If you can't stand to listen to the network TV pundits, you might want to listen Hugh Hewitt. Hugh will give you the returns from a cheerily Republican point of view, if that's what you want to hear. If you want to hear things from the perspective of the left, then any network TV station should do just fine, since they'll be presenting the election returns from a cheerily Democratic point of view. Hugh will be broadcasting until late into the evening. Unfortunately we can't get him on the air here in Utah, but you can listen to him on the Internet here.
The Truth Laid Bear and Real Clear Politics will be good places on the Internet to check the political "scoreboard" as the evening progresses.
Oh, and one final thing: Merry Electoral Christmas everyone! And to all a Good Night!