08 November 2006

election reflections

Happy Election Day, a day late. I hope everyone got out and voted yesterday. We got to our polling place at 8am, so that Greg could vote before traipsing off to Ohio for work, and James assisted me in the voting booth while Evan charmed all of the old ladies volunteering at the polls. I love voting -- it makes me feel like I'm important, like I'm part of something great. Of course, in a state like New York, my individual vote doesn't matter much, but I still like being part of the whole process.

Overall, I'm pretty pleased with who America elected yesterday. Here in New York, we are finally being governed by a Democrat, Eliott Spitzer, who I'm a little bit in love with in a political-admiration sort of way. We re-elected Hillary to the Senate, and you know, as much flak as she gets, and as much as she panders to the center and right, I still support her. I still admire her. My Republican Congressional representative was barely re-elected, unfortunately, but it was a pretty close race, so that makes me a little bit happy.

But the big news, of course, is that the Democrats took back the House of Representatives (and maybe the Senate), and for the first time ever, we have a female Speaker of the House. Ever since Nancy Pelosi appeared on my radar a few years ago, I've admired her as a strong, liberal woman with real progressive values and a backbone. I'm thrilled that she's in a position of leadership, and I'm excited that she is actually in line for the presidency! Of course, that's obviously a long shot, but considering that it's been more than 100 years since a woman first ran for President (thank you, Old Toad Trivia Night, for that piece of information), it feels good to think that the presidency is finally realistically within the reach of a woman. And not just Pelosi, either, but we're at a point where there is serious speculation about a woman -- Hillary --running for president, and perhaps actually being elected. I know the chances of her being elected are debatable -- I love her and even I'm not sure she could win -- but it's definitely a possibility, and given that there are two years between now and the next election, I think it's too early to predict.

And speaking of women, the other piece of news that's exciting to me is that the voters of South Dakota rejected the abortion ban. I guess the three guys protesting abortion outside the hopital in the rain this morning (such dedication!) didn't hear about that, because if an abortion ban didn't fly in a place like South Dakota, there's no way it'd ever pass in New York.

All in all, a pretty eventful and satisfying election. I don't have any illusions about the Democrats suddenly turning America around and heading in the direction I'd like to see -- I'm registered as an Independent because most of the Democrats aren't far enough to the left for my taste, and they're typically as bad as the Republicans in terms of conviction, integrity, honesty and reliability (or should I say, the lack thereof) -- but I'm pretty confident that they won't do worse than the Republicans have done, and that's at least a step in the right direction. Or maybe not a step so much as just not going any further in the wrong direction, but still, that's important.

Update: Rumsfeld is resigning! And I thought things couldn't get any better!

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