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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Elections 2012

**** 1:15 am — I'm typing this late at night so I will edit in the morning and add my usual back-links and sources. Sorry.

**** 11:00 am — UPDATED. Changes in italics.

As I type this, I flip between CNN and my local NBC affiliate here in Atlanta. I sit up in bed, writing and sipping pinot grigio left over from my wending while my very tolerant wife tries to sleep through the cacophony of election news and typing keys. The news stations, including Fox, are calling it an Obama victory while the GOP and Romney camps promise to hold out until all votes are counted or at least until Romney finishes writing a concession speech. The celebration at Obama headquarters just went from jubilation to frustrated anticipation over what they feel is a done deal.

[Image Source:]

Everyone is in post-election analysis mode. It can even be said that GOP leaders, Speaker of the House John Boehner [R-OH] in particular, have been in this mode way earlier tonight before the the first poll closed. Expecting an Obama victory from the get-go and promising that the GOP positions on key issues have not change and that a contentious battle over EVERYTHING is sure to follow.

It's been a long two years—four if you count the conservatives' initial response to President Obama's 2008 win. It's been a disappointingly negative campaign from all sides and most of the people I know were so burnt out by election news that some didn't even care to vote. 

There has been a lot of winners and losers in this election cycle outside the political sphere, one of which is social media. Social media exploded exponentially into the spotlight with the Arab Spring and the Occupy Movements last year, but this election proves that America is not immune to a cultural shift towards social media as legitimate, real time news source. News anchors and correspondents like Cooper Anderson [1][2] and Jamie Dupree along with others have used Twitter and Facebook to give their audience real time information.

One of the biggest news in social media this year involves voter registration via Facebook [3] and the debate over whether actual voting through social media was possible or even a smart idea. I foresee this debate and the innovations being an even bigger part of the political landscape four years from now—heck!—two years from now during the next midterm elections if you are being realistic. We probably won't even have to "wait and see" how social media has and will affect future politics.

Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate (yes there was a third party this year!) has, knowing that his chance of winning was nonexistent, already promised to keep himself and the Libertarian Party's cause in the spotlight through aggressive social media campaigns. [4]

But for now as I watch Romney's concession speech, I know in the morning I will wake to the same business as usual with an incumbent President returning to office with the same Congressional makeup. So hopeful—and can only hope—all involve will just shut up, especially on social media, and just get back to work.

Good night for now. Here's Romney's speech.


****UPDATE ****
Good Morning! Welp, I went to bed just as Obama walked on stage to give his victory speech. I skipped it because by that point last night I was falling asleep as I typed. In cased you missed it too, here's the video of the speech: