Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Note to voters:

Finally it's time to move on

It’ll all be over soon.

Like most people in Western New York — especially the media, I have to presume — I’ve been looking forward to today for quite a while. After tonight, we don’t have to worry about commercials for or against any of the candidates in the special election for the 26th Congressional District. After tonight, I don’t have to worry about Kathy Hochul and Jane Corwin blowing up my email. After tonight, I can delete the #NY26 saved search on my twitter. After tonight it’ll all be over.

I hope.

I thought the same thing a week ago today about the school budget votes, particularly the sports complex vote in the Lockport City School District. And last Wednesday afternoon, I still wasn’t sure if that proposal had passed or failed. So there is a possibility that tomorrow morning, I’ll still be waiting, wondering and watching as candidates bring in high-priced lawyers from Washington much like George W. Bush and Al Gore did in Florida in the 2000 presidential election.

The polling numbers lately in the 26th district seem very close, with one poll over the weekend showing Democrat Kathy Hochul with a 4 percent lead, which was within the margin of error, and a second showing her a six-point lead, just outside the margin of error. Please, God, don’t let there be a recount. The voters of Western New York have suffered long enough.

For members of the media, especially those covering the election — which I’ve done a bit of this time around — election night is an awesome thing. I enjoyed election nights when I worked in radio, but there’s something about working in a newsroom on election night. Waiting for polling numbers to come in from places you’ve never heard of.

I’ve heard “jokes” before that war is God’s way of teaching us geography. Elections do the same thing for members of the media. Analyzing congressional districts might not sound fun to you, but there are maps of the 26th district on people’s desks in newsrooms across Western New York.

I’ve enjoyed seeing stories I’ve written picked up by other news outlets across the state, as well as seeing stories written by people I know and respect spread out across the state.

Because of the nature of this election and the potential implications, all eyes are on us today. Media outlets I love to watch and read have been talking about the same things I’m talking about. The same things you’re talking about. It all makes the world very small, and more importantly, centered around us.

There have been days in the past few weeks where I have wished that Chris Lee had just kept his shirt on, but what’s done is done.

It’s time to move on.

Thankfully.

Hopefully.