WE WON!!!

Obama Wins Second Term—Plus Gay Marriage Is Legalized in Multiple States, Pot Is Legalized in Washington State, and More

Comments

1
And if you see a law you don't like, write to your Congress critters! You want Gitmo shut down, write to your Congress critters! You want marriage equality, write to your Congress critters! You want marijuana legalized, write to your Congress critters! They make the laws, not the President.
2
Very well written!
3
Last night was amazing. I eventually went home to climb into bed, and I fell asleep listening to Capitol Hill partying like never before.
4
Very true David42, but I've found that they mostly respond with either canned responses which never really answer questions you pose to them or simply direct you to read all the promo bits on their websites which never directly address the issues we write to them about.

It gets extremely frustrating to feel one is merely being brushed aside when we address our congress members, either at the State or the Federal level.
5
@4 "It gets extremely frustrating to feel one is merely being brushed aside when we address our congress members, either at the State or the Federal level."

I am sorry about your fee-fees.

...and your opinion is mostly being brushed aside.

...but some low level staffer just ticked a few marks on a tally, and every so often that tally is consulted.

Few constituents really matter to any elected official, but those numbers, they mean something.
6
@4 Even more reason to write and call them. I have recieved personal replies from Patty Murray and Carl Levin (when I lived in MI). What better way to tell if they're listening?
7
Paul, your lecture to those of us who voted for 3rd-party candidates (I voted for Rocky Anderson) is spectacularly hypocritical, not to mention just plain weird. Over the past several years, I’ve written to the president on a nearly weekly basis. I’ve asked him to stop slaughtering civilians in Pakistan. I’ve asked him to stop the ‘double-tap’ drone strikes (where they launch a missile strike, wait for rescuers to go in, and then launch a second strike massacring the rescuers-- a war crime which the UN is now investigating). I’ve asked him to stop imprisoning and torturing whistleblowers. I’ve asked him not to execute people without a trial, and not to pass laws authorizing indefinite detention. I’ve asked him to put a stop to extraordinary rendition, i.e. outsourced torture. I’ve asked him to put an end to the gargantuan warrantless-surveillance programs he has developed. I’ve asked him to halt oil drilling in the arctic. When BP committed one of the great ecological atrocities of our time, I asked Obama not to give the criminals authority over the coast guard and local officials. I’ve asked him to halt the aggressive prosecution of medical marijuana, and I’ve asked him to explain why is it that he refuses to prosecute torturers, but he’ll relentlessly prosecute those who try to relieve suffering. Obviously it hasn’t done any good-- he’s continued doing all of these things-- but I’ll keep pestering him. I feel obligated, because in 2008 I contributed to his campaign... which means that I essentially have blood on my hands, and I’m trying to atone.
I’ve also written to my senators and congressman, asking them to push for investigations into the war crimes and human rights violations and civil liberties abuses of the Obama administration--- just as I did during the Bush years. That hasn’t done any good either, but I’ll keep at it.
And I’ve done what I can to make people aware of the truly horrible crimes which are presently being committed in our name. I don’t have a lot of clout in this regard--- I’m not a columnist--- but I waste my time submitting comments like these, and I speak up in situations where I know people will give me a bunch of shit about ‘ideological purity’ (as if refusing to vote for a torturer and a war criminal is some form of nitpicking). And instead of following your suggestion of giving money to this medeival maniac, I’ve donated whatever I can to the ACLU and Amnesty International, in hopes that they can put a stop to his repulsive policies.

I intend to keep doing all of this, and more. My question to you, Paul, is what are YOU going to do? Do you feel good about being a supporter of torture and mass-murder? Because right now, that is exactly what you are. Turns out that letter ‘D’ next to his name really doesn’t make it all okay.
8
@ WildwoodGuy - it's not the individual action, but the en masse action that gets results. So don't just write your congressperson or senator, get other people to do the same.

For example, I just wrote Maria Cantwell to congratulate her. I also told her that the Senate needs to kill the filibuster in this seating. Let's make this happen!
9
I voted for a third party candidate because it made sense for me to do so. I refused to vote for a war criminal or a corporate elitist with no concern for the lower classes. Instead, I voted for an intelligent woman who is so passionate about this country and what could happen to it that she was arrested (twice). If she runs again, I'll vote for her in a heartbeat. Because Jill Stein is good people.
10
That must have felt good to get off your chest! Kudos to you and all the work you did this election. I am quite sure you are not paid enough.
11
It frustrates me that Obama didn't win by a larger margin. I'm relieved he won, but I'm aghast at how many people voted for Romney in the general election, despite his... well, his performance, during the election and before.

I know everyone wants to be happy that Obama won. I know I'm being "that guy", and I apologize if I'm taking the wind of of anyone's sails. But when the rest of the world sees such a stark contrast, I can't help but feel embarrassed for the apparent ignorance of my country, where 48% of the voting population chose someone who repeatedly demonstrated a complete lack of character.
12
My congress critter is Dave Reichert. It's the only sadness I have from this monumental and wide-sweeping election victory. He votes for nothing that I agree with and isn't likely to change.
13
"People don’t vote against a candidate. They vote for a candidate."

"But I was happy to vote against Mitt Romney, too."

Really?
14
@4 its not so much about how they answer you (although obviously it would be better if these answers were more direct), it's about how they decide what issues their constituents care about. Every letter is taken into account as part of public opinion, if they think an issues is important/popular enough they'll do something about it.
15
Thank you, Paul Constant, for another fantastic article!
Love conquers all!!!! Great First Family re-election photo!!!
Hopefully, this aptly demonstrates once and for all that white
collar criminals who stash their ill-gotten billions in the Cayman
Islands, won't share their tax return information (?), and openly
declare a ridiculous war on their "binders full of women" CAN'T
BUY ELECTIONS!!!!
16
Writing this from an island of blue (New Orleans) in a sea of red. As one of my neighbors (who works with super staunch wingnutty neo-cons) put it: "It's not so much that Obama is a black President that bothers them. It's that Michelle is a black First Lady. That's what they REALLY hate."
17
This is the first article I've read written by you Paul and I liked it very much. I plan to read all your articles from now on.
18
To those who voted 3rd party, I could care less what you think. Have fun in the fantasy world built of your own righteousness.

As for me, my takeaway from the wonderful news and hard work of Barack Obama's re-election is that I am staying involved. Not sure what that means yet, but fighting the good fights pays off.

Thanks, Paul, for the outstanding political coverage. Rules.
19
@11: I understand your frustration, but around here it seemed that many people really thought that Mittens could bring about instant economic relief. If the economy was better I think we would have seen a landslide in favor of Obama.

Obama actually got better numbers in Colorado than I thought he would. And I was really happy to see him take the popular vote as well as the electoral vote, thereby squashing any arguments that the election wasn't the real will of the people.
20
Great article, Paul. THIS is my favorite line

"Voting is not the most important thing you can do as an American—it’s the least you can do. "

Absolutely.
21
Great bit of writing, Paul. I guess that's why you won a Pulitzer.
22
Paul,

Great article. You scare me a little when you say that you came to hate Romney though. I can't say I hate him. I despise his lying, his inability to condemn the racism/sexism/homophobia in his own party, and his contempt for the American people (as evidenced in his 47% speech to his rich buddies).

But I voted for President Obama because he's a great man who has done a good job in the face of strong opposition and after inheriting a bad economy. I would have voted for President Obama no matter who won the Republican primary.

And I agree with you that we should push President Obama to be more progressive, i.e., end the drone war, not give in to the Rethug demands to cut "entitlements" like Social Security, etc. It's up to us to hold his feet to the fire when he goes astray.

FORWARD!
23
@22 (Patricia Kayden): Patricia, the man is a sociopath. It's okay to hate him.
24
Actually, Paul, the most important thing we can do now is to tell Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell that we want them to eliminate the filibuster on the first day of the 113th Congress. Once a minority of 41 senators can no longer kill anything they feel like killing (outside of reconciliation), the President and Senate majority will have a chance to show their true colors. Given that Dems had the opportunity to get rid of the filibuster in 2010 and didn't take it, I suspect those colors are a lot bluer and doggier than what most Stranger readers are expecting.
25
@1 I saw protestors in front of the federal building (a.k.a. Guantanamo Northwest) this morning on my way in to work. I believe to protest the grand juries that have locked up the May Day Occupy folks. Looks like some people are listening.
26
I'll say this much for Rmoney: I wouldn't assume that he reveled in a campaign of racism and lies. Well, the racism part... really, that's the hand he's been dealt. Turn out white voters, it's all a rethug can do nowadays, so yeah, dogwhistles. Lying on the other hand seems to spring naturally from his soul, so I guess that shit's on Mitt. Oh well. His car elevator still loves him.
27
@16 Ugh. That's so disgusting.
28
Jeez - Well done! From those of us in the hinterlands of the southern US - thank you for the best summary of what happened yesterday available anywhere.
29
Oh, Paul Contant, the author of this article who writes, "I’ve learned to hate him as much as conservatives hate President Obama, on a deeply personal level."

If you have "learned" to hate Willard Romney, you have truly learned nothing at all.
30
@19: I expect that the state of the economy was the main reason for many, if not most, votes for Romney, aside from those votes based purely on spite towards Obama. That's why it frustrates me at the level of ignorance. Anyone who has been following reputable news sources knows that Romney and Ryan responded with at best coyness, and at worst condescension, when asked for their economic plan. And yet, people still found them to be viable candidates based on their economic "platform"? It baffles me that people can be so willfully stupid.
31
The thing that made me most happy, before the results came in - here in Saint Paul Minnesota-
I left the polling place early afternoon - schoolbus drove by - and all the kids on board were shouting "o-ba-ma". I waved and smiled.
32
I've had this question for a decade or two now: can someone explain why any Stranger writer discussing details of our voting system and third parties with a level of sophistication beyond that of a sixth grader is obviously subject to severe threat of being fired or never being published in this city again?

Especially when these same writers repeatedly write lovely articles with analyses and opinions that even an R-rated audience might have to think twice about.

For example why it is forbidden to write something as basic as: because Washington state is guaranteed to vote for Obama and therefore your vote for president has no effect on who is actually elected, you might as well turn your vote into a suggestion for moving politics a bit to the left or even just an expression of a desire for a broader spectrum of opinion - and then thoroughly enjoy celebrating Obama's victory later that night with no hypocrisy whatsoever.
33
I've had this question for a decade or two now: can someone explain why any Stranger writer discussing details of our voting system and third parties with a level of sophistication beyond that of a sixth grader is obviously subject to severe threat of being fired or never being published in this city again?

Especially when these same writers repeatedly write lovely articles with analyses and opinions that even an R-rated audience might have to think twice about.

For example why it is forbidden to write something as basic as: because Washington state is guaranteed to vote for Obama and therefore your vote for president has no effect on who is actually elected, you might as well turn your vote into a suggestion for moving politics a bit to the left or even just an expression of a desire for a more representative voting system like plenty of other countries have - and then thoroughly enjoy celebrating Obama's victory later that night with no hypocrisy whatsoever.
34
@16: Stupid is as stupid does down there.
@27 re @16's post: Agreed!
35
@4: But they do have staffers who aggregate the feedback they get on various sides of proposed and extant legislation. Sometimes it doesn't matter because it's a matter of personal or 'necessary' party ideology, but a strong showing for one side or other of an issue can get a politician thinking about that 1% of the vote ze might need next election cycle, and especially for issues that don't break neatly down party lines (school privatization programs, for example).
36
What's apparent as a truth in this election is...Democrats are willing to accept such a low bar of accomplishment in their candidate.

Way to push that bar down, wwwwwwaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyy down.
37
Romney worse than George W. Bush? How so?
38
I voted for James Harris;shame on you for not!
39
DO NOT GET TOO HAPPY, Stranger. REPUBLICANS WILL HAVE THE "FINAL WORD."

I WILL NEVER BELIEVE CONGRESS WANTS HISTORY BOOKS TO SAY THEY ALLOWED SAME-SEX MARRIAGE TO PASS [NATIONALLY] DURING A "COLORED'S" ADMINISTRATION.

SO, ENJOY SMOKIN' YOUR DOPE AND HAVING YOUR FREAKY MARRIAGES IN THE NORTHEAST AND WEST.

BUT, THE S-O-U-T-H WILL N-E-V-E-R HAVE FREAKSHOWS MOCKING THE CHURCH.

CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON
40
Third party voters are typically the most informed of voters. But whenever they point out actual, irrefutable facts, the party line loyalists get upset and scream, "You're not being realistic!" Hmmmm... it would be funny if it weren't so sad.
41
you lost me at "his kill list is an abomination".

No, it's not. For most of us it's a strong point of pride. A few precise strikes and we've managed to do what 8 years of Dubya/Cheney and 5000 dead soldiers couldn't.
42
oh, and 39 needs some jailtime.
43
"wilbur@work,"

IF I WENT TO JAIL, IT WOULD BE INTERNATIONAL NEWS. Luka Rocca Magnotta CAN NOT COMPETE WITH MY TALENTS.

CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON
44
Oh good, we already have a replacement for GDfR, and he's setting a precedent for misunderstanding how both his own keyboard and Google work. Welcome to Slog! Here we heap scorn and derision upon unrepentant idiots, and it looks like you'll do nicely.
45
Since voters in Washington state delivered their electoral votes to Barack Obama (WA overwhelmingly voted for Obama and governor Christine Gregoire campaigned time and again for the president), if Barack Obama's Justice Department -- led by Eric Holder -- cracks down on Washington state's new marijuana law ... why would that not be viewed as a betrayal towards those that largely supported the president in two elections?? I think The Stranger needs to try and interview someone, anyone, in the Justice Department and bring up that very point. I think if the JD does NOT allow WA to make its own decisions regarding pot, it would most certainly be a betrayal ... at least to my own way of thinking.
46
@45 -- mine opinion there is that we, the State of Washington, require the feds to do all enforcement of FEDERAL law, and have all officers in LOCAL jurisdictions (WSP on down) enforce STATE law.

I do not think the Feds will want to expend the resources enforcing Federal Marijuana Prohibition laws. They have more important concerns. In other states they have to rely on the States for most drug enforcement.
47
@ 36 -

O yeah, he's done nothing with his first 4 years... Nothing at all, nope....

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/magazin…

http://obamaachievements.org/

OMG WHAT A SLACKER not
48
@47 merry: @36 and @39 are resident trolls with nothing better to do but whine and spew raw sewage2112 because they're among the ignorant dummies who wasted their votes on Romney and McKenna.
I'm surprised they're not featured in this week's DOTW photos with Drool Boy.
49
I feel like a kid who got everything he wanted for Christmas...Five days later and still on a high!....I'm especially enjoying watching the Republicans turning on their own and reeling in disbelief as the results of the election settle in....I agree with Dan that Mitt Romney was a particularly soul-less entity...but sadly, in a party that gives us the likes of Sarah Palin, Michele Bachman, Rich Santorum, Herman Cain, and Donald Trump, he appeared to actually be somewhat palatable.
50
@49: Agreed---except for your part on "Romney appearing to actually be somewhat palatable." That asshole doesn't give a shit about anybody making less than $1 billion a year!
I could actually see the horns growing out of his forehead! Even
in such insanely horrid company as Sarah Palin, Michele Bachman,
Rick Santorum, Herman Cain, and Donald Trump ad nauseum,
Romney's a bad joke at our expense.

But yeah---Merry Christmas to all, and another 4 years to do what's right!! I, too, am savoring this year's election results. Now Repigs and their puppets can experience the misery I faced eight years ago after Dubya STOLE a second election.

I understand tea bag shithead Allen West is legally contesting the votes in Florida. I hope he gets his ugly ass stomped!! Time to toss out the tea bags with the bath water!
51
@50: Clarification: Dubya STOLE two elections.
Obama legitimately WON two presidential terms.
52
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!

I'm ready to flip Romney a Big Bird!
53
@ 51 That is not true at all its a far left fantasy, lets live in the real world here.
54
Well, maybe not voting for a Obama was not about gay marriage. Washington passed that measure not Obama.

I feel the drone attacks, wire-taps, guantanamo, libya and syria, etc. are to much and did not warrant my vote. Yes he did some great things, healthcare reform, equality for marriage, getting out of Iraq.

I felt Gary Johnson was the best chance for US, but the best part about living in WA and IL is I have and had the luxury of voting for who I want because those states always go blue.

55
@53: Excuse YOU---I AM living in the real world here, doofus. Are you pissed off because the Democrats swept Washington State and the U.S. this election--AGAIN? What a relief in contrast to the devastation that could have happened with Call it what you want, but the truth is about voter suppression in swing states like Florida---when Jed Bush (remember HIM?) was Governor there, remember---and DON'T act like 'so what"? Remember hanging chads?
In this general election, Repigs tried to suppress votes by only allowing polls to be open during certain times of the weekdays---yep, you guessed it---working class business hours! So that theoretically many registered, legitimate voters WOULDN'T make it on time to the polls.
Al Gore should have been our president in the 2000 election, and won by the popular vote. It's a shame he didn't get properly elected. Climate change and the very real threat of global warming wouldn't be such an overwhelming problem now.
It is a damned GOOD thing that President Barack Obama get re-elected! It will take him at least two terms to clean up the damage left by DUBYA.

Go back to your Dumbney cave and stay there. You're the one living in a fantasy land.
56
re: @55: Correction: I meant to complete this sentence with the following:
"What a relief in contrast to the devastation that could have happened with a Romney regime!"

@54: I'm glad my native state (WA) is blue, too, and hope it stays blue!
57
@53: By the way, ask anyone in New York, New Jersey, or along the East Coast who's experiencing substantial losses from the recent multi-billion dollar mass destruction of Hurricane Sandy and TWO Nor'easters if you think I'm living in a "far left fantasy" world, you ignorant wingnut punk.