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Daniel Weintraub

California Insider

A Weblog by
Sacramento Bee Columnist Daniel Weintraub

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« November 7, 2005 | | November 9, 2005 »
November 8, 2005

San Benito: no on everything

San Benito, with 100 percent of its precincts counted, has all eight measures going down. Results here. Some of the county's results are signficantly more negative than the statewide numbers at this point, but there's still time for them all to converge.

UPDATE: They did converge! Not as dead on the mark as other recent elections, but still probably more accurate as a predictor than any other county, especially over the span of several elections. Here are the latest results as of 6:20 a.m.:

Prop. 73
Statewide: yes 47, no 53
San Benito: yes 47, no 53

Prop. 74
statewide: yes 45, no 55
San Benito: yes 42, no 58

Prop. 75
statewide: yes 46, no 54
San Benito: yes 44, no 56

Prop. 76
Statewide: yes 38, no 62
San Benito: yes 34, no 66

Prop. 77
Statewide: yes 41, no 59
San Benito: yes 39, no 61

Prop. 78
Statewide: yes 42, no 58
San Benito: yes 40, no 60

Prop. 79
Statewide: yes 39, no 61
San Benito: yes 38, no 62

Prop. 80
Statewide: yes 34, no 66
San Benito: yes 36, no 64

Posted by dweintraub at 11:42 PM

No on 79, 80

Who would have thought that California voters would vote 60% against two measures that promised cheap drugs and cheap power? Almost lost amid the wreckage of the governor's campaign for reform, that's the current margin against Props. 79 and 80.

Posted by dweintraub at 11:03 PM

San Benito: gov behind on all four

With 60 percent counted in bellwether San Benito, the gov is behind on all four.

Posted by dweintraub at 8:56 PM

San Benito: yes on 75

Half of the vote is in from San Benito -- my bellwether -- and the governor is leading only on Prop. 75. Prop. 74 is close.

Posted by dweintraub at 8:29 PM

Hog Wild


The California Nurses Assn. -- the governor's chief labor nemesis for the past year -- isn't letting up just because the voting is about to end. They're camped out next door to his election night party at the Beverly Hilton, and they've roasted a pig (symbolizing corporate greed) in his honor.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:53 PM

Pat Clarey

Jon Fleischman has a long and interesting post here on what he says is the imminent departure of Schwarzenegger chief of staff Pat Clarey, complete with a list of potential successors. It's well worth reading. But the governor's people are saying today that Clarey will not be fired in any post-election bloodletting, that she will be going back to the Capitol office after her stint on the campaign staff. Of course her long-rumored departure might be just around the corner. But I am told it won't happen overnight. We'll see.

Posted by dweintraub at 5:04 PM

Voting early and often

Before Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger went to vote in Los Angeles Tuesday morning, his staff sent an advance team to check on the details. One thing to make sure of: Is the governor's name on the voter roll? It was, but there was a problem. He was listed as having already voted. A call went out to a Sacramento lawyer who does political work for the governor. The lawyer got in touch with the county registrar. Word came back: the governor was recorded as having voted at a touchscreen kiosk set up by the county for early voting. Schwarzenegger's people said he had done no such thing. More investigation. The verdict: when they were testing the voting system before the election, county workers punched in Schwarzenegger's name, and forgot to undo their handiwork. The registrar went into the system and added the governor back to the precinct rolls. He was allowed to vote.

Posted by dweintraub at 4:43 PM

Keep your eye on San Benito

When the returns come in tonight, you could, like me, look for clues in the absentee vote and then watch for the big counties to report one by one. Or you could just hope that tiny San Benito reports early, check their results and call it a night. For some reason, that Central California county has been a bellwether for the state in recent years. As San Benito goes, it seems, so goes California.

Although San Benito’s demographics don’t quite match the state (it is about half white, half Hispanic with few other ethnic groups), and it is a largely agricultural county with no major urban areas, the county’s 25,000 registered voter base just happens to closely mirror California’s, with 45 percent of its voters Democrats, 34 percent Republican and 17 percent decline to state. And since at least 2002, their vote in every statewide election has reflected the statewide total, sometimes with eerie precision. No other county matches San Benito’s record for accurately reflecting the California results. The much bigger counties of Sacramento and Santa Barbara come close, but fall short.

Here are the data:

2002 governor’s race

Statewide: Davis 47%, Simon 42%
San Benito: Davis 49%, Simon 42%

* * *
2003 Recall
Statewide: Yes 55%, No 45%
San Benito: Yes 55%, No 45%

* * *
2003 Governor
Schwarzenegger, 48.6%
Bustamante, 31.5%
McClintock, 13.5%

San Benito:
Schwarzenegger, 48.7%
Bustamante 31.8%
McClintock, 13.9%

* * *
March 2004 ballot measures
Prop. 56 (state budget/tax increase threshold)
Statewide: Yes 34%, No 66%
San Benito: Yes 37%, No 63%

Prop. 57 ($15 billion deficit bond)
Statewide: Yes 63%, No 37%
San Benito: Yes 59%, No 41%

* * *
Nov. 2004 President

Statewide: Kerry 54%, Bush 44%
San Benito: Kerry 53%, Bush 47%

Nov. 2004 key ballot measures

Prop. 63 (tax millionaires for mental health)
Statewide: Yes 54%, No 46%
San Benito: Yes 53%, No 47%

Prop. 64 (civil justice/lawsuits)
Statewide: Yes 59%, No 41%
San Benito: Yes 61%, No 39%

Prop. 66 (sentencing, three strikes changes)
Statewide: Yes 47%, No 53%
San Benito: Yes 47%, No 53%

Prop. 71 (stem cell)
Statewide: Yes 59%, No 41%
San Benito: Yes 62%, No 38%

Prop. 72 (health insurance)
Statewide: Yes 49%, No 51%
San Benito: Yes 47%, No 53%

Posted by dweintraub at 10:26 AM

Results watching

The Field Poll projections along with the earlier SurveyUSA exit poll of absentee ballots provide a handy reference for watching the results as they come in tonight. Virtually every poll done in this election suggests that 76 and 77 will be dead on arrival tonight. Propositions 74 and 75 are said to be also going down, but by closer margins. It is entirely possible that 74 and 75 will be leading, at least narrowly, in the first absentees that are counted. If the polls are right, those leads will begin to wither quickly and ultimately disappear sometime during the night or, if the races are close, in the days ahead. If 74 and 75 are trailing even in the early returns, that would suggest it's going to be a very short, and disappointing, night for the governor. If, on the other hand, 77 shows any sign of life in those early numbers, then that would be the first indication that the polls were missing something.
Also, this election is likely to be highly polarized, with the Central Valley and Southern Cal outside of LA coming in for the governor and the Bay Area and Los Angeles for his opponents. So the early results could be tilted one way or the other depending on which counties are reporting in first.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:57 AM

Field: 43% turnout

Here is the Field Poll turnout projection: 43 percent of registered voters, with 40 percent of them -- a new record -- casting their vote by absentee ballot.

Posted by dweintraub at 7:48 AM



At Crossroads, a panel of experts and the public debate the future of health care in California. We'd like you to join the conversation.

Daniel Weintraub


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