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By Jeremy Schiffres, Daily and Sunday Freeman, Kingston, N.Y.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Election leftovers

* Today is Nov. 19, a full 15 days after the presidential election. How come we still don’t know who won Missouri’s 11 electoral votes?

* Talk about actions having consequences:
When U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, accepted more than $250,000 in improper gifts from an oil field services company and then lied about it on Senate disclosure forms, he probably figured the worst things that could happen to him would be getting caught, being convicted of a crime and losing his Senate seat. To no one’s surprise, all three of those things happened. But Stevens probably never figured he’d lose his seat by way of the election (rather than by winning and being forced to resign); and even if he did suspect that he might lose to Democrat Mark Begich – which he now has – it probably never dawned on him that the last vestige of Republican power in Washington could be lost in the process. Begich’s win gives the Democrats 58 seats in the Senate – just two short of the all-important filibuster-proof 60 – and there are two races left to be decided. If Democratic challenger Al Franken winds up unseating Republican Sen. Norm Coleman in Minnesota after that state’s recount is done, and if Democratic challenger Jim Martin beats Republican Sen. Saxby Chambliss in the upcoming runoff election in Georgia, then the Democrats will, indeed, have their 60 seats – along with, of course, control of the House of Representatives and the presidency. Perhaps Ted Stevens should have considered that possibility before allowing VECO Corp. to pay for the pricey renovations at his home.

* I’m getting quite a laugh out of all the Obama haters criticizing the president-elect for choosing people from Bill Clinton’s administration to serve in the new White House. “This isn’t the change he promised us!” they bellow. Funny, but I never heard these people complain when George W. Bush chose Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld – both of whom served in previous Republican administrations – to serve as vice president and defense secretary.



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