Since Kerry doesn't seem to want to concede, I will.
Bush won 51% of the popular vote to Kerry's 48%.
That's a win. A narrow, but clear, win.
The Gotham Gal and I are having a hard time dealing with the fact that we are a minority here in America, but the fact is that we are.
Here are the exit polls and Jeff Jarvis' commentary on them:
The top issue (21%) was "moral values"; 78% of those who cared about that went for Bush, 19% for Kerry. That's a huge difference.
Next: economy/jobs at 20%; 81% preferring Kerry, 17% Bush. So Kerry got much better marks on the economy.
Terror comes in third at 18%; 85% preferring Bush, 15% Kerry. That's the one that amazes me -- not in the Kerry/Bush split but in the importance voters gave it. Bush ran on terrorism; it wasn't No. 1 in the minds of voters; yet he still won.
Iraq comes in next at 15%; 75% preferring Kerry, 24% Bush. No surprise.
This is very revealing. Bush's signature issues are "moral values" and "the war on terror". Kerry's are "the economy" and "Iraq". Both candidates won big on their signature issues. But "moral values" are slightly more important to Americans than "the economy". And "the war on terror" is slightly more important that the mess in "Iraq".
So Bush wins. I think its really that simple.
The "moral values" thing bothers me. I've said it was the Preacher vs the Professor and clearly the Preacher was the preferred choice.
The Gotham Gal told me this morning that "anti gay marriage" referendums won in 11 states last night. I have no idea if that's right, but if it is, it's one more signal that the faith-based platform looms large in this country. We've got a huge swath of the country between the pacific coast and the northeast and parts of the industrial midwest where faith and moral values matter most.
That's the political reality in our country this morning along with four more years of George W. Bush.
As I said last night, I'll do my best to support him, but it's going to be tough.