Regular format be damned.
So what’s all the fuss about then?
Well, tomorrow the people of Murka – good and bad, rich and poor, black and white, as long as they’re over 18 – will be pulling knobs and thrusting through chads in order to pick their overlord for the next four years. The current incumbent is a lovely chap from Nenagh called Barry. He’s being opposed by a wealthy Mormon called Myth.
Sure Barry’s some man, surely he has it in the bag?
Well….yes and no. Apparently he’s not quite as popular in the States (the place with the guns) as he outside the States (the place most of the really big guns are pointing at). You see, for the last 4 years, the vast majority of americans have been shit-canend out of their jobs and homes like everyone else around the western world. And, like every other democracy since Sparta, it’s the job of the electorate to blame all of their troubles on whoever is in charge and get them out of power
You mean like when we traded Brian for Enda?
EXACTLY! We didn’t like Enda, we just hated whoever was in charge without paying any attention to who that is. That’s why we all apparently hate Enda now, too. But enough about here, we’re years from one of these yet. It’s important to understand how it all goes down tomorrow night, especially considering the winner will be the lad in charge of all of the aforementioned guns pointing at us.
Alright, so who’s your man Myth when he’s at home?
Myth is the governor of Massachusetts, but despite his disgustingly left-wing surroundings he’s proven to be more conservative than his highest-profile supporter, one CM Burns. When it suits him, that is. Myth has become known for contradicting himself at every available opportunity depending on who’s listening. While we know for a fact that he’s a fan of corporate downsizing at the expense of a labour force in favour of profits (google “private equity” and “Bain capital”), he doesnt actually appear to believe in anything else at all. His running mate is the most violently anti-gay, anti-black, anti-science, anti-tax, anti-infrastructure, anti- immigration, anti-your-aunties reptile that’s ever been pressed into a suit and taught how to wipe the infant entrails off his teeth long enough to smile for the cameras. He has so far politicised terrorist attacks in Libya, Hurricane Sandy, and Barry’s birth certificate without presenting any plan of any kind (other than the exact same 5-pointer trotted out by McCain and Bush for the past 12 years), and his suggestion to students asking how anyone can afford college was to “borrow off their parents”.
In a word? Gowlbag.
Jaysus, sounds a bit of a cunt alright. All for Barry then?
Eh. Barry has a bit of a habit of saying he’ll do things and then not doing them, most noticably the closure of Guantanamo Bay (coming early 2009!), the repeal of the PATRIOT act (early 2009!), and a new era of hope and happiness and fuzzy monkeys bringing you cocktails each morning (early 2009 shut up shut up just vote for me and everything will be fine). It raises the question as to what exactly Barry can be relied on to actually get done, seeing as his political career is still pretty young. Sure, he’s at the top of the heap on paper, but the truth is that he only became a Senator four tiny years before taking on the big chair. If his first term has taught us anything, it’s that great oratory and strong thinking are nothing without political muscle.
Right well, both dickheads then?
Nah, Barry’s alright. But there’s a problem. Know the way elections are basically a count of – at some level – whoever gets the most votes?
Traditionally, yeah, why?
Not so much in the US.
Ah yeah, that’d be the aul’ electoral college
That’s the one! Each state has a certain amount of electoral votes, and these go to whoever wins the state election in all but two states. So bigger, more “important” states have more and smaller states have less. California has 55. North Dakota has only 3. Everyone else has somewhere in between. 270 is the magic number that both sides need to win. So, much like here, where one party can take the Dail with only Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and a few brown envelopes, in the US it’s technically possible to win the election with only the support of 11 states
The FUCK? ELEVEN states? Aren’t there…
Yeah, there’s 50 of them altogether. If either side took California, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, California, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Florida and Texas they wouldn’t need a single vote from any of the other 39 states. Luckily, nobody faggy enough for California will ever be redneck enough for Texas so it’s pretty unlikely that this scenario would ever play out. Still, it just goes to show how easy it is to be stuck in one of the less valuable states.
So it’s all about these eleven states then?
Well….no. See, a lot of the states listed above are never going to flip ANYWAY. There are many states that are almost permanently fixed either Democrat or Republican. In much the same way that the people of Cavan are pretty likely to vote for Sinn Fein, it’s pretty much a dead cert that Texas, Missouri, Kansas and Idaho are going to go red. Then again, most of the (slightly) more liberal NE of the country tends to vote for the blue team. Of the eleven states above, Barry has a “lock” on 4 of them and Myth can probably count on 4.
Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and the one everybody want, Ohio. No Democrat has won without Ohio since the 60s. No Republican has EVER won without Ohio. That’s why Myth’s relief event after Sandy was held several hundred miles inland, in Ohio.
So what should I be watching out for tomorrow night?
Well, if new england states start flipping red, then it’s time for the Barry fans to get worried. On the other hand, If Ohio and Florida go blue, we can all get some rest before 5am, safe in the knowledge that Myth is being sent back where he came from to pester kittens and lure children into Ponzi schemes
And the best way to watch?
2 AM Irish time, as many news outlets as you can find. 270towin.com will be entertaining, twitter will crash, reddit will be packed with pictures of cats, and facebook will be covered in my ranting
Fuck this, I might just go to bed instead
Yeah, good shout.