Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Down the stretch they come....

What a crazy night. Actually, let me correct myself. What an absurd 24-hours.

I was at a party at a bar with a bunch of friends and we were surrounded by every station covering the night. And it was a roller-coaster ride for me. I did realize that I have a serious gambling issue and its called Election night. It is my Super Bowl and NCAA hoop tournament rolled into one night.

I don’t bet on the winners/losers. I support candidates that I believe are going to make a difference for Israel and for the United States and this is the night to see if my investments pay off.

With that in mind, let me walk you through my crazy night. Started at 8 p.m. when Pennsylvania closed their polls. Two minutes after, Bob Casey was announced as the winner of the Senate race vs. Rick Santorum, who was the incumbent. I stuck with Rick, or as a friend of mine in Atlanta calls him “Son of Sam”, to the end. I knew it was money going down the toilet, but sometimes you have to bet the long shot and play the future. What we did here.

That was my only loss for a long, long time … my dear friend Lincoln Davis of Tennessee easily won his house race and was waiting to see what happened with Harold Ford. That race was tough for me – like both candidates, but Bob Corker held off Ford by about 55,000 votes. My only thought when I saw that is that I hope and pray that the people of Tennessee chose Corker because they believe he was better for the state. But I know better and I know that some of those folks couldn’t bring themselves to vote for an African American man for Senate. Would have been the first one in Tennessee since reconstruction. Just a damn shame, but Harold will be back and back in a big way. He’s only 36 and he’s a sharp man. Sad, sad that in 2006 this can still is a thought never mind a fact.

Around 9ish, Joe Leiberman of Connecticut won re-election. I was so happy for him. Here’s a man that has given a ton to his country and his party and they kick him to the curb. Only for him to run harder and smarter and kick Ned Lamont’s butt.

Other races came and went and I found myself screaming at the TV’s from time-to-time when I would see one of my guys doing well with 70 percent reporting but no winner chosen. “Go to the whip, hit ‘em baby,” as if these guys were Steve Cauthen riding Seattle Slew down the backstretch at Belmont.

About 11 p.m. I got a call from Heath Shuler’s finance director, Alexis, screaming into the phone, “Taylor conceded. WE WON! WE WON!” Watch my friend from North Carolina over the next two years – he is the moderate Democrat with family values that the party is going to try and model candidates in the future. Don’t be surprised if he is a keynote speaker at the 2008 Democratic convention.

Funny part with him is that he is a former Washington Redskins top pick. He struggled big time with the Redskins. The media and fans were awful to him. I know this first hand because I lived there at the time. When I asked him why he wanted to go back, Heath said, “Jon, this time I know I can make a difference.” I am considering going to DC for his swearing in wearing a Redskins Number 5 jersey just to piss off Skins fans!!!

I was rolling along well until another friend, Sen. Jim Talent from Missouri, conceded to Claire McCaskill around 3 a.m. ET. He is a very good man who did everything he can but he got caught up in Bush’s war garbage and stem cell research. He was against it and she was for it. While I will take nothing away from McCaskill, Jim should have held his seat and didn’t. Bush was there last week and maybe he blew it for Jim as well.

Consider that if he had fired Donald Rumsfeld a year ago instead of the day after the election, good Republicans like Jim could have held their seats. Funny part is that in Bush’s press conference Wednesday, he said, “I didn’t want to change right before the election. It would have looked too political and that would have been a wrong message to send to our troops.” Hey GWB, don’t you think the country just sent you a message? You might want to listen… funny part is now you have to listen to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. Better you than me!

I had to wait for this morning to find out that two congressmen in Georgia held on for a win – John Barrow and Jim Marshall. Barrow won by about 1,100 votes and Marshall by about 1,500. Montana got called for the Dems and Virginia is leaning that way as well. Looks like a clean sweep for the Dems.

So – the big question is what does all this mean? If you know that answer, you are beyond a genius. With Rumsfeld gone, maybe we can straighten out the Iraq situation. With the Dems in power, maybe GWB (and Karl Rove) will stop and think before they blindly spout off. GWB is meeting with Nancy Pelosi on Thursday for lunch. I would love to be a fly on the wall for that one. It’s the first of many first for GWB. And it’s a whole new ballgame in DC.

We can all bet on that for sure….

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