Mid-term elections: My final analysis
Well the voters spoke and what they said spoke volumes here locally especially at the school board level. I have not seen turnout numbers yet, but it seems there were better than expected turnouts especially for South DeKalb.
The Republican sacrificial lamb went down in flames against Hank Johnson. I will admit, I was not surprised by the Johnson victory. After all this is an overwhelmingly democratic district. What was surprising was that Liz Carter did not get a higher percentage of votes. Historically, Republicans have gotten about a third of the vote. Carter got only 25 percent. She lost all three counties, but kept it close in Rockdale and Gwinnett. In GWX she won 43 percent and I Rockdale she won 47 percent. It was DeKalb that cost her big time. DeKalb was won by Johnson 79 percent to 20 percent. That is a pure rejection by DeKalb voters of the Republican candidate. I cannot wait to see actual precinct numbers. Carter showed her face at events in South DeKalb more than Johnson, so I would like to see how bad she actually did in southern precincts. These numbers confirm to me that no Republican no matter how moderate can win in the fourth short of redistricting which is coming soon.
Democrat David Scott cruised into another term taking out Republican challenger Mike Crane by more than 2 to 1. Crane lost in every county in the district. The only county where it was close was Douglas, he was just over 1000 votes behind. The rest were a wash. The Secretary of State’s office is reporting that as of lunchtime Wednesday, only two-thirds of Cobbs vote had been recorded, but I doubt there are enough out there to change the outcome.
The two races above and the 5th district with John Lewis tells me that Democrats have a stranglehold on certain districts, and they can rest assured that those districts will deliver to the Democrats quite reliably. Now let’s see if the Democrats return the favor. To see just how the Democrats have DeKalb in their pocket, consider this; of the major statewide races (Gov., Lt. Gov., SOS, AG, Insurance and Agriculture Commissioner, Labor Commissioner and State School Super.), every Democrat running for those offices got 70 plus percent of the vote.
I did not cover the Governor’s race to tough because after the primary it was obvious which party was going to be in the state capitol. What I do want to touch on is redistricting. The Republicans hold all the key statewide positions that influence how districts will be drawn. With Georgia’s population growth in the last decade we are going to get at least one additional House representative and possibly a second. If that’s the case, districts will have to be redrawn. Democrats are going to have a tough time getting districts drawn anywhere near what they want to see. And although the Obama Justice Department has to approve any possible redraw, it is going to be very interesting to see where we all fall in the new order. DeKalb which covers parts of four districts, could see drastic changes in the next year or so. Watch the 13th. People do not like how it meanders around the perimeter from South DeKalb To southern Cobb County. Also watch the 4th. One representative is rumored to want to see the sixth drop further down from its present borders.
Now to the school board. When I first saw initial results on election night around 10 pm I was livid. All of the challengers were behind and behind big. Within a couple of hours the numbers had started to settle and things did not look too bad. As it stands now, no incumbent was defeated outright. District 1 and 7 are going to a runoff. District 3, 5, and 9 are wins for the incumbent. If all things hold as they are, only two seats stand a chance at changing. To me that is not enough. It says overall the citizens are satisfied with the direction of the school board. Donna Edler came close to unseating Zepora Roberts, but fell short. In district 1 Nancy Jester finished at the top but could not clear the 50 plus 1 hurdle. Two things about the run-off in both districts. In both, the incumbent actually received less votes. In District 1 if you combine jesters totals with that of Merope Gillis, the voters actually wanted Jim Redovian out. The voters who wanted Redovian out just split on who they wanted. The same was evident in the 7th. Sixty-one percent of votes cast were against Zepora Roberts. If these trends hold those two seats are gains for those who think it is time for a change. The second observation is will enough voters remain discontent and return to the polls to deliver the message they sent on Tuesday. After all people wanted to see something change in those two districts. If bad news continues to flow out about DeKalb schools then the challengers can win. If the fight is gone and people do not show, the incumbents can get more of their people to the polls and that means sure defeat in the run-off for Jester and Edler.
A couple of other things on the board. Jay Cunningham received 64 percent of the vote in district 5. A man with a felony theft conviction and possible conflicts of interest should have had a rougher time than he did. What is really depressing is that there was one a possibly two candidates that were clearly qualified to do the job. In the past SACS has said that accreditation was not on the line in DeKalb. The also stated they wanted to see how the lections turn out. If none of the challengers’ win in run-offs, will this affect SACS view of the system.
DeKalb Results here: http://web.co.dekalb.ga.us/Voter/pdf/GEResult11102010.pdf