A Guide to Election Night for the Non-Political Junkie

Written by Terry Mitchell

Continued from page 1

As states are called, their electoral votes are placed into one candidate's column. Also, look for each news organization to utilize a map ofrepparttar United States, which starts out with each state depicted as white. As a state is called for Bush, its color is changed to red; as a state is called for Kerry, its color is changed to blue; hence,repparttar 125942 red states and blue states. Look for Kentucky to berepparttar 125943 first state called. That state closes its polls at 6:00 Eastern Time and will almost certainly fall into Bush's column. Once a candidate reaches 270 or more electoral votes, he will be declaredrepparttar 125944 winner ofrepparttar 125945 election, regardless ofrepparttar 125946 total popular votes or how many red or blue states he has earned.

If Bush wins allrepparttar 125947 states he won in 2000 and no more, he will win by a larger margin (277-261) inrepparttar 125948 electoral college than he won by last time (271-267). Actually, he could lose one of his smaller states like New Hampshire, without picking up one that Gore won, and still winrepparttar 125949 election. This is because, based onrepparttar 125950 2000 census,repparttar 125951 population has shifted a bit and six congressional seats (and thereforerepparttar 125952 same amount of electoral votes) have shifted from "Gore" states to "Bush" states.

The key states to watch throughoutrepparttar 125953 evening will berepparttar 125954 so-called "battleground" states. The candidate who winsrepparttar 125955 majority of those states will likely winrepparttar 125956 election. By most estimates, these states include New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Florida, West Virginia, Ohio, Iowa, Wisconsin, Colorado, and New Mexico. Most ofrepparttar 125957 other states are considered to already be inrepparttar 125958 column of one candidate orrepparttar 125959 other. As a general rule, Bush is expected to be strong inrepparttar 125960 south, southwest, and mountain and prairie west. Kerry looks to be strong inrepparttar 125961 northeast, upper Midwest, and alongrepparttar 125962 Pacific coast. I don't see any state further west than New Mexico or Colorado being a major decisive factor. It is already assumed that California, Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii will all go for Kerry, while Alaska will go for Bush.

Colorado could prove to berepparttar 125963 most controversial this time, but only if everything falls right. There is an initiative onrepparttar 125964 Colorado ballot to award its electoral votes proportionally, instead of awarding all nine of them torepparttar 125965 winner, as it does now. If passed, this would go into effect immediately with this election. Sincerepparttar 125966 race in Colorado is expected to be close,repparttar 125967 results of this measure would effectively take four electoral votes away fromrepparttar 125968 winner ofrepparttar 125969 state and give them torepparttar 125970 loser. Therefore, ifrepparttar 125971 measure passes andrepparttar 125972 candidate who wins Colorado losesrepparttar 125973 election by less than nine electoral votes,repparttar 125974 measure will have cost that candidaterepparttar 125975 election. Obviously, a major legal battle would ensue if that happened.

One final item to watch for on election night isrepparttar 125976 battle for control ofrepparttar 125977 House andrepparttar 125978 Senate. The Republicans currently hold a slim margin in both houses. Several key wins, or "pick-ups," byrepparttar 125979 Democrats could turn things around in their favor in one house or possibly both. Conversely, some pick-ups byrepparttar 125980 Republicans could increase their margin in one or both house. Key races that could go either way will be monitored closely throughoutrepparttar 125981 evening.

Terry Mitchell is a software engineer from Hopewell, VA. He operates a website, http://www.commenterry.com, on which he posts commentaries on various subjects such as politics, technology, religion, health and well-being, personal finance, and sports. His commentaries offer a unique point of view that is not often found in mainstream media. Mr. Mitchell is also a trivia buff.

A Clear Direction After Election Day

Written by Angela Winters

Continued from page 1
to have a chance in any upcoming elections, they have to expand their base. They can only do that by electing more moderate, likeable candidates. Obama is a good example. Regardless ofrepparttar fact that he was basically runningrepparttar 125941 equivalent of unopposed,repparttar 125942 middle is their only chance. They need a candidate who can appeal torepparttar 125943 base and not just steal Independents, but steal Republicansrepparttar 125944 way Clinton did. They need a candidate that people want as opposed to a candidate that will do as long asrepparttar 125945 other guy doesn't win. If they continue to rely on college kids and African Americans, they are going to stay where they are. The minority party.

So here we are. A President in power withrepparttar 125946 support of a little over halfrepparttar 125947 people, but more than he gotrepparttar 125948 last time. What are you thinking? What are you feeling? Barring something really unusual, Bush is going to win. What do you want him to do differently? What can all politicians do to quell some of this partisan hatred?

Angela Winters is a freelance writer and author of over twelve novels. She writes articles on race, politics and diversity. Located in the Washington DC area, Angela has written for The Laurel Leader, Popandpolitics.com, Watchblog, Centerfield and Politopics among others.

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