Advertising

Blog Roll
Who's My Legislator?

Virginia Blogs
Augusta Free Press
Bacon's Rebellion
Blue Ridge Caucus
Blue Louisa
Coarse Cracked Corn
Crew of 42
DemRulz
Dixie Pig
Equality Loudoun
Greater Greater Washington
Loudoun Progress
Moonhowlings
Ox Road South Blog
Pilot on Politics" blog
Richmonder
Richmond Sunlight
RTD Virginia Politics blog
Roanoke Times blog
Shad Plank
Vivian Paige
Waldo Jaquith


Find more about Weather in Arlington, VA
Click for weather forecast
Search




Advanced Search


The Election Wasn't As Close As You Think

by: TheGreenMiles

Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 10:00:00 AM EST


P110612PS-0894Presenting live election returns as a sporting event makes for good television. At 9pm, Barack Obama & Mitt Romney are tied in the popular vote! The Virginia, Massachusetts and Montana Senate races are tied! Who will win? You have to stay tuned to find out!

But watching election returns minute-by-minute gives a biased view towards the states and even the precincts that count their votes early in the evening. Watching early totals presents a skewed presidential picture in any year, as California (6.2 million Obama votes) doesn't even close its polls until 11pm ET.

This year the problem was even more pronounced than usual as voters in Democratic precincts faced significantly longer lines than voters in GOP precincts. In 59 voting divisions in Philadelphia, Obama beat Romney 19,605 to 0. That meant Democratic precincts were likely to report results later - and in some cases hours later - than their counterparts in Republican areas. Races that seemed surprisingly close early on turned out to be the solid Democratic wins everyone but Fox viewers expected.

So how has what we know about the election changed since Tuesday night?

TheGreenMiles :: The Election Wasn't As Close As You Think
  • In the presidential race, the usual California lateness was compounded by slow vote counts in New York and New Jersey, both struggling in the wake of Sandy and both heavily Democratic. While Obama's margin over Romney was around 2 million votes on Wednesday morning, today Obama's lead stands at more than 3.4 million votes - a victory margin a Republican presidential candidate hasn't posted since George H.W. Bush in 1988.
  • "What's going on in Virginia?" was a frequent theme on Election Night, as early returns had both Mitt Romney and George Allen leading. But Obama and Kaine came back as the night went along and now you wouldn't even call the Senate race all that close - Tim Kaine ultimately won by 6 percent (over 186,000 votes). Meanwhile, President Obama won by 3 percent.
  • It was a similar story in other Senate races. In Massachusetts, it took hours for the race to be called for Democrat Elizabeth Warren, but the final results show Warren soundly beating Scott Brown by 8 percent. The Montana Senate race wasn't called until late Wednesday morning, but the final tally has Democrat Jon Tester beating Republican Denny Rehberg by 4 percent - not a blowout to be sure, but much more comfortable than you'd have thought on Election Night. (Side note: How has the media "called" Arizona for Republican Jeff Flake when over a quarter of the ballots, many from Democratic areas, still haven't been counted?)
  • And in the House, while networks raced to declare "PROJECTION: GOP MAINTAINS CONTROL OF HOUSE!" early, today the story is of Democratic pickup. Democrats have already gained 6 House seats and are leading in 4 of 5 uncalled races.
The danger comes when folks start using the election returns to make up their minds about what happened in the election. What you see before 11pm ET isn't a proportional representation of what will happen later in the night - you have to watch those early numbers with a grain of salt. And that salt's just the right color since it's mostly Mitt Romney's angry old white guy America counting the ballots early on.

So on future Election Nights, have fun watching the early returns roll in, but don't make up your mind about the results until every vote's been counted.

Tags: , , (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

Virginia's slow precincts (0.00 / 0)
Yes, watching election returns as a sporting event is exciting but not insightful of what's actually happening. A little knowledge of where votes are coming from, as CNN's John King demonstrated last week, is the real story.
In Virginia, certain urban districts routinely report late. It happened in 2005 when Jim Webb was elected by a narrow margin and his victory didn't appear under nearly mid-night thanks to slow reporting in places like Petersburg and Fairfax.
The same thing happened this year with urban districts in Tidewater and Northern Virginia coming in late. As I checked last night, two precincts in Fairfax are among the six in the state that STILL haven't reported a week later.
Is this because white guys are counting votes, or are there other reasons? It would be helpful to know why.  

Miles - this diary makes DK Rec list- Well done! n/t (0.00 / 0)


Thanks! (0.00 / 0)
Glad the Kossacks liked it.
http://www.dailykos.com/story/...

Read more at TheGreenMiles.com and follow me on Twitter

[ Parent ]
Now 4% margin in Virginia (0.00 / 0)
Votes are still being reported, about done now.

Now we just need some maps like the following for Virginia! (0.00 / 0)
Paging Kenton Ngo, paging Kenton Ngo. :)



Follow me on Twitter. Follow Blue Virginia on Facebook and Twitter.


[ Parent ]
Source (0.00 / 0)
Maps created by Mark Newman (Department of Physics and Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan, http://www-personal.umich.edu/...

Follow me on Twitter. Follow Blue Virginia on Facebook and Twitter.

[ Parent ]
Menu

Make a New Account

Username:

Password:



Forget your username or password?


Advertising

FOLLOW BLUE VIRGINIA on SOCIAL MEDIA


Donate to Blue Virginia

About
The purpose of Blue Virginia is to cover Virginia politics from a progressive and Democratic perspective. This is a group blog and a community blog. We invite everyone to comment here, but please be aware that profanity, personal attacks, bigotry, insults, rudeness, frequent unsupported or off-point statements, "trolling" (NOTE: that includes outright lies, whether about climate science, or what other people said, or whatever), and "troll ratings abuse" (e.g., "troll" rating someone simply because you disagree with their argument) are not permitted and, if continued, will lead to banning. For more on trolling, see the Daily Kos FAQs. Also note that diaries may be deleted if they do not contain at least 2 solid paragraphs of original text; if not, please use the comments section of a relevant diary. For more on writing diaries, click here. Thanks, and enjoy!

P.S. You can contact us at lowell@raisingkaine.com and you can subscribe to Lowell's Twitter feed here. If you'd like to subscribe to Miles Grant's Twitter feed, click here. For Teacherken, click here. For Kindler, click here.

P.P.S. To see the Blue Virginia archive, please click here. To see the Raising Kaine archive, please click here. To see the Blue Commonwealth archive, please click here.



RSS Feed

Subscribe to Blue Virginia - Front Page


Real Time Web Analytics
Powered by: SoapBlox