Mitt Romney was declare the winner of the Iowa Caucuses by 8 votes. Weeks later after all the votes were counted, Rick Santorum was declared the winner.
Newt Gingrich won the South Carolina GOP Presidential Primary.
Holmdel Deputy Mayor Serena DiMasowas elected a Monmouth County Freeholder by the Monmouth County Republican Committee.
State Senator Joe Kyrillos announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate.
U.S. Senator Bob Menendez blocked Federal Magistrate Patty Shwartz’s nomination to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. Menendez denied he was blocking the appointment because Shwartz’s boyfriend was the Assistant U.S. Attorney who investigated him in 2006. Menendez reversed himself after the news of his opposition to Shwartz become pulbic. Shwartz’s nomination has yet to be confirmed.
Governor Christie nominated Fair Haven Mayor Mike Halfacre to be the Director of the Division of Alcohol Beverage Control.
Governor Christie nominated First Assistant Attorney General Philip Kwon and Chatham Mayor Bruce Harris to be State Supreme Court Associate Justices. Kwon was the first Asian-American ever nominated. Harris was the first openingly homosexual nominee.
New Jersey’s newspaper industry fought back efforts to allow “Legal Notices” to be posted online instead of in newspapers.
Mitt Romney won the Florida GOP presidential primary.
In early December of 2005 I attended the annual holiday gathering of the Monmouth Ocean Development Council. This particular party stands out in my memory of the hundreds of such parties I’ve attended over the years because of the entertainment. A jazz band from New Orleans was touring the country to raise money for the Katrina recovery efforts. Their music was fabulous. Their plea for help is what stuck with me. It was deep, personal and profound. The wreckage seen on television four months earlier was a distant memory for me, until I felt a little of the pain in that band’s plea.
The difference between hearing about and watching news accounts of a devastating hurricance and living through the aftermath of such a catostrophic event is like the difference between watching porn and having sex, though not nearly as fun. It’s not fun at all.
In a negative sense, the Republican Party accomplished the impossible last night. In a year of economic stagnation and anemic job growth, the GOP failed to win the White House against an incumbent president who had begun the campaign with a negative approval rating. At the beginning of 2012, most pundits expected the GOP to regain control of the U.S. Senate; instead, the Republicans appear to have incurred a net loss of two seats.
The reelection victory of incumbent President Barack Obama was primarily a matter of demographics. In my PolitickerNJ column of August 5, 2012, I described this demographic factor as follows:
“Obama’s larger electoral vote base is largely a function of what I define as demographic political inelasticity, namely the tendency of certain demographic groups to vote overwhelmingly for one party or the other, regardless of the condition of the economy. Specifically, the Democrats have maintained the loyalty of African-American, Puerto Rican, Mexican-American, and single women voters, regardless of the current economic doldrums….”
One could also add voters under 25 to the list of these Obama demographic constituencies.
By popular demand (from Matt Rooney and a Democratic operative who doesn’t want people to know he/she talks to me) your favorite blogger is shifting his focus away from the Sandy Aftermath and back to politics on this election eve.
Rooney said, “Let’s hear your projection, Gallagher.” My response: “The power will be off at my house for the rest of the week.”
There’s a serious flaw in all of the polls which is misrepresenting the current state of the presidential race. As Dick Morris has pointed out, the pollsters all assume the demographic turnout will be the same as it was in 2008. There are many reasons why this is simply not going to happen. Many African-American preachers have already indicated that Obama hasn’t done anything for black people and that his views on gay marriage do not match their own. They will not be lining up the busses to take their parishioners to the polls.
Let’s see what this means. At this point, it is fairly well predicted that if Romney takes Pennsylvania, he takes the election.
This seems clear from looking at RealClearPolitics’ current calculations. Giving Romney Colorado, North Carolina, Iowa, and Florida, which is not unreasonable, Romney needs only 26 more electoral votes. If you give him Virginia, where he is slightly ahead, he needs 13. He can do this with Ohio. He can do this with Wisconsin and New Hampshire. He can do this with Pennsylvania. Few people believe he will win Pennsylvania, where he is trailing by 5% in some polls. (Susquehanna Polling — which is very accurate in Pennsylvania — did a poll October 18 showing Romney up by 4%. For some reason, RealClearPolitics is using its October 4 poll showing Obama ahead by 2%.) In 2008, in Philadelphia, the mother lode for Democratic votes and a city with a majority-African-American population, approximately 688,000 people voted in the 2008 election. Of these, 574,930 voted for Obama. In 2010, however, when the Republicans swept to power in the House — due to disenchantment with Obama, primarily — only 422,283 people voted in Philadelphia.
Granted, there are always fewer votes in a senatorial/gubernatorial election than in a presidential election, but this is a dramatic drop-off. To begin with, I should point out that Republican Tom Corbett won the gubernatorial race, garnering 54.49% of the vote statewide. In their final polls, no pollster had the Republican above 52%. In other words, they all underestimated him by nearly 2.5%.
Katie Couric won the night as more people saw her sitting behind Governor Romney and President Obama while the they delivered their remarks since the time she broadcast her colonoscopy.
Romney was the more presidential of the candidates. He was confident, funny and prepared. The crowd responded accordingly.
Obama joked twice about his performance in the first debate. “Just to make Axlerod sweat,” he said that he was going to prepare for the third debate coming up on Monday night the same way he did for the first. It looked to me that the same Obama who showed up at the first debate also showed up at the Al Smith Dinner.