Editor’s Election Day blog: Ashley close to winning county seat

Tim Ashley seems to be closing in on a Curry County Commission seat. Officials say Ashley is leading Paul D. Barnes, 1,660 votes to 1,540, with about 200 votes to be counted.

Debbie Spriggs will be the county's new treasurer and Rose Riley will be the county clerk.

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Fox News is projecting President Obama has won Ohio. Commentator Brit Hume says it's over; Obama will win re-election.

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Early vote totals are in for Curry County and the County Commission race looks like a dead heat.

Republican Tim Ashley leads Democrat Paul D. Barnes, 51.4 percent to 48.6 percent.

That's about 25 percent of the registered voters, but no word yet on how many voters came out.

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Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson was hoping to capture 5 percent of the popular vote tonight. If successful, the party is entitled to federal matching funds in 2016.

But blogger Garrett Quinn is reporting a more realistic goal is 1.06 percent, the libertarian high-water mark set in 1980.

Quinn's blog is here:

http://boston.com/community/blogs/less_is_more/2012/11/live_from_new_mexico_its_gary.html

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Polls have closed in New Mexico.

CNN reports Obama clear winner in exit polls.

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Nov. 16 will be a momentous day for candidates, at least in Clovis. That's when campaign signs are supposed to be gone.

If they're still in place after the 16th, city officials may notify the offender they're about to be fined, or the city can confiscate the signs, Code Enforcement Officer Marcus Brice reports.

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This will be a busy website tonight. New Mexico election results:

http://www.electionpeople.com/nmger2012/County/GroupByCountyTable.aspx

And more election-related websites for your in-depth pleasure, prior to polls closing:

Rasmussen poll:

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/obama_administration/daily_presidential_tracking_poll

Too close to call:

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-34222_162-57545257/polls-on-eve-of-election-presidential-race-remains-a-toss-up/

AP state-by-state predictions:

http://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2012/11/05/a-state-by-state-look-at-tuesdays-election

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Presidential trivia, stolen from Peter Wrench's "All the Presidents' Trivia:"

  • John Kennedy's 1960 campaign theme song was "High Hopes."
  • Andrew Jackson, in 1828, was the first presidential nominee to use campaign posters.
  • Calvin Coolidge enjoyed having his head massaged and covered with petroleum jelly.
  • William McKinley had a talking parrot that could whistle "Yankee Doodle."
  • Gerald Ford got married on a Friday because he wanted to watch football on Saturday.
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Some favorite Election Day Facebook posts:

  • "Stop telling me to vote. Won't do it. I live in Texas — it wouldn't matter anyway."
  • "Voting for the lesser of two idiots anyways."
  • "Wish we had all that cash spent on campaigning to give to charities and people in need. The numbers are astounding…"
  • "Something to ponder on Election Day — 'Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.' Ephesians 4:29-32."
  • "We have $16 trillion in debt; at this point I don't care about ballot initiatives. Plus everything is controlled by the Republicans here anyway. We live in DFW; all I can do is survive the traffic."
  • "My wife elects me to do stuff all the time — take out the garbage, clean up after dinner, etc."
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Welcome to Election Day, the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November.

I'll be blogging all day.

Before we get started, here's what you need to know about my political leanings:

My presidential preference is Gary Johnson. This is the fourth consecutive time I've voted for a libertarian. I started off voting Republican (Reagan in 1980), stayed with the GOP until Clinton in 1996, then finally saw the light after taking one of those online polls revealing my true political viewpoint – less government is the way to go.

I lean left on most social issues, right on most economic issues.

I think the Democrats want to "help" poor people with money stolen from me. I think the Republicans want to legislate morality.

I can't tell the difference between Obamacare and Romneycare, or the Bush II bailouts from the Obama bailouts.

I never understood why the Democrats were so angry at Bush II since he acted like a Democrat half the time. (No Child Left Behind comes quickly to mind.) I never understood why the Republicans were so angry at Clinton since he acted like a Republican half the time. (What was the deficit in those days?)

I don't think either of today's candidates has the compromising temperament of Bush or Clinton, and I don't think either can dig us out of the hole both of their parties have created.

I think gridlock is the best we can hope for in the next four years.

But I also think gridlock isn't so bad. If government can't do anything, maybe the rest of us can slowly start to make some progress.

Your turn.

Tell me why I'm wrong.

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