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Posts Tagged ‘Election 2008’

Today Was a Good Day

Although it looked nothing like Ice Cube’s, I must admit that today was a good day. Despite gettting a $50 bill in the mail for an appointment I had to reschedule, there were many highlights to overshadow that one setback.

  1. Today was absolutely beautiful in Seattle! Sunny, warm, and no rain… it felt like summer!
  2. My laptop arrived in the mail today which means I can officially start my new job AT HOME!!!!
  3. One of me best friends K.D. welcomed a brand new baby girl into the world!! Love you guys xoxo
  4. And last, but definitley not least, I VOTED FOR BARACK OBAMA!! 🙂

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When people ask me how I like Seattle, my response usually includes the weather, the sites to see, the food, and occasionally the shopping. However, it’s the little things like the info on my pizza box that truly explain why I love the Pacific Northwest.

Last week, Damon and I ordered some pizza from the local chain Pagliacci. Typically on the top of their boxes, they print information and statistics about going green, but today’s delivery was different. NOt only was there a flyer taped to front letting me know that they would be begin their services one hour early for debate nights, the box was full of voting stat’s from around the world. And yes, you did just read the last sentence correctly…opening early for the presidential debates. In Seattle, they treat the presidential debates like the Superbowl. How awesome is that? I thought I would also share with you some of the wealth of knowledge on my pizza box.

Presidents Rate: Over the past 30 years, US voter turnout has averaged 52.5% for presidential elections, whereas in non-presidential elections it drops to under 40%.

Australia 95, USA 55: At election time, 95% of Australians go to the polls. Why? Well, it’s been the law since 1924. Refuse and get fined; refuse to pay, go to jail. Do you think a law like that would inspire American voters to improve on their 55% turnout in 2004?

Why do we vote in November? Since 1845, U.S. presidential and congressional elections have taken place on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Why? FARMERS ARE TOO BUSY THE REST OF THE YEAR. American society was largely agrarian in 1845, and in November the harvest was in and the weather mild enough for travel on dirt roads. POLLING PLACES WERE FAR AWAY. Voting could only take place at the county seat- sometimes a day away by horse and buggy. NO TRAVEL ON SUNDAY. To make it to a polling place on Monday, a voter would have had to miss church to hit the raod. BOOKEEPING AND MARKETING. Most businesses finished the books early in the month, and the farmers took their crops to market on Wednesdays. That left Tuesday.

How do we stack up? Washington ranked third in voter turnout for the 2004 election. 82% of all registered voters participated, compared with 89% in COlorado and 85% in Oregon. Go Washington!

Malta’s the Most; In Malta, earlier this year, voter turnout for parliamentary elections was 93% – the lowest since 1971! The USA ranks in the bottom 20% of the world voter participation.

Why the Electoral College? As the framers of the Constitution considered how to elect the president and vice president, two choices emerged: direct popular election or election by Congress. The method they chose – indirect popular election – was a compromise that reinforced the cohesiveness of the young nation. As the country grew, the Electoral College (as it was dubbed decades later) effectively balanced power between large and small states. (not all of this I necessarily agree with, by the way….it forgot to mention, as I tell my students, that many of our framers didn’t think the average AMerican was intelligent enough to vote. In fact, GW was not elected by the people at all…hmmm).

Anyways, there was a bunch more facts on my small onion pizza, but you get the point! Have fun watching the debates! I am anticiapting a good laugh tomorrow night!

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I love Barack Obama. There, I said it. My love affair with Obama began on a cold, February morning in 2007, when he announced his candidacy for President of the United States.  I had read and heard about this young Illinois senator in the Nation and online, but before 2007, I really didn’t know much about him. I remember watching his speech during the 2004 Democratic Convention and thinking to myself, “finally, a new voice in the DNP!”, but 3 years went by and I don’t remember reading much about him other than his stance on the war in Iraq.

I have been following politics very closely now for about 10 years and besides Russ Feingold, Dennis Kucinich, Barbara Boxer and a few others, there has hardly been a politician in my day that I even respect, let alone love. Then arrives Barack Obama, whose words are powerful, they are inspirational, and they are hopeful. I believe that if there is any politician who can restore this sham of a democracy we call the United States, it is him. If given the chance, I believe that he will restore dignity, honor, and respect to the oval office, which has been long overdue in this country.

So why do I love Obama? Well, even though we do not see eye-to-eye on every issue, I believe Obama is a true public servant. He entered into politics not wanting to play games with the good-ol-boys of Washington, but to stand for real change that was in the best interests of AMERICANS, not his checkbook. And when it all boils down to it, that’s what matters the most… in fact that the reason the presidental office was established in the first place, not to rule with an iron fist and declare war on the constitution, but to protect the PEOPLE and to make decisions with their best interest in mind. That’s what I love about Barack Obama.

Critics want to say he’s inexperienced;  they want to say that we don’t know enough about him, that he’s an “elitist”. If you don’t know enough about him, you haven’t been paying attention. His life story has been plastered over every cable news channel for the past 4 months and as far as experience goes, I’ll take my chances on a Harvard Law School magna cum laude ANYDAY over 22 months in a gubernatorial seat… and that’s just McCain’s Vp. Comparing srictly the two candidates, McCain has no executive experience either.  (Remember, George Bush was a governor and look how far that got us!) What ever happened to intelligence? Is that not a quality that we look for in a leader? As I watch interviews with Sarah Palin, it appears not. It that who we want helping to run this country? I hope not. As far as being an elitist….please. Since when is growing up in a single-family home on food stamps make you an elitist? Where I come from, not knowing how many homes you own makes you an elitist, not your intelligence or your ability to bring yourself out of poverty. And those are just a few more reasons why I love Barack Obama.

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