Sunday, November 28, 2004

The Ten Region Analysis

Another interesting, far more useful, way of looking at American electoral demographics is the 10 region map.

In the 2004 election, the Big River Region, predicted to be key to the election, broke to Bush by a mere 50.1 percent. Just 10 counties made the difference, pushing Iowa into Bush's electoral bag. Combine this with extraordinary turnout in Appalachia, which kept Pennslyvania competitive and helped deliver Ohio to Bush, and you have Bush's electoral college victory.

Turnouts in Sagebrush areas of the Southwest put New Mexico in Bush column and kept Arizona, Colorado, and Nevada red. The surprise of the election however is where Bush's surprising 3.5 million popular vote margin can from; largely the Democratic bastions of the Northeast corridor. Areas of New York, including Staten Island, and Long Island, and Jersey's Ocean County all contributed hundreds of thousands of votes to Bush's victory. This, I suspect, is not a strategy that will work for any other Republican than Bush, or possibly Gulianni, because of 9/11.

What the 10 region map tells us is that Democrats must take back Big River by increasing their appeal to farming and rural voters. We need to reduce the staggering 61% margin for the Republicans in Appalachia, and increase the turnout in urban areas of the Southern Lowlands to be competitive in the upper South (VA, WV, NC, SC GA, TN, KY) and Florida. We must increase our appeal in El Norte to both urban and Hispanic voters, and suppress the 60% Republican margin in the southern portions of Sagebrush to take the Southwest (AZ, NM, CO, NV). The No South strategy remains valid, but we should work to close the gap in the Southern Lowlands, which have the highest minority populations in the South (up to 28%), and remain quite closely divided with a mere 51.5% margin for the Republicans.


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