Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Early Voting Update

CNN has unveiled an early voting map, which keeps track of numbers by state (where information is available). Usually, my critique of CNN's graphics is that they look better than anyone else's but have less information and are updated more slowly. This one seems better than their primary season graphics, but I've only been looking at these numbers for like ten minutes and have already found two fuck-ups: they've switched Louisiana's Republican and Democrat numbers and colored Virginia "not early voting" instead of "statistics not available".

George Mason professor Michael McDonald's United States Election Project is probably more useful, as it includes a regularly-updated summary of early voting numbers across the nation with more demographic information than CNN. It doesn't come with a map, but it does have readily clickable source links (usually government websites), so you can go and check out where the information is coming from and see what he didn't include. Also, he updates more quickly than CNN and is an academic so is less prone to messing up the numbers.

The long and short of it is, we're kicking ass. If the election was based solely on these numbers, we'd win every single state that could possibly have any bearing on the outcome. North Carolina and New Mexico would go for Obama by a 2:1 margin. We'd win Georgia. Hell, we'd Louisiana.

The great thing is, even though there are plenty more votes to be cast, these are votes, not polls. In fact, these are a lot of votes: NC and NM are both just short of 40% of the total turnout from 2004, with fully six days left. Furthermore, NC and GA are both posting enormous surges in the number of African American voters – something that is not always represented in the polls, which often assume a relatively static mix. Granted, Obama will probably not win Georgia in the end. But my guess is that it'll be closer than you'd think, and could even go blue.

On the downside, Colorado remains deadlocked and Florida is within 5%. And god, I wish Virginia would release their early voting numbers. This ain't over yet, especially since CO is the third most important state in the election after Pennsylvania and Virginia.

PS: Arizona doesn't do EV, so it's not directly relevant to this post. But if it was, I'd point out that AZ is now within the striking range of a Get Out The Vote movement as awesome as Obama's, as three polls show McCain at +5% or under.

1 comment:

  1. The numbers are looking like the Dukakis numbers at the same time pre-election. Someone pointed this out, but I am embarrassed to say I am reading too many blogs right now to remember whom. Barring massive voter suppression and screw-ups at the polls, McCain could do worse than Dukakis. Wow.

    I want Arizona so bad I can taste it. Not happening, but that's my new bar.