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How Likely Is an Electoral Vote/Popular Vote Split?
RCP ^ | 10/12/2012 | Sean Trende

Posted on 10/12/2012 7:46:28 PM PDT by SeekAndFind

The possibility that Mitt Romney could win the popular vote while Barack Obama wins the vote in the Electoral College has been discussed throughout this campaign. In recent days, we've seen pieces from Nate Silver, Nate Cohn, Harry Enten and RCP's Scott Conroy exploring the issue. Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina has even referenced the potential discrepancy, urging reporters to look at the state polls rather than the national surveys.

How likely is this, really? History suggests "not very," unless the race is extremely close. This is because the Electoral College and the popular vote almost always line up reasonably well.

Take a look at the following chart.

It lists presidential races going back to 1952 (prior to 1952, the ensuing exercise is difficult to apply because of the "Solid South"). The second column lists the state from which the candidate who won the popular vote received his 270th electoral vote. 

That’s a bit abstract, but think of it this way: In 2008, Barack Obama won Washington, D.C., by 86 percentage points, his largest margin of victory anywhere. That gave him his first three electoral votes. The next largest margin was in his home state of Hawaii, which he won by 45 points. That gave him four more electoral votes, for a total of seven.

Continuing this exercise (Obama won Vermont by 37 points for a total of 10; he won Rhode Island by 28 for a total of 14 . . .), we come to Colorado as the state that gave him the clinching electoral vote -- number 270.

The third column is the national margin for the candidate who won the popular vote. The fourth column is that candidate’s margin of victory in the state that provided him electoral vote number 270

(Excerpt) Read more at realclearpolitics.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: electoralcollege; popularvote

1 posted on 10/12/2012 7:46:29 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
Right now, Romney leads by 0.7 points in the RCP Average. At the same time, the tally in the RCP Average of electoral votes looks something like this:

So winning the McCain states, plus Indiana, plus Nebraska’s 2nd District gives Romney 191 electoral votes. Adding the next-closest state (North Carolina) gets him to 206 electoral votes. And so forth.

Even though Romney is winning in the popular vote right now by 0.7 points (as of this writing), he trails in the state presently containing electoral vote number 270 by 1.3 points. In other words, as of Thursday afternoon the RCP Average suggests that the Electoral College is biased by two points toward Obama, which would be one of the largest biases ever.

Why might this bias persist through Election Day? The argument would go something like this: Barack Obama’s ground game and swing state spending advantage create something of a firewall in key swing states like Ohio, Wisconsin, and Nevada. Under this theory, the outsized Obama presence in these states makes them “sticky.” In other words, at a time when the rest of the country moves heavily toward Romney, these states will be less likely to do so. 

I find this hypothesis particularly persuasive for Ohio, where the auto bailout and Bain Capital air assault might have immunized blue-collar whites in northern Ohio from the same forces that have drawn similarly situated whites toward Romney nationally.

2 posted on 10/12/2012 7:48:00 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

State polls typically are a lagging indicator because polls from states are updated less frequently.


3 posted on 10/12/2012 7:57:07 PM PDT by Raycpa
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To: SeekAndFind

Did you include ME2 in your analysis?


4 posted on 10/12/2012 7:57:36 PM PDT by Perdogg (Vote like the US Constitution depends on it - it does!!)
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To: Raycpa

Have you noticed that the UC Boulder model is shaping up nicely?


5 posted on 10/12/2012 8:00:57 PM PDT by Perdogg (Vote like the US Constitution depends on it - it does!!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Check this out: 32 combinations that election ends in a tie.
bit.ly/Qi4WuZ
ht Dean Clancy


6 posted on 10/12/2012 8:01:18 PM PDT by CPT Clay (Follow me on Twitter @Clay N TX)
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To: CPT Clay

http://www.270towin.com/presidential_map/ties.php?party=dem&num_rem=68&st_remain=FL,PA,OH,MI,NC,VA,WI,CO,IA,NV,NH&me=&ne=

Maybe this will work.


7 posted on 10/12/2012 8:03:26 PM PDT by CPT Clay (Follow me on Twitter @Clay N TX)
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To: CPT Clay

I don’t see any of those scenarios falling out.


8 posted on 10/12/2012 8:09:33 PM PDT by Perdogg (Vote like the US Constitution depends on it - it does!!)
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To: Perdogg

Yep. Hope they are right.


9 posted on 10/12/2012 8:10:26 PM PDT by Raycpa
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To: SeekAndFind

Because of the Democrat advantage in the big blue states Obama winning the EC but not the popular vote is unlikely; more likely Obama wins popular vote but loses EC like Bush 2000.


10 posted on 10/12/2012 8:11:02 PM PDT by Mike Darancette (Take two Aspirin and call me in November - Obama for Hindmost.)
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To: SeekAndFind

If we had a tie, we could have Pres Romney chosen by House, and VP Biden chosen by Senate .


11 posted on 10/12/2012 8:13:10 PM PDT by PghBaldy (I am sick of Obama's and Hillary's apologies to muslims, especially after 11 September 2012.)
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To: PghBaldy

assuming the Senate does not change hands.


12 posted on 10/12/2012 8:19:27 PM PDT by Perdogg (Vote like the US Constitution depends on it - it does!!)
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To: SeekAndFind
How likely? I don't think it is at all likely - this is already shaping up to be a blow-out for Romney, and as each day goes by, it looks to be bigger and bigger and bigger.

Biggest nail in Zero's coffin - his intentional lying about what took place in Benghazi.

13 posted on 10/12/2012 8:20:38 PM PDT by Ron C.
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To: Raycpa
How Likely Is an Electoral Vote/Popular Vote Split?

Highly unlikely in a blowout.

14 posted on 10/12/2012 8:27:29 PM PDT by stevem
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To: SeekAndFind

This would not happen unless the eventual winner wins with less than a full percentage point of the vote. If Romney wins the popular vote with a full percentage point or more I don’t see this happening.


15 posted on 10/12/2012 8:48:58 PM PDT by Republican Wildcat
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To: SeekAndFind

You actually think there will even BE an election, doncha?


16 posted on 10/12/2012 9:04:23 PM PDT by Old Sarge (We are officially over the precipice, we just havent struck the ground yet...)
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To: Perdogg

Unless I’m quite confused, the Congress that would decide an EC tie is the lame duck Congress that does not include the new members.

Also, voting is by majority of state delegations, which means it is theoretically quite possible for the party with a majority of the House to not be able to elect its candidate as President. Don’t think it applies this year, though. Or very often, since Democratic reps are concentrated in the larger states.


17 posted on 10/12/2012 9:24:14 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: Sherman Logan

it would be the new members


18 posted on 10/12/2012 9:35:48 PM PDT by Perdogg (Vote like the US Constitution depends on it - it does!!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Assuming Romney won FL, VA, and CO, the combination of NV, IA, and Maine’s split vote is enough even if he lost OH.


19 posted on 10/12/2012 11:16:39 PM PDT by paudio (Post-racial society: When we can legitimately hire and fire a Black man without feeling guilty.)
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To: Perdogg

Forget Ohio — As long as CO holds; Romney needs to win 2 of NH (RR ahead 50-46 in latest poll), NV, WI, IA. personally I think they are in that order of likelyhood.

Obama is as likely to win VA, NC and FL as Romney is of winninig PA & MI


20 posted on 10/12/2012 11:24:17 PM PDT by Freeze923
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To: Perdogg

You are quite correct. I’ve been reading a lot of Civil War history recently and there’s a bunch of lame duck session covered. However, that flaw in the Constitution was settled by the 20th Amend.


21 posted on 10/13/2012 3:11:06 AM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: SeekAndFind

*


22 posted on 10/13/2012 8:12:29 AM PDT by PMAS (All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing)
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To: Perdogg

Most plausible 269-269 scenario is Obama wins OH PA MI WI NH, Romney wins FL NC VA CO NV IA


23 posted on 10/14/2012 6:38:50 AM PDT by CPT Clay (Follow me on Twitter @Clay N TX)
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To: Freeze923

I don’t think that’s quite right. NH only has 4 EVs. So giving him the 1 EV from Maine plus CO, Romney needs 12 more EVs. NH/IA or NH/NV would only get him 10. NV/IA would be exactly 12. And WI has 10, so WI plus any of the other 3 would do it.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2012/president/2012_elections_electoral_college_map.html


24 posted on 10/17/2012 4:32:07 PM PDT by JediJones (ROMNEY/RYAN: TURNAROUND ARTISTS ***** OBAMA/BIDEN: BULL $HIT ARTISTS)
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