I have two thoughts about these latest developments.
The first, and big-picture observation, is that except for who actually wins, the new numbers really don't change the overall landscape. Before the vote-canvassing upset Thursday, I thought the smartest (if fairly obvious) observations were from those who saw etched in these numbers the deep and fairly even division of the state's residents. The margin is still in the area of one percentage point; we're talking roughly 1 person for every 8 or 9 square miles in the state, or little more than 100 people per county. So we're likely to see-saw a bit over the next few years, as we have in the past, as momentary circumstances edge first one, then the other party over the top. In that way, we're an awful lot like the whole country. (And our governor's lame claim that somehow it was just "Madison" vs. "the rest of the state" was absolute horse-pucky.)
As an aside, a county-by-county map of the vote [which appears not to have been updated since Thursday's revelation] points out something else: That majorities for one candidate or another are notably greater in individual counties, suggesting that Wisconsin has experienced the "Big Sort" phenomenon that Bill Bishop and Robert Cushing wrote about in a book of that name published three years ago.
There are, of course, already dark conspiracy theories being spun. I am not a huge fan of conspiracy theories. I think Oswald probably did kill Kennedy, acting more or less alone, I don't think 9/11 was an inside job, and so on.
But I do admit to questioning the way the 2000 Florida vote
As I said to DairyStateMom this morning:
"I don't want to be a sucker for a conspiracy theory. I also don't want to be a sucker for a conspiracy."
And so I end with a question and hope to get some serious responses in comments:
What is the most bizarre theory about a long-hidden conspiracy you can recall that actually turned out to be basically true?
And that latter point is key: basically true according to a reasonably broad consensus. Kennedy theories and 9/11 debunking haven't reached that threshold yet -- nor have any of the other examples I cite above, whether I am inclined to believe them or not.