ONTD Political

Charles Darwin gets 4,000 write-in votes in Athens against Paul Broun

11:26 pm - 11/09/2012
A follow-up to a post a month back: GA Congressman: evolution is "lies from hell"

By Jim Thompson
updated Friday, November 9, 2012 - 2:00pm

Charles Darwin, the 19th-century naturalist who laid the foundations for evolutionary theory, received nearly 4,000 write-in votes in Athens-Clarke County in balloting for the 10th Congressional District seat retained Tuesday by five-year incumbent Republican Rep. Paul Broun.

A spot check Thursday of some of the other counties in the east Georgia congressional district revealed a smattering of votes for Darwin, although it wasn’t always clear, based on information provided by elections offices in those counties, whether those votes were cast in the 10th District race. And because the long-dead Darwin was not a properly certified write-in candidate, some counties won’t be tallying votes for him, whether in the congressional race or other contests.

A campaign asking voters to write-in Darwin’s name in the 10th Congressional District, which includes half of Athens-Clarke County, began after Broun, speaking at a sportsmen’s banquet at a Hartwell church, called evolution and other areas of science “lies straight from the pit of hell.”

Jim Leebens-Mack, the University of Georgia plant biologist who started a “Darwin for Congress” Facebook page in the wake of Broun’s remarks, said the number of Darwin votes cast in the race were “in the ballpark, a little bit more” than he had expected.

The Darwin votes, Leebens-Mack added, made it “clear to me, and I hope everybody, that Paul Broun is vulnerable” in terms of continued re-election to Congress. Broun was first elected in a special 2007 election, and won re-election in 2008, 2010 and again on Tuesday in a newly drawn 10th District, reconfigured as part of congressional reapportionment.

“The campaign for 2014 started yesterday,” Leebens-Mack said Thursday, adding that the next step will be identifying potential candidates for the next congressional election.

In a Thursday interview, Leebens-Mack pointed out that in addition to the write-in votes cast for Darwin, the 10th District contest attracted a large number of other write-in ballots. “Votes” were cast in the race for “Anyone but Broun,” “Anyone else” and various permutations of that sentiment, with “Big Bird” and “Bill Nye, The Science Guy” also earning ballots.

The only legitimate write-in candidate in the race, little-known Brian Russell Brown of Augusta, who has mounted write-in campaigns for other high-level offices in recent years, received a large number of votes in Athens, claiming more than 200 ballots.

In addition to the write-in votes cast for Darwin in the 10th Congressional District race, a handful of votes for the long-dead British scientist were cast in other races on Athens-Clarke County ballots. Votes for Darwin were tallied in both statewide Public Service Commission races, and for all of the state legislative offices on the ballot, including uncontested seats.

“I can’t ever remember seeing a (write-in ballot) report that long,” said Athens-Clarke County Elections Supervisor Gail Schrader after releasing the full list of write-in numbers to local media Thursday morning.

Broun received 16,980 votes in Athens-Clarke County, and garnered 209,917 votes across the district.

The congressman’s press secretary did not return calls to her office and to her cellphone Thursday afternoon, nor had she responded to an email request for comment.

Source: Athens Banner-Herald Online (local paper cited in major national news articles on this)

OP: Saw Rachel Maddow gleefully report on this and thought I'd share. ;)

Nye 2014?
the_physicist 10th-Nov-2012 06:28 pm (UTC)
I always hope that people like him who have so much contempt for science practice what they preach and don't use any of the work created by devil worshippers, like computers, mobile phones, the internet...*insert epic list here*... toothpaste, and deodorant.

You know, just to show us all they actually believe what they are saying.
grace_om 10th-Nov-2012 08:09 pm (UTC)
Yes, and pretty much any modern medicine. I have an old Doonesbury cartoon where the doctor asks the TB patient if he's a creationist -- so therefore he'll only want the older treatment that no longer works because the bugs have evolved resistance.
layweed 10th-Nov-2012 06:36 pm (UTC)
This election seems like it's a lot more entertaining than the lizard people election of 2008 was.
mindrtist 11th-Nov-2012 03:20 am (UTC)
I'm laughing so hard right now.

Yet, I'm reminded of my friend insisting that Donald Rumsfeld was a lizard.

the_glow_worm 10th-Nov-2012 06:36 pm (UTC)
Well, he is the natural selection.
popehippo 10th-Nov-2012 06:57 pm (UTC)
Pffffffffft. You win.
alicephilippa 10th-Nov-2012 06:46 pm (UTC)
This made the papers on this side of the pond. Go Charles Darwin. :D
(no subject) - Anonymous
liret 10th-Nov-2012 07:57 pm (UTC)
I do feel sorry for them on a personal level. I've heard people who have broken away from those kinds of mindsets talk about the absolute terror that can come from having doubts, and wondering if they're a sign you're not really saved because your faith isn't good enough - I can see how that pushes a person into proving to themselves and others that they believe no matter what 'traps' the devil and his secular minions try to set. Admitting reality doesn't fit your worldview is a sign of dangerous spiritual weakness, to that kind of thinking.

On the other hand, I think people should be disqualified from public office - and other things, including practicing medicine, which is Brun's other career - if they prove that they'll reject facts and evidence in favor of what they are told to believe. That kind of attitude in someone making laws is terrifying.

Edited at 2012-11-10 07:57 pm (UTC)
mirhanda 10th-Nov-2012 07:03 pm (UTC)
Instead of writing in a useless vote, why not vote for his opponent and get him out of there? I mean it's cute and all, but not as useful and unseating him. If he was running unopposed, use the drive that they put out to get people to vote for Darwin to write in an actual living person.
(no subject) - Anonymous - Expand
(no subject) - Anonymous - Expand
kitanabychoice 10th-Nov-2012 09:19 pm (UTC)
It's kind of scary that there's people out here who decry ALL forms of science even though they are surrounded by products of that science. You can't tell me this guy doesn't have a phone, use the internet, ride elevators, drive, etc. /smh
rkt 11th-Nov-2012 12:27 am (UTC)
OP this is the same story but with a slightly different angle and includes a partial list of some of the other write-ins

corinn 11th-Nov-2012 02:22 am (UTC)
IDK, Athens-Clarke County voters. Wouldn't Voldemort run on an anti-science platform, too?

Cthulhu smites those who think He is a minor enough evil to serve as an elected official.

Obi-wan would be good on the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, though. Good choice.

Edited at 2012-11-11 02:24 am (UTC)
zhiva_the_mage 11th-Nov-2012 11:08 pm (UTC)
This reminds me of "50 better warchiefs than Garrosh" thread on old WoW forums :) That one included things like "half a stack of peacebloom" and "basic campfire".
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