Yesterday's election has come and gone, and for the most part it appears to have been a continuation of the right-wing slide in which the country has been stuck for the last several election cycles. Fortunately, there weren't that many things of import on the ballot nationwide, but much of what did get voted on seems to have resulted in tea-bagger victories. Hopefully that will reverse a year from now when America goes to the polls in big numbers to elect a new commander-in-chief.
I did get out and vote. There was only one issue on the ballot at my local polling place - an appeal from the local ambulance board to raise the sales tax for their benefit in return for a reduction in the property tax rate. I voted "no" because sales taxes are regressive - designed to hurt the poor more than others - and reducing property tax benefits those with property. Surprisingly, at least to me, the vote failed decisively.
Kentucky elected a tea-bagger as their new Republican governor. Matt Bevin, who two years ago ran against Mitch McConnell in the primary for his senate seat, managed to win the governorship rather handily after conducting what many regarded as a poor campaign. The upside of this political embarrassment will come when the new governor has to actually roll up his sleeves and get to work administering the government of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. That should give political commentators much to focus on, comedy-wise, as the country prepares for the upcoming general election.
Ohio turned down a statewide ballot initiative to legalize weed for medicinal and recreational use. The measure apparently included a poison pill added by the Republican General Assembly that would have limited pot-growing to just ten agricultural concerns - referred to as "monopolization" during the campaign. Even people who wanted their pot to be legal had qualms about turning production over to a handful of select business oligarchs. But the good folks in Ohio are already talking about the clean bill that they will put forward "next time."
One of the saddest election-watch parties seems to have taken place in the city of Houston, Texas, where voters overwhelmingly turned back a city council-approved ordinance that granted protected status to fifteen sub-groups including gay, lesbian, and trans-gendered individuals in areas such as housing and job discrimination. The mayor of Houston, Annise Parker, herself a lesbian, fought valiantly to defend and promote the ordinance before the public. Proponents of the ballot-initiative to rescind the ordinance labeled it simply "No Men in Women's Restrooms." Simple messages for simple minds won the day.
Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, a Republican, had this to say: "It was about protecting our grandmoms and our mothers and our wives and our sisters and our daughters and our granddaughters. I'm glad Houston led tonight to end this constant political-correctness attack for what we know in our heart and our gut as Americans is not right."
Houston is probably a place decent people would not even want to visit - what with its gut issue and all - and it would certainly be an inappropriate venue for a Super Bowl.
Move it, Goodell, move it!