A Democratic Washington

Washington voted for Obama in the 2008 presidential election by a wide margin, 57.6%-40.5% (17.1%). Therefore I’ve created a map where all ten congressional districts have the same Obama percentage, that is the same margin he won statewide.

All ten districts are within 0.05% Obama pecentage and 500 population of the median.  

A Democratic Mississippi

This map creates two Democratic districts with a PVI of at least D+10 and two Republican districts with a PVI of at least R+30, which would be the two most Republican in the country.

The districts are contiguous, even when they don’t really look like it, including a narrow strip along the gulf shoreline for the fourth district.

As always I crunched the actual precinct data to produce these maps. However in this case, to my horror, I could have saved a week of transcribing scanned county records and just maximised the minority districts since they produce almost exactly the same map. Nevertheless at least this way we have precise voting totals for each district.

1st(Blue): 63.2% Obama 37.8W 57.3B

2nd(Green): 66.2% Obama 36.1W 59.1B

3rd(Dark Magenta): 22.4% Obama 79.6W 16.0B

4th(Red): 22.3% Obama 78.8W 15.1B

A Less Competitive New Hampshire

New Hampshire currently has two districts that have changed hands a total of four times in the last five years. Whilst it is probably a good thing to have competitive districts, a question we could ask about New Hampshire is what might the map look like if there was bipartisan agreement to split the congressional districts between the parties?

CD 1 (Blue): 48.9% Obama

CD 2 (Green): 60.5% Obama

A Republican Hawaii

Given the condition of Hawaiian politics the title of the diary may seem laughably oxymoronic. Nevertheless there areas exist in Hawaii where Republican votes are more concentrated than others. Given Obama’s marked birth-state advantage in Hawaii I used Bush/Kerry numbers for calculations.  

CD1(Blue): 47.6% Kerry 16/9/53/20 W/H/A/O

Most of Oahu, particularly the more Republican parts.

CD2(Green): 58.4% Kerry 29/9/42/20 W/H/A/O

South-eastern Oahu and all of the other Hawaiian islands.

It is possible to make CD1 a point or two more republican if VRA requirements are ignored. However CD1 would now be a fair fight district giving the rare Hawaiian Republican a much better chance of winning without relying on no-primary vote splitting jungle elections.  

A Republican Connecticut and a Democratic Connecticut

For “A Republican Connecticut” I’ve made not one but four interesting maps. There is also a bonus Democratic Connecticut for those interested. Redistricting in Connecticut, as I understand it, prohibits the splitting of towns for any reason other than to balance population. Therefore I have not split any towns in any of the maps and have kept population deviation within 1%; town splitting to accomodate the last couple of thousand people won’t change any numbers. As in only 29 of the 169 towns in Connecticut did a majority of voters vote for McCain over Obama, most by a slender margin, it was rather difficult to produce overly Republican districts. Edit: The colouring problems should now be resolved

Republican Connecticut (2-3)

We will start off with a messy looking map that should give Republicans a chance at both the R+1 1st and the D+3 2nd.

1st (Blue) 51.7% Obama

2nd (Green) 56.1% Obama

3rd (Dark Magenta) 70.9% Obama

4th (Red) 63.3% Obama

5th (Gold) 66.1% Obama

Republican Connecticut with Water Contiguity (2-3)

CD1 and CD2 are both close to toss-up districts with R+1/D+1 PVIs respectively. Districts four and, spectacularly, five both rely on water continuity. The water south of Darien in western Connecticut shouldn’t be coloured for this or future maps; it’s just a limitation in the application.

1st (Blue) 51.9% Obama

2nd (Green) 54.1% Obama

3rd (Dark Magenta) 68.8% Obama

4th (Red) 66.6% Obama

5th (Gold) 67.0% Obama

Republican Connecticut (1-4)

CD1 is the most Republican district I could make in Connecticut without splitting towns or using water contiguity, it doesn’t quite get under 50% Obama but it does achieve a R+2 PVI. Three democratic district are stacked on top of each other in the centre of the state (and one on the western edge) whilst the republican district wraps itself around them on three sides.

1st (Blue) 50.8% Obama

2nd (Green) 68.0% Obama

3rd (Dark Magenta) 61.9% Obama

4th (Red) 64.0% Obama

5th (Gold) 62.3% Obama

Republican Connecticut with Water Contiguity (1-4)

At last a Connecticut congressional district that voted for McCain! By the thumping margin of 575 votes! And all that needed to be done was sacrifice four out of the five districts and use water continuity for two of the districts.

1st (Blue) 49.9% Obama

2nd (Green) 66.5% Obama

3rd (Dark Magenta) 62.6% Obama

4th (Red) 69.4% Obama

5th (Gold) 60.2% Obama

Democratic Connecticut

Finally I made a bonus Democratic Connecticut that might be quite a good choice for redistricting if Democrats had free reign over the process. Only counties too large for their own congressional district are split and the current representatives remain in their own districts, though not Chris Murphy since he is running for senate (although he could be drawn back into the 5th easily enough if it were desired).

1st (Blue) 61.6% Obama

All of Litchfield county, most of northern Hartford county, Waterbury and Wolcott towns in New Haven county.

2nd (Green) 60.5% Obama

All of New London, Windham, and Tolland counties, south eastern Hartford County, and Enfield township.

3rd (Dark Magenta) 60.0% Obama

Western New Haven county and Northern Fairfield county.

4th (Red) 61.0% Obama

Southern Fairfield county.

5th (Gold) 62.8% Obama

Big change here. The district shifts east to encompass all of Chester county, southern Hartford county and western New Haven county.

A Democratic Oklahoma

Following attempts to create seats with Democratic PVIs in Nebraska and Kansas I’ve continued south into Oklahoma. Oklahoma has been trending Republican at the presidential level (and most levels really) and Obama received only 34% of the vote state-wide whilst not winning a single county. Whilst the following map would be impractical in the real world, it demonstrates that it is still theoretically possible to create a Democratic leaning congressional district in Oklahoma.  

1st CD (Blue) 54.9% Obama, 50/29/16/7 (W/B/H/N)

The Democratic CD is centred on linking the urban centres of Oklahoma City and Tulsa via Stillwater. A short arm reaches down to Norman and a long arm stretches all the way back to eastern Oklahoma picking up those counties (or at least certain precincts thereof) which still vote reasonably Democratic at the presidential level. This district also answers the unasked question of whether it is possible to draw a majority-minority district in Oklahoma with a surprising (to me) yes.

2nd CD (Green) 29.6% Obama, 76/6/8/4 (W/B/H/N)

The more republican parts of Oklahoma County and some nearby area areas.

3rd CD (Dark Magenta) 29.2% Obama, 75/4/6/8 (W/B/H/N)

The rest of Tulsa, the area inscribed by CD1, and a couple of counties north of Tulsa.

4th CD (Red) 31.6% Obama, 69/3/4/17 (W/B/H/N)

Eastern Oklahoma including Little Dixie. Fairly similar to the current 2nd CD.

5th CD (Gold) 27.4% Obama, 74/5/10/6 (W/B/H/N)

Western Oklahoma.

A Democratic Kansas

In a similar vein to my previous diary “A Democratic Nebraska” I moved a state south to see how Democratic a Kansan congressional district can be. However, early on I noticed that it was actually possible to make two districts in Kansas with a democratic lean, albeit a very, very slight democratic lean. As in the past the numbers are hand tabulated and should be quite accurate.

CD1(Blue): 53.5% Obama 73/9/10 W/B/H

The blight on the landscape that is CD1 stretches its hideous legs out from its nominal centre in Emporia to swallow up Pittsburg, Parsons, Wichita, Hutchinson, Manhattan, Junction City, Topeka, and parts of Lawrence whilst nimbly avoiding republican counties with any sort of significant population.    

CD2(Green): 53.5% Obama 76/9/10 W/B/H

Compared in to CD1 CD2 is has a positively tidy shape. Based in Kansas City (the part that is in Kansas anyway) it runs up along the Missouri through Leavenworth to Atchison and south into the more Democratic parts of Johnson county before turning west into the heart of Lawrence.    

CD3(Dark Magenta): 35.0% Obama 88/2/5 W/B/H

South-eastern Kansas wrapping around CD1. It would be a neater district if it was just southern Kansas and didn’t turn north-east at Hutchinson, honestly I just didn’t want to reassign the precincts south of Manhattan.

CD4(Red): 29.6% Obama 83/1/13 W/B/H

The rest of Kansas. Mostly the western and northern parts of the state but it does follow the Oklahoma state line quite a way east.

The single so called “super-democratic” district turned out to be 57.6% Obama (74/10/11 W/B/H) and appears below.

A Democratic Nebraska

Since Obama managed to win Nebraska’s second congressional district 3 years ago I’ve been wondering just how Democratic a district it is possible to make in Nebraska. With the new census data becoming available, now seemed as good a time as any to find out! As Dave’s Redistricting App doesn’t include partisan data for Nebraska I tabulated each precinct by hand.

CD1 Blue

57% Obama 43% McCain, 71/11/12 W/B/H

The Democratic district stretches predictably enough from Omaha to Lincoln and on into Saline county. While it certainly isn’t the most Democratic congressional district going around it is pretty darn blue for Nebraska and the right kind of Democrat could do very well here.  

CD2 Green

39% Obama 61% McCain, 90/2/5 W/B/H

The non-CD1 parts of south-east Nebraska.

CD3 Dark magenta

30% Obama 70% McCain, 85/1/11 W/B/H

The rest of Nebraska.

4-4 Gerrymander of Maryland

Obviously an exercise, inspired by the flood of 8-0 Democratic Marylands. Originally I had attempted to make five Republican seats in Maryland, but while it was possible to make five seats won by McCain it would have been a huge overreach and Republicans would have been unlikely to hold all five seats in even a neutral year (possibly none in a Democratic wave). Given that, the exercise became a matter of shoring up four seats as much as possible. While Maryland is quite a blue state these years the Democratic voting base is heavily concentrated so forcing it into four ultra Democratic seats was entirely possible. The remaining four Republican seats all ended up with a 44-54 Obama/McCain lean.    

CD1 (Blue): W85 B10, O44 M54 Much of Anne Arundel county, coastal Baltimore county and smallish bits of Harford and Prince George’s. PVI R+9  

CD2 (Green): W31 B63 O87 M12 Most of Baltimore city with tiny amounts of Baltimore county. PVI D+34  

CD3 (Dark Magenta): W80 B16 O44 M54 The entire Eastern Shore, all of Calvert and St. Mary’s, and parts of Charles and St George’s in south Maryland, and a piece of Harford in the north. PVI R+9  

CD4 (Red): W21 B69 O91 M9 Mostly Prince George’s, with a little of northern Charles D+38

CD5 (Gold): W47 B36 O77 M21 Northern Prince George’s with a tendril stretching to Annapolis (the Severn river does maintain contiguity) and toward (though not into) Baltimore city. D+24

CD6 (Teal): W87 B7 O44 M54 Mostly Baltimore county but spilling over into adjacent counties. PVI R+9  

CD7 (Dark Grey): W58 B15 A12 H12 O73 M25 The most Democratic parts of Montgomery county. D+17

CD8 (Slate Blue): W88 B6 O44 M54 Western Maryland and the less Democratic parts of Montgomery county. PVI R+9  

Republican Gerrymander of New York

This diary presents a theoretical Republican gerrymander of New York (27 representatives) that should, in the normal course of events, yield a 16D-11R delegation. Exactly how Republican a seat needs to be to be safe is a matter for debate, but in none of the projected Republican seats did Obama receive more than 47% of the vote which I feel should be safe most of the time. This map make makes quite a bit of use of water contiguity both around Long Island and Lake Ontario, however there is no touch point contiguity. Population deviations are all less than 1000 (within 0.15%).

Districts are numbered in reverse order to the current system, low numbered districts are upstate and high numbered are downstate.

NY-1 (Blue): More or less similar to the current 28th including the most Democratic parts of Buffalo, Niagara Falls, and the western Democratic parts of Rochester. Uses water contiguity on Lake Ontario instead of following the coastline which helps to push the PVI a little more Democratic. O 71% M 27%  

NY-2 (Green): Reasonably similar to the current 26th in that it includes parts of the Buffalo and Rochester suburbs and the areas in between. O 47% M 51%  

NY-3 (Dark Magenta): At this point upstate New York starts to take departures from reality and no longer resembles the current districts. The western parts of the southern tier, the south Buffalo suburbs, and wraps around Rochester to take in the eastern suburbs.  O 47% M 52%  

NY-4 (Red): Eastern and southern democratic leaning areas of Rochester, water contiguity to Oswego and a thin strip to metro Syracuse, tendrils to both Utica and Ithaca. O 64% M 35%  

NY-5 (Gold): The remainder of the southern tier, the territory between Syracuse (including its western suburbs) and Rochester, wraps around to southern Syracuse avoiding Ithaca. O 47% M 51%  

NY-6 (Teal): Northern Syracuse, northern Utica, Rome, north along the Lake Ontario coastline before turning east and then south, terminating short of Albany. O 47% M 52%  

NY-7 (Dark Grey): The Democratic leaning northernmost counties, a narrow strip running down the eastern state line, Saratoga Springs, Schenectady, and Albany. O 62% M 36%  

NY-8 (Slate Blue): Otsego County centred, with arms running off in every direction sucking in Republican leaning districts. O 47% M 51%

NY-9 (Cyan): Both the east and west state lines with convoluted lines grabbing the most Republican parts of Rockford County O 46% M 52%  

NY-10 (Deep Pink): Binghampton, Middletown, Peekskill, Newburgh, Poughkeepsie, Kingston, and the land connecting them. O 60% M 39%  

NY-11 (Chartreuse): The Democratic parts of Rockland and parts of Westchester, down the Hudson river coastline a little. O 66% M 33%

NY-12 (Cornflower Blue): More of Democratic Westchester, including New Rochelle and Mount Vernon, plus some of the northern Bronx. O 85% M 14%  

NY-13 (Dark Salmon): Southern Bronx, much like the current 16th. O 93% M 7%  

NY-14 (Olive): Northern Manhattan, much like the current 15th. O 92% M 7%  

NY-15 (Dark Orange): Southern Manhattan. O 82% M 17%  

NY-16 (Lime): Little bits of Kings, Queens, the Bronx, and Manhattan. O 79% M 20%  

NY-17 (Dark Slate Blue): Mostly Queens. O 81% M 19%

NY-18 (Yellow): North-eastern Kings. O 95% M 5%  

NY-19 (Yellow Green): North-western Kings and the northern shore of Staten Island. O 90% M 9%

NY-20 (Pink): South-western Kings and Staten Island minus its north shore. O 47% M 53%

NY-21 (Maroon): South Eastern Kings, and connected by water contiguity, the entire south coast of Long Island from Long Beach to Montauk.

O 46% M 53%

NY-22 (Sienna): Mostly Queens. O 71% M 29%

NY-23 (Aquamarine): Horrendously tortuous district picking up everything republican in southern Westchester, Bronx County, Queens, and Nassau and using repeated water contiguity over Eastchester Bay and the Long Island Sound to do it. O 47% M 52%

NY-24 (Indigo): Republican areas north of Jamaica bay in Queens, as well as southern Nassau, and a little south-western Suffolk.  O 47% M 52%

NY-25 (Pale Violet Red): The most Democratic parts of central and southern Queens and Nassau. O 90% M 10%

NY-26 (Grey): The republican parts of Eastern Long Island O 47% M 53%

NY-27 (Spring Green): The Democratic parts of Eastern long island, in four sections, each connected by water contiguity along the Long Island Sound. O 63% M 37%