Wisconsin updates

From the Guardian:

9.16pm: Let’s dive into the exit poll data from Wisconsin:

• Union households made up about a third of the electorate, and about two-thirds of them backed Tom Barrett, about the same level of support he received among the group in 2010

• Barrett improved on his 2010 performance among African Americans, those with incomes below $50,000 and independents. Barrett won 95% of the African American vote, up from 87% in 2010

• Both Walker and Barrett retained more than 9 in 10 of those who backed them in 2010. Walker marginally won independent voters by 50%-49%

• About one in 10 voters said they did not vote in 2010 – and they broke heavily for Barrett

• About 9 in 10 in early exit polling said they decided who to vote for before May. Those who did make up their minds in the final month of the campaign supported Barrett by nearly 30 points

9.08pm: More from the exit poll – and it may be tight in the recall race, but Wisconsin voters still appear to be backing Barack Obama come November.

The exit poll has Obama getting 54% to Mitt Romney’s 42% – and that’s a poll that should be more accurate than most state polls at this point, given the circumstances. That must be a disappointment forRepublicans.

9.06pm: Gary Younge sees some last minute stragglers dashing in at the last moment to vote in Milwaukee:

At 7.58pm outside the Keenan health centre, recall supporters chivvied up the stragglers: “Come on blood seriously get in there.”

“You’re the on who came to my door,” said the young man, struggling to run as his trousers sagged halfway down his legs. “I’m here like I said.”

A minute later the polls closed to applause.

Gary adds that everywhere he’s been has had long lines but no problems.

Scott Walker and Tom Barrett.

Poor, poor Mike

Via a friend’s email, a luncheon with Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, who represents the Hellmouth. He’s a slimy little weasel, so I’m always happy to see people call him out. By the way, I’ve been to the free clinic he’s talking about, and while they’re good at what they do, they certainly don’t handle serious cases like cancer. It’s immoral of Fitz to pretend they do:

Yesterday Congressman Fitzpatrick had a $100 per plate fundraiser at the (out of district) Huntingdon Valley Country Club. A couple of his constituents came to ask him some questions. He, of course, talked in circles and avoided those questions. He was noticeably flustered. Both constituents have serious health problems and wanted to know how Rep. Fitzpatrick could vote for the Ryan budget (twice) which would cut health care for millions and privatize Medicare all while giving tax breaks to billionaires. Fitzpatrick avoided the questions and told the one gentlemen Dan, who wears a respirator, that he should rely on doctors to donate their services or he should go to the free clinic. Now that’s compassion!

Dan is on his wife’s health insurance plan now but is constantly afraid that she will lost her job and he will have no coverage. Fitzpatrick who has had his own health problems has bragged frequently that he is on his wife’s plan and not the government plan. But unlike Fitzpatrick, Dan cannot go on a taxpayer-funded congressional health plan if his wife loses his job.

After the fundraiser another constituent Walt, tried to ask Fitzpatrick a question about his health care situation but Fitzpatrick left the room to avoid him. He also tried to approach Senator Toomey, who was also there, but Toomey made a beeline for the door. Walt and I approached Fitzpatrick who had retreated to an adjacent room and were reprimanded and kicked out by Fitzpatrick’s campaign manager.

Purging Texas

The same crap is, of course, happening in Texas:

Walter Pinkston, a Friendswood retiree and faithful Harris County voter, got a letter in late March asking his family to confirm that he was dead – which he was not – and warning that he was about to be purged from Texas voter rolls.

Retired Houston Baptist University Professor Trilla Pando received a similar notice of her death from voter registration officials in 2010.

Even Sylvia Garcia, a former Harris County commissioner, got suspended – not because anyone thought she was dead – but because county officials questioned the validity of a P.O. Box the Houston native had used on her voting card for years.

More than 300,000 valid voters were notified they could be removed from Texas rolls from November 2008 to November 2010 – often because they were mistaken for someone else or failed to receive or respond to generic form letters, according to Houston Chronicle interviews and analysis of voter registration data.

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