8:26 p.m. The League of Pissed Off Voters is hosting an election night party tonight. People trickle into El Río and take seats at the bar to catch a glimpse of the flats screen TV broadcasting election results on KRON 4. A big screen is set up on the outside patio, and folks from Lost Weekend Video are preparing to show the 1999 film, Election. Heather from the League says that people are just finishing campaigning out in the streets, and many Leaguers will be dropping by soon to join the festivities.
Come on by with your voting stub and get a free drink!
8:47 p.m. Sarah Light and Ryan Hubert take seats against the wall, with a clear view of the flat screen hanging above the bar. Sarah says, in an ironic tone, that she’s here for the extreme pain. “It’s like Day of the Dead Democrat,” she says.
8:57 p.m. People from the League of Pissed Off Voters set up a laptop next to the bar. They are checking results come in on various sites, including the Secretary of State’s Web site. Alex Cotton from the League says the AP called Boxer with 14% counted. He shrugs. “I don’t know. It still could go the other way but who knows?” he says.
Pam Moore on KRON 4 says Steve Cooley is beating Kamala Harris 52% to 48% with 7% reporting. The crowd groans.
Pam Moore announces Jerry Brown has been declared winner by the AP. The crowd cheers.
9:05 p.m. House and Senate updates pop up on the TV screen. Republicans take the House, and the crowd here moans and groans. Democrats hold the Senate, and they cheer.
9:25 p.m. Pat Toomey wins the Pennsylvania Senate race. Ryan Hubert curses the TV. “A Republican won in f*#ing Pennsylvania!”
Jonah Horowitz, a volunteer with the League since 2004, is visibly upset that Prop. 24 didn’t pass. It would have repealed corporate tax rates. “We were hoping citizens would see the light and see that we need revenue,” he says.
9:35 p.m. Jerry Brown is again declared winner. El Río erupts with cheers. Newsom is projected the winner for Lieutenant Governor. There is no big reaction from the crowd. Jonah Horowitz shrugs and says hesitantly, “Yay?”
9:40 p.m. People are slowly becoming distracted. They talk amongst themselves, grab free tacos being served outside, and check out the movie Election playing on the big screen.
9:45 p.m. El Río is starting to get packed. More pissed off voters arrive along with men and woman with painted faces flowing in from the Day of the Dead parade. David Taylor walks to the bar and asks about Prop. 23. It went down, says the crowd. “Woohoo,” he cheers. “But we lost 26,” someone says. “We lost because it’s winning.” “That really sucks. Why did we lose 26?” asks Taylor.
“26 is incredibly evil,” his friend says. “It’s obvious by who paid for the thing. Chevron, Conoco, Phillip Morris. It takes away the ability to regulate polluting industries.”
$4 billion was spent on elections this year, which is unprecedented. “A lot of that money is from polluting industries,” says Taylor. “The next election could be $20 billion.”
10:10 p.m. There is a huge moan from the crowd. “Sit/Lie passed,” someone says.
10:25 p.m. Newsom is giving his victory speech but no one is really paying attention.
10:32 p.m. The outside patio is packed. The movie Election ended. Heywood from the League hooks up the laptop to the big screen projector outside and displays election results, refreshing the Secretary of State’s site every so often.
10:44 p.m. 21.8% of California precincts are reporting. 98% of San Francisco precincts are reporting. Supervisors for District 6 and 8 will go to an instant runoff. No one got 50% of the votes. It could take a few days to figure out the runoff vote, says Ali Uscilka from the League. If Rafael Mandelman gets a large percentage of Rebecca Prozan’s second choice votes, he has a chance, says Uscilka.
Scott Weiner has 42% and Rafael Mandelman has 36%. In District 6, it’s also a toss-up. Jane Kim has 31% and Debra Walker has 28%.
But the turnout number will grow. 98% of precincts reporting doesn’t really mean 98% of all voters, according to Jeremy Pollock from the League. Provisional ballots and absentee ballots that came in today still need to be counted. Jeremy thinks there will be another 60,000 votes or so. Tomorrow morning, the department of elections will announce how many votes still need to counted.
11:15 p.m. The League folks toggle through election result pages projected on the big screen. Harry Reid is re-elected in Nevada. They are happy, but Pollock laughs and says, “it’s hard to get excited about Harry Reid.”
11:34 p.m. 40% of California precincts are reporting.
11:44 p.m. Beth Byrne, who is wearing a Mandelman t-shirt, says she’s happy about some things, but overall she’s disappointed. She’s suprised about the propositions. “I thought 24 was pretty straightforward, to end corporate tax breaks. A lot of them are pretty surprising to me. But Meg Whitman spent $160 million and she lost,” says Byrne. “I mean, that’s awesome.”
11:49 p.m. The party is dying down. They turn off the projector. The Leaguers huddle in a group hug. “We’ve got to work on turnout,” says Heywood.
“I don’t need a hug. I need a drink,” says Jeremy Pollock. And he heads to the bar.