WI-Gov results by state senate district

You may remember my quick calculation of PVI-based vulnerability estimates for the recall-eligible state senators of Wisconsin.  There, I used the Obama numbers for my calculations.

Well, the Milwaukee, Wisconsin Journal Sentinel has the gubernatorial numbers by senate district.  As a bonus finding, they also mention that Darling, Kapanke, Hopper, and Holperin had close races in 2008.

Enjoy.  One of you should go do a quick PVI calculation using the gube results as well, for each of the 16 recall-eligible districts.  I’m heading to bed for now since it’s past 1:30 AM.

Comparison chart for hot house races, 2006-2010

I thought of this idea a few days back when I realized that we might be able to compare margins between 2008 and 2010 for frosh and sophomore losers, to see who should be coming back.  For example, I’d like to see Tom Perriello (who won by about 50-50 in 2008 and lost by about 47-51 in 2010) and Bobby Bright (who won by about 50-50 in 2008 and lost by about 49-51 in 2010) coming back for another crack at things.

I then realized that I could do this for like…well, every district.

I’ve started up a Google Spreadsheet for this! The spreadsheet is now finished!  Check it out here:



1. Do pay attention to the formatting, and try to keep it like that.

2. If you want to add 2004 congressional, 2004 Kerry/Bush, and 2008 Obama/McCain numbers, please do so in new columns.  2004 congressional should go before 2006 congressional, and presidential columns should go last.

3. Add as many districts as you wish, if you want to see them on the list.  When adding rows, remember to ADD TWO ROWS FOR EACH DISTRICT.

By the way, the spreadsheet is now locked because it’s finished.  If you spot an error, please let me know and I will fix it.

Or if you want to add data for other districts, or other data, such as 2004 data or presidential data.  Give me your GMail address and I’ll give you access.

My Very First Gerrymander: the GMHmander

So, I said I’d actually play around with Dave’s Redistricting App.  Unfortunately, I don’t really know my geography that well, as to what parts of what district are D or R leaning, or have significant populations of what minority groups, or where college town communities are, etc..  But I needed a goal to work toward.

I started trying to see how I could redistrict Rhode Island as closely following county lines as possible.  But that was boring.  The insane maps–such as abgin’s New York Baconmandering–are more fun.  But I don’t know where anything is.  Wait…I’ll stroke my ego by writing out my username’s initials!

The other requirements for this map were to get as close to an even division of population as possible, and to retain five districts.

Map and other info below the fold.

The GMHmander

Fitting the G in there was rather hard.  It still looks rather sloppy.  Well, granted, so does the M.  Next time, I should pick appropriate states for doing what I want to do with them…

I know a lot of cities were cracked.  This is mostly for population balancing and location (i.e. letter-drawing) reasons.

FWIW, the population figures for these districts are as follows, according to Dave’s App.  (They might not be totally correct: for example, a tiny district east of New Britain seems to contain no voters for some reason.)

demographics of the GMHmander's districts

Interestingly, I’ve ended up with three districts of about seventy-something percent white populations.  Dunno if CT has enough minorities to trigger VRA restrictions, but I didn’t take them into account here anyway.

Who goes where?  First thoughts suggest that all but the new 4th district might stay D, especially the second (central CT cities except Hartford and Middletown) and third (Hartford, Middletown, and Norwich).  However, after trying to think for a bit about which incumbent should go where,…I became very confused.  Maybe Himes could get the new CT-05, and give DeLauro the new CT-02, while Courtney and Larson can decide who gets CT-03 and CT-04.  Larson would likely take 03, but amusingly, I would suddenly become represented by Joe Courtney.  (Well, it was close anyway, I live next to Tolland County which is currently in Courtney’s district.)  I guess this leaves C. Murphy to take CT-01…?

(Yes, Salisbury and Sharon are covered by the table, but you can safely assume they’re in the new 4th district.)

And then I pressed “Use New Pop Est”.  And all the numbers changed and now I’m off by like 10,000 people in some districts.  And I can’t change them back.  And I don’t know how to load a map back into the App…  Are these the new population counts from the 2010 Census data?

For some reason, coming up with a title for this made me think of “My Little Pony”.  I’m not a fan of it, but I just realized that it might be amusing to produce a My Little Ponymander.

Unrelated note: If anyone was wondering what happened in the general election rematch for probate judge in my area between Brian Griffin and Marianne Lassman Fisher, here are the results: Griffin 13,458; Lassman Fisher 11,679.  Griffin again won Windsor by a big enough margin to overcome Lassman Fisher’s combined smaller margins in East Windsor and South Windsor.

(all in!) My own local race liveblog

(At least I think the votes are all in.  I’m not sure, but it’s been three whole days now.)

So apart from our statewide races (Gov, LG, SoS, and Comptroller), our town had just one local race: the race for probate court judge.

Background information and analysis is beneath the fold.

4:09 pm: Well, we now have East Windsor results.  Again, I’m not sure if this is the full count, but this would be a slightly even lower turnout than South Windsor’s (at 5.6% instead of 6.9%).  Well, Fisher didn’t even get a total number of votes bigger than Griffin’s margin–it’s Fisher 311-241.  Final tally of all three is Griffin 2665-2351.  Griffin wins the D primary, and he goes on to a rematch with Fisher in the general election, but with Fisher as the R nominee.  I’d say he’s now definitely favored, and now I’m wondering if there was some other local race in Windsor that really drove up turnout.

13 August 2010

1:52 pm: Wow, finally, some results!  South Windsor, Fisher’s home, has reported, and as expected, she won big, 1305-408.  However, assuming these are all the results, this is a notably lower turnout here relative to Windsor–only 1713 votes total, out of a population of about 25,000.  Griffin now leads by under 400 votes.  Can East Windsor make up Fisher’s deficit, with a 2000 census population of only 9,818?

12 August 2010

9:00 pm: It’s been a whole day now, and they still only have the Windsor results.  I wonder when they’re counting the ballots; I know there’s at least two votes in Fisher’s column in South Windsor (mine and my mom’s) so I know they haven’t reported yet.

1:51 am: Still nothing new.  I’m taking a break from following the main reporting thread on the front page and going off to watch some Record of Lodoss War.  It’s completely possible that they still won’t have reported several episodes later, so I might just turn in for the night if that’s the case.  I’ll bump this thread tomorrow with a comment if there are new results.  I also added a bit more commentary about the demographics of each town.

1:36 am: Nothing new reported, but I’ve just posted this diary.

1:04 am: Windsor has reported.  Not surprisingly, Griffin won big there, 2016 to 735.

11 August 2010

11:29 pm: No results from any of the three towns yet.

10 August 2010

CT SoS election results, probably updated irregularly as results come in

Marianne Lassman Fisher is the probate court judge in South Windsor and East Windsor.  Brian Griffin is the probate court judge in nearby Windsor, across the Connecticut River.  But the two probate court districts are being combined into a single district, to be called Region 4.

The Democratic primary was held on 10 August 2010, as with everything else, of course.  Both of these candidates are Democrats.

Here is the local newspaper’s background on the race.

Note this important detail: a Griffin loss in this primary would mean that he’d have to wait four years to run for this office again, but a Fisher loss in this primary is tempered by the fact that Fisher has been cross-endorsed by the Republicans and thus will still appear on the ballot for a rematch this November.  (Though this isn’t as favorable obviously; and all three communities are Democratic-leaning at a national level.)

Demographics of Windsor, demographics of East Windsor, demographics of South Windsor.

Based on this being a low-info, low-issue-politics race where each candidate seems to have their own base, I’m predicting a Fisher win based on her having a larger base–about 25,000+9,000 versus about 28,000.  Additionally, Windsor is on average a slightly poorer community with a greater percentage of minorities.  Though the sparse and even less wealthy East Windsor may eat into Fisher’s potential additional margin from that town, so it may yet be close.

Letters to members of the Democratic/progressive communities

Dear Attorney General Richard Blumenthal,

You had better learn and take to heart the lessons provided yesterday by your neighboring colleague.  In particular: (1) a gigantic lead now is VERY MUCH NOT the same as a blowout victory (or even any victory), and (2) neglect is NEVER the right way to run a campaign.

Your supporter,

Glenn Magus Harvey

More beneath the fold.

Dear Democratic Party,

I damn well hope that this costly lesson about the negatives of complacency has been well learned.

If we can win Idaho, they can win Massachusetts.

Your supporter,

Glenn Magus Harvey


Dear progressive movement,

Stop whining about how watered-down the health care bill is, stop threatening to vote for all sorts of crazy people (on any side) against sane Democrats who can get elected (and possibly risk losing nasty districts), and start accepting political realities (remember the “living in reality” slogan?).

Stop whining about how the Obama administration isn’t progressive enough, and start asking yourself what realistic steps you can do to inch the country toward a better future.

You want results?  Be prepared to work very hard for them.  Whining and sulking do not produce results.  Do something better with your time–such as learning about on-the-ground political realities, figuring out how to use and to affect them to help your goals, coming up with productive ideas, and putting such ideas into action.

Your friend and ally,

Glenn Magus Harvey


Dear Nevada State Democratic Party and other relevant persons and parties,

Figure out a way to deal with Reid.  Both of them.  Preferably, figure out a way to get rid of both of them.

Your fellow Democrat,

Glenn Magus Harvey


Dear Senator Joe Lieberman,

You suck.

If Chris Dodd can afford to offend the insurance companies, then so can you.  So shut up.

Your detractor and former supporter,

Glenn Magus Harvey

DE-AL, DE-Sen: Mike Castle’s town meeting gets hijacked by birther

This is probably old news to all of you, but it is rather rare that a story about a House member gets reported on the half-hour evening news.


The most important question for us horse-race analysts is probably, “What does this mean for whether he’s gonna be running at all, and for which seat?”.  The guy, who’s both a moderate Republican and a veteran member of Congress, is obviously aware of these shenanigans, but does he want to have to deal with them?

In other news, please say hi to Bill “Quarter Alligator” Posey on your way out.

AK-Gov, AK-Sen, Pres: Shenanigans.

Dang, that word is funny.

So, as we all know already, we’ve got Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and Lieutenant Governor Sean Parnell on one side of the Alaska Republican Party, and Representative Don Young and former Senator Ted Stevens on the other side, and they clearly dislike each other.

What with the AK Republicans (officially), headed by Palin, pumping out hot air calling for Begich to resign, it seems that (according to info from here and Politics1.com) that Young might even be taking Begich’s side in this dispute.  Not to mention that Begich (easily) called Palin’s bluff on the resignation request.

And of course, the best part of this is that Young now wants Stevens to primary Palin.  Battle of the century, eh?

Is this fun? [y/n]

More discussion/questions below the fold.

Also, has Palin “overmisestimated” her own political capital?  How much pull do Young and Stevens still have?  Does Lisa Murkowski’s now-pretty-good favorables actually show that voters are done with the whole “anti-Frank-Murkowski/Don-Young/Ted-Stevens” mood?

And what if Stevens actually were to primary Palin?  Who might win the primary, and how bloody would it be, and who do we have waiting in our wings?  What’s the likelihood that Stevens would actually do this?  (Somehow I think he won’t.)

And if he doesn’t, would the Stevens wing of the R party have anyone else to run?  I hear that the Alaska legislature doesn’t seem to like Palin that much these days…

And is Parnell up for more shenanigans next year?

And is shenanigans a funny word?

Things to pay attention to when considering a candidate’s electability

Note: some of these things only apply to incumbents, while some only apply to challengers.

* political positions on issues, as advertised and/or as perceived by people

** how easily said perception can be changed (versus how cemented it already is)

* actual political positions as based on voting records, and whether this is different from the above

* fit to the district based on perceived ideology

* fit to the district based on actual ideology

* constituent services (can seriously make up for bad fits)

* backbencher versus leader

* teflon-coated-ness versus controversy generation (also known as gaffe/misbehavior probability)

* campaigning style–what is it suitable for (liberals, moderates, conservatives, liberal Democrats, liberal Republicans, conservative Democrats, conservative Republicans, rural voters, suburban voters, urban voters, Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, Whites, etc.)

* campaigning effort and effectiveness (some people are just lazy campaigners or haven’t adapted well to a new district’s style or such)

* charisma

* length of incumbency

* vote percentages in previous elections

* previous positions held, victories, and losses

* scandals (current and past)

* anything that dirty tactics can target (shouldn’t be a deciding factor, but should be paid attention to be ready to defend against)

* fundraising capability and fund availability

* fund usage capability (campaign on a dime?)

Anything else?

And is there a way we can distill this?  Though I’m sure some professional strategists already have some sort of abbreviated list that they use in their line of work.