November 2004

Unaffiliated Voters in Orange County

Guest Post by George Entenman

I've been grabbing the raw Absentee and One Stop voting data every day for the last week or so (I am doing it for the Orange County Democratic Party). Here are my final counts from the raw data downloaded from the SBOE site this morning at 6:09 am Sunday.

Here's the Orange County early voting data through Saturday, the last day of early voting (there may be more absentee ballots received):

DEM : 1573 (51.79%)
UNA : 842 (27.72%)
REP : 610 (20.09%)
LIB : 12 (0.40%)
Total absentee votes: 3037
One Stop (Early) Voting, By Party
DEM : 18440 (60.96%)
UNA : 6331 (20.93%)
REP : 5371 (17.76%)
LIB : 106 (0.35%)
Total early votes: 30248

Notice some interesting things about Orange County:

1. More Democratic and Unaffiliated voters voted absentee than did Republicans.

2. More Democratic and Unaffiliated voters voted early than did Republicans.

3. In both cases the more traditional Rep - Dem - Una order prevailed in statewide early voting - see below.

Open Thread on Election Day

So what's going on out there in Orange County?

Non-local comments will be removed. We're not kidding.
Please visit BlueNC for updates and discussion of state races and dailyKOS for state and federal races.

On Wednesday...

Guest Post by Steve Sherman

Thrilled that Kerry won, and that massive mobilizations of people triumphed over a hideous campaign and desperate voter suppression efforts?

Bummed that Bush won, and ready to tell him we aren't going away?

Ready to make sure this time that we don't stand silently by while the Supreme Court overrules the American electorate?

Come out to the Franklin Street Post Office on Wednesday, November 3rd at 5pm, and join us as we celebrate or mourn and pressure Kerry or Bush (or Nader or Badnarik) to listen to the voices of the global multitude.

Additionally, if it becomes evident that this election has been stolen or tampered with, we will be participating in a nationwide call for direct actions throughout the day, with the Wednesday rally an opportunity for mass direct action.

Bring any and all noisemakers (drums, pots, pans, etc): we will not be silent.

I've heard a rumor that a statue of our current Commander-in-Thief may be toppled, but I can't say for certain.

Local results

Not suprisingly, every Democrat up for election in Orange County won handily. Here are results from the News & Observer (with my addition of party affiliation):

County Commissioner (2 Seats Available)
Valerie Foushee [D] 18,516
Moses Carey [D] 16,652

Jamie Daniel [R] 12,021
Artie L. Franklin[L] 3,446
43 of 44 precincts reporting

NC State Senate District 23
Ellie Kinnaird [D] 18,869

Whit Whitfield [R] 10,727
43 of 44 precincts reporting

Soil And Water District Supervisor
Roger Tate [D] 13,848

Will Shooter [L] 5,742
Write- in 144
43 of 44 precincts reporting

US Congress District 4
David Price [D] 20,582

Todd Batchelor [R] 9,355
43 of 44 precincts reporting

Anyone care to analyze or interpret these results?

Open Thread on The Day After

Although I don't consider it over, I do consider the 2004 Presidential race quite demoralizing. For so many people to have worked so hard to have it be this close really makes you want to give up on national politics.

But the great thing is that we can look at the good outcome of our local races and many of our state races and be reminded of how much more impact we can make at the local level. This is what this website is all about.

Imagine if just a fraction of the energy that Orange County poured into the presidential races was directed toward the municipal election next fall. We could have a grassroots revolution on our hands! Let's take all the lessons we learned this year about community organizing and put them to work here at home where we can really make a difference.

Consider this an open thread to discuss whatever is on your mind today about local, state, and national elections this year... or next.

Reading the Tea Leaves

We know that both Moses Carey and Valerie Foushee won the Commissioners race, but how did Valerie come out on top? Let's take a look at what really went down in the Orange County Commissioners race.

To draw out some conclusions about the County Commissioners race, I split up the precincts into five (value neutral) groups based on the results in this race. At the bottom of this post you will find those groupings (inadequately) defined.

DISCLAIMER: There is no significance to the order in which the Groups were lettered. There is nothing implicitly better about Group A versus Group D, for example. They are just identifying terms. Also, I hope I am merely presenting what I found, rather than what I wish that I found, so please do not read this post as reflecting what I think about merger etc. For the record, I voted for Val and Moses, just like almost all voters in my precinct.

Looking at those Groups, here is what I conclude (initially):

Shake Election Blues at NC WARN Bash

NC WARN will hold it's Fourth Annual Auction and Dance Party Saturday night from 6:30 to 11:30 at the Eno Unitarian Universalist Fellowship at 4907 Garrett Road.

As well as offering a rollicking good time, the event is an opportunity to learn about WARN's new Power Reduction campaign. This campaign gives us the opportunity to engage locally in an effort whose ramifications are truly global, one that ties consumption choices directly to policy making, and one that promotes an energy strategy exactly opposite to that of Dick Cheney.

Electoral Reform Begins at Home

There are four major electoral changes that Orange County voters should consider. Take note everyone, I said ‘consider.' I am not entirely sure what the best approach would be, but I do think the current system doesn't adequately reflect the diversity of viewpoints in Orange County.

For what they are worth, here are four ideas for County electoral reform that have been bandied about:

1. Increasing Membership

Censorship at WUNC

IPAS is a locally-based international women's health and reproductive rights organization. The following message came today:

IPAS has been sponsoring WUNC and we have a short announcement that is read on-air. Recently, WUNC decided that the phrase 'reproductive rights' which we use in our announcement was in violation of FCC regulations because it advocates for a particular position that is not universally endorsed. They admit that this is a conservative interpretation of the regulations, but nonetheless they will not let Ipas use this phrase in its on-air announcement.

I have been arguing with them to make the case that reproductive rights is not a euphemism for abortion and that, indeed, the whole point of rights is that they are universally held, e.g. the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. I doubt that my arguments will be successful.

I know that many of you are supporters of WUNC and I think some questions from listeners on this policy might help open their eyes to this issue.

What Now?

Guest Post by Liz Mason-Deese

A Community Planning Meeting on Surviving and Resisting Four More Years of the Bush Agenda Wednesday, Nov. 10, 7:30 PM, UNC-CH Rosenau Hall Room 133 (Public Health Building on S. Columbia St.)
For a campus map:

All members of the UNC and Chapel Hill/Carrboro/surrounding communities are invited! Please tell your friends!

The fact is, on Nov 2, 2004, we almost won. Millions of Americans got involved in politics: We met our neighbors; we felt part of a great movement for change. We can't let that energy go to waste. Now is the time to build that movement, to organize ourselves into a power that can stop our "leaders" from taking our country to disaster, and instead spread a vision for a new America. Our future is at stake. Being part of a movement for change is our best hope.

Liz is a junior at UNC-CH. She can be reached at



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