By Robert Carter
North Jefferson News
— Good Wednesday morning to you…
Weather: Clouds decreasing. Skies will begin to clear today, but highs will struggle to reach 60 and it will be breezy at times. Lows tonight will go down to the upper 30s. Thursday will be sunny and a bit warmer.
Four more years. Barack Obama has narrowly won re-election to a second term. When the state of Ohio was called by major news organizations for the president, it gave the Democratic incumbent enough electoral votes to win. Obama had a clear lead in the Electoral College, but his lead in the popular vote was slim — as of 12:30 a.m., the margin over GOP challenger Mitt Romney was about 550,000 votes out of more than 103 million cast. Meanwhile, races in Alabama went as expected, with Judge Roy Moore being returned to be Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. All seven Alabama Congressional representatives were re-elected as well.
Constitutional amendments: Voters rejected Amendment 4, which would have removed racist language from the constitution regarding public education; the Alabama Education Association had opposed the amendment because they said it endangered guarantees of free public schooling. All of the other 10 amendments passed, including one which funded the Forever Wild conservation program, another which attempts to reject Obamacare, and one which requires elections for unions to be conducted by secret ballot (as opposed to so-called “card check” certifications).
Wet or dry? In Blount County, voters voted on whether to allow legalized sales of alcohol, and at the end of the night the issue was still not decided. With 27 out of 28 precincts reporting, “no” votes held a slim 160-vote lead out of more than 23,000 votes cast.
Sports: Basketball begins. It was not an auspicious debut for new Mortimer Jordan girls basketball coach Kelsey Treadaway, as the Blue Devils fell to Pleasant Grove 56-22 in their season opener Tuesday evening. The Devils also found themselves on the dubious side of a historical note: they were one of the very first teams to fall victim to the AHSAA’s new 30-point “mercy rule,” in which a non-stop clock is invoked when one team gains a 30-point lead at the beginning of the fourth quarter or afterward… College football: The Sugar Bowl will now host the champions of the SEC and the Big 12, starting on New Year’s Day 2015. The bowl game had been temporarily called the Champions Bowl, until a site was selected. The matchup will take place in the years in which the Sugar Bowl is not one of the semifinal games for the new four-team playoff system.