Monday, February 27, 2017

State Political Scores

How "Blue" (Democratic) or "Red" (Republican) is a State, really?

I start with 1964, because that was the year of the Civil Rights Act, when the South began to turn. If a State went for the Democratic nominee that year, gets 1 point; in 1968, 2 points; and so on, up to 2016, 14 points.

The exceptions are when a Southern State went for a Southern Democrat, because we can safely presume that it wouldn't have gone for a non-Southerner: Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964, Jimmy Carter in 1976 and 1980, or Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996. In each of these cases, the State in question gets only half the credit it would ordinarily get. By 2000, Al Gore was not going to be treated as a "Southerner" by the South, and Hillary Clinton certainly wasn't.



50. Wyoming, 1: Nearly went Red for Barry Goldwater in 1964, did for Richard Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way. Hillary's worst State. Also Barack Obama's.

49. Idaho, 1: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964, did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way.

48. Kansas, 1: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964 (though not as closely as Idaho did), did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way. 

47. Oklahoma, 1: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964 (though not as closely as Idaho and Kansas did), did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way.

46. North Dakota, 1: Went Red in 1968, and has stayed that way. Ranked ahead of the preceding because Obama and Hillary came closer to taking it.

45. South Dakota, 1: Went Red in 1968, and has stayed that way. Obama and Hillary came closer to taking it than they did North Dakota.

44. Utah, 1: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964, did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way. Ranked ahead of the preceding because Donald Trump only got 46 percent there in 2016, since homestater Evan McMullin got 21 percent, nearly relegating Hillary's 28 percent to 3rd. It was the 1 State where Bill Clinton finished 3rd in 1992, as he got 24 percent to 43 percent for George H.W. Bush and 27 percent for Ross Perot.

43. Alaska, 1: Went Red in 1968, and has stayed that way. Not so much conservative as Libertarian: They legalized recreational marijuana, which is why I've ranked it ahead of the other 1-pointers.

42. Alabama, 2: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976, but not 1980.

41. Mississippi, 2: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976, but not 1980. Ranked ahead of Alabama because Obama and Hillary have come slightly closer to taking it.

40. Texas, 2: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976, but not 1980. Ranked ahead of Mississippi because Obama and Hillary have come slightly closer to taking it.

39. South Carolina, 2: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976, but not 1980. Ranked ahead of Texas because Obama and Hillary have come slightly closer to taking it.

38. Nebraska, 5: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964, did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way, except for, in a split-district setup which only they and Maine have, 1 of its 3 House Districts, and therefore 1 of its 5 Electoral Votes, went for Obama in 2008 (so it gets only 1/3rd-credit for that year's election).

37. Georgia, 8.5: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, was the only Southern State Carter won both times, won by Bill Clinton in 1992, but went Red for Bob Dole in 1996 and has stayed that way.

36. Arizona, 9: Goldwater just barely won his home State in 1964. Other than that LBJ victory, Bill Clinton's win there in 1996 is the only time it's gone Blue since Harry Truman in 1948.

35. Missouri, 9.5: Blue for LBJ in 1964, Carter in 1976, and Bill Clinton both times. Red all the other times. In other words, from 1964 onward, it has only gone Blue for Southerners. So I'm going to treat it as a Southern State, and cut its total in half, from 19 to 9.5.

34. Arkansas, 10.5: Went Red in 1964, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980) and homestater Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996.

33. Louisiana, 10.5: Went Red for Goldwater in 1964, and has stayed since except for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980) and Bill Clinton both times. Ranked ahead of Arkansas because it's not Bill's home State.

32. Tennessee, 11: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, and has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980), and Bill Clinton both times (but not for his Vice President, Gore, in 2000).

31. Kentucky, 11: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, turned Blue for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980), turned Blue for Bill Clinton both times, but not since. Obama and Hillary came closer to taking it than to taking Tennessee.

30. Indiana, 13: Nearly went Red for Goldwater in 1964, did for Nixon in 1968, and has stayed that way except for Obama in 2008 (but not 2012).

29. North Carolina, 14.5: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, has since gone Blue only for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980) and Obama in 2008 (but not 2012).

28. Montana, 18: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, turned Blue for Carter in 1976 (but not 1980), turned Blue for Bill Clinton both times, but not since.

27. West Virginia, 20: Except for Nixon in 1972 and Ronald Reagan in 1984 -- Carter won it in 1976 and Mike Dukakis did so in 1988 -- stayed Blue through 1996, acting more like a Northeastern State. But after the NRA told them that Gore was coming for their guns in 2000 campaign ads, it's acted more like a Southern State since, becoming among the bloodiest of Red States.

26. Florida, 32: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, Blue for Carter in 1976, back Red for Reagan in 1980, Blue for Bill Clinton in 1996 (but not 1992), the flashpoint in 2000, Blue for Obama in 2008, back Red in 2016.

25. Virginia, 39.5: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed Red until Obama in 2008 (it was the 1 former Confederate State that Carter did not win in 1976), has stayed Blue since.

24. Ohio, 47: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed Red except for Carter in 1976, until 1992, going Blue for Bill Clinton both times, went Red for Dubya both times, went Blue for Obama both times, went Red for Trump in 2016.

23. Colorado, 48: Went Red in 1968, Bill Clinton turned it Blue in 1992 but not 1996, and Obama turned it Blue again in 2008.

22. Nevada, 57: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed that way except for Bill Clinton both times, until turning Blue for Obama in 2008, and has stayed that way.

21. Iowa, 60: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed Red until going Blue for Dukakis in 1988, stayed Blue until going Red for Dubya in 2004, went Blue for Obama both times, went Red for Trump.

20. Michigan, 66: Turned Red for Nixon in 1972 (but not 1968), stayed Red until turning Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, stayed Blue until turning Red for Trump in 2016.

19. New Mexico, 67: Turned Red for Nixon in 1968, Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, Red for Dubya in 2004, and has stayed Blue since Obama in 2008.

18. New Hampshire, 68: Blue for LBJ in 1964, Bill Clinton both times, and ever since John Kerry in 2004. Red for Nixon both times, Gerald Ford in 1976, Reagan both times, Daddy Bush in 1988 (but not 1992), and Dubya in 2000 (but not 2004).

17. Pennsylvania, 70: Turned Red for Nixon in 1972 (but not 1968), Blue again for Carter in 1976, turned Red for Reagan in 1980, stayed Red until turning Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, stayed Blue until turning Red for Trump in 2016.

16. Maine, 73: Turned Red for Nixon in 1972, stayed Red until turning Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, and has stayed that way, except for, in a split-district setup which only they and Nebraska have, 1 of its 2 House Districts, and therefore 1 of its 4 Electoral Votes, went for Trump in 2016 (so it gets only half-credit for last year's election).

15. Wisconsin, 75: Went Red for Nixon both times, Reagan both times, and Trump in 2016, but that's it.

14. California, 78: Went Red for homestater Nixon in 1968, and didn't go Blue again until Bill Clinton in 1992, but has every time since.

13. Illinois, 78: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed that way until Bill Clinton in 1992, and has stayed Blue since. Ranked ahead of California because of fewer homestaters (Obama's 2 and, sort-of, Hillary Clinton's 1 vs. 2 each for Nixon and Reagan).

12. Vermont, 78: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed Red until turning Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, has stayed Blue since. Ranked ahead of Illinois because no homestaters.

11. New Jersey, 78: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, stayed Red until turning Blue for Bill Clinton in 1992, has been Blue since. Ranked ahead of Vermont because it's my home State.

10. Connecticut, 80: Went Red for Nixon in 1972, didn't turn Blue again until Bill Clinton in 1992, but has stayed that way.

9. Delaware, 82: Went Red for Nixon both times, Reagan both times, and Daddy Bush in 1988, otherwise solid Blue.

8. Oregon, 85: Went Red for Nixon in 1968, turned Blue for Dukakis in 1988, has stayed Blue since.

7. New York, 91: Has gone Blue every time except for Nixon in 1972 and Reagan in 1980 and 1984.

6. Maryland, 92: Has gone Blue every time except for Nixon in 1972, Reagan in 1984 and Daddy Bush in 1988.

5. Washington, 93: Hasn't gone Red since Reagan in 1984.

4. Hawaii, 96: Since gaining Statehood in 1959, has gone Blue every time except for Nixon in 1972 and Reagan in 1984, the 2 49-State landslides.

3. Rhode Island, 96: Has gone Blue every time except for Nixon in 1972 and Reagan in 1984, the 2 49-State landslides.

2. Massachusetts, 99: Has gone Blue every time except for Walter Mondale over Reagan in 1984, the only State not to do so that year.

1. Minnesota, 102: Has gone Blue every time except for George McGovern over Nixon in 1972, the only State not to do so that year.

--. District of Columbia, 105: Since getting to vote for President for the 1st time in 1964, its mostly-black permanent residents have gone Blue every time. But it's not ranked, because, of course, it's not a State.

*

But ever since the screwed-up election of 2000 created the terms "Blue State" and "Red State," we get a different picture. The influences of Presidents before George W. Bush no longer apply. So let's judge them only from 2000 onward, and we will see their "true colors":

50. Wyoming, 0.
49. Idaho, 0.
48. Kansas, 0.
47. Oklahoma, 0.
46. West Virginia, 0. It's Shotgunistan now.
45. Arkansas, 0, with Bill Clinton's influence gone.
44. Louisiana, 0, Hurricane Katrina scattering the black vote hurt a lot.
43. Tennessee, 0, Gore came close in 2000 but it's slid back since.
42. Alaska, 0 but there's the slightest of hope.
41. North Dakota, 0 but there's slight hope.
40. South Dakota, 0 but there's slight hope.
39. Utah, 0 but there's slight hope.
38. Alabama, 0 but there's slight hope.
37. Mississippi, 0 but there's slight hope.
36. Kentucky, 0 but there's slight hope.
35. Texas, 0 but there's some hope.
34. South Carolina, 0 but there's some hope.
33. Georgia, 0 but there's some hope.
32. Montana, 0 but Obama nearly won it in 2008, so there's hope.
31. Arizona, 0 but Obama nearly won it in 2008, so there's hope.
30. Missouri, 0 but nearly won by Gore in 2000 and Obama in 2008.
29. Nebraska, 1 for that 1 EV in 2008. Less hope for the State overall.
28. Indiana, 3. Obama won it in 2008.
27. North Carolina, 3. Obama almost won it both times.
26. Florida, 7. It should have been 8, but Dubya stole it in 2000.
25. Ohio, 7. It should have been 9, but Dubya may have stolen it in 2004.
24. Iowa, 8.
23. Pennsylvania, 10. Hacked by the Russians in 2016?
22. Michigan, 10. Hacked by the Russians in 2016?
21. Wisconsin, 10. Hacked by the Russians in 2016?
20. Nevada, 12.
19. Virginia, 12.
18. Colorado, 12.
17. Maine, 12.5 due to the split-vote of 2016.
16. New Hampshire, 13.
15. New Mexico, 13.
14. Massachusetts, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2006 and 2014.
13. New Jersey, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2009 and 2013.
12. California, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2003 and 2006.
11. Minnesota, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2002 and 2006.
10. Maryland, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2014.
9. Illinois, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2014.
8. Vermont, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2016. Thanks, Bernie Sanders.
7. Connecticut, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2006.
6. Rhode Island, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2006 and an Independent in 2010.
5. Hawaii, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2002.
4. New York, 15. Elected a Republican Governor in 2002.
3. Oregon, 15. Elected a Republican Seantor in 2002.
2. Delaware, 15. Elected a Republican Senator in 1994.
1. Washington, 15. Elected a Republican Senator in 1994.

1 comment:

Ken Dick said...

Mike,

May I recommend a website you may enjoy (I have no connection to it whatsoever)?

http://www.electoral-vote.com/

It is written and maintained by two professors with a slight Democratic leaning. It's a better read during election season, but it's still pretty good even in the "off-season."

I hope you enjoy it.
--Ken D.