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Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Election Night: Unity 2008

For one night at least, Davis Democrats were just Davis Democrats. Friend and foe. Adversary and ally alike shed their labels and lined up under the big tent. Democrats got together last night at Lamppost Pizza for the Yolo County Young Democrats Election Night Party.

For local Democrats, races are officially on. Proposition 93 was defeated at last count 53-46. That means that Lois Wolk, although she faces no primary challenge, will face the fight of her life when she takes on fellow Assemblyman Greg Aghazarian. Supervisor Mariko Yamada and West Sacramento Mayor Christopher both were at the party last night and will square off for the Democratic nomination for the 8th Assembly District. The winner will almost certainly be the next Assembly representative in the heavily Democratic District. Jim Provenza and John Ferrera will square off for the open 4th Supervisorial District currently held by Ms. Yamada.

The shocker is the national results however. Senator Hillary Clinton won the biggest prize of California, currently 52-42. But Barack Obama won more states, as of last count 13 with New Mexico still too close to call although Senator Obama leads narrowly. The popular vote is nearly evenly split. The delegate count far from decided, but most likely also evenly split. Most pundits had felt the best Senator Obama would do would be 7 to 9 states. So he outperformed expectations there. On the other hand, it seemed many felt that he could take California, but that was never a context.

That leaves amazingly enough the Democratic nomination completely up for grabs. Pundits argued that Senator Obama did not have to win the election outright last night, if he stayed close he would have the momentum and resources to win a prolonged battle. That will be put to a test now as the races move on past Super Tuesday no closer it seems to a winner.

The same cannot be said for the Republicans. Though hardcore conservatives railed against him, Senator John McCain won every single big prize last night, most of them winner-takes-all states. The biggest loser was former Governor Mitt Romney. And Governor Mike Huckabee won some Southern contests playing a spoiler roll for Gov. Romney. That nomination is all but sewn up for McCain, and we shall see if the party can unite behind him.

Meanwhile for Davis and Yolo County, it is game on. Just under four months until the election for the Democratic nominees for Senate and Assembly, and the non-partisan but heated battles for Supervisor and City Council.

For one night though, it seemed like everyone was on the same side.

---Doug Paul Davis reporting