29 January 2009

PARTISAN RANKINGS for 2008 - also compared to 2004 - complete report

This report contains the partisan rankings for 2008, based on margin and also based on “partisan value” (to be explained in the report), each in two different way: via a direct state-by-state comparison to 2004 and also a numerical ranking comparison to 2004.


You can also find this report at GOOGLE DOCS.


Blue=democratic

Red=republican


Here the “Partisan Rankings” for 2008, based on the winning margin. Since Obama won the election, the table begins with the state he carried with the largest margin (DC) and ends with the state that John McCain carried with his largest margin (WY). The left side shows the liberal ranking, from 1-51. The right side shows the conservative ranking, from 51-1. This means that each state has two ranking numbers. For instance, MI is currently the 13th most liberal state in the union, or the 39th most conservative state. For the purpose of simplicity DC will be called a state. NE-02 is in the rankings, but will not be assigned a number.


Lib. Rank.

2008

Margin

Cons. Rank

1

DC

+85.93

51

2

HI

+45.26

50

3

VT

+37.01

49

4

RI

+27.92

48

5

NY

+26.69

47

6

MA

+25.81

46

7

IL

+25.44

45

8

CA

+25.13

44

9

DE

+25.00

43

10

MD

+24.03

42

11

CT

+22.37

41

12

ME

+17.32

40

13

MI

+17.11

39

14

WA

+16.46

38

15

NM

+16.35

37

16

NJ

+15.13

36

17

WI

+15.54

35

18

OR

+13.90

34

19

NV

+12.49

33

20

PA

+10.24

32

21

MN

+10.32

31

22

NH

+9.61

30

23

IA

+9.53

29

24

CO

+8.95

28

25

VA

+6.30

27

26

OH

+4.53

26

27

FL

+2.81

25

--

NE-02

+1.21

--

28

IN

+1.03

24

29

NC

+0.33

23

30

MO

+0.13

22

31

MT

+2.26

21

32

GA

+5.20

20

33

SD

+8.41

19

34

AZ

+8.48

18

35

ND

+8.60

17

36

SC

+8.98

16

37

TX

+11.76

15

38

WV

+13.14

14

39

MS

+13.17

13

40

TN

+15.07

12

41

KS

+14.93

11

42

NE*

+14.93

10

43

KY

+16.22

9

44

LA

+18.63

8

45

AR

+19.85

7

46

AL

+21.58

6

47

AK

+21.54

5

48

ID

+25.34

4

49

UT

+28.07

3

50

OK

+31.29

2

51

WY

+32.24

1


And the partisan rankings, compared to the partisan rankings from to 2004:

The states in shading are the states that flipped sides from 2004 to 2008.


Lib. Rank.

2008

Margin

2004

Margin

Cons. Rank

1

DC

+85.93

DC

+79.84

51

2

HI

+45.26

MA

+25.16

50

3

VT

+37.01

RI

+20.75

49

4

RI

+27.92

VT

+20.14

48

5

NY

+26.69

NY

+18.29

47

6

MA

+25.81

MD

+12.98

46

7

IL

+25.44

CT

+10.37

45

8

CA

+25.13

IL

+10.34

44

9

DE

+25.00

CA

+9.95

43

10

MD

+24.03

ME

+9.00

42

11

CT

+22.37

HI

+8.74

41

12

ME

+17.32

DE

+7.59

40

13

MI

+17.11

WA

+7.18

39

14

WA

+16.46

NJ

+6.68

38

15

NM

+16.35

OR

+4.16

37

16

NJ

+15.13

MN

+3.48

36

17

WI

+15.54

MI

+3.42

35

18

OR

+13.90

PA

+2.50

34

19

NV

+12.49

NH

+1.37

33

20

PA

+10.24

WI

+0.38

32

21

MN

+10.32

IA

+0.67

31

22

NH

+9.61

NM

+0.79

30

23

IA

+9.53

OH

+2.11

29

24

CO

+8.95

NV

+2.59

28

25

VA

+6.30

CO

+4.67

27

26

OH

+4.53

FL

+5.01

26

27

FL

+2.81

MO

+7.20

25

--

NE-02*

+1.21

--

--

--

28

IN

+1.03

VA

+8.20

24

29

NC

+0.33

AR

+9.76

23

30

MO

+0.13

AZ

+10.47

22

31

MT

+2.26

NC

+12.43

21

32

GA

+5.20

WV

+12.86

20

33

SD

+8.41

TN

+14.27

19

34

AZ

+8.48

LA

+14.51

18

35

ND

+8.60

GA

+16.60

17

36

SC

+8.98

SC

+17.08

16

37

TX

+11.76

MS

+19.69

15

38

WV

+13.14

KY

+19.86

14

39

MS

+13.17

MT

+20.50

13

40

TN

+15.07

IN

+20.68

12

41

KS

+14.93

SD

+21.47

11

42

NE*

+14.93

TX

+22.86

10

43

KY

+16.22

KS

+25.38

9

44

LA

+18.63

AK

+25.55

8

45

AR

+19.85

AL

+25.62

7

46

AL

+21.58

ND

+27.36

6

47

AK

+21.54

OK

+31.14

5

48

ID

+25.34

NE

+33.22

4

49

UT

+28.07

ID

+38.12

3

50

OK

+31.29

WY

+31.14

2

51

WY

+32.24

UT

+45.54

1



The table shows us some very important details: in 2004, as of the no. 9 most liberal state (CA), Kerry’s margin was already in single digits. Compare this to 2008, where you must first reach the no. 22 most liberal state (IA) in order to see an Obama win that is in single digits. This helps us to visualise the sweeping difference between 2008 and 2004 for the respective democratic candidates. Similarly, in 2004, Bush went into single digit margins as of the no. 23 most conservative state (AR), whereas McCain was in single digits as of the no. 16 most conservative state (SC).


The margin difference for each state (or „Swing“), 2008 compared to 2004, can be found here at GOOGLE DOCS, in the „Everything Table“.


PARTISAN VALUE


There is another way to measure all of this margin business. Look at it this way: Kerry won his home state of MA by +25.16% in 2004; Obama won MA by +25.81% in 2008, a difference of only +0.65% between the two democratic candidates. But are these landslides really so similar to each when measured against the national margin (or “pull”) for those respective years?


In electoral statistics, there is a value called the „PARTISAN VALUE“, which is different than the margin itself. The partisan value is the winning margin for each state minus the national margin. Be careful: the national margin for the winning side is a positive (+) value, whereas the same national margin for the losing side is a negative (-) value.


In order for these numbers to make sense, we must remember the national margins for both cycles:


Year

DEM national Margin

GOP national margin

2004

-2.46

+2.46

2008

+7.25

-7.25

„Swing“

+9.71

-9.71



So, sticking with MA as an example:


2008: +25.817.25 (national margin) = PARTISAN VALUE 18.56

2004: +25.16 - (-2.46) (national margin) = PARTISAN VALUE 27.62

PARTISAN VALUE SHIFT 2004 to 2008: -9.06


What does this mean? It means that Kerry's landslide carries some more weight because he carried his home state with +25.16% in spite of a -2.46 national trend working against him. Obama, on the other hand, though he had an almost identical landslide in MA, had it against the backdrop of a national trend of +7.25 for him instead of against him, but the trend was not apparent here. Now, we can argue that a huge landslide is a huge landslide is a huge landslide and what does it matter, but this kind of statistic tells us that the national margin of +7.25 for President Obama must have been accumulated somewhere else in the USA, but not in MA. And this way of measuring in no way takes away from Obama's landslide in MA, but puts it in a different perspective.


This form of statistic also means that the closer the difference of two PARTISAN VALUES from neighboring cycles comes to „0“, the more stabile the state is in spite of the national “pull” from one party to another. An excellent example of this is MO:


2008: 0.13 - (-7.25) = PARTISAN VALUE +7.38

2008: 7.20 – 2.46 = PARTISAN VALUE +4.74

PARTISAN VALUE SHIFT 2004 to 2008: +2.62


So, in spite of the fact that Bush won MO with a much more sizeable margin in 2004 than the razor thin margin of +0.13% that McCain eeked out in 2008, McCain still won against a national trend of -7.25 that was working against him. The fact that the margin was shrunken from +7.20 to +0.13 (difference = -7.07) allows us to clearly see that +7.25 national trend that was working for Barack Obama. So, what Obama did not accumulate toward his national average in MA, he certainly did pick up, at least partly, in MO.


Should Obama win a second term, then we will have two election cycles where the national average will be for the same party two times in a row, which makes comparing within each party somewhat easier. So, the partisan value provides us with a second baseline for 2012.


Here is a table of the PARTISAN VALUE for each state, based on the 2008 partisan rankings, with a direct state-by-state comparison to 2004. Of course, using the PARTISAN VALUE instead of the winning margin for each state results in exactly the same order of partisan ranking, followed by a PARTISAN VALUE table according to 1-51 place rankings per state. Remember, these numbers are just values, not the actual margins:




State

PART. VAL. 2008

PART. VAL. 2004

DIFFERENCE

DC

78.68

82.30

-3.62

HI

38.01

11.20

+26.81

VT

29.76

22.60

+7.16

RI

20.67

23.21

-2.54

NY

19.44

20.75

-1.31

MA

18.56

27.62

-9.06

MD

18.19

15.44

+2.75

IL

17.88

12.80

+5.08

DE

17.75

10.05

+7.70

CA

16.78

12.41

+4.37

CT

15.12

12.83

+2.29

ME

10.07

11.46

-1.39

WA

9.86

9.64

+0.22

MI

9.21

5.88

+3.33

OR

9.10

6.62

+2.48

NM

7.88

-1.67

+6.21

NJ

8.29

9.14

-0.85

WI

6.65

2.84

+3.81

NV

5.24

0.13

+5.37

MN

2.99

5.94

-2.95

PA

3.07

4.96

-1.89

NH

2.36

3.83

-1.47

IA

2.28

-1.79

+0.49

CO

1.70

2.21

+3.91

VA

-0.95

5.74

+6.69

OH

-2.72

-0.35

-3.07

FL

-4.44

2.55

-1.89

NE-02*

-6.04

19.33

+13.29

IN

-6.22

18.22

+12.00

NC

-6.92

9.97

+3.05

MO

7.38

4.74

+2.64

MT

9.51

18.04

-8.53

GA

12.45

14.14

-1.69

SD

15.66

19.01

-3.35

AZ

15.73

8.01

+7.72

ND

15.85

24.90

-9.05

SC

16.23

14.62

+1.61

TX

19.01

20.40

-1.39

WV

20.39

10.40

+9.99

MS

20.42

17.23

+3.19

TN

22.32

11.81

+10.51

KS

22.18

22.92

-0.74

NE*

22.18

30.76

-8.58

KY

23.47

17.40

+6.07

LA

25.88

12.05

+13.83

AR

27.10

7.30

+19.80

AL

28.83

23.16

+5.67

AK

28.79

23.09

+5.70

ID

32.59

35.66

-3.07

UT

35.32

43.08

-7.76

OK

38.54

28.68

+9.86

WY

39.49

35.51

+3.98


The states in the table above that show a large postive difference for Obama over 2004 and a large minus difference for McCain over 2004 are logically the states where Obama either racked up enormous margins or reduced republican margins. These are the states that contributed to the majority of the national margin of +7.25 for President Obama.


Here the partisan rankings, numerically, based on partisan value, for both 2008 and 2004.

Of course, the list is identical to the list based on the winning margin.

Remember, these numbers are just values, not the actual margins.


Lib. Rank.

2008

P Val. 08

2004

P Val. 04

Cons. Rank

1

DC

78.68

DC

82.30

51

2

HI

38.01

MA

26.22

50

3

VT

29.76

RI

23.71

49

4

RI

20.67

VT

22.62

48

5

NY

19.44

NY

20.75

47

6

MA

18.56

MD

15.40

46

7

IL

18.19

CT

12.83

45

8

CA

17.88

IL

12.80

44

9

DE

17.75

CA

12.40

43

10

MD

16.78

ME

11.46

42

11

CT

15.12

HI

11.20

41

12

ME

10.07

DE

10.05

40

13

MI

9.86

WA

9.64

39

14

WA

9.21

NJ

9.14

38

15

NM

9.10

OR

6.82

37

16

NJ

7.88

MN

5.94

36

17

WI

8.29

MI

5.88

35

18

OR

6.65

PA

4.96

34

19

NV

5.24

NH

3.83

33

20

PA

2.99

WI

2.50

32

21

MN

3.07

IA

-1.79

31

22

NH

2.36

NM

-1.67

30

23

IA

2.28

OH

-0.35

29

24

CO

1.70

NV

-0.13

28

25

VA

-0.95

CO

2.21

27

26

OH

-2.72

FL

2.55

26

27

FL

-4.44

MO

4.74

25

--

NE-02*

-6.04

--

 

--

28

IN

-6.22

VA

5.74

24

29

NC

-6.92

AR

7.30

23

30

MO

7.38

AZ

8.01

22

31

MT

9.51

NC

9.97

21

32

GA

12.45

WV

10.40

20

33

SD

15.66

TN

11.81

19

34

AZ

15.73

LA

12.05

18

35

ND

15.85

GA

14.14

17

36

SC

16.23

SC

14.32

16

37

TX

19.01

MS

17.23

15

38

WV

20.39

KY

17.40

14

39

MS

20.42

MT

18.04

13

40

TN

22.32

IN

18.22

12

41

KS

22.18

SD

19.01

11

42

NE*

22.18

TX

20.40

10

43

KY

23.47

KS

22.92

9

44

LA

25.88

AK

23.09

8

45

AR

27.10

AL

23.16

7

46

AL

28.83

ND

24.90

6

47

AK

28.79

OK

28.68

5

48

ID

32.59

NE

30.76

4

49

UT

35.32

ID

35.66

3

50

OK

38.54

WY

37.33

2

51

WY

39.49

UT

43.08

1


Now, how to read the two above tables in an organized sentence (example):


Hawaii is currently the 2nd most liberal state in the Union, having voted +38.01% above the national average for the DEMOCRATIC candidate in the 2008 GE. Hawaii was the 11th most liberal state in 2004, having voted +11.60% for the DEMOCRATIC candidate above the 2004 national average. Therefore, Hawaii has shifted upward nine places in the liberal partisan rankings and earned a partisan value difference of +26.81 over 2004, which is the largest liberal partisan difference over 2004. Therefore, Hawaii, though it is the 2nd most liberal state in the rankings, is the 1st most liberal trending state in the Union at this time, having by far the largest partisan value difference.


North Dakota is currently the 17th most conservative state in the Union, having voted +15.85% above the national average for the REPUBLICAN candidate. North Dakota was the 6th most conservative state in 2004, having voted +24.90% over the national average for the REPUBLICAN candidate in 2004. Therefore, North Dakota has shifted downward 11 places in the conservative partisan rankings and earned a partisan value difference of –9.05 over 2004, which is the largest negative conservative partisan difference. Therefore, North Dakota, though it is the 17th most conservative state in the rankings, is the least conservative leaning state of the states won by John McCain in 2008.


Those are the statistics and will be part of a large 51 state revised study that was first published at my blog in November 2007.