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Electoral College Breakdown, Installment One
Various

Posted on 02/19/2004 8:45:25 AM PST by Dales

Edited on 02/19/2004 10:36:05 AM PST by Lead Moderator. [history]

Due to popular demand, I am going to revive my poll tracking and analysis that I did during the 2000 election season. I will be starting things a bit differently this year. Instead of starting off with a comprehensive overview of the entire nation, I am going to start by looking at five states at a time. For the first installment, the random state generator presented me with North Dakota, Maine, Alabama, New Mexico, and Vermont.

North Dakota
Electoral Votes: 3
2000 Result
Bush 61%
Gore 33%

Background: North Dakota is always a problematic state for my poll tracking, in that it is so rarely, if ever, polled. There are good reasons for this. It is a very small state, with only three electoral votes. It also is rarely competitive. The last time the Democrats won in North Dakota was when Lyndon Johnson trounced Barry Goldwater in 1964. Since then, Republican candidates have carried North Dakota by margins from a low of 7 points (Bob Dole against Bill Clinton) to a high of 38 points (Reagan against Carter). Obviously, George W. Bush had little problem with Al Gore last election cycle.

Polling Data: None available.

Punditry: There is zero chance that North Dakota will be a factor in this election. If the election is close nationwide, North Dakota will not be, and if North Dakota is then the nationwide election won't be. Safe Bush


Maine
Electoral Votes: 4
2000 Result
Gore 49%
Bush 44%

Background: Despite having only a single more electoral vote than tiny North Dakota, Maine gets a bit more attention due to its proximity to the media hotbeds in New England. However, it is rarely listed as a swing state for the coming election, which is a mistake. Bush lost to Gore by only 5 points last time, and over the past 10 elections it has split evenly between the parties. The best way to describe Maine is streaky, as those elections have been Democrats for two straight, Republicans for five straight, and now Democrats for the last three. Perhaps it is because Nader picked up 5% that people assume that Maine will be less competitive this time.

Polling Data:

Date Polling Company Link Type MOE Republican Democrat
3/03 Critical Insights Link 600 RV 4.0 Bush 47% Unnamed Democrat 36%
9/12-26/03 Critical Insights Link 600 RV 4.0 Bush 36% Unnamed Democrat 45%

Punditry: Maine has been tracking the nationwide polls regarding Bush for quite some time now, generally with him lagging by a point or two here. If the election is close nationwide, expect this state to stay close, particularly if Kerry is the nominee. Despite being a New England state, Maine tends to vote for Democrats who are centrist and reject those who are perceived to be liberal. Slight Advantage Democrat.


Alabama
Electoral Votes: 9
2000 Result
Bush 56%
Gore 42%

Background: Alabama has been a reliable GOP state, only straying twice since 1960; both times it went for a southerner. Jimmy Carter carried the state, as did George Wallace.

Polling Data:

Date Polling Company Link Type MOE Republican Democrat
4/27/03 USA Polling Group Link RV 5% Bush 60% Unnamed Democrat 30

Punditry: This is another state, like North Dakota, which falls into the category of "if this one is close, the election is not". Bush will carry Alabama comfortably. Safe Bush.


New Mexico
Electoral Votes: 5
2000 Result
Gore 48%
Bush 48%

Background: No state, not even Florida, was closer in the last election than New Mexico. Prior to Clinton breaking through, the Republicans had carried the state for 6 consecutive elections, often by significant margins. Both times that Clinton carried New Mexico, the Perot vote played a significant factor. The strong showing Perot made here suggests that this is a state concerned with Mexico, both from an immigration perspective and from a jobs perspective.

Polling Data:

Date Polling Company Link Type MOE Republican Democrat
9/12/03 Research and Polling Inc. of Albuquerque Link 400 RV Bush 40% Unnamed Democrat 43%

Punditry: Simply on the basis of the close election results in 2000, New Mexico is going to be a state to keep an eye on, and the poll from last September indicates that it will still be a battle. I sense, however, that this state will be less friendly to the President this time around due to NAFTA, his immigration proposal, and the popularity of Democrat governor Bill Richardson. Slight Advantage Democrat.


Vermont
Electoral Votes: 3
2000 Result
Gore 51%
Bush 41%

Background: Vermont went for Lyndon Johnson, then not for another Democrat until Bill Clinton. It has gone Democrat the last three elections (by 16, 22, and 10 points). Third party candidates are a factor in Vermont, even if they do not generally swing the state.

Polling Data:

Date Polling Company Link Type MOE Republican Democrat
10/02 Research 2000 Link 400 LV 5% Bush 38% Dean 50%
10/28/03 Research 2000 Link 600 LV 4% Bush 46% Dean 34%

Punditry: Vermont has changed dramatically since the days when Ronald Reagan had been carrying the state. The Republican voters there are loyal, but they are simply outnumbered. Safe Democrat.


Summary Table
  Bush Democrat
  Safe Strong Lean Slight Tossup Slight Lean Strong Safe
  ND (3) - - - - NM (5) - - VT (3)
  AL (9) - - - - ME (4) - - -
Designation
Total:
12 - - - - 9 - - 3
Candidate
Total:
12 - 12
Undesignated electoral votes: 514

Next installment: Colorado, Georgia, North Carolina, Montana, Massachusetts

Historical election data and graphics are located at Dave Leip's invaluable website.


TOPICS: Politics/Elections; US: Alabama; US: Maine; US: New Mexico; US: North Dakota; US: Vermont
KEYWORDS: dales; ecb; electionpresident; electoralcollege; gwb2004; polls
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1 posted on 02/19/2004 8:45:26 AM PST by Dales
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To: Dales
As I recall, you were really close in 2000, but to refresh my memory, what was your final estimate?
2 posted on 02/19/2004 8:47:56 AM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrack of news.)
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To: Dales
Damn, we're losing already!
3 posted on 02/19/2004 8:50:03 AM PST by JohnnyZ (People don't just bump into each other and have sex. This isn't Cinemax! -- Jerry)
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To: Dales
Oh, I am glad to see you back with the explanations of the polls! I learned a lot from you last time! Thanks!
4 posted on 02/19/2004 8:51:04 AM PST by Miss Marple
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To: JohnnyZ
Settle down! We have a long way to go and these are only five states!
5 posted on 02/19/2004 8:52:04 AM PST by Miss Marple
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To: Miss Marple
I bet we take the lead after the next round.
6 posted on 02/19/2004 8:53:14 AM PST by JohnnyZ (People don't just bump into each other and have sex. This isn't Cinemax! -- Jerry)
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To: Dales
This is excellent. Please keep it in front of us. Thanks, Mark.
7 posted on 02/19/2004 8:56:00 AM PST by GOP_1900AD (Un-PC even to "Conservatives!" - Right makes right)
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To: Dales
Alabama has nine electoral votes, not the mere three you've tabulated.
8 posted on 02/19/2004 8:56:21 AM PST by PeoplesRepublicOfWashington
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To: JohnnyZ
Yep. Now I think you were being funny, and I didn't catch on. Sometimes I am a bit too quick on the trigger.

I like seeing the individual states because that is how you have to plan the campaign...not on total nationwide vote.

9 posted on 02/19/2004 8:56:43 AM PST by Miss Marple
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To: Dales
Check your table. You have the wrong number of electoral votes for AL.
10 posted on 02/19/2004 8:59:07 AM PST by jayef
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To: LS
While I recorded things all the way down to the states that were essentially tossups, in the titles I put the sum of the states that were not essentially too close to make any sort of prediction.

In the last of those, posted 11/6, I had it as 227 electoral votes for Bush, with 178 for Gore and the rest tossups. When I factored in the tossups, I had Bush getting 276 electoral votes, Gore getting 239, with 23 electoral votes unassigned. In the one before that, posted 11/3, I had it as 209 apiece, with when I factored in the tossups it being 265 for Gore, 262 for Bush, with 11 completely unassigned.

11 posted on 02/19/2004 9:00:27 AM PST by Dales
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To: Dales
Thanks for doing this analysis again. I really appreciated all that you did in 2000. It's a lot of work, no doubt.
12 posted on 02/19/2004 9:01:34 AM PST by Cap Huff
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To: PeoplesRepublicOfWashington; jayef
Typo. I'll fix it.
13 posted on 02/19/2004 9:01:37 AM PST by Dales
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To: Dales
You da man!

I look forward to following your tracking data in the months leading up to the election.
14 posted on 02/19/2004 9:01:42 AM PST by randita
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To: Dales
Dales, my FRiend!!!

It seems like only yesterday.

*****sniff******

I am very much looking forward to your work.

If you have a ping list, put me on it.

15 posted on 02/19/2004 9:02:06 AM PST by TomB
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To: Dales; LS
Seriesly, though, Maine is a weird-ass state. I grew up there and I still don't understand the politics. IIRC, GHWB came in 3rd in '92 in Maine. It's probably the most NASCAR of the New England states, yet the "private" Yankee view of religion predominates. There's a weird love-hate thing with the Bus(c)h series (get it?). The state GOP is piss poor in many respects but still does okay somehow, and whatsisname came from way back to finish respectably against Baldacci. There's no great love for Massachusetts in the Real Maine, but southern Maine IS Massachusetts, they're just not willing to admit it.
16 posted on 02/19/2004 9:03:53 AM PST by JohnnyZ (People don't just bump into each other and have sex. This isn't Cinemax! -- Jerry)
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To: Dales
Good work!

This is going to be a nail biter!

The electors will make the difference again.

17 posted on 02/19/2004 9:05:20 AM PST by Cold Heat ("It is easier for an ass to succeed in that trade than any other." [Samuel Clemens, on lawyers])
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To: JohnnyZ
Yes, by 316 votes, he came in behind Perot.
18 posted on 02/19/2004 9:05:28 AM PST by Dales
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To: TomB
Hi TomB. I am sorry, but I am not planning on doing a ping list this time. Too much to keep up with and I have less time now than ever before.
19 posted on 02/19/2004 9:06:12 AM PST by Dales
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To: Dales
I'll create a ping list and ping folks to your installments if you wish.
20 posted on 02/19/2004 9:07:28 AM PST by Neets (Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining.~)
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To: Neets
That would be great!
21 posted on 02/19/2004 9:08:47 AM PST by Dales
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To: Dales
Well, you don't get much better than that.
22 posted on 02/19/2004 9:09:20 AM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrack of news.)
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To: Neets
Put me on the ping list, please!
23 posted on 02/19/2004 9:12:12 AM PST by Miss Marple
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To: Neets
Put me on the ping list.

[Gee, I don't think I have ever typed those words before.]

Thanks.
24 posted on 02/19/2004 9:13:57 AM PST by 11th Earl of Mar
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To: LS
It seemed to work ok. There were a few states that the pollsters were off by quite a bit in aggregate, but they seemed to cancel each other out.
25 posted on 02/19/2004 9:16:02 AM PST by Dales
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To: 11th Earl of Mar; TomB; Miss Marple
You got it!
26 posted on 02/19/2004 9:19:26 AM PST by Neets (Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining.~)
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To: Neets
Please place me on Dales ping list. This is Superbowl time and Dales is the John Madden of commentators on this board =)
27 posted on 02/19/2004 9:21:33 AM PST by Anitius Severinus Boethius
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To: Dales
I was waiting for the return of this.

No real disagreements. North Dakota, Vermont, and Bama are obvious.
As for Maine, I predict the dem to win the state, but I do think one electoral vote(they split their votes) there is in play, while the other is more dem. I wouldn't be suprised to see a split there, but as of now, I expect the dems to win all of Maine.

New Mexico is one of the toughest states for me to predict. In 2000, Bush cleaned up in a lot of the small to mid size counties there(mostly counties under 30,000 voters). He needs a good turnout in San Juan county especially(35,000 voters and 62% win).

The dems have a few big 'small counties' of their own that I think are on the reservations. Santa Fe County is a big dem stronghold with 49,000 voters.

Two other key counties here are Sandoval(31,000 voters - Bush won with 49%) and Dona Ana(47,000 - Gore won with 51%)

And the big prize is Bernalillo (Albequerque). 200,000+ voters and Gore won it with 49% and by about 4212 votes. That could swing the state right there.

If I remember right, there was a big snowstorm in NM on Election Day last time. That may have affected everything.

28 posted on 02/19/2004 9:23:28 AM PST by Dan from Michigan ("You know it don't come easy, the road of the gypsy" - Iron Eagle)
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To: AuH2ORepublican; Impy; Pubbie
Ping
29 posted on 02/19/2004 9:26:38 AM PST by Dan from Michigan ("You know it don't come easy, the road of the gypsy" - Iron Eagle)
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To: Neets
Could you please add me to the ping list. Thanks.
30 posted on 02/19/2004 9:28:48 AM PST by Dan from Michigan ("You know it don't come easy, the road of the gypsy" - Iron Eagle)
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To: Dales
Where did Go Bush/Cheney go I wonder.
31 posted on 02/19/2004 9:29:57 AM PST by GraniteStateConservative ("You can dip a pecan in gold, but it's still a pecan"-- Deep Thoughts by JC Watts)
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To: Neets
Ditto! Add me to the Ping list also!
32 posted on 02/19/2004 9:30:04 AM PST by Hurricane Andrew
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To: Neets
Please add me to the ping list as well. Thanks!
33 posted on 02/19/2004 9:31:51 AM PST by NYS_Eric
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To: Hurricane Andrew
Ping list candidate, I am.

Gum

34 posted on 02/19/2004 9:33:14 AM PST by ChewedGum (http://king-of-fools.com)
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To: Anitius Severinus Boethius; Dan from Michigan; Hurricane Andrew; NYS_Eric
Ask and ye shall receive.
35 posted on 02/19/2004 9:34:02 AM PST by Neets (Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining.~)
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To: ChewedGum
Got ping?
36 posted on 02/19/2004 9:34:38 AM PST by Neets (Complainers change their complaints, but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining.~)
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To: Neets
OK, Neets, add me please.
37 posted on 02/19/2004 9:37:15 AM PST by onyx (Your secrets are safe with me and all my friends.)
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To: Neets
me too!
38 posted on 02/19/2004 9:37:20 AM PST by KJacob
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To: Neets
If you do, add me, please.
39 posted on 02/19/2004 9:38:37 AM PST by reformedliberal
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To: ChewedGum
Shameless tagline/website confluence bump
40 posted on 02/19/2004 9:39:20 AM PST by P.O.E. (Think of all the accidents you never hear about because they don't happen.)
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To: Neets
Add me. Please.
41 posted on 02/19/2004 9:41:19 AM PST by Krodg ("My faith frees me"...G.W. Bush........'A Charge To Keep')
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To: Neets
Put me on ping list also!

Thanks

42 posted on 02/19/2004 9:43:35 AM PST by beaureguard (Herman Cain for Senate!)
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To: Dales
Maine assigns their 4 electoral votes by giving 2 to the winner of the statewide popular vote, 1 to the winner of the vote in Congressional District 1, and 1 to the winner of Congressional District 2. IIRC, Bush was VERY close to Gore in District 2 in 2000.

It is a distinct possibility that Maine's electoral votes will be split this time: 3 to the Dems, 1 to Bush.
43 posted on 02/19/2004 9:44:57 AM PST by So Cal Rocket
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To: Dales
Thanks for the hard work. Very informative.
44 posted on 02/19/2004 9:48:10 AM PST by chimera
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To: Dales
I remember your work from 2000. You ought to consider selling your services, they are pretty darned good.
45 posted on 02/19/2004 9:51:38 AM PST by KC_Conspirator (This space for rent)
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To: Neets
Please add me to the ping list.
46 posted on 02/19/2004 9:55:29 AM PST by CIApilot
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To: Neets; Dales
This is great stuff, Dales!

Put me on the ping list please, Neets.
47 posted on 02/19/2004 9:56:30 AM PST by headsonpikes (Spirit of '76 bttt!)
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To: Neets
Please add me to the Dales ping list.

Does anyone have a chart that shows migration of electoral votes from 2000 to 2004? That would be helpful in tracking the EV contest since the last one was so close and I'm not expecting too many states to change.
48 posted on 02/19/2004 9:57:53 AM PST by Tall_Texan ((Tagline withheld pending notification of next of kin))
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To: Dales
Dales, thank you VERY much for your superb work in helping to teach and inform us about polls, election trends, and related material. I look forward to your continued reports throughout this election season.
49 posted on 02/19/2004 10:16:56 AM PST by Wolfstar (A self-confident cowboy nation, or a Kerrified nation. Your choice.)
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To: Neets
I would like to be on the ping list, too. Thanks.
50 posted on 02/19/2004 10:26:33 AM PST by scan58
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