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Pay no attention to the people behind the curtain

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Before I head out tonight

I feel very pessimistic. I usually feel less optimistic on election days than I do in the lead-ups, so I don't know why it's so bad right now--could be the exam week blues at school; could be the current (and expected) lack of sleep this week. Maybe I'm not getting enough fiber.

But one thing has been nagging me for a couple of months now that I need to exorcise a little bit before the results actually start coming in.

There has been a lot of talk--a lot of talk--about The Coming Democratic Wave. Everywhere, people don't like Bush. They're fed up with Iraq. They have had enough of corruption in the ruling party in Washington. The results could be--won't necessarily be, but really, really could be--huge for Democrats nationwide tonight.

Why, I've wondered, haven't we seen The Wave in Wisconsin? It isn't that we're not a state disposed to vote for Democrats in general; we even dearly love some of the specific ones we're voting for today. But in the eighth CD--a seat that, by national trends, ought to be a rout, despite Kagen's inexperience as a campaigner--is tighter in the polls than I'm comfortable with, and I've been worried about Dem turnout in that race since primary day. Governor Doyle, who is a committed centrist and by all (honest) accounts is doing a decent job steering the ship of state in a solvent and productive direction, is in a race that's closer than it should be for an incumbent.

Turnout is up--that's generally good for Democrats. The machines all seem to be working relatively well, even in the city wards where there were screw-ups in September. Even the dirty tricks by Republicans that we've seen in other states haven't shown up here. I should be feeling positive. I should be stoked. I should be giddy with delight.

And yet . . .

I feel very pessimistic. C'mon, ye elections gods. Prove me wrong.

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