August 2, 2005

2nd OH Congressional Race: Live Blogpost

Filed under: OH-02 US House — Tom @ 7:46 pm

From the newly discovered center of the political universe (the race, not this blog, though we’re working on that), firmly ensconced in an undisclosed basement location, with high-speed connection, TV remote, and AM radio at the ready:
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11:48–Signing off the live blogpost. I am intensely grateful for the interest level from so many different places. (the 10PM hour was just about the busiest ever, with the exception of an Instalanche or two from Instapunidit). I’ll need to get to e-mails now, because I had to quit out of it during the high-pressure point about an hour ago. Go here (“20 Reasons Jean Schmidt Should Have Lost”) and here (“It’s Over”) for analysis of the race.

Especially to all of you who came here for the first time tonight: Thanks, and don’t be strangers.
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11:37–Here’s the AP Story on the Race. As you might expect, the two candidates’ perspectives on the results are different:

“We began this race way back in late march, and no one had thought we’d be the focus of the national media or be the so-called first test of the Republican Party and the Bush mandate. Well, ladies and gentleman, we passed that test,” Schmidt said.

Democrats had viewed the race as a bellwether for 2006, saying even a strong showing by Hackett in such a heavily GOP district would be a good sign for them in the midterm elections.

The interesting thing will be how (and if) the papers that gave the race so much coverage (NYT, USAT, and WaPo, for starters) report this result.
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11:31–Hackett concession is cut off on TV by switch to next program. Weak (not Hackett, the TV coverage).
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11:25Nix Guy gloats (BizzyBlog is a no-gloat zone).
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11:22–Building on the challenge issue, the 4,000-vote margin (3.5%) is proportionally bigger than the statewide Bush-Kerry Ohio margin (2%), and the challenges initiated by various people after the election did the Democratic party no good.
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11:10–TV’s probably done, though I’ll keep it on for a bit. Got into Hamco, and the official numbers are Schmidt 59,132 (51.74%), Hackett 55,151 (48.26%). The 4,000-vote margin won’t be made up with provisionals and militaries, and I would suggest that if Hackett wants to run again in 2006 and not alienate voters that he pass on challenging.
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11:04–Hackett supporters described as energized by the result. Hackett on way to Aronoff Center. They’re arguing that it’s a victory no matter what.
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11:02–Schmidt speaking. Supports President and his leadership on WOT and will bring it to Washington. Louder cheering than I’m used to hearing. Getting into the thanks thing. Cut to WLW TV and a better mic feed (XIX was terrible).
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10:59–Can’t get to Hamco. WXIX just said it was 52-48 Schmidt. That’s well outside recount range, but probably closer than most expected.
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10:54Schmidt wins, SCHMIDT WINS. Clerco margin is almost 5,000 votes, meaning about a 4-point or so Schmidt win. Will try to get to Hamco for grand totals.
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10:52–In case anybody cares, my Firefox for Mac told me I had a fatal memory error, but the other two browsers (IE and Safari) are handling things OK. A good night for Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, not-so-good for open-source.
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10:50–Well, it looks like the election not being decided will end up being the channel-surfing sport here between 11:00 and 11:30.
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10:47–WLW hasn’t said a word, even though the game has been over for 30 minutes or so. WXIX mentions a paper jam, with no estimate as to when they’ll get it done. The Hackett camp is mentioning provisional ballots and overseas military ballots as being relevant factors. Look, this area’s weather isn’t as nice as Florida in December. Spare us, please.
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10:44–Got into Hamco, but nothing’s changed.
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10:41–Starting about 10 minutes ago, the Clerco site said it’s unavailable. Zheesh.
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10:39–Looks like we’re just hangin’ on here; I don’t think my host set-up has ever been pushed like this. I had a 10:30 thing that mentioned that the 91 precincts in Clerco are being hand counted and the word irregularity was used on WXIX, but I think the correct term is “unusual circumstance,” but it’s not comforting.
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10:25–Holy moly, the FreeRepublic thread on this election is up to 825 posts–are you kidding me? DU and Dkos must be having lots of fun too.
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10:20Nix Guy is looking into the recount statute. Schmidt’s margin is almost 1% before the last half of Clerco, so I don’t see a recount kicking in.
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10:16–Out of touch with Hamco again. Very, very weak.
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10:12–10:05 report on WXIX said something about how monitors were being treated or handled but it was very vague. Uh-oh; how about specifics?
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10:08–Hackett HQ appears to be near conceding but holding on, based on my take on the WXIX report.
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10:05–Clerco official tells WXIX that humidity is slowing down its counting. Definitely gives left blogs something to talk about.
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10:03–Margin is actually 870 per latest Hamco report.
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10:01–WXIX is not calling it on its 10 PM news lead-in.
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9:59–Hackett needs to win about 53% (CORRECTED) of the remainder of Clerco after losing the first 55% by a margin of 56-44. That would seem to be a remote possibility, but I didn’t expect it to be this close. We don’t know what happened in Hamco itself, but it appears that it gave a decent margin to Hackett, which would be a surprise.
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9:55–The eyes of the political universe are on Clerco, which hasn’t updated in about 30 minutes. They like to do stuff in bunches there I guess. I’ll betcha they’re sure not going to pull the premature compilation thing that happened in the primary.
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9:53–Just got in. Margin down to 700+ after Scioto kicks in. The other half of Clerco is all that remains. Given the way the first half of Clerco went, you would have to think that Schmidt doesn’t have to break out the Kleenex yet. But Paul can hold the swear words for at least the next few minutes too. WLW just cut in with the 700-vote update.
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9:50–Couldn’t refresh Hamco. Bleep.
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9:47–Hamco is ALL in there, Warren is ALL in there, all that remains is about 1/2 of Clerco and a sliver of Scioto. Hackett win appears impossible.
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9:44–The Hamco results have ALL of Adams, ALL of Pike, and 71% of Scioto, so any pickups Hackett might get from the eastern counties are basically like Ragu spaghetti sauce–they’re in there.
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9:40–Just got into Hamco. Schmidt has a 2000-vote lead (48K-46K), with 80%-plus counted, but the key is what counties are in there.
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9:33–While we twiddle our thumbs waiting to get into Hamco, I would estimate that Schmidt has a 3000-vote lead in what we know. Anyone who knows Pike, Adams or Scioto, please e-mail me. We’ll at least be able to piece it all together except Hamco itself.
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9:27–Clerco finally appears. 100 of 191 precincts, Schmidt by 7869-6099. That’s a lot of votes for Hackett to try to make up in the eastern counties and Hamco.
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9:22–Hamco inaccessibility is officially a disgrace. Can’t even get to the home page for the whole county.
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9:19Warren County final: Schmidt 7556-5420, 58.23%-41.77%. Big margin for Hackett to make up elsewhere. Turnout was about 24% (hard to tell because it’s combined with some school district votes that weren’t in the congressional district).
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9:17–Nothing on TV crawls. TV is off until 10 PM news.
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9:14–What is with Clerco? No results except absentees for the last 45 minutes.
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9:10Brown County shocker; turnout is 24%; I’m not going to assume they’re done until midnight now. Hackett 3950-3100–very big margin for this county.
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9:07–Hamco is out of touch again.
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9:04–Warren County, 6150-4512 Schmidt with 82% counted. More than half of this is NOT in the Hamco 8:59 totals, so I’d say it’s basically a dead heat with what we know right now.
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8:59–Finally got to Hamco aggregate again (the way to get there changed). Current 52-48 Hackett, 14676-13549. The thing that is frustrating is that you don’t know which of the counties we’re looking at are in there (% of precincts, yes; number of votes, no). Very, weak. There is no Clerco in there yet, which means Schmidt can hold the Kleenex for the time being.
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8:55–Warren County update: 65% counted, Schmidt 4608-3523. That’s washes out the Hackett Brown carry, and then some.
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8:51Brown County update: Hackett 3289-2519; given the 20% turnout, I would say that’s a final (correction, see later). A significant carry for Hackett, who as I understand it worked this county very hard.
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8:46–Brown County update: Hackett 3289-2519. Top-of-head count gives Schmidt a narrow lead of known votes districtwide.
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8:44–Warren County is at about 40% counted. Schmidt leading 2850-2322.
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8:40–Hamilton County is either inaccessible or they moved the page–investigating. Their home page isn’t accessible. Access to other sites is not a problem. Zheesh.
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8:35Correction on Brown County (it didn’t look right to me, which is why I questioned it earlier). Their display is crazy and gives you the impression all precincts are counted when they aren’t. Current tally is now Hackett over Schmidt, 2279-1692. I have no idea whether that’s part or all of the Brown County vote.
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8:32–Either my computer caching is messed up, or Hamco isn’t accessible (probably the latter).
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8:28Warren County shows up. 1327-1122 Schmidt with 20% of relevant precincts counted (not all of the county is in the 2nd District).
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8:25–Clerco kicks in with its first report, 1158-750 Schmidt. Looks like absentees only.
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8:23–If I’m reading right, Brown County is done, 1480-1048, HACKETT (misread county results, which are poorly presented). Not unexpected that Hackett would carry the county, but the margin is a bit higher than I anticipated.
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8:20Nix Guy updates turnout at two precincts at his polling place: 18% and 25% in a very conservative area of Warren County.
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8:15–Game is only in 3rd inning, so WLW won’t go active on this until at least 10:00, probably 10:30.
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8:10–Warren County still MIA, no signs of crawl results on local TV or national cable. 55KRC is carrying Savage, and WLW is doing the ballgame. I anticipate OH-02 mentions during breaks in the ballgame, and that’s it, and maybe only when it’s decided.
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8:00–Brown County reports what is presumably absentees, 242-213 Hackett. Hamco absentees are posted and favor Schmidt 1964-1629. Actually, that looks like ALL absentees for all counties, as Hamco’s results page presents only one total for Hackett and Schmidt (no county breakdowns, just like last time, which I consider very weak). Watching individual counties where available will again be important tonight, as they were in the primary.
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7:55–Warren County still asleep at the switch on a results page.
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7:50–Well, well. The Enquirer has a blog covering the bloggers and the election tonight, and BizzyBlog got mentioned. Welcome, Enquirer readers. The Enky doesn’t do trackbacks yet–newbies.

Precinct Report 2 (in Warren Co.)

Filed under: OH-02 US House — Tom @ 7:00 pm

Just returned from my voting precinct again (no, David Woodruff, I didn’t vote again). The total this time was about 81 votes with 40 minutes to go, vs. in the low 40s in the June primary.

It looks like the nearly-double scenario held for my precinct. Two or three other precincts vote at the same location, and I’m told their turnout may have more than doubled.

As noted before, I would think that would be better news for Schmidt than for Hackett.

I’m out until live-blogging begins at about 8:00 PM. E-mail me if you have a specific results link for the dingalings at the Warren County BOE.

2nd Congressional District (OH): Odds and Ends from the Recently Discovered Center of the Political Universe

Filed under: OH-02 US House — Tom @ 5:51 pm

Go to LIVE BLOGPOST.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a local election generate so much heat on election day, and it’s not just the 95-plus-degree weather.

All of a sudden the world can’t get enough of Ohio’s Second Congressional District:

  • Rush talked about the race today, apparently at length and has posted the first Hackett video on his site. I didn’t listen (I thought the local guy Bill Cunningham would talk about it on his afternoon program–basically, no for the 20% or so that I caught). I’m waiting for Rush’s roughly 6PM site update to read what he really said, as left blogs are leveling some pretty serious charges.
    UPDATE: BizzyBlog links, you decide (links will only work for 24 hours, titles abbreviated):
    - Libs Must Lie to Win
    - Team Hackett Readies Voter Fraud Charges
    UPDATE 2: Have been waiting for someone of Rush’s stature to say this:

    Here they’re looking at this as a bellwether election and their candidate will not even admit to being a Democrat, which means they’re still in the we’ve-gotta-deceive-people mode. If we tell them he’s a Democrat, well, it isn’t going to fly in this district. This district is not going to elect Democrats. Yet the media is looking at this as a bellwether election.
    ….. But I’m just going to tell you, folks, this is no bellwether whatsoever. When you’ve got a Democrat that won’t run as a Democrat, when you’ve got a Democrat who will not say everything Democrats are saying and then they try to say he won the race, don’t fall for this. This is more smoke and mirrors, and it’s a great example of how the left and the Democrats continue to lie to even themselves.

    Rush doesn’t post 100% of his show, so I can’t confirm or deny whether or how often he (or a caller or Rush staff person) said “staff puke,” as alleged by the left blogs. Assuming he did, add Rush to the list of people who have not had their finest hour during the past few days.

  • Cable news guys (I’ve seen the names Ron Brownstein of the LA Times and MSNBC’s Shout-em-Down O’Donnell mentioned) are setting an expectation for Hackett of 45%, saying that much or more is a moral victory and an indication of Bush weakness (in…your…dreams). I think this is what is known as “lowering the bar.”
  • Apparently the traffic has taken down the OH02 blog. I’m rooting for a revival there by 7:30 PM.

2nd District Results Links (080205, as Ready as Possible)

Filed under: OH-02 US House — Tom @ 1:42 pm

Having performed my civic duty, now it’s time to focus on where to get the results tonight.

As in the primary, Hamilton County’s Board of Elections will be where the results were aggregated. The Ohio Secretary of State has no direct involvement, and won’t be posting any immediate results. Unfortunately, the aggregation process at Hamco in June kept us from seeing exactly what was going on in individual counties (which is why we couldn’t detect the reporting error made by Clermont County). I expect that will also be the case tonight (which is why the county links, where available, are probably necessary to really keep tabs on things).

This is as accurate as I can get it pending readiness at Hamilton and Warren counties Warren County:

  • Hamilton County (home page); Hamilton County, as noted, is where results are being aggregated.
  • (UPDATED 6:30 PM) Hamilton County realtime results page–WARNING: The results link on the page is a PDF, and will have to be downloaded separately every time you want updated results; browser refreshes will not get you to updated info. I suggest using a browser that will display PDFs.
  • Clermont County (link is for this specific election-no other issues are on the ballot)
  • Warren County BOE home page; here is June 14′s link (doesn’t work yet, and may be different tonight, BOE says they will have up later today and didn’t know URL; 6:30 update, nothing new, just start at the home page above and hope they display something you can find)
  • Brown County (Link is for this specific election-no other issues are on the ballot)

As in June, these counties do not have BOE web sites, according to the SOS:
- Scioto–Eric at Project Logic suggested WNXT Radio in Portsmouth as an info possibility (but only for those who live in the area, since there is no “Listen Live” web link), but was disppointed last time.
- Adams
- Pike

E-mail me if you find a link page for the counties without sites, or better links for the other counties.

Precinct Report (in Warren Co.)

Filed under: OH-02 US House — Tom @ 12:32 pm

Just voted, for Schmidt. One Hackett sign was on the road at the entrance to the polling place (no Schmidt sign). No people were outside from either camp. Poll workers said turnout so far was about double last time. In this precinct, that is probably good for Schmidt, probably not good for Hackett.

Another observation: A number of Schmidt signs in prominent places on private property in the immediate area seem to have disappeared. Don’t have specifics beyond that, but it’s enough to make you go “hmmm…”

UPDATE: An e-mailer asked me about exit polling. I’m not aware of any being done besides what the campaigns might be doing, which surely won’t be shared. Any attempt to release exit-polling data would have the same problems the presidential election had, which is that the people who vote early in the day may be different from those who vote later, but no one really knows how different, or even in which direction.

UPDATE 2: Mrs. Nix Guy reports much higher turnout at her precinct in Harlan Twp. (Warren Co.)