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Throw the Bums Back In! 

Published November 4, 2008 at 11:37 p.m.

Well, it looks like a normal night in Vermont election-land — statewide incumbents appear headed for easy reelections.

Treasurer Jeb Spaulding, Secretary of State Deb Markowitz, Auditor of Accounts Tom Salmon (who is serving in Iraq), Attorney General Bill Sorrell, and US Rep. Peter Welch all appear headed to easy wins.

Was it ever really in question? Not really, but what remained in question was if the Left could get enough votes to keep Douglas below 50%. And, no, they couldn't. Even with two of them in the race they couldn't do it.

Incumbent Gov. Jim Douglas is holding steady and is likely to safely exceed the 50% threshold needed to keep the race from going to the Legislature. In fact, Democratic challenger Gaye Symington has conceded the race as has Independent Anthony Pollina.

With about 73% of the vote tallied, WCAX-TV is reporting that Douglas has 55% of the vote, Symington 21% and  Pollina 20%.

In their concessions, however, both candidates had strong words for Douglas and his leadership, or lack thereof, and Pollina came across as giving the first stump speech of a bid for governor in 2010 than a concession speech in 2008. We'll see how that goes for him in the coming months as there is likely to be plenty of discussion on the Left about how best to unseat a popular incumbent Republican in an ever-left leaning state.

The GOP held its ground, too, in the battle for control of the House and Senate will end up being a wash in the end. The Dems have picked off a couple of key Republican seats in Bennington, Rutland, Caledonia, and Chittenden counties. Meanwhile, the GOP has picked up seats in Franklin and Chittenden counties.

Interesting that the Obama tide that the GOP expected was either better deflected or didn't materialize.

It's still to early to tell if the Progressives will hold their seats. It appears as if they will lose their seat in Orleans-Franklin currently held by Dexter Randall to the Republicans.

Burlington results are not fully in, but it appears that Progressive Chris Pearson has lost his reelection thanks to a spirited challenge from Democrat Kesha Ram. Progressive Dave Zuckerman look like he'll be reelected.

I'm off to Dem Party HQ — I'll tweet from here on in. Cheers, and thanks to Cathy Resmer for all of her excellent live-blogging and all the folks here at Channel 17.

Catch you on the flipside.

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About The Author

Shay Totten

Shay Totten

Shay Totten wrote "Fair Game," a weekly political column, from April 2008-December 2011.


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