Danny Taggart's Blogarama

A more-or-less daily dose of news, politics, techmology, and any random thoughts that pass through my head.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Election numbers breakdown

I've crunched some numbers on the election. The states Bush won (red) gained 5.6 million people from 2000 to 2003, with a population growth rate of 4%. The states Kerry won (blue) gained 3.7 million people in the same time period, with a growth rate of 2.65%. This means that Republican states are gaining more people, at a faster rate, than Democratic states. All good news for Republicans? The picture is a little more complicated.

I then multiplied the percentage difference between Bush and Gore (2000) for each state by the population of that state and summed the results. I get an approximation of what the popular vote difference would have been had everyone in the United States voted, regardless of age, citizenship, registration, etc. : 430,000 lead for Gore. The actual popular vote difference was reasonably close to this number: 540,000 lead for Gore. If you follow the same process, using the 2003 population estimates (2004 estimates are not yet available) and the 2004 election tallies, you get a more interesting result. Had everyone in the US voted, Bush would have led by about 8 million votes, whereas his actual lead was 3.5 million. This suggests that the population increases which primarily occurred in Republican-leaning states did not translate into proportional increases in the Republican vote count.

I have not yet studied as to why this may be the case. My Excel spreadsheet with all state-by-state data can be found here.

2000 election results
2004 election results
2000-2003 population estimates