You Decide 2006: Election Day

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After I interviewed former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich last night, he asked me if I were following closely the Texas governor race. I said I was not following it closely, but did know Governor Rick Perry was up for re-election. I was certainly aware of the governor since I had interviewed Governor Perry during the aftermath of Katrina — when Texas opened its arms to many who were fleeing the aftermath of the hurricane.

Speaker Gingrich told me to check out the Texas race — not for surprising results — but just the pure dynamics of the race. Governor Perry has lots of challengers, which makes it interesting, but apparently is way ahead. I am going to check it out… you might find it interesting, too. (Incidentally, Speaker Gingrich is a historian. He is fascinated by the political races and the dynamics of the races, which is why we booked him last night. If you paid close attention to my questions and his answers, you realized that the interview was not partisan or political.)

You may have noticed that my questions of both Congresswoman Katherine Harris and Governor (DNC Chair) Howard Dean last night were not heavy handed. There is a reason: The interviews were done on the eve of a very important election and if either were — for time reasons or other — unable to address a controversial issue that might have been raised, there would be no time to fix it. Last night was really the point beyond no return. If for some reason the interviews had occurred Friday night and one had inadvertently been treated unfairly by me or by my question, I would have had a night to fix it (Monday) — whether through a rebooking of the guest or another guest who is like minded on the issues. Don't kid yourself, this election is very important and it is my job to do it fairly — which includes not sandbagging a guest with whom I might not agree on the eve of the election. So, last night I made the judgment to try and just have a little fun with the guests and let you see them on the eve of the race.

The green room at FOX was quite busy last night with people from both sides of the aisle. Here is a sample: Terry McAuliffe (former head of the DNC), Mrs. Cheney and Dorothy Bush Koch (yes, sister of the President.) It was very friendly — the green room is a very different environment than you might guess.

In case you don't know, Dorothy Bush has a new book out called "My Father, My President: A Personal Account of the Life of George H. W. Bush." I told her that I have not yet read the book, but I certainly intend to read it. I will get it this weekend and begin reading it. I have wanted to get it, but I have been behind in my reading.

Whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, you have to admire her father, President Bush 41. I admire him. At age 82 he spends his time helping others — whether it is Katrina relief, the South Asia tsunami or earthquake victims in northern Pakistan. Likewise, former President Bill Clinton has been in there pitching, trying to raise money to make the world a better place. I admire Clinton for his efforts at making the world better. What bothers me is: What's with the current politicians and their really ugly ads? (And how do they explain them to them children? "The other guy is doing it.." or "I didn't do it... that's one of those 527s... (that I give a 'nod and a wink' to when no one is looking.)"

There are some more pictures posted from our work last week in Reno on a special to air in about one week. The pictures were taken by my colleague Joel Parks — check them out.

As you know, last week we spent about two hours on the set of FOX hit series "24" and we aired two segments on Thursday night. Since we have so much more tape we did not air on FNC, we are going to post the video you did not see on tomorrow.

Now for some e-mails:

E-mail No. 1

I was @ a hair salon last Friday afternoon and I asked the young lady working on my hair, "So have you voted yet?" She looked @ me blankly and asked, "For what?" I studied her face to see if she was kidding, and replied "The Midterm elections." She still didn't know what I was talking about! We laughed when I offered to check her pulse. She went on to explain that she didn't understand any of "that stuff" and asked me what does "Republican" or "Democrat" mean anyway? So I offered my best "fair and balanced" definitions — but I also encouraged her to read about the upcoming election on the Internet over the weekend. Some people are less "undecided" about the issues, than whether they should even bother to vote. Many don't believe their vote is relevant to their lives.
We should do more educating and less "mudslinging"!
Dallas, TX

E-mail No. 2

I have already voted and at this point, the day before the election, I don't personally know anyone who is undecided. In some cases, there just was not deliberation necessary for me. I don't usually vote a straight ticket and didn't this time, but all of the candidates I did vote for come close to my beliefs on the issues important to me and I think most Americans. I am really sickened by the circus elections have now become. I'm so upset that with all the dire issues these idiots think we give a crap about a visit to a football party by one candidate or an uncalled for remark about this or that by another. Both parties owe the U.S. Americans an apology with a promise never to let it happen again. It's childish, X-rated in some cases, and completely off the mark for serious politics, and God in his heaven knows we should be sober and serious now.
Thanks, and keep up the good work you do Greta. As I've told you before, don't much care for the FOX News Network, but I love your show.

E-mail No. 3

Never wrote before, but thought I would on this. (By the way, I love reading your blog every day). My mother is 79, and she is not sure yet who to vote for. She is sure of what she believes, but is so easily swayed. She is a registered Democrat, but usually always votes Republican, due to she believes in them more, but does not want to change her party affiliation. She is a Joe Lieberman-style Democrat. Also, I her daughter, am a small business owner and vote Republican, due to Republicans helping out small business more than Democrats. She will usually ask me who to vote for. This time around there is a nice older Democrat Candidate who is totally off the wall for our district, she wants to vote for him because he visited with her for 10 minutes, and he likes Kenny Schrader (the NASCAR driver) and that is her guy. I will keep talking to her right up until she votes, but not sure if I can sway her on just this one. That is probably a lot of the people that are undecided, are people who just want to vote for a person because of silly reasons and who know what will win out when they get in the booth. I am sure it will go both ways! Love to hear about your personal life, sure makes you seems so real. I like just the facts on politics too.
Lima, OH

E-mail No. 4

Hi Greta,
I am decided for Election Day. What is a little surprising is the amount of people that I know that are not decided whether they will vote at all. I would like to propose a new amendment to our constitution... If you are eligible to vote and choose not to, then you forfeit your right to freedom of speech. You can still live here, but do it quietly.

E-mail No. 5

Dear Greta,
I have not met one person who is undecided. I must be honest and admit that I am so NOT into California politics/elections. Shame on me.
Enjoy tomorrow night with your husband. He may fall asleep. I used to be real good stealing the remote out of my husband's hand.

E-mail No. 6

Hi Greta,
Here in Oregon, we have had vote-by-mail for quite some time now. I sent my ballot in a couple of weeks ago. I haven't changed my mind about anything, but have always wondered what you could do about it if you had already mailed your vote.

E-mail No. 7

I won't be watching election returns as I have company coming in Tuesday evening. The plan is to have dinner and hang out in the casino. Plus the fact…I never watch election returns.
As for the annoying phone calls, I moved last year and when I changed my address, I told them I didn't have a phone. The only call I keep getting is from Laura Bush.
I will be voting and the only issue I am interested in that there are two smoking propositions on the ballot. I am an adamant nonsmoker. I also am very sick of how the casinos have the ability to dictate how alcohol and smoking are controlled in Nevada. As for the politicians, I think most of them are a bunch of liars and anyone who runs a negative ad doesn't get my vote.

E-mail No. 8

Dear Greta,
I cannot wait until this election is over! I have programmed my telephone answering software to hang up on calls from a Private Caller and every call I get from an 800 number gets added to my "hang up on this person" list. Now if I could just program it to hang up on calls from Unknown Caller. If they think I am influenced to vote for them by a negative ad, they have it backwards. If someone can stoop so low to smear other human beings in this way, I don't want them representing me! They are the ones who don't get it. Billions of dollars are wasted on mailings that get put in to the trash and telephone calls that NO ONE listens to.
What I want is the truth about what THEY CAN OFFER U.S. CITIZENS. If they're already in office, I want to know what they've been supporting on my behalf. If they're not in office, I want to know what they will support if we elect them.
I thank God they don't have my e-mail address…yet.

E-mail No. 9

Dear Greta,
If anyone in Teton County (WY. and ID.) is undecided, they're not showing it! We're all supposedly voting, but generally the Republicans out-volume the Democrats by a 5-to-4 margin.
By the way, I'm sorry you won't be working Election night — I would have loved to see you get as giddy/punchy as Brit Hume did at 3 a.m. during the 2000 election. I enjoyed watching the sleep-deprived anchors as much as the election itself!
Enjoy the circus maximus,
Mick R.
Alta, WY

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