the laweekly tells us that, since absentee ballots are still being counted in caleefornia, it’s turning out that gov. ah-nold got his butt kicked even worse than anybody thought.  excerpts from the article, and our thoughts, after the jump:

so the numbers keep coming in, and factoring in the late returns, the results are quietly astounding. the biggest story is turnout. in each of the other two special elections (that is, elections featuring ballot measures but no candidates) in california over the past two decades, turnout was roughly 37 percent. schwarzenegger’s consultants assumed that this time around, inasmuch as turnout has been steadily declining in state and out over the past four decades, they could count on 36 percent of voters actually bothering to participate. the consultants for the unions who ran the campaigns against schwarzenegger’s measures figured that they had to boost turnout at least to 41 percent. in the days before the election, the office of secretary of state bruce mcpherson figured that perhaps 42 percent of voters would cast ballots, and that was the figure most commonly cited on election day itself.

and they were all wrong. as the count proceeded this past weekend, the percentage of california voters who cast ballots was up to 47.3 percent. when the count’s all done — the county registrars have to wrap it up by december 8 — that figure may be close to 48 percent, 11 points higher than each of the two preceding specials…

it’s also a testament to the scope and efficacy of the campaign the unions ran to pull their voters — and not just union members, but black, latino and progressive voters more generally — to the polls. in l.a. county, not only was the turnout surprisingly high, but the margins against arnold’s measures were huge. as of this weekend, proposition 74, extending the probationary period for teachers, was losing by 22.8 percent among l.a. county voters; proposition 75, curtailing unions’ ability to wage election campaigns, was trailing by 23.2 percent; proposition 76, limiting funding on schools and giving the governor unilateral power to cut spending, was down by 35.6 percent; and proposition 77, establishing a mid-decade reapportionment, was behind by 32 percent.

 the article goes on to mention the latimes’ new hard tack to the right (under new management), and thereby how out of touch with its core readership the paper is now appearing. the op-ed page not only endorsed 3 of ah-nold’s 4 propositions, the editors, after the loss, chided, derided and broad-sided the citizenry of the state for failing to pass them.

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