Special election results thread (updated)

The People’s Republic of Johnson County will come through for Democrat Janelle Rettig in today’s special election for county supervisor, if the early vote figures are any guide. John Deeth posted more turnout data today.

I wish I had a better feeling about the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The impressive GOTV effort of the past few days probably won’t be enough to save Democrat Martha Coakley, unless almost every pollster was working from a very flawed turnout model. Coakley apparently only held 19 campaign events in the 40 days since the primary. You can’t take anything for granted in politics, especially when unemployment is above 10 percent.

Some “senior Democrats” didn’t have the decency to wait until polls closed before giving journalists blind quotes on who’s to blame for the debacle.

On the optimistic side, former aide to Senator Ted Kennedy thinks Coakley will pull through and explains why using numbers from past Massachusetts elections.

At Swing State Project, Crisitunity posted a very helpful map with “town benchmarks,” indicating how many votes Coakley needs in various towns to win a plurality statewide.

At the Blue Mass Group blog, Hoyapaul posted “town by town bellwethers and what to watch for on Tuesday.”

I’ll update this post later as results come in.

UPDATE: Things are looking grim for Coakley with about half the votes counted. She is underperforming in most towns that have reported and not winning the Boston precincts by large enough margins.

Turnout was higher than expected, which in some ways is even more depressing. When Scott Brown got close in the polls, I assumed Coakley would win easily once Democrats became aware that this was a real race. Instead, Brown surged into the lead despite an onslaught of ads and direct mail from Democrats. There is plenty of blame to go around. Coakley ran a horrendous campaign, but the Obama administration hasn’t handled economic and health care policy well these past several months. The DSCC ads don’t seem to have helped either–stale negative attacks.

SECOND UPDATE: Coakley has conceded. Many post-mortems to come, and Peter Daou’s is worth a read.

FINAL UPDATE: Rettig won big in Johnson County; read Deeth for details. Republican Lori Cardella won’t have a supervisor’s seat to distract her from helping Chris Reed’s campaign in Iowa’s second Congressional district.

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  • "Peoples Republic of Johnson County"???

    If only.  Please.  Lived there for a decade. Place was overrun by damned liberals.

  • Sorry About Coakley's Performance...

    Here’s something I don’t get:


    The Democratic Party has been taken over by the extreme left?

    I say, again:

    If only. Please.

    Western Europe decided that universal health care was a fundamental human right about 4 decades ago. The Dems aren’t even trying.

    Maybe if they were trying, I’d give democracy a chance sometime, and the people would respond positively as well. Instead we are being forced to deal with a specific class of person, the career politician. Someone so afraid they might lose their job, they almost always refuse to do the right thing.

  • hmmm...

    Does a 2010 beat down = resurrection of the base and get dems back in the game for 2012?  Is that the only hope? Democrats are depressed and its going to get much worse before it gets better….

    • the worst part is

      a lot more House Dems will retire in the face of these results. Yes, it’s a bad environment with 10 percent unemployment, but Coakley ran an atrocious campaign; no incumbent House Democrat would run so badly.

      We would have lost some seats in 2010 anyway, but we’ll lose a lot more because Ted Kennedy had brain cancer. It is sickening.

      On the bright side, maybe Senator Blanche Lincoln will retire in Arkansas. That would help our cause.