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Open Election Thread

Thoughts, predictions, your experience voting – whatever you’ve got.
We’ll be here all day.
And night.
(Actually not – we’ll be in and out. But just be patient.)
(Comments now closed – I’ll start a new reax thread.)

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posted November 4, 2008 at 8:55 am

Good morning, Amy!
Down here in Florida, just in the last week, I have noticed an increasing number of McCain/Palin signs and bumper stickers every day.
I think the tide has been turning in McCain’s favor the last few days, and I hope that Obama’s “You can build a coal plant, but it will bankrupt you” comment is enough to swing Ohio and PA.
I really think McCain has a decent shot to pull this off, so my prediction is McCain, by a slim margin.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 8:57 am

At the seminary I’m at, we have Adoration all day as the nation goes to the polls.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 9:04 am

I live in a typical neighborhood in Queens, NY. This morning as I left my house to walk to the polling place, the guys at the union hall across the street were setting up tables supporting one of the state senate candidates. As I walked to the corner a landscaper’s truck was stopped picking up Mexican day laborers for a job. At the polling place I waited in line with Hassidic Jews, a Sikh in his turban, and a whole host of other cultures and races. It almost felt like a movie. However, from snippets of conversations I overheard, I got the distinct impression that I was one of the few who were voting for John McCain. I’m still praying, however!

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Shaun G

posted November 4, 2008 at 9:04 am

I live in Delaware, and one of the most interesting races for me is the one between Sen. Joe Biden and Christine O’Donnell for Biden’s U.S. senate seat.
Biden is permitted under law to run for both the vice presidency and the senate — and if he happens to win both elections, Delaware’s governor gets to appoint someone to his seat. But nobody knows for sure whether it will be Delaware’s outgoing governor (Democrat Ruth Ann Minner) or incoming governor (either Democrat Jack Markell, who has a heavy lead in the polls, or Republican Bill Lee) who will do the appointing.
So, basically, if you vote for Biden for senate over O’Donnell with the expectation that Biden will win the vice presidency, you’re effectively saying that you will take ANYBODY over O’Donnell.
So what’s so bad about O’Donnell?
Well, like Biden, she’s Catholic. But unlike Biden, she’s very vocally pro-life. She’s a pretty generic Republican candidate as far as her other positions go, but it seems like the pro-life thing alone has kind of doomed her in liberal Delaware.
One of the things that I think is most telling about the intersection of faith and politics here in Delaware is the results of a mock election held last week in Delaware schools.
In the senate race, Biden whooped O’Donnell overall. But when you look at the school-by-school votes, you’ll notice that the evangelical-ish Wilmington Christian School overwhelmingly voted for O’Donnell … but that the Catholic high schools overwhelmingly voted for Biden.

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Tom K

posted November 4, 2008 at 10:01 am

Good morning! I was in line by 5:40 this morning, the polls opened at 6 am. I was #92 to vote and was finished voting by 6:55. I took advantage of the time in line to say the rosary (twice) that God watch over our country as we vote today. Yesterday I saw a picture of John McCain’s visit to the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico this past July. In the photograph, he was placing a rose before the image of Our Lady. Seeing the picture comforted me, for it reminded me that Our Lady of Guadalupe is the patroness of North America. So the rosaries I prayed last night and this morning were for her intercession and protection.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 10:06 am

Long-ish lines at the polls this morning at about 9:30. At least I got a free cup of coffee at Starbucks for showing my “I voted” sticker.
My diocese is holding 40 hours of adoration & fasting for the election. If these prayerful efforts aren’t enough to get a pro-life candidate elected, hopefully the efforts will mitigate the potential damage of the pro-abortion candidate.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 10:40 am

I’m also in Delaware & have voted at the same site for almost 30 years (yikes!) but today was the first time ever that there were no poll watchers (aka “challengers”).
I asked where they were and no one seemed to know or care.
Poll watchers are the ones who sit in the back and check the registration rolls when your name is called out. Today, no names were announced and there was a different crew working the tables and the machines.
I don’t know what it means, if anything, but it is a big difference in this location where it was always the same workers until today and always poll watchers.

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Memphis Aggie

posted November 4, 2008 at 10:43 am

Longer lines than last year and the thoughtful folks at my local precinct provided coffee and donut holes. Finished by 7:20 and went to mass.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 10:47 am

Nearly no line at our polling place. My husband was in line 20 minutes before the polls opened and had voted and was on his way within an hour and a bit.
I packed up our 3.5 month old daughter and headed out around 9:30. We were back home by 10:00.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:00 am

I woke up early this morning to vote. My intention was to avoid the long lines that might be there tonight as people come home from work to vote. It was my first time voting at this polling place since I moved into this neighborhood last year. It’s not very convenient to where I live by NYC standards (I live in Brooklyn). And it takes me out of my way to work. Still, I offered up the extra walking and added it to the sacrifices and fasts I’ve been offering up for our country.
I had heard on 1010 WINS that at 7 AM there were already long lines at polling places on the Upper East Side and I got worried that I might be late for work. Turns out that wasn’t the case in my part of Brooklyn. There were only three people in front of me. Like Lourdes from Queens (comment #3) there was a broad spectrum of people there: Hasidic Jews, Russian and Chinese immigrants, working class folk, young, old, women, and men. This is NYC so I expect to be one of the few voting for McCain. I saw a car with an Obama bumper sticker on my way to the polling place. I’m sure it’s a sentiment shared by many. I don’t care. I was undeterred and I voted for life.
I will not be listening to the television or the radio today and I won’t be checking the results online either. I will just pray. I’ll find out when I turn on the radio tomorrow morning. And no matter what the result, I’m determined to have a happy birthday tomorrow.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:08 am

Here in Valley Village, CA, I was in line at 10 minutes to 7, and already there was a long line. Took about 40 minutes to move through the line.
On the way out, there was a man with “No to Prop 8″ flyers across the street. He started to hand one to me until he saw my “I voted” sticker. He said, “You’re of no use to me now.”
Feeling the love.

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Sean Gallagher

posted November 4, 2008 at 11:09 am

I got to our polling place at 5:50 a.m., 10 minutes before it opened. It took an hour for me to get through. I was the 65th voter there.
Right by the door to the polling place (a fire station), there was an official looking sign that told people how to vote a straight Democratic ticket and for Barack Obama. Down in the lower right hand corner, there was a note in small type that the sign was sponsored by the local Democrat Party.
I asked a polling official about it and he took it down.

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John G.

posted November 4, 2008 at 11:10 am

Took about an hour here at a polling place in Virginia Beach. Everything smooth and orderly. Big turnout, of course.
Saw this at the Wash Times this morning…

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RP Burke

posted November 4, 2008 at 11:12 am

Gave up on early voting last week when, from the end of the line, I heard the wait would be about 3 hours. At the poll this a.m., my wife and I arrived at 555am for a 630am opening, and were about 20th in line. When we got sorted by alphabetical order, she (who kept her last name) got through faster than I did. Total time spent, about an hour, enough time for breakfast at the upstairs dining hall. Only signs and poll workers were for Obama.
Trolling around some rural areas of the state to go apple picking a couple of weeks ago, we were struck by the relative lack of McCain signs in an area that was papered with lawn signs supporting not only George the Lesser but the anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment that passed here (Ohio) in ’04. Probably 1/4 of the total number of signs, and of these, maybe 60% were McCain, 40% Obama.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:23 am

Went to vote around 7:30, out by 8:30 (I vote in D.C.). Somewhat longer line than in 2004, but not by much.
I can’t recall ever being this depressed and angry over an election. If the Pope still had the Papal States, I’d be petitioning to enter as a political refugee.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:40 am

A beautiful fall morning for voting in Omaha – my wife and I got there when the polls opened at 8am. Lines started forming out the door as we left. It’s working class people where I live: at the rally for Sarah Palin here last month, I found they were the majority of the audience. My wife voted for Obama and I for McCain. There seems to be an assumption that husband and wife vote for the same party: my kids find it confusing. It feels good to be an American today, although I feel a little tense about the whole thing – yeesh – how long has this campaign been going on? Longer than my youngest (1 year) has been alive!

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Elizabeth M

posted November 4, 2008 at 11:45 am

We went with the kids around 10 am. Just a very short line (but we have a small district with 3 districts voting in the same elementary school). Signs starting outside the school reminding everyone that there is no electioneering within the polling place. NJ law (according to the sign) also forbids any campaign buttons or apparel in the voting place. So none of that around. The same group of senior citizens manning the polls. They seemed pleased that we brought our kids with us. The kids wished they could vote too. They both proudly voted McCain in the “Kids Vote” program in school yesterday.
We have had to explain to them that whoever wins, whether we agree or not, he will be our country’s president!

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:59 am

It’s a pretty day here in Dallas but I must admit I’m filled with an unease and almost overwhelming sense of dread.
Both my husband and I took advantage of the early voting. Dallas County typically runs heavily Democratic but the state as a whole votes Republican. I went a week ago Saturday (voted McCain) and there were only a few people around (lots of electronic stations, just few voters). However, Chris voted on Wednesday of last week and waited 45 minutes to vote (at the same location). I’m terribly conflicted right now. I doubt McCain will win, I’m afraid that if he does win, we’ll never hear the end of it. Then there is a big part of me that says, “well, maybe things have to get really, really bad (thinking FOCA here) before people wake up and realize that everyone has to vote!”
Dallas County had 455,000 early voters out of approximately 700,000 registered voters. But here, early turnout used to mean Republican (the oldsters not wanting to wait in line).
However, I am glad that hopefully tonight this will be over. Annette

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Murdoch Macleod

posted November 4, 2008 at 12:22 pm

Prayers continuing for your country today.
— Mac in Alberta

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posted November 4, 2008 at 12:28 pm

I’m a recent transplant to D.C. from the west coast, and as I’m still registered in my home state of CA, I voted by mail and won’t get to experience going to the polls.
Maybe because of a combination of the atmosphere here in D.C. and the bitter battles (especially over Props. 8& 4) going on at home, or perhaps it’s because I work and talk primarily with Catholics, but the gloom & doom is pervasive of late.
“Apocalyptic” is the word in everyone’s mouth; from my younger sister, (a college undergrad) to my supervisor at work here in D.C., to my roommate from last year (a winery worker in CA), to a young Dominican acquaintance I spoke with last week.
I’m no fan of John McCain, but I greatly fear what will happen if he loses- which I think very likely. I hope not, but it’s a hope against hope. In either case, I will be happy when today is over.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 12:46 pm

Voted a couple weeks ago by mail in the comfort of my home taking my own sweet time. Even looked up some of the judges on the internet to see what I could find. Even found one to not retain, although I read somewhere that no judge in Colorado has been booted by ballot.
My only concern with vote-by-mail is that there’s no confirmation that my ballot was received. I don’t have a yard sign, but what if I did, and a mail carrier with opposite political leanings had an “accident” with my ballot? Actually, I don’t even need a yard sign; he already knows what kind of mail I get.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 12:47 pm

I LOVE election day. Even as a kid, I thought it was such an exciting day.
I waited for 45 minutes.
My sister’s preschool had elections yesterday. The 4 & 5 year olds voted by putting an X under the photo of the man they wanted to be president. (McCain or Obama). McCain won.
My sister says that her preschool voters always end up being right. Their winner has been elected each time.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 12:48 pm

Working at home today with the kids off of school. I went out a little while ago to vote and pick up lunch for us. I was back in less than 45 minutes. Beautiful day here in NE Ohio.
I knew I couldn’t wear anything “partisan” to vote, but I did put on a black long-sleeve T-shirt that is embellished with a large, gold, embroidered cross decorated with rhinestones. Nothing says “Right Wing Voter” like sparkley Christian symbolism.
I also feel very nervous and uneasy–which is unusual for me and unlike any other election in my experience. I will be praying instead of watching the results tonight.
The McCain Palin signs seem to outnumber the Obama Biden signs in our area, but the middle school mock election picked Obama by about 2/3 of the vote. (The student body is about 98% white, so race was not a factor.)

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posted November 4, 2008 at 1:05 pm

From Northern Virginia
Went to the 9:00 AM Mass and stayed for the daily rosary afterward. From there, headed over to the polls. Very, very short line. Was there less than five minutes.
I am continuing in prayer throughout the day, as I am sure very many of you all are also. May the Lord have mercy on our country.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 1:09 pm

I live in one of the bluest neighborhoods of one of the bluest states (California) — it is all white, upper middle class and roughly 50% Jewish. The Obama fever here is overwhelming. I realize that it is not representative of the country as a whole, but it is representative of a key segment of our elites and it is all very daunting. I sense that here and elsewhere there is a huge bandwagon effect favoring Obama, one that derives from a desire to “make history.” I fear that we are in for some trying times.

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Sandra Miesel

posted November 4, 2008 at 1:10 pm

I was humming the Dies irae as I ventured forth today. I voted mid-morning when there was no line at all. (100,000 county residents voted early after loong waits.) The only campaign workers outside my polling place door were kids pushing local GOP candidates. Same pattern with election signs there: one Obama and many for local Republican candidates. Signs that I saw on lawns in the area were tilted the same way.
My parish has urged us to come into church and pray during the election hours.

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Sherry Weddell

posted November 4, 2008 at 1:21 pm

Here in Santa Clarita, they are also holding all day Eucharistic Adoration.
At Mass this morning, a number of petitions were about the election. Our hostess observed that many people are so distressed about the election and it’s outcome (and often afraid of different things) that she has been praying continuously for peace after all the results are.
The lines for early voting yesterday were 6 hours long, they tell me. Makes my 1 1/4 hour wait last week in Colorado Springs seem like a peace of cake.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 1:22 pm

Actually, after some digging I found a site online for my county where I could confirm that my mail-in ballot was received. Whew! They could’ve made it a little easier to find.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 1:26 pm

I haven’t voted yet, but my husband said the lines weren’t long at our polling place in upstate NY.
An interesting incident this morning, though: as I was crossing the Mid-Hudson Bridge, traffic was stopped while some bridge workers unfurled a huge American flag to hang from the middle of the bridge. Despite my misgivings and angst regarding this election, I was reminded of–and grateful for–what George will said a while ago, to wit: “To have been born in the United States in the 20th century is to have won the lottery of life.” How true that is, and I was glad to be reminded of it this election day.

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Headless Unicorn Guy

posted November 4, 2008 at 1:36 pm

Driving home last night (Orange County, CA) I ended up in traffic beside a carful of crazy teens holding big rainbow flags out their car and shrieking like Beatlemaniacs. (Had to do with “No on 8/pro Gay Marriage” — I think.) Only in California…
If we weren’t both doing 40 down Chapman, I would have played dumb and started going on about they must be Incas, they’re flying the flag of the Inca Empire and City of Cuzco, Peru; if I only spoke Quechua I could make their day REALLY surreal…
P.S. Has anyone heard the nickname of the Obama campaign crest? Donut & Bacon.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 1:37 pm

Our state only has two counties that still have polls and not vote-by-mail and I don’t live in one of them, so I voted a couple of weeks ago.
but I did get an “I Voted” sticker from a coworker today, and my free cuppa at Starbucks.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 2:25 pm

A good crowd at my polling location today. More than I have ever seen, but the one worker there said it was the fewest people they had had all day, with lines snaking around at most times, something I have never seen here in south Jersey. Ever.
Seems to be a lot more McCain signs on lawns and such today than there has been up to now…
I pray those pre-schoolers in #22 are correct.

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Jim Dick

posted November 4, 2008 at 2:25 pm

I’m Catholic and I’m votin’ for Obama. And I don’t think I will need to confess it.
I have voted in every local and national election in five different areas of the U.S. since 1972. For the first time I will not wear an “I voted” sticker. Voting has become sacralized. Important as it is it is it is not a “sacred duty” in my way of thinking.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 2:36 pm

About 1/3 of the registered voters turned out for early voting here in Georgia, with waits up to 6 or 8 hours. Today, the lines at my polling place ran about 1 to 1.5 hours all morning, although I think the line was longer when the polls opened at 7am. Gorgeous sunny day with all the leaves changing, so the wait was pleasant.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 2:44 pm

This, from Thomas Sowell, makes me pine for the days of Bill Clinton:
“The Clintons had the saving grace of utter lack of principle. Which meant that when they saw which way the political winds were blowing, that’s the way they’d go, regardless of what they were saying. This man has been a far-left ideologue for twenty years…I think this man really does believe that he can change the world and people like that are infinitely more dangerous than crooked politicians.”
From the WSJ editorial page:
“If the current polls hold, Barack Obama will win the White House on November 4th and Democrats will consolidate their congressional majorities. Though we doubt most Americans realize it, this would be one of the most profound political and ideological shifts in U.S. history.”

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posted November 4, 2008 at 2:48 pm

Proud Catholic Jim said
>Important as it is – it (voting) is not a “sacred duty” in my way of thinking. <
but killing innocent children is a sacred duty and so you voted for BO and the party of death (Arch-bishop Burke)

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posted November 4, 2008 at 3:05 pm

I agree with others who’ve said they felt dread or anxiety today. I voted on October 23rd (early voting in Texas), and felt dirty about it then and still kind of feel dirty about it; maybe if I’d waited and voted today, the excitement of election day would have helped? (Then again, maybe not.)

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posted November 4, 2008 at 3:05 pm

Last night, one of our local parishes held adoration from 6-9. I attended for the last two hours. People came and went, there were about 40 people in the church at any given time.
The congregation was very silent and prayerful.
Tears welled in my eyes as I knelt behind a young couple several rows in front of me as they cradled and kissed their infant son with Down Syndrome.
My heart breaks for what is happening in this country. We can’t stop praying. We must continue to put our trust in God, no matter who wins.

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Memphis Aggie

posted November 4, 2008 at 3:09 pm

Beautiful day here to mid 70’s and sunny

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posted November 4, 2008 at 3:41 pm

Today is a day to put on ash and sackcloth.
May Our Lady of Victory pray for us.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 3:44 pm

More than usual turnout in our normally comatose polling place, even around 8am PST. And we in CA have more than just the presidency at stake.
Most interesting thing that, despite Obamania, Props4/8 out here et al, that was the great indicator of the coming Apocalypse-
I happened to glance down at the last of the duos running for President and noticed the respected Dr. Allan Keyes’ name. I thought “Hmmm, what party affiliation?”
Who’d have thought that Allan Keyes would be running for president via the American Independent Party in our boomer lifetimes? Somewhere, George Wallace and Dr. King are having a quite a chuckle over the Lord’s mysterious ways.

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Suzanne Temple

posted November 4, 2008 at 4:11 pm

I tried early voting here in NC, but the lines were much too long. Today, with more polling places, and ours in the deep woods, I didn’t wait at all. Free coffee at Starbucks after was nice. I’m feeling anxiety over this election. The anxiety I feel is more for the division in this country than any one party’s gain or loss. How I wish there would be a landslide election. How I wish there were a candidate we could all rally behind together.

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Katherine Barron

posted November 4, 2008 at 4:22 pm

Went around 10 am today in rural south GA. No waiting. In and out in 10 minutes. My understanding was that there was a lot of early voting in my county. My 5 year old son went with me. We have electronic touch screen voting. I let my son check all the boxes. He loved that.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 4:49 pm

I live in heavily blue area of Philadelphia (African-American/college). Obama’s get out the vote operation here is over the top: there are cars driving around with sound systems on the roof, most calmly reminding you to vote for Obama, a few passionately haranguing. I’ve had three people so far ring my doorbell, and I can’t count all the fliers stuffed under my door in the past week. If you go out for a walk, you see Obama volunteers ringing doorbells everywhere.
For McCain on the other hand I had one robocall and one piece of direct mail yesterday, both from Arlan Specter. And I’m a registered Republican.
I voted at 2:30, and there was no line whatsoever. The poll workers said it had been much busier earlier, and were not at all friendly, I would guess due to burn out.
I’m reading in the national news about a lot of voting irregularities in Philly, but saw nothing like that at my polling place. The only politiking was a college- student-looking girl in an Obama shirt sitting in a folding chair on the sidewalk outside, chirping “hello and welcome to the polls” to everyone as they arrived.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 5:04 pm

Catholic Obama supporters:
What was your proportionate reason for voting for Obama? And what will you say on your judgment day to the 6+ million babies who will be aborted over the next 4 years, and the many more who will be aborted if FOCA passes and pro-abortion Supreme Court justices are appointed as Obama has promised? You might want to start working on that speech, or perhaps reconsider whether you should ask for mercy. What justice it will be when your verbal gymnastics defending the murder of the voiceless and helpless are met with eyes of pity welling with tears for you. I pray you have the grace and sense to sincerely beg for mercy and forgiveness instead.

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Msgr. Eric R. Barr

posted November 4, 2008 at 5:14 pm

Was proud to vote this morning in my small town amidst my parishioners. It always gives me a thrill to vote—what a great power we have. But today, I also shudder with real fear what people are doing with their votes. The push for change simply for change’s sake can catapault us onto a shadowed road where other values function than the ones we have been used to. What a huge election–and what a great change seems to be coming to our republic. I’m asking God to place us in his loving care–whatever happens–and guide us through this uncertain future. I’m not giving up–I’ll fight for what’s right–and that’s why I love Dylan Thomas’ line from his great poem—Rage, Rage against the dying of the light!

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Susan Peterson

posted November 4, 2008 at 5:29 pm

Polls opened at 6 am here in the Southern Tier of New York. I walked over to the elementary school which is less than the length of a block from my house, at about 6:30am, walked in, the people sitting there asked me my name but were already opening the book to the right page before I said it. I signed my name, walked right into the booth, the nice old fashioned ones with the big lever you pull to close the curtain and the little levers you push down by your candidates, and then you pull the big level back to register your vote and open the curtain. I wasn’t there five minutes.
I love living in a small town. Even going to the Department of Motor Vehicles is a pleasant experience here.
Although New York always goes Democrat, my county has gone Republican ever since I have lived here. But I am afraid I saw more Obama signs than I would have expected, about 50/50 with the McCain signs.
My husband still hasn’t accepted the possibility, far less the liklihood, that Obama may win. I have been trying to reconcile myself to it so I can stand it tonight and tomorrow.
Maybe we all can plan a really huge turnout to the Right to Life March on Jan 22?
Susan Peterson

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My Little Ways

posted November 4, 2008 at 5:44 pm

Mick, your comment took my breath away. Yes, THIS is why I care so much about the election outcome. Politicians come and go; markets go bullish and bearish; controversies rage and cool; but those little souls will be gone — forever.

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Kalynne Pudner

posted November 4, 2008 at 5:47 pm

I broke up my 11:00 class early, and left a note on the board of my 12:30 that we’d start at 12:45. When I got back, the students asked if I’d slipped out on account of the election. I said I had. But not to vote. I went to Mass. (Voted later, after the completion of teaching duties…first things first.)

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Jaime McGrath

posted November 4, 2008 at 6:00 pm

I used my hour in line to listen to all my favorite prayer & Scripture podcasts:
Verbum Domini
Daily Readings from the New American Bible
Pray Station Portable
and even had time for Daily Breakfast and some of a Catholic Answers episode!
Voting in Savannah, by the way, is weird (my first since moving here), since 90% of the local offices go uncontested. It seems the incumbents hold local office for life. Not that I really care who is County Coroner, I suppose.

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Western NY

posted November 4, 2008 at 6:14 pm

Beautiful day here. After voting I attended a special Eucharistic Adoration time at a local chapel. My thoughts: God is in charge–ultimately. We cannot frustrate His loving plans, no matter how badly we may screw things up. I was at an outdoor pro-life stand in our town on Sunday afternoon. A bag-lady shuffled by and (pointing to one of our signs) quipped: “That’s the reason this country’s in the mess it’s in.” WISDOM!

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sad in ohio

posted November 4, 2008 at 6:26 pm

No lines at my poll here in Cinci about mid-morning. The bummer is that I got there and my name was not on the list—I had to vote provisional, which here means my vote won’t be counted for 10 days. Seems almost pointless by then. I get home to call the board of elections to find I’d been “unregistered” by some computer glitch. They are re-registering me but that still doesn’t do any good for getting my vote counted today. This makes me sad because I was excited to vote in this election. I was excited to vote for LIFE. So, go McCain, go–you’re going to have to do it without me!

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posted November 4, 2008 at 6:28 pm

From Rural Wyoming (Ok, so that’s redundant)
Parish is holding 24-hour Adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, ending at 7:00 tonight. Whatever happens in this election, Jesus is still Lord.
Two youngest daughters voting for the first time, ages 18 and 19.
No lines at our polling place, not a surprise–lines for anything in Wyoming are a rare occurence.
Thought that the two in college had to vote in our home state via absentee ballot, but heard that many college students voted in the state in which they’re attending college. Though it’s a moot point for them this election, does anyone know if that’s permissible? If so, they should have voted in Florida and Virginia instead of Wyoming with our grand total of 3 electoral votes, and a voting population that’s 2/3 Republican. We do have a very close U.S. representative race, though.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 7:00 pm

I was a poll watcher for early voting last Thursday night. Folks waited in line about 2hr. I felt really sorry for the over-worked staff who were trying to check them in. They ended up turning away about 6 people that I saw. The weirdest thing was a guy who came in without a drivers license, SS card or voters ID. All he had were a few unsigned credit cards. The staffer asked him if he had anything with his signature & he said no. She told him to just sign on of the credit cards & let him through. I thought that couldn’t be okay so I called someone who said it was not ok & they’d notify the Election Commission. I think the system would be pretty easy to abuse.

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Franklin Jennings

posted November 4, 2008 at 7:02 pm

Here in Atlanta, at 2pm, I walked in and my longest wait was while the young lady found my name by computer. I was there a total of 00:03:45. I had my choice of 3 empty computers.
I was also the only person not of obvious African descent. I don’t know if or why that matters, but I did find it interesting.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 7:58 pm

The weirdest thing was a guy who came in without a drivers license, SS card or voters ID. All he had were a few unsigned credit cards.
gb, here in California (California! of all places!) we don’t show any ID at all. Just tell them your address and they check you off the list.

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Patricia Gonzalez

posted November 4, 2008 at 8:21 pm

Went to evening Mass at my parish church here in Hudson, Quebec, Canada to pray for the people of the US on election day — and also for the new President, whoever he may be. He’s going to need lots and lots of prayers. May God bless America!

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Margaret Duffy

posted November 4, 2008 at 8:38 pm

Here on the Upper East Side of Manhattan I looked out my window this morning directly across the street at the school that is my polling place. The school and I are about half way down the block between Second and First Avenues. At 7:30 AM there was a line down to Second Avenue. Saw people on their cell phones and blackberries, probably calling in to their offices to say they would be late, all while juggling coffee cups. About an hour and a half later I left the house, intending to vote before going in to work. Forget it. By that time the line stretched all the way to Second, up Second to the next block and halfway down the next side street. I went to work instead.
Scared by this experience, I left work an hour early and rushed home. What a difference! No lines down the block and only one other woman in line at my election district voting machine (the good old fashioned kind with the big lever). It probably took me all of 5 minutes.
Of course, since this is a VERY Obama-ish area, pulling the lever for McCain is hardly more than a protest. But I’m very proud to be able to make that protest. Like the many other people who have expressed anxiety about the outcome of this election, I feel very queasy. I feel that people’s emotional reaction to an unpopular war and president and the economy is about to bring us great evil. Not just that but, since no human being can possibly live up to the inflated expectations (that some have called “messianic”), I can only wonder where we are headed. If we thought it was tough going before, I think it’s about to get tougher.
We really need to pray and to trust that God’s loving presence will sustain us, whatever happens.

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Fr. Augustine Thompson O.P.

posted November 4, 2008 at 8:57 pm

This morning I celebrated Mass at 5:30 before going to my office at the university and then to teach. Voted (in person) on they way a our local precinct polling place. Five people in line before me–as opposed to 4 years ago when I was the only one there.
Last night at the Parish Gregorian Schola practice no one mentioned the election or voting. We prayed and sang the Dominican Salve asking our Lady’s help for a newborn who needs a heart transplant.
In the end, the world and our country will go its way. Do we remain faithful? And what are we doing to insure that Catholics will remain faithful in a dangerous age?

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Murdoch Macleod

posted November 4, 2008 at 9:11 pm

How familiar things look from across a border and how strange. Susan Peterson at No. 47 said.

I walked over to the elementary school which is less than the length of a block from my house, at about 6:30am, walked in, the people sitting there asked me my name but were already opening the book to the right page before I said it.

Very much the same in Canada. I voted last month a block from home at an elementary school. The poll clerk found my name in the book with little trouble, handed me a ballot and I went and voted.

I signed my name, walked right into the booth, the nice old fashioned ones with the big lever you pull to close the curtain and the little levers you push down by your candidates, and then you pull the big level back to register your vote and open the curtain. I wasn’t there five minutes.

That’s not old-fashioned. Old fashioned is a cardboard screen on a table, a paper ballot with the names of six candidates for Member of Parliament, and a space beside each to write an X. I voted in under one minute, including checking to make sure I had put my X where I intended.
(OK, that only works in a parliamentary system with only one level of government being elected at a time. But it’s more old-fashioned than machines.)
I also live in place that alwaysvotes Conservative but that’s never a reason not to vote. I once lived in a city where an obvious shoo-in for mayor lost the municipal election because he was so obvious that turnout slumped etc.
Best of luck and grace.
Mac in Alberta

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Disgusted in DC

posted November 4, 2008 at 9:14 pm

It looks pretty dark tonight for the country – I fear for our future. It’s also looks pretty dark for me come January because of what is shaping up to be an Obama victory, when I will have to leave where I am now in a nasty employment environment. It is hard to disentangle my fears for the nation from my own personal situation, to be sure, and there are many people in far worse shape than I am at the present moment, but I am very, very discouraged and upset tonight. Please pray for me.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 9:34 pm

today i spoke with a priest who voted for obama. he is a wonderful pastor, but one of those 1960s liberals. i asked him if he was aware of the proposed legislation that obama has agreed to sign and told him how it would completely change the american workplace. I am an employment lawyer so i know what i am talking about. he told me he was unaware of any proposed legislation, and that if he had known about it he would have voted differently. If obama is elected these bills will pass and even if he is overthrown in 4 or 8 years, the legislation will stand. This is what happens when the substative issues are not debated and the electorate is unaware of unintended consequences.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 9:38 pm

Yesterday , our Parish held a Day of Prayer with Eucharistic Adoration. We began the day with 8am Mass and ended with a Novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help and a candlelight march to the Parish school , which is also a polling place. I was surprised at the turnout. Our Priest was very moved by it. This whole business may even strengthen our Parish.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 9:43 pm

Voted at 10am here on Oahu. Only 4 people in front of me in line. Took my daughters to show them democracy at work. The family has been praying the election novena that Father Corapi, SOLT called for, along with the Rosary.
My wife brought home from the library a book by Ralph McInerny called “Some Catholic Writers” that offers a way to cope with Obama win. In the book the author puts before the reader 35 writers who were influenced by their Catholic faith. Under the chapter on Evelyn Waugh, he writes that, “Waugh … could not or would not adjust to the realities of socialist Britain. He did say he found it possible to go on living in his native land only by imagining he was a tourist.”

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Tony Vogrincic

posted November 4, 2008 at 10:34 pm

Thanks inhocsig for the consoling recommendation of
Ralph McInerny’s book. Sometimes its awfully discouraging…Catholics voting for a rabid pro-abortion president, all the prayers that on the surface seem futile, a culture that by all appearances continues to deteriorate. Often if feels as if we’re in a strange land. Perhaps imagining ourselves as tourists in a foreign land is one path to accepting what’s been handed us.
Some random thoughts from Canada.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 10:36 pm

Well, it’s over and Oprah is being interviewed on ABC quoting the Bible. “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world if he loses his soul?” Good question.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 10:40 pm

Somehow, tomorrow, Wednesday, November 5th, the Bishops will find out how very much they have in common with President-elect Obama.
Like the U.S.S.Ct., they read the election returns.

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posted November 4, 2008 at 11:41 pm

Inauguration day will be just a formality. The new regime will doubtless begin its takeover Wednesday. I am not looking forward to walking into my workplace full of smug Obama supporters, but this reading gives me peace.
Wednesday, November 5
Reading I
Philippians 2:12-18
My beloved, obedient as you have always been,
not only when I am present but all the more now when I am absent,
work out your salvation with fear and trembling.
For God is the one who, for his good purpose,
works in you both to desire and to work.
Do everything without grumbling or questioning,
that you may be blameless and innocent,
children of God without blemish
in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation,
among whom you shine like lights in the world,
as you hold on to the word of life,
so that my boast for the day of Christ may be
that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.
But, even if I am poured out as a libation
upon the sacrificial service of your faith,
I rejoice and share my joy with all of you.
In the same way you also should rejoice and share your joy with me.

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Lori Pieper

posted November 4, 2008 at 11:45 pm

I work at home, so I got to go to vote at a non-busy time, right after lunch, around 1 p.m. The polling place, a school, was only 3 blocks from my apartment.
I live in the Bronx, and my electoral district went 92% for Gore in 2000. Still, on my way, as I was passing the grocery store, I saw a little black kid running around with some flyers (or maybe sample ballots?) calling “Vote Obama, vote Obama!” The Obama campaign was definitely not taking any chances!
The polling place wasn’t crowded at all, and everyone was very friendly. My neighborhood is about 70-80% black and Hispanic, so at that time, I seemed to be the only white face around. I showed my ID, signed my name in the book, and sat at the school cafeteria table to wait for the four people ahead of me to vote, then went in the booth and for the second time in 30 years, pulled the lever for a straight Republican ticket.
The first time was in 1976, the first election when I was of voting age. My Catholic family were all lifelong Democrats and I had always expected to be the same. Then in 1973, when I was sixteen, came the shocking and numbing announcement that the Supreme Court had decreed abortion on demand legal throughout the land. In 1976, Jimmy Carter was announcing his wishy-washy stand and shutting vocal pro-lifers out of the Democratic convention. I voted Ford in protest. I still recall how reluctantly I did so.
I have voted for Democratic presidential candidates since then — just not any that were actually running. Twice I gave my write-in vote to Gov. Robert Casey of Pennsylvania, a brave pro-life Democrat. Much of the time I have simply not voted, also out of protest and aversion to Republican policies. This time, I wanted at all costs to defeat Obama, but I knew that in my district my vote was basically useless. But mostly I wanted to vote for a real live Feminist for Life for Vice-President. Who knows when I’ll be able to do that again?
For over 30 years I have gone through an internal struggle, longing to vote Democratic but unable to do so in good conscience. Those who are saying “it’s OK, we’ve got a proportionate reason!” all sound terribly glib to me. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe they’ve gone through as great an inner struggle as I have and are now throwing in the towel. or maybe they are just waking up to the whole question for the first time. I’d really like to know how they can do it. All I can think of is all the babies being slaughtered.
I started watching the election results at dinner. They’ve just called it for Obama. I’m now incredibly depressed, but determined to start the fight against FOCA as soon as possible. If not 30 years of pro-life work will be wasted.
Susan, I will definitely be seeing you at that January rally in Washington. We must never give up!
And at all costs, we must pray for our country and our new President.
(Gee, I set out to write a single paragraph, and this thing is now so long I should put it on my own blog — sorry for ranting like this).

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posted November 5, 2008 at 12:00 am

I just heard John McCain’s very moving concession speech;
everyone has prayed that he would win tonight,
but God is still in charge, and we are still people of faith
May God protect our precious unborn children and show
us how to be people of faith in a culture that does not understand what faith is.

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posted November 5, 2008 at 12:00 am

All this talk of fear for our country’s future and the darkness of the night — we’re a people of hope — the true hope, not a perennial campaign slogan. I’ve heard from several people “afraid for the future of our country.” Our faith is not defined by our political leaders — a good thing since they’ve all failed to live up to why we’ve voted for them to begin with. They used the mandate we gave them time and time again to champion policies largely of an economic nature, and there’s a fair share of suspect work that they have conducted in our name. We already know how the story ends — our job is to spread that good news. Trust in that hope and live the Gospel. Let’s remind ourselves of that each day as we wake joyful for the Lord. The hearts and minds we need to change through our example are right outside our doors, crippled by a similar fear for worldly things — jobs, money, health care. We have to do our part and truly work to help them understand that to live is Christ. Maybe we’ve been hiding behind our elected officials too long, expecting them to change policies when all along we needed to realize that the work was ours in the end — not to vote, but to work to change minds. Guide us Lord, and help us all to go and live it.

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Ryan C

posted November 5, 2008 at 12:17 am

No supermajority it seems, and two years is not too far away. Just saying!

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Margaret Duffy

posted November 5, 2008 at 12:19 am

To Patrick.
I don’t think that the fears that I or others have voiced is because we have hidden behind political leaders or because of any lack of hope. It’s just that the struggle against the culture of death, which is hard to begin with, just got a lot harder. We already have the example of Europe and Canda before us.

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posted November 5, 2008 at 12:29 am

Was able to vote last Monday here in Ohio. Things seemed to go smoothly here. Guess Obama has won, which is okay with me since I voted for him; although now the real work begins.

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posted November 5, 2008 at 12:47 am

I tucked my daughter into bed tonight who was feeling sad; “now we have a president who thinks abortion is ok”.
Feeling let down myself I half-heartedly said that God had a plan and that we still have to pray and work hard to do what is right……As I rubbed her back my eyes drifted to the clutter on the floor and a prayer card that a friend gave her when she made her First Communion this year. I picked it up and read:
Fear not, for I am with you: Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthern you, Yes,I will help you, I will uphold you with with My righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)

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posted November 5, 2008 at 1:00 am

We just have our work cut out for us now and we’ll have to work harder for the pro-life movement in this country, especially when President Obama pushes through the Freedom of Choice Act, as he has promised he was going to do as one of his first acts of his administration. I think the pro-life campaign at that point could really heat up, hopefully to the point that we take it out into the streets en mass with loud (but peaceful) protests, mass sit-ins, etc., on a consistent basis, never letting up. The kind of mass demonstrations on a scale like the Vietnam War in the 60’s, without any of the violence and anarchy attached to it. Perhaps it may come to this, that abortion once again gets shoved front and center in the news and in the awareness of the people in this country so much so, that it begins to give Barack Obama some serious headaches and sleepless nights as he contemplates signing FOCA into law. If we make enough noise in public, that’s what it might take. Organize like the civil rights church goers did under Dr. Martin Luther King. Be prepared to go to jail even. Mass protests and mass prayers. That’s what we should be preparing to do in Barack Obama’s administration.

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