I woke up early this morning to drive my daughter to school and on the way she remarked how pretty the leaves were. We turned east and drove into a beautiful pink sunrise. I guess the world didn't end last night. Today is a new day.
I spent yesterday poll watching. In my assigned precinct we had surprisingly few issues. Early in the day, the Democratic lawyer who was assigned to my precinct and I got into a bit of a discussion. We had a guy who claimed he had just moved but could not prove residency. At one point she suggested that he could be considered homeless. If he were, Section 48A5(b) of the Iowa Code reads:
Be an Iowa resident. A person's residence, for voting purposes only, is the place which the person declares is the person's home with the intent to remain there permanently or for a definite, or indefinite or indeterminable length of time. A person who is homeless or has no established residence may declare residence in a precinct by describing on the voter registration form a place to which the person often returns.
I objected, that the person was not homeless. He had stated the address at which he resides. Rather he could not provide proof of residency. Further, it was not appropriate in the polling place for her to coach the voter. She later agreed that it was improper and we had no further issues. In fact we got along quite well, our children go to the same school and are involved in band and choir together.
Yesterday evening I went to our county Victory Party. There is plenty of commentary on the statewide results, so I'll be a little more parochial and focus on my county. The presidential results weren't really a surprise but I was crushed when Miller-Meeks lost. Then Reed. Then the county races started coming in. Mahacek, Rosenthal, Erceg, Zahn all lost, the one bright light in county government was Brent Oleson who handily won his supervisor's race. In the legislature, Potts, Nemecek, and Childers all lost. We had two more reasons to celebrate, Nick Wagner won handily in HD36 and Renee Schulte squeaked by winning by 47 votes in HD37. We'll be on pins and needles for a few days because the margin will likely trigger a recount. At this point I do not know how many provisional ballots were cast but they may come into play.
As for our party, we need to begin looking to the future now. The first step is to analyze our failures (and our successes) from last night. We need to look at absentee ballots, GOTV, volunteer organization and more.
As a member of the State Central Committee, I serve on the Organization Sub-Committee. Many of these issues wll fall into our area of responsibility. We need your input — we need to listen to our county organizations. 2010 is going to be a crucial year the work starts now.