Tag Archive for Obama


We’re getting ready.

Okay, we’re not ready. But we’re trying. Like really hard.

Photo “Inaugural preparations” by adamsjp2010,published on Flickr.

Yesterday during the morning commute there was: a water main break (yah. a. gain) that stranded folks for two hours, a “suspicious package” that shut down a Red Line station and part of one of our busiest streets, a train switch malfunction, an “unexplained” orange line delay. But still. We’re trying.

By Tuesday’s evening commute, one week from the day, I saw this:

  • a slew of volunteers behind one reflector-laden Metro station attendant, telling them, “Now this time, of course, we don’t want them to have to get change or anything, not on Tuesday, right??!” Chuckles from the Northface-jacketed crowd. No, we don’t!
  • a memo from my Official U.S. Government Agency Workplace, detailing where I (and the other 3000 or so employees) could and could not park, walk, stand, and loiter. Yes, you can exit the Security Zone, but no, no you can’t enter.
  • signs galore saying “emergency, no parking, Jan. 19-21.” Harumph, like the one I had to beg District Two, D.C. Police to give me for my move out and my tenant’s move in– “sorry, ma’am, we can’t give them for two days.” Guess Obama didn’t have that problem.
  • and finally, this tip, from “some guy named me” who just happens to be my husband to be, who reports that Arlington Alert is warning: prepare for the inauguration like you would for a hurricane. Won’t we feel stupid, “some guy” postures, when the Obamas show up to our house, only to find the windows boarded up and us in hiding, making our signs in case we need a roof escape.

Are we ready? Not quite. But we’re trying. Yes we are.

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Politically. Correct.

Oh Hai. Remember me?

Probably not, save the five of you faithful friends who keep checking lo these many weeks. And mom. Hi mom! Shout out to mom!!!

Anywho, it’s been more than a month I’m sad to say and I don’t even have a good excuse. Just… well… life.  In a good way, life has been…. happening!  It’s allllll good. No, seriously, it’s ALL good, really good, joyousness.

I’m getting married, moving in finalllllly with my love (shh, don’t say anything. you’ll jinx it), have reconnected with tons of old friends (thanx facebook!), and making new ones in the way i love best, through long shared writing (thanks election and funny long political email chains enabling bright fun people to reveal their best selves).

And even better… good is all around me. Babies are being born, brides seem to be multiplying all around me, my beloved niece “bucket” is starting to talk and make faces and have a spirit, a true self.

Work is quieting down, papers are starting to fall into place and although there’s one final step left (or two) towards my much-anticipated new chapter, I am starting to breathe again.

Because the other thing is… the reason it was so hard to be here, especially so in October… is because it’s tough to be apolitical (as my government job and all journalistic jobs before it) require when it matters so much. So very much. I’m a cynic (again, job requirement of journalism); I voted how I voted and hoped for the best but inside I was unconvinced it really truly mattered. Until this time. When it did. When it does.

And I am breathing again.

Yes, the economy is bad; yes, we’re feeling it directly and see plenty hit harder everyday; yes, much like my much-anticipated next personal chapter we’re a step, or two, or twelve away. But it’s coming.  I can feel it. And I can breathe again.

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The time is now

The time is now to register to vote, fellow DC-metro-area peeps.  Do you know where / if you are registered? You should! (And if you live outside the area, but still in the U.S.,  fear not, go here for the National Mail-in Voter Registration. Several organizations (some partisan, some not) have organized electronic pages as well, including MTV’s well-known Rock the Vote. The Detroit Free Press has a great story on voter registration with links to every state’s voter registration.)

Here at home, in the hood, by which I mean the tri-state area (no, not those three states, New Yorkers, sigh)…

In DC, the  deadline is Oct. 6.
You need to attest and show proof that:

  • You are a United States Citizen
  • You live in the District of Columbia
  • You will be at least 18 years old on or before the next election
  • You are not in jail on a felony conviction
  • You have not been judged “mentally incompetent”in a court of law
  • You do not claim the right to vote anywhere outside DC.

In Maryland, the deadline is Oct.14.

To register in Maryland, you need to 

  • Be a U.S. citizen;
  • Be a Maryland resident;
  • Be at least 18 years old by the next general election;
  • Not be under guardianship for mental disability;
  • Not have been convicted of buying or selling votes;
  • Not have been convicted of a felony, or if you have, you have completed serving a court ordered sentence of imprisonment, including any term of parole or probation for the conviction.

And, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls…..

In Virginia, the deadline is Oct.6.

You need to be: 18, a citizen, and a “resident” of Virginia, the burden of proving which is determined “by the applicant.” While things such as owned or rented property, mailing address, and work status count in the evaluation of that claim (if there is any dispute) residency is ultimately determined by “where you lay your head at night” as per a court decision that included provisions for the homeless. Interesting.

More specifically…
[1. See for example:  Virginia residency requirements]

Under the Virginia Constitution, a prospective voter must be a resident of the precinct where he seeks to register. In order to establish “residency”, a prospective voter must show that (1) he has an actual physical place of abode in the precinct, and (2) he is domiciled there.

To establish “domicile”, a person must live in a particular locality with the intent to remain there for an unlimited time. Sachs v. Horan, 252 Va. 247 (1996). Thus, no person can have more than one domicile or vote in more than one locality at the same time. Where a person establishes his domicile may result in consequences unrelated to voting, such as payment of taxes. The burden of proving domicile rests with the person asserting it. Each person must, however, have some place that they can vote, if they wish to be able to vote. Even the homeless may register by using the site “where they lay their head at night”.

Registrars in Virginia bear the responsibility of determining if applicants are eligible to vote in their localities. Under Virginia Code §24.2-101, registrars may give consideration to at least the following factors in determining domicile: 1.  A person’s “expressed intent”, and 2.  A person’s “conduct and all attendant circumstances”, including, but not limited to:

  • financial independence
  • business pursuits
  • employment
  • income sources
  • residence for income tax purposes
  • marital status and children
  • residence of parents
  • leaseholds and ownership of real property
  • where automobiles and other personal property are registered and taxed.

If a registrar has reason to question whether a person actually resides in the precinct where he seeks to vote, the registrar should make reasonable inquiries to help the applicant make an accurate determination. No single factor or response should be determine an applicant’s domicile. On the contrary, each prospective voter should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, weighing all of the relevant circumstances.

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