Excuse me NC, but your votes are showing

voting.jpgThe votes are in, speeches have been made, and Fox New notwithstanding, it looks like America broke for progress and hope instead of regression and fear. North Carolina, unfortunately, didn’t quite get there.

Of the battleground states, North Carolina was the sole state to go for Romney (excluding Florida), albeit by a slim margin of less than 100,000 votes.  In fact, North Carolina had the third smallest margin between Obama and Romney at 2.2% (topped only by Florida and Ohio). The State’s traditional liberal counties went blue, with the majority of the state going red. It was close, and a performance that will likely keep North Carolina in the swing state category for the foreseeable future in national elections.

Unfortunately, there really isn’t much good news in the down ballot races. Not that we thought there would be, but we were hoping. With the gubernatorial contest essentially over before it started, and perfectly gerrymandered districts providing clear and easy GOP majorities, prospects for a more sane and settled General Assembly were pretty much abandoned months ago, and haven’t improved since.

We now have a 32-18 Republican majority in the Senate and a 77-43 supermajority in the House. Take into account that the Lieutenant Governor’s race is still being decided, and we have all but guaranteed the possibility for a sharp(er) turn to the right this year.

I know – it’s difficult to believe.

So, were there any bright spots to local elections? Not really. But if you squint hard enough and turn your head to just the right angle, you can find a bit of good news anywhere, right? And that news would be found in the Council of State races. Treasurer, Auditor, Commissioner of Insurance, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Attorney General and Secretary of State remain in Democratic control, and all by hefty margins.

So, there we are folks. As all of my colleagues keep saying, “This is when the real work beings,” though I’m not exactly sure what we’ve been doing for the past few months.

I’m going to stock up on my sleep now.