Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Election day memories

No advocacy today.  There's no point.  The die is cast.

Take a little walk down Memory Lane with me.  Just to kill some time before the returns come in.

This election is the ninth presidential election in which I've voted.  I remember them all.
  • 1980 - John Anderson

    In the end, although I was tired of President Carter, I couldn't stomach voting for Ronald Reagan.  So I cast my ballot for John Anderson, the independent congressman from Illinois.  On election night, I watched the returns come in from the living room of my good friend, Rick Means.  When Jimmy Carter gave his concession speech, Rick's mom said to me, "He [Carter] would be a good neighbor, but he hasn't been a good president."  Now, all these years later, I think she had it right.

  •  1984 - Walter Mondale

    Right after Reagan's election, I went through a brief interval as a registered Republican.  By 1984, I was back on board with the Democrats.  I cast my vote in the cafeteria of Pelican Elementary School in Klamath Falls, OregonBrother Eric and I may well have been the only two blue votes in that very red precinct.
  • 1988 - Michael Dukakis

    I'd only just moved to the Portland Metro area when this election went down.  The day before the election, I went to a Dukakis rally downtown.  There was a big crowd, but folks pretty much knew the gig was up.  I watched the returns all alone in my little Lake Oswego apartment.  As the red tide covered the map, I got a call from Mom.  "You holdin' up alright?" she asked.  I can't remember how I replied.  Probably something like:  "People are stupid."
  • 1992 - Bill Clinton

    This election occurred in the days when my ex-wife and I were co-habitating in the Vermont Hills neighborhood, a few months before we got married.  The polling place was right across the street from our apartment at a local church.  After we voted, we talked to an exit pollster from CNN in the church parking lot.  This was the first time I voted for the presidential candidate that won.  It would be a long time before it happened again.

  • 1996 - Ralph Nader

    Clinton had this election in the bag, right from the get-go.  I voted for Nader to register my wish that the country move farther to the "left," away from unfair trade agreements like NAFTA and the WTO.
  • 2000 - Al Gore

    I voted for Gore, but I didn't hate Junior.  When the Republicans pulled off their coup d'etat in Florida, I was angry, but I still didn't hate him.  By 2003, I hated him.  I still do.  F*ck him..
  • 2004 - John Kerry

    This election happened in the Year I dropped out
    I awoke that morning certain that John Kerry would win.  At about 7pm that evening, I was disabused of that notion.  I worked hard to defeat Junior Bush.  It was the most devastating defeat I've ever suffered.  I will never fully lose the sense of betrayal I felt toward the American people.
  • 2008 - Barack Obama

    We all remember this one.  It was only the second time in my life that I'd voted for the candidate who actually won.  Obama has a long list of accomplishments (Affordable Healthcare Act, two Supreme Court Justices, food safety regulations, student loan restructuring, financial reform) as well as some egregious abuses of power.  Still better than the alternative.
  • 2012 - Barack Obama

    Obama is the only candidate I've ever voted for twice.  Why?  See here.  Outcome to be determined.
All over but the shouting now.  Let's see how it shakes out.

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