It’s been almost a week since the election. Even though I knew my vote didn’t count – each candidate I voted for lost and just about every issue on which I either voted yes or no went the other way – here in Washington, I voted nonetheless.
Of course, I’m very unhappy about the results of the election. Although I was hoping I wouldn’t have to, I reset my computer countdown clock to Inauguration Day 2017. Since President Obama’s inauguration in 2009, I watched my clock count down the years, months and days to last Tuesday. It helped.
Since last Tuesday, I’ve heard plenty about what Gov. Romney “coulda, shoulda, woulda” done differently, but I’ll leave that analysis to those far smarter than I am.
What struck me though in this election was the issue of the “undecideds.” I’m always amazed when I read about polls and there’s always 57% for, 39% against and the ubiquitous “don’t knows” at 4%. Now, I guess if you asked me whether I thought Pluto should’ve been removed from the list of planets, I’d have to say “I don’t know,” but, on just about anything else, I’d have an opinion.
It’s mind-boggling to me that there could be even one person “undecided” coming into this election cycle, let alone going into the voting booth not knowing how they were going to vote last Tuesday. The choices were never clearer and I’m not going to waste space here talking about those differences. They’re as obvious as the nose on my face.
Bernie Goldberg, in his article, Obama Wins – And Loses, remarked about “Chris Christie’s embrace of President Obama after Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey.” Bernie said it didn’t mean the Republican governor endorsed the President, “but it’s a safe bet that it came off that way to independent and undecided voters.” I commented that it’s frightening to think that a photo op for both President Obama and Gov. Christie playing kissy-face could, even with the President’s track record, sway an undecided voter.
But Bernie was right. According to exit polls reported on The O’Reilly Factor, 42% of voters said Obama’s response to Hurricane Sandy was an important part of their decision. And when asked “when did you finally decide for whom to vote in the Presidential election?” 9% said in the last few days, 11% said in October, 9% said in September and 69% said before that.
When I saw the President with Gov. Christie, I chuckled because the first thing I saw was Mr. Obama wearing the same Presidential jacket all Presidents seem to wear after a disaster and my husband and I wondered whether President Bush actually left this one in the First Family’s bedroom closet. Gov. Christie had to make nice with the President because he had his hand out for federal funds. It all seems so obvious.
So, my bottom line is, although I can’t imagine one voter who could still be undecided when he or she woke up on November 6th, I can’t even begin to fathom why a photo opportunity for two politicians could make an impact on someone’s vote. Even if the Messiah (as President Obama is referred to Sean Hannity) waved his hand and parted the waters and was able to make the waters of Hurricane Sandy recede, I still wouldn’t have voted for him. But then that’s me….
And by the way, shame on each and every Republican and Conservative who stayed home last week. No candidate is perfect, but not voting for Mr. Romney, for whatever reason, insured Mr. Obama a second term.
In the meantime, if anyone is interested, it’s 4 years, 2 months, 8 days, fourteens hours, 52 minutes….. to Inauguration Day 2017.