They are known to let dead people come back to vote for ward leader in Philadelphia, but when I arrived at my polling place of the last two elections yesterday, I found my name mysteriously removed from the rolls. My friend and South Philadelphia homeowner Ryan, meanwhile, got turned away for not being a Democrat, even though he changed his registration the last time he realized the Green Party was lame during last year's mayoral primary. Look: the last machine still running in Pennsylvania runs its voters. Hillary was going to win that. No one on Crappy Hour ever predicted Barack was going to carry this, or even get close, or if we did it was a joke or we were too hungover to know what we were doing, obvi. So I'm not really that mad about Barry's inability to "close the deal." I am, however, kind of baffled by the Abercrombie & Fitch thing. From blind gayvotion to NAFTA to centimillionaire executive pay packages to endemic racism to bland pointless predictability Abercrombie is the epitome of everything about the America that is not "ready" for a black Muslimy Marxist freethinking president. Were those the best white kids you could find, Axelrod? That and more minutiae with me and a very hungover Megan after the jump.
MOE: Okay so I am depressed and I hope everyone dies. Especially the commenter who thought I was saying the artists that helped revive Philadelphia on an aesthetic level came from PENN.
MOE: FUCK ALL OF YOU.
MEGAN: Yeah, you should've seen the Obama party last night, it was on the river in a nice location and people didn't even stay to watch the concession but damn were the bartenders pouring with a strong hand,
MEGAN: Also, it was a pain to catch a cab back from.
MOE: And then my train was held over an hour in Trenton, so I not only missed watching the returns, I missed Jenna Bush at the 92nd Street Y. And that's when I got a call from an old friend at the Wall Street Journal, which is rapidly being dismantled by Rupert Murdoch.
MEGAN: Oh, God, Trenton blows.
MOE: The world knows.
MEGAN: Like, of the many things I celebrated about leaving the lobbying profession, the fact that I would never again have to be in Trenton was on the list.
MEGAN: Of course, now that I've said that, I'll get stuck going there some time. Fuck you, Trenton.
MOE: Yeah if you take the regional rail between Philly and New York at night you cannot avoid getting stuck at the train station.
MEGAN: Also, by the way, she raised $2.5 million last night.
MEGAN: Hopefully her next round of commercials will be less lame.
MOE: Okay, you know who gets a special "Fuck you"? The New York Times. I have plenty of dear friends who have taken longer to get disillusioned by Hillary (still waiting on Sinister!) but none of them work for the NYT op-ed page. Drudge is calling it an "un-endorsement" I guess. Ugh. Anyway, I'm annoyed. Because I knew this was going to happen, and I was truthfully worried about much worse margins, but the stupid media set expectations artificially high again, which they keep doing.
MEGAN: I fucking love this quote:
The Pennsylvania campaign, which produced yet another inconclusive result on Tuesday, was even meaner, more vacuous, more desperate, and more filled with pandering than the mean, vacuous, desperate, pander-filled contests that preceded it.
MEGAN: God, I love politics.
MOE: Hey, Hillary supporters, you know who's with you now? The National Review's Lisa Schiffren:
Perhaps the sheer fact of having to get out there day after day to meet Americans, has humanized her, and helped her learn how to relate to citizens from different demographic swathes than her own narrow one. She may have learned a thing or two from them along the way, about their deeper values. (Barak surely has learned nothing of that.)
MEGAN: Their deeper values? Crown Royal and beer?
MEGAN: Oh, god, what the fuck are they smoking over there?
MOE: Right, Barack has spent no time with people from different demographic swathes than his own narrow biracial Hawaiian Indonesian-reared Harvard Chicago Marxist one.
MEGAN: And where can I get some of that good shit.
MOE: Anyway, here's my question: why is everyone so surprised? It was a closed primary, I got turned away to vote and they fucking let DEAD PEOPLE vote in Philadelphia, Obama didn't dole out any street money...I mean, I wasn't surprised! I knew it was coming! The only thing I thought would be cool was getting to vote in it! Too bad!!
MOE: Jenna and Barbara are getting fellated on Fox & Friends right now.
MEGAN: Oh, gross imagery. Thanks for helping my hangover with that.
MEGAN: Also, aren't you supposed to be allowed to vote on a provisional ballot? And Obama took Philly anyway, it's just he lost everywhere else.
MOE: Yeah, I was supposed to be, but I was going to try and figure out where my actual polling place was, near another house I used to live in, and then time ran out. I will state that the folks at my polling place were absolutely totally unhelpful, although very friendly in their unhelpfulness. They knew I was there to vote for my Marxist. Hey, now, I know this is sort of a change of subject, but on the "total obliteration" front does it seem like North Korea and Syria have more going for them mass destruction-wise than the Iraq ever did? Not that that's really saying much.
MOE: So, where was the Obama party last night? What did you do?
MEGAN: The Obama party was at some place I forget the name of, because I'm like that, but the address was 1 Boathouse Road, and it was very nice. The DJ was pretty awesome, but no one was dancing despite the fact that I guarantee you his crowd had way more rhythm than Hillary's, if the crowd I had to push through to get out of my hotel (where her party was) was any indication.
MEGAN: I went, I took pictures for Glamocracy and I drank.
MEGAN: And then I came back to the hotel and went to bed because yesterday was an exhaustingly bloggy day, between writing all the female voter profiles for them. I didn't even finish the glass of wine I had, and that's saying something.
MOE: And while you summon the ability to let me in on that, allow me to clarify my BlackBerry dispatch from yesterday — and to answer commenter B_boy who wondered what I need with a blackberry, the answer is I got sort of dependent on it after September 11 when I was working as a newspaper reporter, and I've never been able to give it up, and at this point it's kind of cheap anyway — but with regard to the artists. There is a real, humble, awesome politically-active, socially aware, iconoclastic, big-hearted, entrepreneurial idealistic group of artsy carpenter types who gentrified Philly for the better. A lot of them are from the area, some of them went to RISD and just needed a cheap place to live, but what you have to understand is that when you gentrify a city like Philadelphia you're not driving anyone away from their houses. The remaining residents do not resent you; quite the opposite. And they're fucking cool. It's hard to explain how it worked down there, but I was always amazed by the willingness of some of those kids to look at bona fide ruins and see the potential for a super functional community.
MOE: And zero percent of them came from Penn, thank you v. much. Although one of them, noted Mummer Sonja Trauss, is getting some sort of graduate degree in economics there now.
MEGAN: Yeah, my editor and I drove along the Baltimore Ave/Pike/Ave the whole way from Penn campus to Media, PA and saw a ton of that kind of respectful gentrification, as opposed to the DC kind where they kick everyone out, tear everything down and put up a condo tower with a Starbucks or a Cosi on the ground floor.
MOE: No one wants to build a fucking condo tower on Baltimore Avenue. I mean, on Baltimore — I used to live on 43rd and Baltimore — it's a little different. There wasn't the block after block of 2/3 bombed out rowhouses. Though there was an controversial crackhouse-cum-anarchist squat that was always an interesting point of controversy for the neighborhood. Like, did they like it more when crackheads ate from their dumpsters? Or the smelly dreadlocked white kids?
MOE: Oooooh, voter disenfranchisement from my friend and South Philadelphia homeowner Ryan Creed.
MOE: Ryantastic: well, it's not all that salacious.
Ryantastic: I voted green in 2000, and I found out I never reaffiliated last year when I went to vote for mayor
Ryantastic: I thought I changed it there
Ryantastic: but apparently it didn't go through
Ryantastic: This is the second damn time in a year that it's happened
MEGAN: Apparently, there's a brew pub now on 50th and Baltimore, so the edges of the gentrification is spreading outwards, according to one of our panelists.
MOE: This happened with a few people actually...they thought they changed their registration, and then they showed up and were told they didn't.
MEGAN: That sounds shady to me, but, then, so does street money and ward captains and shit.
MOE: Ah, the brew pubs. Incidentally, Philadelphia is where Yards beer is brewed, and Yards beer is the best beer in the universe, although I think they might have closed because doing business in Philadelphia is a pain in the ass if you aren't part of the machine. Also there's a near 5% wage tax and some sort of business privilege tax that keeps people away apparently. I dunno. It is an awesome place to live if you aren't the type of person who never looks at your ATM receipt.
MEGAN: I am, personally, physically incapable of not looking at my balance, it's part of an overall level of analness.
MOE: Dana Milbank was good today.
MEGAN: Also, I just have to ask, how exactly did Obama "play the race card" on Bill Clinton again? By pointing out the shit that Bill had already said?
MEGAN: I mean, unless Bill was part of their strategic planning, they couldn't've known-known that Bill would shove most of his right leg into his mouth and give them an opening, right?
MOE: So we have to discuss the nexus of my favorite two subjects, Barry Hussein and Abercrombie & Fitch, happening once again.
MEGAN: Dude, fucking everyone was talking about that shit last night.
MOE: We discussed this yesterday. He played the race card the same way Geraldine Ferrarro was the victim of racism; in his own deluded compartmentalizing triangulating victory-deranged mind.
MEGAN: Oh, right, sorry. I forgot, BUT STILL, why hasn't he shut up about it yet. Obama's all like, dude, I have no idea what he meant by that, I'm sorry.
MEGAN: Also, that's really poor advance work on Obama's staff's part, because don't they know they're supposed to have, like, white middle-aged people in the background to show their support for him? Which reminds me of the thing I'm still really mad I couldn't take pictures of: little old ladies for Obama. There was one on the median outside the hotel in a wheelchair, a little old white lady, with a sign that said "Obama Granny" waving and getting people to honk. Then, at the party last night, there was a little old African-American lady with a cane shaking her groove thing to Mary J and I had to give her a hug but that might've been the wine or the rum.
MEGAN: But on the 'crombie boys, one of them is kind of rocking the gay-face, and they don't look like they're from Indiana to me.
MOE: Well yeah, I wanted to punch them out. I was at a bar talking about the death of journalism, but apparently one of them was talking on his cell phone. I can't tell if it is more sick or absurd. Knowing what I know about Abercrombie, I am sort of torn. And following the biggest race-discrimination payout in...well I have no idea, but I imagine that Abercrombie now has diversity training and maybe those guys were moved by the race speech. I was always fascinated to find that the very employees who enforced Abercrombie's institutional racism were ...not unaware of it. They were sort of tormented by it I guess. Also gays are supposed to vote for Hillary. Yeah, the whole thing is really weird.
MEGAN: Actually, I don't understand the near-universal gay men's love of Hillary, unless it's some sort of diva worship? None of my gay friends who are Hillary fans can really explain it to me particularly well, but it annoys the crap out of my gay friends who support Obama.
MOE: It's totally diva worship. I mean, you know, I get it. I get people who like Hillary. I think she's great! In any other election I'd be so stoked to vote for her! You guys all know this! I'm just super impressed by Barry and I'm amazed how well he's done. And truly, does last night matter?
Under party rules, congressional districts that voted most heavily Democratic in recent general elections get more delegates to the party's national convention in Denver in August. In Pennsylvania, districts that went most heavily for Democrats in the 2004 presidential and 2006 gubernatorial races got the most seats.
All states use a similar formula, which dates to the 1970s and was intended to reward constituencies and voters most loyal to the party, said Democratic strategist Tad Devine. But the effect is most pronounced in states with large and concentrated African-American populations, which tend to be most loyal to the party.
I guess that sort of makes up for all the newly-registered but never-actually-registered Dems that were turned away yesterday.
MEGAN: so it's sort of like texas?
In Texas, African-American votes for Sen. Obama in delegate-rich Houston and Dallas largely offset Hispanic votes for Sen. Clinton in the delegate-poor Rio Grande Valley. Sen. Clinton netted just four more delegates in the primary than Sen. Obama did, despite winning the popular vote by 101,000 votes and 3.5 percentage points.
Pennsylvania posed a similar opportunity. Philadelphia's 2nd Congressional District, where Sen. Obama long has had his strongest support, will send nine people to the national convention. Two nearby districts with similarly large African-American populations will send seven delegates each.
MEGAN: Wait, and then with the caucuses, he actually took more delegates.
MOE: Nevertheless, Obama won the vast majority of party switchers. Even despite all the reports of party-switchers who found their party hadn't been switched. I think those two things bode well. He also won the majority of people for whom Iraq was the biggest concern.
MOE: There's no caucuses in Philly though.
MOE: I mean in Penn.
MEGAN: Hey, you know what's fucked up? One of our Glamocracy panelists said she'd definitely heard of Republicans switching to vote for Hillary to keep this going, the way Republicans voted for Hillary in Texas.
MOE: Yeah but Pennsylvanians don't listen to Rush the same way Texans do.