I don’t see how Haines doesn’t ask for a recount on this one. We’ll discuss this race more tomorrow.
Moving on…the final vote for Kimberly Dudik is 1,706 to Gary Marbut’s 1,677, or 50.43% to 49.57%. That means that it was just 29 votes separating those two.
Expect to see Marbut do some kind of challenge on the grounds of the flyers or something like that, anything to get that recount.
And just getting back to what I was getting to with the parks, 18,645 people voted against it and 21,618 voted for it. That’s 53% for and 46% against…a pretty even split.
Lots of people are not happy with tax and spend policies, and this is hurting Democrats. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, it comes down to Engen. Those associated with him will feel the pinch. He’s there until 2017, remember.
I do believe he was acting on Matt Lowy’s campaign in some regards, and perhaps that cost him. A lot of people are mistrustful of the city courts and legal system, however…or would this election not imply that?
Lots of stuff to speculate on. I think that may well be it for me tonight, however. I won’t sign-off just yet, but if you don’t hear from me again, I probably zonked-out.
2:10 AM: I’ve been speculating on the SD49 race and particularly Doug Coffin and Diane Sands. They both were looking to hop up to the Senate and Sands just happened to beat out Coffin in the primary.
Well, it wasn’t even a contest – she got something like 65% to 70% of the vote. Now, if I was Doug I’d want Diane to lose, and right now she’s got the edge by just 7 votes. This is a big money race too, around $20,000 or so at least, I’d have to look it up, but I got a shit-ton of mailers from her in the past week.
That was the whole campaign, the way I saw it – mailers. Was it enough? I didn’t have any Diane Sands flyers when I was knocking on the doors in SD49 today, but I wish I would have.
But shit, I didn’t see any Haines signs!
I’m telling you, it’s what I’ve been talking about for months, and that’s Engen’s failed policies.
Look how much that park bond passed by, just…breaking news!
1:49 AM: Results are beginning to trickle in for Missoula again, after a few hours of nothing.
Kim Dudik has now pulled ahead of Gary Marbut. Diane Sands and Dick Haines are neck and neck. Stay tuned!
1:27 AM: What a fucking mess. Don’t expect Obama to get a whole lot done anytime over the next 2 years, besides a lot of golf and trips to Camp David. Might as well cash in some of that unused vacation time, huh? Maybe start doing some extended college-looking trips for the girls. Why not UM? They’re really encouraging toward women, as many 60 Minutes viewers will find out soon.
Anyways, royal fuck-ups all around, lots of frustration, and Democrats going for each others’ throats. This is when you’ll see leadership change in the Democratic Party as the national level. Remember, I said the next election cycle begins on Wednesday, and people are jockeying for power already…perhaps in their sleep without even knowing it.
The same will happen in Montana. We know who will be on the stage in 2016 to support the national candidate…whoever that may be. It could be Schweitzer, and I can’t help but think this loss helped him, helped him big time.
But remember, we’re not speculating on tomorrow…well, it is tomorrow.
1:10 AM: I just threw this thought out on Twitter, but for John Lewis and Amanda Curtis, it’s gonna feel like you should just go out into the hills and shout obscenities for hours.
Why not do podcasting instead? I did that after I lost the primary and it kept me in the game and kept me limber. Plus it’s good speaking practice, good for coming up with one-liners, and other stuff that I’m not sure of at 1:05 AM.
Just load up Sound Recorder on Windows and delete it when you’re done. Maybe make sure you delete it.
Which makes me think, how many people will be doing YouTube videos from the 2015 Legislature? I’m not sure any will, and perhaps that’s a shame. Maybe podcasting would be better, as there’s no image.
Many counties are in now and it’s over 76% of the precincts reporting. They say they’ll get most votes in tonight, and I’d like to see some more action in Gallatin and Missoula Counties, myself. Will it happen? I’m not sure…but I am supposed to get up at 8AM and drive my wife to work and son to school tomorrow. Do you think they’ll take the bus?
Well, I’ll get up…and it’ll be nice to have my regular routine back, which is…?
This 1:00 AM post is really for the two candidates, and maybe they’ll read it tomorrow or Thursday or in a month. I’ve written over 4,000 words on this blog tonight, and I hope some of you have gotten some enjoyment out of it.
I figure some reporters will read it tomorrow and glean some facts, or maybe some times. It’s a good timeline, if nothing else.
12:41 AM: I’ve gotten a little mixed up when checking the LR-126 and the auditor races. I got a tweet from someone on that but didn’t think much of it.
Maybe I should go to bed, huh?
Everyone else seems to have, although there do seem to be some people in the Capitol. But then they get paid the big bucks so…
I’m not sure how many of them are still there. Many counties are now in, but many of the counties with large cities – cities that lean Democratic – are not.
So what does that mean? Well, it could mean that some legislative races work out…such as that Dudik/Marbut race that really took everyone by surprise.
It could mean that auditor ballot initiative could get closer…although I’m not sure on that.
It could mean that Amanda Curtis wins. It could, but I’m not sure that will happen either.
So what are the big upsets so far?
I’ve mentioned the PSC race many times, I’m upset by the JOP race in Missoula, I’m upset that the Park bonds passed.
Of course I’m big time upset that Lewis and Curtis lost, but everyone kept saying they’d lose anyways. I mean, everyone in the media said it every single day…right?
I really thought that Wheat race would be closer. WTF?
So yes, there are some upsets. What can be done about it? I’m not sure at this point. I’d like to see what the gains/losses were in the Montana House first before I start speculating. I want to see one of those red/blue maps of Montana pretty soon too. Those things can be looked at for a long time.
12:18 AM: Montana Cowgirl readers will remember Norma Duffy, who ran for HD72 but lost 79% to 20%. I only got 10% in my primary race this year.
Another big loss was in the Monforton/Bond race, with GOP Matthew Monforton taking 70% of the vote to Bond’s nearly 30%.
Remember these races are still going and numbers are still coming in. Everyone was taken by surprise with the PSC race. McCullough’s old nemesis is back.
Anyways, Art Wittich will be going to the House, District 68 specifically, with 66% of the vote compared to Dem Stevick’s 33%.
12:09 AM: The tight Helena race between Republican Joe Dooling and Dem Jill Cohenour looks to be about done. Dooling took 46% to Cohenour’s 53%. Residents will remember the bright green signs on this race. Guess the luck of the Irish didn’t play out this year. There’s always Butte in March.
12:06 AM: There’s just 3% separating LR-126 and 319/693 precincts are fully reported…or 46%. Could people wake up to see that the thing does indeed pass?
(Update: Sleepy error on my part)
12:02 AM: Ha, I knew I was write to put that AM/PM there…you all thought I was a fool.
Someone else that thinks I’m a fool is Heather Wilson for the MT Dems. I guess I called the Wilmer race a bit too early for her liking. Supposedly they were still voting in Bozeman until 10 PM…or 2 hours ago.
I dunno, sounds like someone’s a bit sore to me. We’ll have to keep our eye on this race…but again, if you don’t like what someone says, get a platform and drown them out.
I’ll keep drowning out my competition tonight with this platform…mainly because all the competition went to sleep some time ago.
11:55 PM: Bozeman's Franke Wilmer goes down to defeat, just like the woman she was vying for the nomination for in August, Amanda Curtis. It was 56% to 43%, with GOP Hinkle taking the race. That was a big money race, too. Gosh, the Democratic strategy really went off the rails this year. I’ll have to dig into some of my old philosophy posts and see if we should have turned some corners.
11:50 PM: It’s just past 11:50, let’s take a look at the federal races, with 41.4% of the precincts reporting, and 32 counties fully done now.
It’s Steve Daines with 176,615 and Amanda Curtis with 123,920…or 57% to 40%. Roger Roots took 6,331 votes, or 2.07%. There were 305,866 votes cast…so far.
Ryan Zinke took 167,483 to John Lewis’s 124,428…or 55% to 40.8%.
Here in Missoula, Diane Sands is now at 3,698 to Haines’s 3,734…or 49.76% to 50.24%. I thought Diane Sands would take this race easy, and she sure had a ton of mailers, as I often reported. What happened?
11:42 PM: Darrell Ehrlick, the editor over at the Billings Gazette, just tweeted out this photo of the papers going to press. There’s going to be a lot of happy people in Billings tomorrow.
There’ll be a lot of unhappy people in many parts of the state tomorrow. Already some are venting, like “Mike” over on Montana Cowgirl. I’m not sure what his problem is, but it’s probably a little bit of alcohol and a helluva lot of frustration.
I’m glad I’m writing this blog post tonight or I’d probably be putting my foot in my mouth over and over and over. Maybe I am.
Well, when does the show end? I think I’ll go until 2 AM at least. If you’re just joining us, I’d suggest starting at the bottom of the page to see the earliest entries. Thanks for reading!
11:38 PM: We’re approaching November 5 and the day after the election…technically.
I just asked Montana Secretary of State Linda McCullough how many of the 56 counties we have in so far. She keeps shouting out thing like Wheatland County complete, so I thought I’d ask.
And it is 31 counties complete now, or 55%.
I guess I probably could have figured that out, huh?
Anyways, what else is happening? The big news was that the HD94 race between Dudik and Marbut is within a single vote. Shit, I have to shake my head on that.
Other than that, things seem to be going slower. Twitter is really slow now, with maybe 6 new responses in a couple minutes. We were getting 20 new responses a minute at the height of the night. I guess regular folks have to get up early tomorrow.
11:24 PM: Looks like the Missoulian has a story up on the McDermott/Clark sheriff race here in Missoula, as well as this good image of him watching returns come in at the Depot, a swanky place.
I took a girl there once, and it cost like $60. I remember I rode my bike up there in the snow, all the way from Schilling Street, which is down by Reserve. Anyways, that was the last time I saw her…so, I don’t go to the Depot much.
Anyways, there will be some sore cookies tomorrow, and a lot more than if you just wasted $60 on a girl. What will Josh Clark do? Will he leave the Sheriff’s office, perhaps going over to the MPD, maybe the university…maybe Helena?
I don’t know, I’m sure KGVO will have some stuff tomorrow on the radio around 7 or 8 AM.
11:14: PM: Jenna Heberden snapped this photo of Lewis shaking hands and thanking supporters after he conceded the race in Helena this evening. I wonder what will be next for him?
His wife’s a lobbyist and I’m sure she makes bank. And since the race is now over, I'll just say it - isn't she hot?
Anyways, he can stay at home until the New Year and watch the kids – who he probably hasn’t seen too much – and not take a shower for 2 days at a time.
It’s refreshing, to do that, and I hope he does so. After that? Well, I’m not sure what he’ll do. Will he be one that fades and we never hear from again?
Or will he be like a Brad Johnson, someone that always comes back. You’ve got to have some respect for that man, even if you have none. He’s got a great story. Maybe it’s time for me to get more serious about my Montana Heroes and Montana Villains book. I like writing biography, and he’s got a good story.
Anyways, Brad Johnson is leading the PSC race against Galen Hollenbaugh by 61% to 38%. Wow, just wow! Everyone was looking at Wheat and VanDyke and all of us, all of us, dropped the ball on that PSC.
Now we’ve got an energy analyst on there, and just when they’re trying to go public or something to make up for that damn dam purchase. I hope some people write about this tomorrow.
11:07 PM: Looks like McDermott has 73% of the vote for Sheriff while Josh Clark has about 26%...according to the ticker on the Missoulian website.
11:03 PM: Boy, I hope you have not gone to bed, folks, because things are heating up.
In SD49, Diane Sands is now losing by 41 votes…3,603 to Haines’s 3,644.
HD92 has slipped away from Dave Strohmaier, with his 1,592 to Doc Moore’s 1,826, or 53% to 46%. Damn, Dave worked hard on that one.
Boy, what happened in HD94? Kim Dudik has 1,577 votes to Gary Marbut’s 1,614…or 50.58% to 49.42%. That one’s close!
HD96 is still going good, with the 99 vote lead of Person giving him 51.51% to Hellegaard’s 48.49%.
Don’t get me started on HD97.
3,510 people in my district, HD98, voted. So Curdy will have 59% to Seewald’s 40%. I never got one flyer from Seewald, nor saw any.
10:55 PM: Sounds like Amanda Curtis has conceded the race, at least if you go by Montana Public Radio.
10:53 PM: Things have happened quickly. It looks like John Lewis has conceded the race, and Ryan Zinke made a quick acceptance speech and then cleared out of there, probably to California. The Whitefish party is already over.
I’m sad to see Lewis lose. I really thought of the two races, he could win. But I guess it wasn’t in the cards. Thankfully this Representative position is just 2 years.
10:40 PM: Gary Marbut has actually pulled in front of Dudik, with the race at 1,614 for Marbut and 1,577 for Dudik. It’s 50.58% to 49.42% on this one right now, folks. Mike Miller called it first on Twiiter.
10:33 PM: Shit! Andrew Person is losing his lead in HD96. It's now Person with 1,687 votes and Hellegaard with 1,588.
It looks like Matt Lowy will not be the next Justice of the Peace in Missoula, unless a lot of other votes come in.
10:29 PM: My Weebly browser is getting sluggish on me. Might be time for a short break.
John Lewis is to address supporters in 10 minutes in Helena I just heard on Twitter. Right now he's down by about 24,000 votes.
Amanda Curtis is down by around 30,000 votes with 13% of precincts fully reported, and a 55% partial-report rate.
Amendment 45 on the State Auditor looks to be 116,478 saying no, don't change it, and 113,138 saying yes. So that might lose.
LR-126 has 136,701 voting against, and 103,948 saying yes...so that means you can still register to vote on election day.
I'm glad to see Janet Ellis winning in Helena's HD81 where my mom lives, 61% to 38% on that one.
Moffie Funk has 52% to Liz Bangerter's 47% or so, so the Dem will go to HD82.
Still a tight race between GOP Gibson and Dem Dunwell for HD84, with Dunwell leading 51% to 48%.
10:19 PM: Supreme Court races are good, with Rice at 79% and Wheat at 61%. That means our laws will probably be safe. Damn, we came real close on losing that seat to VanDyke.
$10 says he's back in Texas before the end of the year.
10:14 PM: Fucking hell, who the hell fell asleep on the wheel on that PSC race, and I'm talking about reporting it? Please don't tell me I was the only one that noticed Johnson all of a sudden just coming out of nowhere on that! This is what I posted at 8:25:
8:25 PM: Looks like Galen Hollenbaugh is leading Gary Johnson for the PSC by 7,216 to 5,851...or 55% to 44%.
Well, I just don't know what to say...either about that race or the local media. All night they've been behind on things, especially when that site crashed and they had nothing to report. That's when you start reporting the reporting, idiots!
Shit, let's just move on.
10:11 PM: Here's the latest federal results. It's pulling away, with 10% of precincts fully reported.
10:08 PM: Daines still looks pretty stunned to me, that deer in headlights.
Is Denny there passing the bottle around? Take that away, votes are still being counted!
9:59 PM: We hang by a fragile thread, just these servers. I'll be taking a break to listen to Fox News on the radio, or KGVO here in Missoula.
I'm pretty sure not much has changed since I last listened to it. After awhile many media folks in Montana will go home, probably in the next hour. Then where will you get your news? We'll see.
9:54 PM: In Helena, or L&C County, the race has changed. Curtis has 51% and Daines has 46%. I thought this was the bureaucratic stronghold, the Republican place to be? What happened?
9:50 PM: The PSC race has flipped, with Johnson roaring ahead of Hollenbaugh, 55% to 44%.
9:43 PM: Shared by Thom Bridge of the Helena IR, this image shows people in Helena checking out the SOC results on a big screen, and with lots of lights.
9:31 PM: The SOC website can go down again at anytime, and probably will as the 10 PM news approaches. I'll take a break then to listen to the radio (we don't have TV in our home anymore).
Anyways, smart folks will record results now to Tweet later, as I was able to do when the thing went down earlier. Screen shots work best for this.
Cynthia Wolken is beating out appointed to the race Mike Hopkins in SD48 and she has 59% to his 40%.
Diane Sands has 52% to Dick Haines' 47% in SD49. That was a big money race on Sands' part.
Very tight race for HD92. Dave Strohmaier with 49.33% to Doc Moore's 50.67%. 45 votes.
51% to 48% for the Dudik/Marbut race.
55% to 44% with Andrew Person mopping up like he did in Iraq.
That damn Libertarian Satchfield is costing Democrat Bill Geer HD97 right as we speak. It's 50% to 47% for the GOP.
Matt Lowy is coming back, getting 48% to Andersen's 51%. This one will be close.
Damn parks and trails bond is passing, something that will cost Democrats future Missoula races as people complain about the bill. But we'll save that for those running in 2016 or 2018.
9:28 PM: The SOC site is back up. Amanda Curtis is 43% and Daines is 54%. Lewis has 44% and Zinke has 51%.
4.7% of precincts are fully reported. 37% are partially reported.
9:26 PM: The Flathead Beacon has some good numbers up, to fill the time at least.
9:20 PM: Well, I think just about everyone involved in Montana politics is standing around with their dick in their hand.
I guess those counting the votes down in the precincts and polling places aren't, just those eagerly waiting for them to get done doing their work.
So until then there's not a whole lot to do, but speculate.
Really, why do we need anymore SOC returns? Daines won, didn't he? I mean, that was an acceptance speech, right?
Maybe we should just stop counting the votes and throw the rest in the trash and just go home. Hell, the bars are still open, some restaurants are still serving...why give ourselves the hassle?
I guess that's the same mentality that allowed LR-126 to get so far...at least in people's minds. When the vote came in, that sucker crashed, at least here in Missoula.
Hopefully we'll get some more results soon. But remember, here in Missoula, Lewis was creaming Zinke by 56% to 39%. And Amanda Curtis was up 56% to 41%.
Lots of votes need to be counted. Daines was just tired from talking to real people all day.
9:19 PM: Live blogging has yet to begin at the Flathead Memo.
9:15 PM: SOC website remains down. People on Twitter are beginning to wonder what's going on. I'm sure in the Capitol the shit is hitting the fan big time, and people are yelling in the hallways.
9:07: PM: Montana Secretary of State website crashes, probably due to too much traffic. I'm sure it'll be back up.
9:00 PM: Here's me voting earlier today.
8:53 PM: Keele Smith just shared this image of around 30 people waiting to vote in Bozeman.
8:47 PM: Steve Daines is currently giving his acceptance speech, talking about hocking babies and not pointing fingers. He just got a big cheer for getting that Keystone Pipeline. I never thought Americans would be so happy to give away oil to other nations.
Oh, and getting a budget. I can't wait to see what happens there. I bet a lot of nothing will get done, like usual.
But remember, for Daines, Montana will always come first, Montana will always be #1. Yeah, I guess that means #1 for the bastards trying to take our resources.
But we'll see. Maybe Daines will be one that goes against those that made him, one that bites the hand that feeds him.
But what am I talking about? Aren't results still coming in? I hope he has to eat these words. Let's see.
8:38 PM: Alright, the HD97 race is tight, with Democrat Geer getting 47% to Republican Tschida's 50.5%. 2.35% is being taken by the Libertarian.
In my old HD98 district, my old opponent Willis Curdy is killing Roger Seewald, 61% to 38%. There was a lot of activity in this area of the district in the past week.
Cola Rowley is beating Vicky Gordon 54% to 45% for Missoula County Commissioner.
There is absolutely no reporting on Josh Clark, which I'm disappointed to see. McDermott has 12,430 votes.
Damn, the Lowy/Andersen race is close. I'd like to see Lowy win myself, and he's short right now. It's Andersen with 9,811 votes and Lowy with 9,219.
8:33 PM: Missoula races are coming are starting to come in. SD49 is a lot closer than I thought so far, but I guess that's absentee. Right not it's 52% to 47% Sands leading Haines.
The HD94 race between Kimberly Dudik and Gary Marbutt is a lot closer than I thought, 51% to 48% Dudik. It's her birthday today, so let's hope she beats out that independent.
I'm very happy to see Lynn Hellegaard is only getting 922 votes and Andrew Person is getting 1,146 votes. He worked hard in HD96 and I hope that gap stays the same, or widens in his favor.
It's a tighter race in HD97 with Bill Geer and Brad Tschida, perhaps because that Libertarian got thrown in.
Sight just went down at SOC so I'll continue later.
8:28 PM: The initiative or ballot issue races are interesting. LR-126 failed miserably...so far. The auditor one - the name of which I'm still unsure of - is closer than I thought. Right now it's 51% yes to change it, 48% no. That could all change.
8:25 PM: Looks like Galen Hollenbaugh is leading Gary Johnson for the PSC by 7,216 to 5,851...or 55% to 44%.
8:22 PM: Shared by Seaborn Larson of the Montana Kaimin, here's an image of the Lewis campaign HQ in Helena. It's at the Exploration Works, which I believe is right next to the old state liquor warehouse, later changed to Publications & Graphics, later to Print Services, and I think they're changing it again.
The place is headed-up by a real dipshit supervisor, one of those types that doesn't know anything but think they do. Anyways, it's also by the Silver Star and the Carousel.
Of course, I could have just mistaken the hell out of the place too. Either way, it's looking a little ho-hum right now.
8:17 PM: Here are some federal returns, with not too many precincts reporting. Could this be the trend that we see all night, a huge gap? Let's see when Missoula and some of the larger cities get all their votes in. I bet the lines at the Missoula Fairgrounds are still long.
8:11 PM: Shared by Spencer Conlin on Twitter, this is Daines celebrating the national media calling the race.
Boy, they sure fall all over themselves over nothing, don't they? Let's see some returns come in.
I will say that the Republicans have done a helluva better job getting their images out onto social media. The Lewis campaign did a good job. Amanda Curtis? I didn't see anything until the Billings Gazette shared an image of her doing some phone calls. Just some thoughts.
8:08 PM: 0% of the vote is in from Missoula County.
8:05 PM: The Secretary of State page is up and running and right now it looks like 11.26% of precincts are partially reported.
Looking on Twitter, I see that CNN called Montana for Steve Daines.
That's pretty depressing, and I think irresponsible, for the race to be called when no reporting at all has come in from anything official from the state.
What happened to that media promise to become responsible after Election 2000?
7:42 PM (first post): So what will it be tonight…shit storms of regret or hugs and kisses all around?
It’s hard to say, yet the election returns are about to start coming in. I’m sitting at home watching my young 3-year-old, Paul. If my wife comes back by 8 I can get some live blogging going – that seems to be all the rage, as if Twitter weren’t enough.
I guess it’s just easier than putting up post after post, as you can just edit this one and re-publish it and voila!
So stay tuned and we’ll see what develops tonight, what the election return centers looks like, and which campaigns are tearing-up because of their success, and which because of their loss.