Macleans.ca Liveblogs US Election Night

  • 6:35 PM Scott Feschuk – this is it! the long wait is over! tonight, after months of waitng, we have finally arrived at the moment a nation has been anxiously awaiting – the first night of mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.
  • 6:39 PM Scott Feschuk – after all the anticipation, it looks like we’ll get about 90 seconds of genuine thrills tonite, followed by endless hours of analysis and recriminations. it’s losing my virginity all over again.
  • 6:49 PM Scott Feschuk – I am typing this on my phone at a hockey arena, where my seven year old is practising. early exit polls indicate a landslide in favour of tim hortons and cold arses. clearly, this is indepth political analysis you are not going to find anywhere else on the web. leaving soon for a night of beer and CNN. two years I’ve been watching these pundits. it’s like the last night at camp for them. last chance for David gergen to make his move on donna brazile. do it, you big bald love puppy!
  • 6:56 PM Paul Wells – I’m here! Alan Keyes was on the ballot. I saw a photo of a ballot this morning and Alan Keyes was on the ballot. Why wasn’t I told? Clearly he plans to follow Obama into the pits of hell.
  • 6:59 PM Paul Wells – The early exit-poll data I’ve seen suggests a comfortable Obama victory. But the early exit polls suggested a comortable Kerry victory four years ago, and in the end it was the least comfortable kind of Kerry victory: his opponent’s. So I’m keeping my powder dry, or I would if I had powder.
  • 7:01 PM Paul Wells – OK, it’s 7 p.m. And CNN is giving Vermont to Obama, and Kentucky to McCain, which is kind of like giving Canada to Obama and Bushiest Dick-Cheneyland to McCain. So we’re not busting out with surprises here so far.
  • 7:05 PM Paul Wells – All rightie. I’m decamping to an election-night party, where I won’t last long if they don’t have wi-fi. You’ll be hearing from me within 20 minutes. One way or the other.
  • 7:06 PM Paul Wells – Mark Warner picks up a Senate seat for the Dems in Virginia, which has been rough territory for Republicans lately.
  • 7:06 PM Paul Wells – And now I’m decamping…more soonish.
  • 7:22 PM Scott Feschuk – is everyone out there watching CNN? no? well you need to be watching CNN! wolf blitzer just promised to “do something that had never before been done on television.” just as i was preparing for wolf to slip into something more comfortable, he made jessica yellin, cnn’s obama correspondent, materialize RIGHT IN THE NEW YORK STUDIO EVEN THOUGH SHE’S IN CHICAGO! he “beamed her in,” to use wolf’s lingo. she appeared, wreathed in blue like the princess leia hologram in star wars, but in a full body shot right there on the floor of the CNN studio. i’m not doing it justice – suffice to say it was every bit as utterly pointless as it sounds. jessica told us she was standing in a special tent in chicago, surrounded by 35 high-def cameras to achieve the effect. “you’re a great hologram,” wolf told her. so to sum up: no tension about who’s going to win, but we should all stay tuned for when darth vader attacks.
  • 7:30 PM Paul Wells – Oh I was reading about the hologram thing. It’s insanely complicated. 42 cameras or something. Basically, it was either that or cart truckloads of money onto Soldier Field and burn it.
  • 7:31 PM Paul Wells – But they decided that burning truckloads of money would look cheap.
  • 7:31 PM Scott Feschuk – you have to see it, paul. i really can’t get over it. it was stunning. it was cheesy. it looked incredibly expensive. it was completely pointless. if you’re watching another network, you owe it to yourself to flip over to CNN for just long enough to see them do it again. maybe next time jessica will have obtained the blueprints for dick cheney’s undisclosed location and the rebels can launch their assault.
  • 7:33 PM Paul Wells – Can they make Bill Bennett disappear holographically? Can they calm Paul Begala down holographically? No. Because the real problems never get solved by technology.
  • 7:35 PM Scott Feschuk – you say that, but what’s been keeping the skeleton of james carville alive these past 15 years?
  • 7:36 PM Paul Wells – Stunning quantities of gumbo.
  • 7:38 PM Scott Feschuk – i was beginning to think he might be a zombie, but there aren’t nearly enough brains on the CNN set to attract a zombie’s attention.
  • 7:39 PM Paul Wells – OK, Obama’s up 14 points over McCain in FLORIDA. McCain’s still up in Indiana.
  • 7:40 PM Paul Wells – I should point out that I’m liveblogging from the superglamorous Bluesky Strategy Group election-night party at Darcy McGee’s pub on superglamorous Sparks Street in superglamorous downtown Ottawa, and an impressive selection of Ottawa’s sleekest and shiniest politicos, journalists and lobbyists are laughing at me and making the “loser” sign.
  • 7:41 PM Scott Feschuk – i’m getting the same thing, but what really stings is that i;m blogging from my own house.
  • 7:41 PM Paul Wells – How is it possible for the Democrat to be up in Florida? Obama must have a salsa band in his pocket.
  • 7:43 PM Scott Feschuk – you never really know where the votes are being reported from. huge leads can evaporate in a hurry. by the way, every time we blog together i learn of yet more parties that you are attending and i have not been invited to. i blame society.
  • 7:43 PM Scott Feschuk – just fyi, that’s not a salsa band in his pocket – he’s just happy to see you
  • 7:46 PM Paul Wells – So I am now thinking about David Wilkins, the courtly and very professional U.S. Ambassador to Canada, who has become very popular in Ottawa even though he is the least Canadian-like emissary ever sent to represent Washington in Ottawa. I’ve been thinking this week about how Ambassador Wilkins will soon go back home to South Carolina, and how he’ll be genuinely missed, even though his politics are well to the right of Frank Sinatra’s.
    I’m thinking about David Wilkins because he’s from South Carolina. And right now, Barack Obama is seven points up on John McCain in South Carolina.
  • 7:46 PM Scott Feschuk – suzanne malveaux is also reporting for cnn from chicago, but she has not been beamed in. dammit scotty – i need full transporter power now!!!
  • 7:48 PM Scott Feschuk – where the hell is coyne? he better not show up wreathed in blue alongside wolf blitzer.
  • 7:51 PM Paul Wells – Coyne’s gonna swoop in later and act all wise.
  • 7:53 PM Scott Feschuk – he’s like our yoda, except slightly more cuddly. so far the only real sign of unexpected obama weakness is in virginia, where he’s down early by 15 points. i
  • 7:55 PM Paul Wells – So he’s down in VA where he was thought to be strong, and dominant in SC where he was thought to have no chance. Of course these are very preliminary numbers.
  • 7:56 PM Scott Feschuk – i feel badly that americans don’t get to experience “very early numbers’ like we do, where networks report leads of 7 to 3 in certain ridings.
  • 7:57 PM Scott Feschuk – ha! mccain wins south carolina, wolf says. i assume he’s basing this on exit polls and communications chatter picked up by lt. uhuru
  • 7:58 PM Paul Wells – Well. CNN’s calling South Carolina for McCain even though he’s 9 points back on current returns. They clearly know more about where those returns are from than we are.
  • 7:58 PM Paul Wells – …than we do. Bit of subspace interference there, sorry.
  • 7:58 PM Scott Feschuk – i’ll get chekov to look into that
  • 8:01 PM Scott Feschuk – no surprises in the 8 pm projections. eight for obama, two for mccain. and nader triumphs in the state of denial.
  • 8:02 PM Paul Wells – So far Obama’s doing really well in the blue states; McCain, on the other hand, seems strongly competitive in the red states.
  • 8:04 PM Scott Feschuk – clearly, only a person of tremendous charisma and purpleness could ever bring these red and blue americas together.
  • 8:07 PM Paul Wells – MSNBC is calling Pennsylvania for Obama, based — and here I’m speculating — almost entirely on the M Night Shyamalan vote. None of the other networks and newspapers I’m monitoring is making the same call yet. It would be very good news for Obama if he landed PA.
  • 8:08 PM Paul Wells – Although come to think of it, it’s good news for any candidate if he lands any state.
  • 8:09 PM Scott Feschuk – let’s remember it’s msnbc. i believe they’re poised to also call texas, alaska and the moon for obama. but you’re right – even john king was hinting the exit polls show an obama win in PA, even though cnn won’t call it.
  • 8:10 PM Paul Wells – ABC just called PA for Obama too. Incidentally, did you see The Happening? That’s two hours of my life I’ll never get back.
  • 8:11 PM Scott Feschuk – i saw it on a plane. and what really burns me is that i could have watched sex and the city instead.
  • 8:13 PM Scott Feschuk – i can’t believe CNN hasn’t beamed in the jessica yellen hologram in a full hour. maybe wolf blitzer can’t bring himself to break the news to her about her home planet of alderon.
  • 8:17 PM Scott Feschuk – how’s your party, paul wells? is it strangely dull and lifeless because i am not there?
  • 8:18 PM Paul Wells – Oh man you are missing EVERYTHING. Joe Jordan just lunged for the zucchini.
  • 8:21 PM Paul Wells – Isabel Metcalfe just sat down to show me a photo of the day she met Barack Obama. It was in April when she was volunteering for Hillary Clinton. Isabel doesn’t believe this conversation is actually going onto the blog. I’ll show her.
  • 8:21 PM Paul Wells – And the TV just stopped working. So no, Scott, you’re not missing gobs of fun.
  • 8:21 PM Scott Feschuk – i’ll get wolf blitzer to email a hologramed john king over to you to keep you up to date.
  • 8:23 PM Paul Wells – TV’s back. But David Axelrod is on the screen, so it’s sort of like watching a test pattern.Elizabeth Dole beaten out of her Senate seat in North Carolina. Second Dem pickup in the Senate tonight, if I’m not mistaken.
  • 8:26 PM Scott Feschuk – it’s no big surprise, i guess, that everything feels sort of anti-climactic tonight. in a way, i’m weirdly disappointed that the republicans went down without using the full array of scare tactics including ‘warning’ of imminent terrorist attacks and dick cheney making a video in an osama bin laden beard. after the last two presidential election, this result is satisfying but really dull.
  • 8:28 PM Paul Wells – Meanwhile, noted Obama terrorist pal Bill Ayers has broken his silence. How odd that he seems like a regular guy:
  • 8:31 PM Scott Feschuk – i just flipped over to HDNet, where dan rather is hosting what just might be the lowest-budget election night coverage since reporters covering Taft relayed results through two tin cans tied together with string. he’s sitting at a desk with four nerdy guys on laptops. behind them: not a live shot or a big video screen but stylized photo of a washington cityscape. not only will dan rather NOT be beaming in any holograms, i highly doubt he has enough money to order out for pizza.
  • 8:31 PM Paul Wells – Do you mean I can link to anything and Scribbler inserts the link?
  • 8:31 PM Paul Wells – Cool.
  • 8:32 PM Paul Wells – I’m told Susan Ormiston has a “smaller, illegible version of the CNN magic board” over at the CBC. And Rex Murphy is reading emails.
  • 8:34 PM Paul Wells – And Sununu (R, ancient) goes down in New Hampshire? That would never have happened if Steyn had the vote.
  • 8:36 PM Paul Wells – Kady’s liveblogging too, elsewhere, which is odd because she’s standing in front of me right now. And Mitch Raphael just took her picture. Kind of a Maclean’s oriffic night here at Darcy’s. Not for the first time.
  • 8:36 PM Paul Wells – Here’s Kady’s liveblog.
  • 8:39 PM Scott Feschuk – that kady – she could liveblog a hiccup.
  • 8:40 PM Paul Wells – Is it really a projection if CNN is the last news organization to call PA? In other news, CNN is “tentatively calling the Civil War for the North.”
  • 8:44 PM Paul Wells – From the NY Times, a factoid that will settle a lot of bar bets. “According to exit polls, about a quarter of people in Pennsylvania said race was a factor — but it was a positive force. Six in 10 of those who said race was a factor said they voted for Mr. Obama.”
  • 8:44 PM Paul Wells – Overheard at the Bluesky party: “Dana Bash should have a cheeseburger. She needs a few, actually.”
  • 8:52 PM Scott Feschuk – i’m bored. this is boring. you’re boring me, america. even james carville is displaying the ability to formulate complete sentences, which suggests he’s almost comatose.
  • 8:53 PM Paul Wells – Alex Castellanos is made entirely from rich Corinthian leather. He’s my new favourite, except when Biden is talking.
  • 8:54 PM Scott Feschuk – elizabeth dole has lost north carolina. there is no god.
  • 8:54 PM Paul Wells – Biden? I meant Gergen. In Washington dialect, “been here forever” is signified with names ending in “en.”
  • 8:58 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Hey — coming up for air from writing. So the fact that Indiana hasn’t been called yet is a good sign for Obama. I was in Indiana for the Democratic primary and that contest went into the wee hours. Obama beat Clinton thanks to heavy support from around Gary, Ind. (near Chicago) — and those came in last.
  • 9:00 PM Scott Feschuk – Gary, Indiana. that always makes me laugh. can you imagine living in a city called ‘Doug?’
  • 9:00 PM Paul Wells – McCain takes Alabama. It would have been kind of hugely surprising if he didn’t.Following up on Luiza’s point, it looks like the late decadent Clinton primary-era argument — that Obama would not be able to win states in the general that he had struggled with in the primaries — is turning out to be heavily bogus. It sounded kind of plausible at the time, but then I was soft on Hillary so I’d have believed anything.
  • 9:01 PM Paul Wells – On the Gary thing, Dave Barry always made fun of Alberta for being named after an ancient gospel singer.
  • 9:02 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Hey Scott, watch it! I’m married to a Hoosier.
  • 9:02 PM Paul Wells – He says nice things about you, Luiza.
  • 9:02 PM Scott Feschuk – Hoosier! HOOSIER! stop, you’re killing me with this stuff!
  • 9:03 PM Paul Wells – Where’s Charlie tonight? For that matter, where are you, L Ch S?
  • 9:04 PM Scott Feschuk – don’t worry, luiza – if we ever meet, your husband and i can bond over where we were when keith smart sank The Shot. and whether we teared up when Gene Hackman said “i love you guys.”
  • 9:04 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Paul — yes, PA put that to bed. And the anti-Hillary argument also failed: namely that the long drawn out primary would bloody the eventual winner who would then be left limping into the general. On the contrary: the lengthy primary helped the Dems identify and organize their supporters all over the country.
  • 9:04 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – I am in Washington writing a looong story.
  • 9:05 PM Scott Feschuk – this isn’t exactly a mondalian arse-whupping, but no one is going to be able to say that obama won with anything other than a convincing and nationwide mandate.
  • 9:06 PM Paul Wells – Looong stories are kind of an election-night tradition here at Maclean’s, he said, plugging the next issue shamelessly.
  • 9:06 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Though I feel like I could be in Grant Park given the hooting and hollering that I am hearing through the walls every time a state gets called for Obama. It’s going to be quite a scene in this majority Democrat and majority African-American city with its fair share of Latte-sipping East Coast elites — if he wins tonight.
  • 9:07 PM Paul Wells – Bet it’ll be a wild night on U Street. But then it always is. I like to say things like that because it sounds like I know Washington, when in fact all I know is Twins jazz club.
  • 9:08 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – U Street is only 7 letters from here.
  • 9:13 PM Paul Wells – Our colleague Mark Steyn is liveblogging, intermittently, over here with his other colleagues at The Corner.
  • 9:13 PM Paul Wells – There’s good comedy over there: Fox called Ohio for Obama, essentially by mistake, and everyone at The Corner had a heart attack.
  • 9:15 PM Scott Feschuk – i bet that obama wins ohio by 8 points or more. i also foresee that it’s splittsville for paris and benji.
  • 9:17 PM Scott Feschuk – dan rather to a pundit: “you say it’s going to be tight in florida. are we talking girdle tight?” the man has still got it – and by ‘it,’ i mean ‘the crazy.’
  • 9:20 PM Paul Wells – I’d bet money he also has “a girdle.”
  • 9:21 PM Paul Wells – Mitch McConnell hangs on in Kentucky Senate race. It was kind of tight, although to be fair I think it’s only OJ-glove tight.
  • 9:21 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – I’m dying to see how Virginia turns out. They just said on MSNBC that votes from Arlington and Fairfax counties — blue-leaning suburbs of DC — have not yet been counted. I’d also like to see Prince William County — that’s an “exurb” that has been hit incredibly hard by foreclosures. There are houses there that used to go for $300K-$400K and you can now find them for a quarter of the price. Of course, it’s a painful commute.
  • 9:22 PM Paul Wells – NY Times has the Dems picking up 3 Senate seats so far.
  • 9:22 PM Scott Feschuk – come on, paul. he has a 20,000 vote lead. that’s boxer-brief tight at best – snug but comfortable.
  • 9:23 PM Scott Feschuk – has there been word on al franken? that would be one entertaining ‘concession’ speech if he loses…
  • 9:24 PM Paul Wells – Early exit poll has Franken comfortably ahead, but nobody’s hanging their hat off exit polls tonight.
  • 9:25 PM Scott Feschuk – that’s good news for him, al franken.
  • 9:25 PM Scott Feschuk – (yes, i am 100 years old)
  • 9:25 PM Paul Wells – Fox has now called Ohio for Obama, for real. “It’s over,” Ramesh Ponnaru writes at The Corner. “Obama wins.”And CNN is getting close to “a major projection.” Who cares, I just want to see the hologram trick.
  • 9:27 PM Scott Feschuk – seriously! i can’t believe they busted out the special effects at the beginning and then spent the next 90 minutes on character development.
  • 9:28 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – If I’m recalling the math correctly, if Obama holds all the Kerry states (incl. PA) and wins New Mexico and Iowa, where he’s had a strong poll lead, then he only needs to win one of: Ohio, Virginia or Colorado to win the whole thing.
  • 9:29 PM Paul Wells – Jaime Weinman has video of the magic hologram lady, of course.
  • 9:29 PM Scott Feschuk – things are getting worse for dan rather on HDNet. they’ve been showing a closeup of his face for the last 10 minutes. Why? as rather himself put it, he wanted to put up a map graphic but it “takes a lot of time to do that here.” this is getting painful – wonderfully, entertainingly painful.
  • 9:30 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Exit polls in Florida show Obama winning Hispanics by 10 points. That’s a big deal.
  • 9:31 PM Paul Wells – Swiped from NYT: Big Bob Schieffer calls it, using nothing except ancient wisdom of the anchor gods:Bob Schieffer on CBS: “I think Barack Obama is going to be the president of the United States.” Katie Couric: “The cake is baked, in your view?” Mr. Schieffer: “Yes.”
  • 9:32 PM Scott Feschuk – well, god, it’s SOOOO obvious that he’s won. bob just wants to get home and get to bed.
  • 9:36 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – On Fox News they are debating whether this means the US is moving from a center-right country to a center-left country. A lot of hand-wringing about Congressional Democrats “ramming through a liberal agenda.” But I think a lot of the newcomers are going to be centrist Democrats from red areas. Bill Kristol predicts Obama is going to try hard to find things that look bipartisan.
  • 9:37 PM Paul Wells – Which means Obama is not going to try very hard to find Bill Kristol.
  • 9:41 PM Scott Feschuk – he’ll be running palin’s 2012 campaign anyway. the man is smitten.
  • 9:44 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Katie Couric is interviewing Peggy Noonan: WHhat was John McCain’s biggest mistake? Was it simply being a Republican… in a toxic environment. Noonan says AMerican are in “a firing mood.” I must say, the two most intersting Americans columnists in this campaign, in my humble opinion, have been Peggy Noonan and George Will — two conservatives but not hard-bitten partisans.
  • 9:46 PM Paul Wells – I’ve been really impressed with Peggy Noonan in this election cycle, which had never happened for me since she stopped writing speeches for Reagan.
  • 9:48 PM Scott Feschuk – peggy noonan is the american ken dryden, in that whatever they write is 40% questions: what is this election about? what is our purpose? what is our duty as citizens? why are we here? why does my elbow hurt? where did i leave my bathrobe?
  • 9:51 PM Scott Feschuk – whew – roland martin is back on pundits row at CNN. he was missing for a while there and i was worried that william bennett had eaten him.
  • 9:56 PM Paul Wells – Mandate, mandate, who’s got the mandate….I’m no electoral-college wizard, but it doesn’t seem to me like Obama’s running the table in any massive way. Maybe there’s a lot of battlegrounds untested in the Southwest or something? But for now, looks like he’s going to win the Gore-Kerry states plus just a few others.
  • 9:57 PM Paul Wells – Which is still better than losing them, because first prize is, you get to be president.
  • 9:58 PM Scott Feschuk – he’s going to beat mccain 3-1 in the electoral college. it’s not running the table, but it’s a big-ass mandate – and enough democrats in congress to give actionable power to that mandate.
  • 9:59 PM Scott Feschuk – by the way, virginia is even tighter than florida, according to dan rather. florida, you’ll recall, is “girdle tight.” whereas in virginia, it’s so tight that you “cannot put a cigarette paper between the candidates.”
  • 10:05 PM Scott Feschuk – not that i’m preoccupied, but what the hell happened to hologram lady? is she being held captive on the death star? because if so do NOT go down into the trash compactor when you rescue her, wolf — there’s some sort of creepy garbage snake monster down there. plus han solo is going to be a huge jerk about it all.
  • 10:08 PM Paul Wells – I am preoccupied, and I have to assume something’s gone badly wrong with the hologram projector. I expect there will be bashful stories in the papers on Thursday.
  • 10:11 PM Scott Feschuk – they should never have entrusted delivery of this hologram to a droid that lacks feet.
  • 10:13 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – It’s still very tight in Indiana — which hasn’t voted for a Demcrocat since 1964.
  • 10:14 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – North Carolina is 50-50, with 75% of the vote in.
  • 10:15 PM Scott Feschuk – wow – don’t tell dan rather. i think he’s run out of synonyms for “tight.”
  • 10:16 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – It will be interesting to see what Hillary Clinton does after this. Her convention speech and subsequent campaigning for Obama have been well received by Democrats.
  • 10:18 PM Scott Feschuk – dude on dan rather’s show says the two main uncounted counties in indiana are democratic strongholds – says he’s confident the state will flip and go to obama.
  • 10:19 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – And of course, what happens with Sarah Palin.
  • 10:20 PM Paul Wells – Luiza, is it plausible that Hillary could get a Supreme Court seat? That strikes me as a really hard nomination to get confirmed…
  • 10:21 PM Scott Feschuk – palin will be fine in 2012 – by then she’ll have figured out how to hunt for votes by helicopter
  • 10:30 PM Scott Feschuk – you know what? with her single appearance, Princess Leia has ruined television journalism for me. All these other field reports they’re showing on CNN – they’re all fine and whatever. but none of them can match the authenticity and gravitas that comes with being beamed through space and reconfigured in hologram form for no reason.
  • 10:31 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – The Supreme Court idea has been talked about but I read an interview with her in which she dismissed it. It would be hard to confirm if Democrats end up with fewer than 60 seats in the Senate.
  • 10:34 PM Paul Wells – Talking Points Memo is saying 60 Dems in the Senate looks beyond reach.
  • 10:36 PM Scott Feschuk – well they needed the mcconnell seat for starters.
  • 10:37 PM Paul Wells – Hologram! But it’s just a hologram of a building.
  • 10:37 PM Scott Feschuk – those are the worst kinds of holograms and not at all potentially sexy!
  • 10:38 PM Scott Feschuk – (ps. forget hillary. she’s old news. the bigger question: what does oprah get? secretary of state? ambassador to london? a ham?)
  • 10:40 PM Paul Wells – Who would Obama’s ambassador to Canada be? I’m thinking not Austan Goolsbee. But I liked asking the question because it gives me another chance to write Austan Gooooolsbee.
  • 10:41 PM Scott Feschuk – i think it might be austan goolsbee.
  • 10:42 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Maybe he’ll send Bill Clinton to Canada. Just to keep him out of the way.
  • 10:45 PM Paul Wells – Could he send the next ambassador by CNN Hologram Projector?
  • 10:46 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – A fun link via fivethirtyeight.com to a Daily Kos discussion back in 2004 when Obama won his senate seat. The liberal blogosphere was debating whether he’d be a good VP candidate in 2012.
  • 10:46 PM Paul Wells – Will.i.am the Hol.o.gram!!!!!
  • 10:46 PM Scott Feschuk – will i.am just beamed aboard the starship CNN!
  • 10:48 PM Paul Wells – It was a creed that was written by George Lucas when he was still an undergrad
    Yes We Can.
    It was something something something King who led us to a mountaintop blah blah blah
    Yes We Can.
  • 10:50 PM Scott Feschuk – anderson cooper’s asking will.i.am how he came up with the idea for the Yes We Can song he did using an Obama speech. i hope he takes the next logical step and asks him how he came up with the idea for My Humps. (same answer for both, i believe – trying to score)
  • 10:52 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – On MSNBC Rachel Maddow and Pat Buchanan are duking it out over whether McCain lost because he was dealt an atrocious hand by recent events, or whether he just ran an atrocious campaign.
  • 10:52 PM Scott Feschuk – anderson cooper, the man who became a real actual journalist with his nakedly emotional reports from new orleans after katrina, just said there are “a lot more holograms ahead” in CNN coverage tonite. i honestly cannot wait until next hurricane season when they can ship the holosuite down florida way and we can see CNN correspondents get battered by flying debris in super-surround-holovision.
  • 10:53 PM Paul Wells – Fox calls Virginia for Obama. My understanding is that if he wins three more states he gets to lead the U.S. <i>plus</i> his choice of another G8 country.
  • 10:54 PM Scott Feschuk – italy! they have a city with rivers instead of roads!!!
  • 10:57 PM Paul Wells – A Slate column arguing McCain lost it when the economy went south….
  • 11:00 PM Paul Wells – And I can’t find my column from months ago saying McCain and Dion were secretly the same guy. I find this fascinating, and Liberals (or at least Stéphane Dion) will be haunted by it: when the economic crisis hit, it benefitted the centre-left candidate in the U.S. — and the centre-right candidate in Canada.It was a credibility-check moment — a 3 a.m. call, if you like.
  • 11:00 PM Paul Wells – And CNN calls it for Obama.
  • 11:01 PM Scott Feschuk – holy snap – barack obama is the freaking president of the freaking united states.
  • 11:03 PM Scott Feschuk – i liked that moment just now on CNN – the guy on the stage in chicago was trying to lead the crowd in a chant of “Yes, We Can.” and one black man was instead yelling the far more fitting: “Yes, We Did.”
  • 11:08 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Can you believe that in 2004, when he delivered the speech to the Democratic Convention that launched this whole thing, he was still a state senator.
  • 11:10 PM Scott Feschuk – very young, hugely inexperienced, black – why didn’t we see it coming?
  • 11:12 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – My street is erupting in shouts and chants from open windows from the yuppie condo towers and low-income rentals filled with Hispanic workers…
  • 11:12 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – OBAMA!! WOO HOO!!
  • 11:13 PM Scott Feschuk – anyone wearing monocles leaping in despair to their doom?
  • 11:13 PM Paul Wells – I was born less than 10 minutes’ drive from a major Canada-U.S. border crossing. I used to drive to Port Huron, MI to buy better jazz LPs than I could find in Sarnia. In our school, a quick trip to Detroit, to see the Tigers or Billy Idol or Sting was a several-times-a-year thing. On the last weekend of the summer of 1984 I went with two friends to Bert’s Market Place in Detroit to watch Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers jamming with the locals. The three of us were the only white guys in the room.I’ve grown up loving the United States, and I was kind of amazed when a strange thing started happening a few weeks after 9/11. Conservative Canadian commentators started branding as “anti-American” thoughts and opinions I have always associated with the United States: openness to contradictory opinion, concern for one’s neighbour, ethnic and religious diversity, a willingness to exhaust the possibilities of diplomacy — defined as honest negotiation with people you DON’T agree with, not huddling defensively with people you do — before resorting to force. All of this, I read, was “wet” or “Trudeaupian” or otherwise, somehow, an affront to some people’s definition of true American values.So I know it’s not my country and I know I don’t get a vote, but for several years there I wondered whether all these people who claimed to talk on America’s behalf were getting that country wrong — or I was.

    Tonight I heard from the America I grew up with, the America I love. I have been critical of Barack Obama as a candidate and my hopes for him as President are not sky-high. But in the end he was better than the alternative and he can hardly help but be better than his predecessor. And his country took an ennobling step forward by choosing him.

    “You walk into the voting booth and each time you pull the little lever there is implicit in the gesture a tiny leap of faith,” Anna Quindlen wrote — in 1992, a detail which stands in retrospect as a handy lesson in the limits of optimism. “And this time some hope as well.”

  • 11:16 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – There is a lot of pride here in the fact that, as he puts, “my story could happen here.” The overwhelming vibe at his big rallies back during the lofty rhetoric days of the primaries was a move-you-to-tears pride and patriotism among the crowds.
  • 11:16 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Ah, now the car horns are starting up. But will we get street dancing?
  • 11:16 PM Scott Feschuk – probably – it’s all that anyone can afford to do.
  • 11:20 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – McCain is giving a gracious concession speech.
  • 11:20 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – What happened to those people predicting that Bush would suspend the constitution and stay on a third term?
  • 11:22 PM Scott Feschuk – mccain’s speech starts on a note of real grace – crediting obama for inspiring those who’d lost faith in politics – and continues in that vein, paying homage to the historic nature of an african american winning the presidency. i think mccain would have done better in this election if he’d given more speeches like this — (ie not ridiculous, not hysterical and genuinely thoughtful, cooperative and kind)
  • 11:24 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – How very Elitist Media of you, Scott.
  • 11:26 PM Scott Feschuk – yeah, that’s me. i honestly feel for mccain. i think he’s going to go through a real tough patch as he reflects back on what he became during this campaign and how he abandoned his principles so effortlessly when push came to shove. i think he’s going to have serious regret – and it’s too late in life for a do over.
  • 11:29 PM Paul Wells – I’d swear Mark Helprin, the novelist who wrote Bob Dole’s 1996 convention speech, wrote this. It had his cadence.
  • 11:29 PM Scott Feschuk – whoever wrote it, mccain’s remarks will go down in the annals of great concession speeches. it will be cited for generations. that hug with his wife, however, is better left forgotten.
  • 11:30 PM Paul Wells – True, the question of who held the pen is secondary. It was a really beautiful, gracious speech. No, it doesn’t make up for the manner of the McCain campaign, but it was good to hear from McCain’s better angels again.
  • 11:35 PM Scott Feschuk – oprah sighting! and WITH steadman to boot. i thought they’d broken up. paul, what do your sources say?
  • 11:38 PM Paul Wells – Nothing useful. Ottawa never concentrates on the things that matter.
  • 11:38 PM Luiza Ch. Savage – Virginia, Florida, Colorado, Nevada… amazing. He basically has one clear mandate: fix the economy. Good luck with that.
  • 11:40 PM Scott Feschuk – macgyver could fix it. all he’d need is some string, a piece of bubble gum and $3-trillion.
  • 11:43 PM Paul Wells – Apparently Proposition 8 (an attempt to ban gay marriage) is still a tossup in California.
  • 11:52 PM Paul Wells – All right, I’m gonna throw caution to the wind here and call Pennsylvania for Obama.
  • 11:53 PM Scott Feschuk – reckless!!
  • 11:56 PM Paul Wells – The Al Franken Decade, on the other hand, now stands for how long it’s taking to count the MN returns.
  • 11:57 PM Scott Feschuk – alert dan rather! there’s every chance that race is speedo tight.
  • 11:58 PM Paul Wells – Here they are. I’m sorry, but he’d better not let the youngest daughter talk. She’s cute, but it really goes off the rails when they hand her a microphone.
  • 11:59 PM Scott Feschuk – so she’s like sarah palin then?
  • 11:59 PM Paul Wells – Will CNN beam Will.i.am into the frame so he can sing along with the speech?
  • 12:00 AM Scott Feschuk – alas, i think he’s currently doing an autograph sessions at a star trek convention in reno.
  • 12:04 AM Scott Feschuk – “you have earned the new puppy that’s coming with us to the white house.” not exactly “ask not what your country can do…”
  • 12:05 AM Paul Wells – He has until Jan. 20 to write that one.
  • 12:07 AM Scott Feschuk – he should take time to enjoy the next two months before the inauguration – planning, writing, filling posts, etc. from everything i’ve read about the clinton and bush presidencies, those were the best times in both administrations.
  • 12:07 AM Paul Wells – Prop 8 looks set to pass in California, despite calls by Schwarzennegger and Bill Clinton to vote No.
  • 12:08 AM Scott Feschuk – ellen is going to be some kind of pissed
  • 12:08 AM Paul Wells – STATEMENT BY PRIME MINISTER STEPHEN HARPER ON THE ELECTION OF BARACK OBAMA AS THE 44th PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA“On behalf of the Government and the people of Canada, I want to congratulate Senator Barack Obama for his victory in tonight’s United States Presidential Election.“I look forward to meeting with the President-elect so that we can continue to strengthen the special bond that exists between Canada and the United States.

    “In the weeks and months ahead Canadian officials and diplomats will be working closely with members of President-elect Obama’s transition team. Ministers in our government look forward to building a strong working relationship with their counterparts in a new Obama cabinet.

    “I would also like to congratulate all incoming Members of Congress and Governors. Given the challenges facing the world economy, it is vital that Canadian and American legislators continue to work together on the important issues facing families on both sides of the border.”

  • 12:08 AM Scott Feschuk – “there will be setbacks and false starts… governments can’t solve every problem…” let the backpedalling and the downplaying of expectations begin!
  • 12:16 AM Paul Wells – Well that was a good speech.
  • 12:17 AM Scott Feschuk – really? i thought it was a decent but unremarkable speech from obama, save for the strong and memorable peroration about a 106-year-old woman from Georgia. also: did anyone tell him he won? he didn’t look all that happy.
  • 12:18 AM Paul Wells – I seriously don’t get any strong buddy vibes from the Obama-Biden tag team. Returning to the pre-Gore concept of the vice presidency, mayhap?
  • 12:19 AM Scott Feschuk – i think obama knows that if it weren’t for palin trumping biden in dimwitted utterances, his VP pick might well have backfired rather badly.
  • 12:20 AM Paul Wells – I did think in the first half of the speech there was a bit of overreach. But it’s hard to speak plainly when you’ve just done something that’s hardly plain at all. I can’t begin to imagine what the proper tone is when you’ve accomplished something as big as this.
  • 12:22 AM Scott Feschuk – fair enough. i just didn’t like him recycling so much of his stump speech into the first part of tonight’s speech. a victory like this deserved all its own words. but like you say – save it for jan 20th. that’s the one for the history books.
  • 12:28 AM Scott Feschuk – well, i was going to say that was “fun,” but from what wolf blitzer’s been saying all night, i believe we are legally obliged to refer to this evening only as “historic.” so it’s been historic but i’m going to beam myself to bed. last one to leave CNN, please place carville in his regeneration pod.
  • 12:40 AM Luiza Ch. Savage – I’ve posted the text of his speech on my blog.
  • 12:42 AM Luiza Ch. Savage – Two interesting things about it — the fact that he talks about how his presidency will be viewed 100 years from now, and the fact that he said some things won’t be finished in one term. Raising expectations, and lowering them. Laying the groundwork for big themes and modest results, I think.
  • 12:42 AM Luiza Ch. Savage – Now that the speech is over, the horn honking has started up again. I’m signing off to finish a story. If not for some earlier radio appearances tomorrow morning, I’d be heading to U Street myself.
  • 1:11 AM Paul Wells – I once had lost my wi-fi connection, but now am found, just long enough to say good night.

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Macleans.ca Liveblogs US Election Night

  1. Feschuk, to be mentioned in the same breath as the giants Coyne and Wells….WOW!!!Can I have your autograph?

  2. Feschuk made us both pay 20 bucks or we couldn’t liveblog with him.

  3. …the first night of mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.

    Just take me now, Lord.

  4. What feed are you going to be using? One or a bunch?

    I’ve finally settled on PBS. I don’t want to watch Wolf have a seizure live in front of the best political team in …… the Whole Universe.
    With PBS you get a few fairly intelligent people talking to each other instead of a gaggle of spinners yelling at each other amidst a flurry of magic fingers flying all over touch screens.

    Then I’ll move on to Stewart/Colbert later – to find out what really happened.


  5. yeah i can’t find you guys over there

  6. Hear, hear – when is this going to show up on the ScribbleLive site?

  7. Which network has the Lazy-Susan-style bar graphics?

    I’m honestly scared to turn on the teevee.

  8. The only really burning question before polls close: Why did you three chauvinist pigs banish our dear Kady to her own liveblog somewhere else? Did you not all play nice together during previous team liveblogs?

  9. OMG! CNN has a hologram reproter! Is Wolf Blitzer going to command her to find the young Skywalker?

  10. But Sis! You’re missing Jessica Yellim as a hologram! Right beside Wolfe!! But she’s really in Chicago!!!

    C’mon, they’ve got to pay for this stuff you know.

  11. That’s OK. Jenn. David Brooks just belched on PBS.

    It’s so exciting.

  12. Oooooh, I must switch to PBS.

  13. Scott,

    Not to be a dick (as if I could help it), but would it actually kill you to conjure up a capital letter along with your sterling insights? If it would, then definitely don’t use capital letters (it’s not worth it!), but otherwise: shift key brother, shift key.

  14. PW,

    Say hi to Lisa C for me. Just tell her it’s her friend in Wpg. She will know.


  15. Scott mentioned he is blogging from home.. but he did not mention what he is using…perhaps he’s using some sort of hybrid typewriter-modem that has no shift key.

  16. Maybe Liz Dole shouldn’t have released that ad, where she faked her opponent saying “God doesn’t exist”, or some other such nonsense. Considering her opponent was a Sunday School Teacher, it’s nice to see an attack ad biting someone on the ass

  17. ok i’m pretty much only watching cnn and ignoring all other media this eve, but had to check in here to see maclean’s liveblog take on the “hologram”, and you guys didn’t let me down ;^) heh heh. as soon as she “materialized,” much uproarious laughter was had by all at our election party!

  18. So that’s what happens to old washed up terrorist, they co-edit books titled “City Kids, City Schools” and “City Kids, City Teachers.”.

  19. Olaf,

    Count your blessings. Scott could instead type with the CAPS LOCK on.

    It makes Scott look angry, you wouldn’t like Scott when he’s angry.

  20. You guys are the most entertaining thing on this election night. Thanks for bringing sanity to the chaos slash boringness of it all. Rock on.

  21. Look like it’s time to update my resume and find the only computer store in Canada that won’t have to cut staff when the United States goes all National Policy on us…

  22. It’s over. All Obama has to do now is keep the 3 west coast states and Hawaii and he’ll have 271 EVs.

  23. PW,

    It sounds like D’arcy’s is very pro-Obama. Are the CONS not in attendance, making for a very Liberal crowd, or are the CONS in attendance, and simply cheering for Obama too?

  24. I don’t know 80% of the people here, AMM, but the ones whose partisan affiliation I know are Liberal, I think without exception. Well, there’s one New Democrat.

  25. Thanks, PW. Hopefully being at D’arcy’s tonight, won’t preclude you from attending again tomorrow night (as usual).

  26. But for now, looks like he’s going to win the Gore-Kerry states plus just a few others.

    It looks like Obama will pick up 7-9 states.

  27. i think he’s run out of synonyms for “tight.”

    You mean similes.

    oops, sorry, i’m talking to feschuk. you mean similes.

  28. You guys are all watching CNN? MSNBC, baby! They earned this one!

  29. Is Bill Bennett reaching critical mass?

  30. You people are still here? it was over when CNN called Pennsylvania…

  31. If he sends Bill Clinton up here, he will get drafted by the Liberals!

  32. My choice for Ambassador to Canada: John McCain.

  33. Okay, I’m calling it for CNN. There’s no way any other station can beat a hologram.

  34. My choice for Ambassador to Canada: John McCain.

    Palin can see Canada from Alaska so that makes her more than qualified for the job.

  35. Good Lord, if Bill Bennett blubbers any more, he’s going to lose his ambergris.

    I bet some people think the people in the studio can actually see the “holograms” in front of them. Those would be the Red State voters.

  36. Why not just keep David Wilkins? He’s great!

  37. Wells is waxing nostalgic about Port Huron.


    …*wanders off*

  38. Looks like someone(s) just flash mobbed the white house!

  39. Thanks for the great coverage tonight, guys! I learned something. History was made. You were there through it all.


  40. Only Wells would find it necessary to point out how he has been critical of the guy and his campaign on a night like tonight. Way to go, you’ve consistently poo-pooed the progressive, young, literate, engaging, intelligent new president who also happens to be the first African American ever elected to the office. I think you once said you hope no one who worked for him works again in politics. You’re so right; wouldn’t want someone like that to ever get elected.

  41. Thank you great guys for the best coverage of tonight (that excludes holograms of any sort, obviously). You remind me (now NYC resident) of why I miss Canada. Then again, the US now definitely have the more ‘historic’ (or, to ignore any tv vocabulary: insert any adjective of your choosing) leader… No offense, S.H.!
    Well, anyways, thanks again, and good night and good luck.

  42. Where was Coyne?

  43. i’m going to read the coyne article about how canada’s elections suck compared to the us. lol. thankyou paul, feschuk, luiza…i think i saw kady doing double duty. lots of reporters doing double & triple duty. i don’t think i’m going to get any sleep. i saw a little bit of fox, but like nas said fox news hates ethnics and that’s why i watch the simpsons and judge judy but aside from that buffalo and fox can suck it. i saw the tandem colber and stewart. i am a cnn baby. loved it. sad it’s over. i saw the host of james carvale. and what’s gergen gonna be doing. it’s gonna be sad when bill schnider/larry king go first. toobins line on elizabeth dole working 12 days in her state was awesome. i’m so wrung out. THANK YOU BARACK OBAMA.

  44. Did anyone find Coyne yet? Was he busy being asked to be Chief of Staff? Or Secretary of Curmudgeon?

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