Wednesday, August 6, 2008

War report from Fort Bragg

The sounds of gunfire and explosions from heavy munitions are all around me.

I am vacationing on the outskirts of Fort Bragg, where my brother Pafio was stationed with the U.S. Army when he started a different battle (with cancer) several years ago.

Technically, Pafio is my wife's cousin. But I have been adopted into their West African kinship structure, and to their way of thinking, she and he are sister and brother. My marriage to his sister made Pafio and me brother and brother.

All of this makes perfect sense to me. We are all, anyway, people of African descent, if you trace back far enough.

Back to the sounds of explosions. My cell phone won't get reception inside Pafio and Della's house, so I have to race outside to report on the Missouri primary, as I am doing (even on vacation) for this week's edition of The St. Louis American.

It is fascinating, and altogether fitting, to receive reports from the political wars back home as I hear soldiers training for foreign wars in the hot fields of Fort Bragg.

Here is the latest report from the front, to be posted any moment on


According to a St. Louis County election official, the outcome of the Democratic primary for attorney general remains in doubt.

Dick Bauer, assistant director of the County election board, said "more than 500, but less than 600" votes remain uncounted in St. Louis County due to typical logistics involved in collecting electronic voting records.

According to unofficial results posted by the Missouri Secretary of State, Chris Koster beat Margaret Donnelly by 852 votes, so those 500-600 votes could change the primary election outcome if other voting irregularities are corrected in the final tally.

"Obviously, the Democratic attorney general race was close," Bauer said.

He said he would keep the American posted as results are finalized today. "I think Margaret Donnelly will like to know, too," Bauer said.

Donnelly did not immediately return a call to her cell phone this morning.

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