Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Greetings from North Carolina

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Hello friends and neighbors! Mr. Super here posting from the ground in North Carolina today. Lots of exciting news out here and in Indiana as well. I'll offer the early insights that I have so far:

North Carolina employs an early vote period which allows voters to cast ballots at polling places two weeks in advance of an election. This year voters cast nearly half of a million ballots during that period, which is a record for this state, already surpassing the early vote totals from general elections in 2004 and 2006.

Reports of long lines at polling places, high traffic in Charlotte (urban and heavily African American) and in metro Raleigh. Light traffic in Greenville and the East (heavily rural and African American) and a steady stream of voters in Greensboro, Chapel Hill and Durham. Should be an exciting day. Some voting machine errors early on, but they seem to be addressed and fixed as quickly as they are reported.

Supers will be watching intently. It's expected that the candidates could split the states, each ending the night with a win. And though it's unlikely, a double-win by either would be particularly notable.

UPDATE 11:35 AM Eastern: turnout in the East has spiked considerably, now looking at heavy African American turnout and light to moderate White voter turnout.

Participating continues to be very heavy in Charlotte, though the mayor is running for Governor on the Republican side. Thus this may not necessarily indicate Democratic turnout that is drastically higher than anywhere else, but rather that Republicans are actually turning out in high numbers in this region.

UPDATE 12:00 PM Eastern: Turnout in Greensboro still steady. Bill Clinton on the ground in Charlotte at polling places all morning. Senator Clinton called into a conservative talk radio show in Charlotte (Republicans can't take Democratic ballots here, so not sure how that was effective). My guess is that President Clinton will be down East in Greenville later this afternoon.

Precinct 18-05 in Raleigh has seen 814 votes cast out of a possible 2,193 votes available. That's nearly a 40% turnout with roughly 7 hours left to go...

UPDATE: 3:00 PM Eastern: Via phone and working with a team of people, have been spot-checking polling places in Raleigh, Greenville, Charlotte and Greensboro today. Turnout is steady and high, though a bit quiet at the moment (midday is always the slowest).

It's apparent that some precincts in Raleigh are starting to swell as precinct 16-08 in Raleigh is already experiencing a 20-minute wait. Precinct 119 doesn't have enough parking - poll workers employing "curbside assistance" which basically means bringing the ballots to a person's car and they vote there. Kind of like a drive-thru.

UPDATE: 8:00 PM Eastern: Just got back from North Carolina State University, where the spring semester ended last week but the campus polling station still managed to rack up 741 votes as of 20 minutes prior to closing. State called for Obama as soon as the polls closed, which indicates a big spread in the exit poll.


Mr Super said...

Update: turnout in the East has spiked considerably, now looking at heavy African American turnout and light to moderate White voter turnout.

Participating continues to be very heavy in Charlotte, though the mayor is running for Governor on the Republican side - so that turnout may not translate the same for Democrats in the region.

Unknown said...

Thanks for the NC observations.

After today's results, the contest for pledged delegates will only have 5% left of pledged delegates to select. We are so close to the end in fact that 2 weeks from today Sen. Obama will clinch the 1627 majority of pledged delegates.

However as of now, there are still 34% of superdelegates left to be decided.

Amot said...

I wonder if our own Mr. Super will remain undecided after today?

Anonymous said...

It looks like heavy early turnout in NC favoring Obama, looks like he'll make a strong showing there. Will you also report from Indiana?

BTW, thanks for being an island of solid sanity in this crazy race!

Amot said...

I checked the press for Indiana news. If I had to summarize:
- solid turnout close to 2004 GE
- news about turnout in all areas
- a lot of crossover voters for both camps; heavily republican districts are voting with Dems ballots

My prediction is that Reps and independents will decide the outcome - if many Reps go out and vote Hillary to prolong the fight - she is the winner; if many independents and progressive Reps go out and vote Barack - he is the winner! (I know, it's an exclamation mark!)

DocJess said...

Amot, Amot -- PLEASE! Of course he will.

DocJess said...

Amot --

Read in one of the Indiana papers that there are a lot of Republicans in the south who are voting Obama even though they plan to vote for McCain in November JUST IN CASE he loses, they consider Obama the "best of two evils" -- BUT HEY! I'll take the win!

Amot said...

I don't know - I have read 5 articles so far and all they say voting of Reps in IN goes both ways... Maybe core Reps in IN are really thinking Obama is the better choice and support him for good! If this is the case, he will win!

DocJess said...

Yeah, yeah -- look Amot -- I'm just trying to keep my heart in my chest until 7:30 pm when the first polls close. And while I've read in ALL the primaries that there are both Republican Obama supporters, and Republican Ditto-heads (vote Clinton to keep up the race) I actually hadn't read before that there are Republicans who are voting Obama "just in case"

SO -- while I accept what you're saying, I'm just clinging to this ONE LITTLE EXTRA THING.

While I have great respect for the guys who run DCW and their commitment to fairness, and true numbers, and citing sources -- I'M A PARTISAN WITH AN OPINION -- and I want my candidate to win Indiana decisively and put an end to this slow torture.

So I'll cling to whatever I can.....

Amot said...

Is this what USA should look like?

"More Republicans who crossed over seem to have done so either for more straightforward reasons -- they prefer one of the Democrats to the other, at least as a second choice, and may be considering crossing over in the general election.

That was the case with Larry Lamanna, 60, a Lou Dobbs fan and former Romney supporter at another table who doesn't like John McCain's stance on immigration.

He said he was "thrilled" to hear Clinton say she'd "obliterate" Iran. "It's time someone spanked those people," he said."

Next one

"I am definitely going to try to go with Hillary," said [Mary Bunger, a 44-year-old single mom from Abington]. "I almost feel like [Obama's] anti-Christ from the Middle East."

Bunger reads news online about the election and has been "trying to talk everybody into voting, especially this year because I'm really scared for Obama to get it."

Maybe USA deserves McCain after all...

Mr Super said...

Amot - Great quotes. Can you offer the source and a link for those?

Amot said...

Yes, I took them from


I think one of the sources was Ben himself... That is IN, I believe your state does better :)

DocJess said...

Dear Mr. Super --

I've read you here, I've linked and read your blog.

I fully understand all of your reasons that individual super delegates would hold back their endorsements.

I have read the numbers, as I'm sure you have, and it seems virtually impossible for Hillary Clinton to numerically and honestly wrest the nomination from Obama.

In addition, there is Plouffe's letter to the supers this morning echoing the numbers, the trends, and the importance of supers coming out.

So I ask you, in this public forum -- what more do you need to endorse? What possible benefit is there TO YOU, TODAY to hold your endorsement?

Thank you for your time and consideration in this matter.

Anonymous said...

Why should Mr. Super endorse? What I have valued from his analysis is the lack of evident bias.

Just the facts, sir!

Amot said...

My guess is Mr. Super is a leaner, but he better stays uncommitted! He will probably endorse on June 4th because some of his remarks make me believe he is not neutral at all and if he was not doing such a great job as a blogger he would have endorsed so far...

GL, Mr. Super!

Anonymous said...

Well at least Clinton's campaign is indicating the fight ends with the primaries. I suspect the SuperDel count by then will have moved into Obama's favor, in addition to maintaining his lead in all other categories.

West Virginia could be Clinton's last big hurrah - the poll margin looks enormously in her favor. It would be nice to see her "go out with a bang." Though I think some of her battle strategies have actually done her harm, she has helped to sharpen and hone Obama's campaigning skills. Thank you Hillary!